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Back  |  March 14, 2019  | 

Calgary businesses are owned, operated, and employ Calgarians and form the economic anchor of our past and future success. Over the last 5 years Calgary has experienced a prolonged economic downturn which has had a deep impact on the assessed value of properties in the downtown core. The business community outside of those office towers have borne the brunt of this tax shift.

Relying on largely small and medium-sized businesses to make up the shortfall is unsustainable, even when those increases were offset by approximately $55 million from a Phased Tax Program (PTP) over the last two years. In response to the continued assessment shift, I’ve tabled a proposal that will significantly alleviate the tax burden on businesses through budget reductions at the City of Calgary and by more evenly sharing the burden of this tax shift. This will create equity in the tax system between non-residential and residential ratepayers.

Fairness and equity are core principles of mine and over the last number of years the inequity of our system has become a significant challenge for our business community. I believe that action needs to be taken through reductions to our city budget and by sharing more equally in decreases to the property values in the downtown.

The specifics of my Notice of Motion which will be presented to Council on March 18th are as follows:
 
1. In 2019, approximately $250 million in municipal tax previously generated by non-residential property tax previously generated by non-residential property tax assessment value in the downtown to be shared as follows:
a. City of Calgary Budget Reductions of $100 million;
b. A transfer of taxes borne by non-residential property accounts to residential property accounts such that the overall tax responsibility is equally shared between non-residential and residential properties of $80 million; and
c. Allow redistribution from downtown non-residential accounts to other non-residential property accounts of $70 million.

2. A reconsideration of the March 5, 2019 decision of Council on Major Projects to remove $54.1 million from the new Major Capital Projects Reserve and, in addition to the $70.9 million currently allocated to create the following:
a. $125 million Residential Tax Rebate Program over a 4-year period
 
I have been working closely with the CFO and Assessment Department on this over the last week and have been considering this issue deeply for the past five years. I know that there are other proposals being tabled and am looking forward to the debate on Monday.

(click below to open PDF)
Alleviating the Tax Burden NoM Infographic 640 x 1115.png






 
 

Categories: Budget; City Finances; Councillor’s initiatives; Tax; Transparency

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This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.​

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