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Back  |  April 09, 2019  | 


​Yesterday, City Council made a decision on how to move forward this year in tackling the challenging tax shift issue. As you may have seen in my post from last week (scroll down if you want to read more), I put forward a proposal to Council that was intended to be a reasonable, balanced approach. Council approved the first year of that approach, though decided to not make any decisions on 2020, 2021, or 2022 at this time. (My proposal froze non-residential taxes for those years, and I will continue to fight for a freeze or better.)
So, what did we decide?
As was approved in November during our budget discussions, homeowners will see an increase of 3.45% (this is the municipal and provincial rates combined). This means about a $8.75 increase per month on the average household.
Non-residential business properties, however, will see a combined municipal and provincial decrease of 3.07%. And, in order to provide immediate relief, Council has approved in principle a Small Business Sustainment Grant that is intended to put cash in the pockets of small businesses struggling through the downturn. Details on this will be revealed in the coming weeks.
The balance between what residential and non-residential properties pay is now becoming more equitable, moving from a 45-55% split to a 47-53% split, respectively.
The City of Calgary is also sharing in this. In addition to the $607 million in efficiencies that has been identified in the last four years, the City will continue to find reductions and evaluate the services we provide.
This is a really challenging issue that does not have an easy solution. No one wants to pay more in taxes. But, this economic downturn has impacted everyone and we simply cannot let this shift sink small businesses in this city.
I feel like we’ve struck the right balance between protecting businesses facing untenable property tax increases in an already challenging economic environment, while maintaining our competitive residential property tax rates.
Now, we’re setting our sights to longer-term solutions to make our downtown more resilient for the future.

Categories: Better economy; Budget; Even smarter City Hall; Media; Video

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