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RMWB Council approves 2019 Tax Rate Bylaw

(Fort McMurray, AB – May 7, 2019) – The Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) Council approved the 2019 Property Tax Rate Bylaw resulting in a $28 million reduction in overall property taxes and a reduction in the tax ratio between the highest non-residential and lowest residential tax rate.

“The majority of residents will see a decrease on their property tax bill this year,” said Philip Schofield, Regional Assessor, Assessment and Taxation. “Growth in the rural non-residential tax-class, continued focus on budget reductions and a strong fiscal management program has reduced the required property taxes from $672.2 million last year to $643.6 million in 2019.”

Tax notices will be mailed in May. Property taxes are due June 28, 2019. Under the Municipal Government Act, all property owners are obligated to pay their property taxes.

The Property Tax Rate Bylaw establishes the rates at which different property classes are taxed and is calculated based on the total assessment value of properties within each property class. This bylaw is essential for completing the work set out in the approved operating and capital budgets.

Using the principles of zero-based budgeting, RMWB Council approved a 2019 budget that was $20 million less than it was in 2018. The 2019 operating and capitals budgets focused on finding further efficiencies to reduce costs, increasing non-tax revenue and continuing to support the programs and services that contribute to quality of life in the region.

In 2018, RMWB Council approved the creation of a rural non-residential small business property sub-class. This tax rate was included in the 2019 Tax Rate Bylaw approved by Council. Properties that meet the criteria outlined in the provincial regulation will receive a 25 per cent reduction from the rural non-residential rate.

Provincial Education Tax

The Municipality collects the provincial education tax on behalf of the Province. Education funding continues to comprise the largest part of a residential tax bill. The Municipality does not have control over the amount of the provincial education levy.

Due to the provincial election and an absence of a provincial budget, the provincial education tax levy has not been issued yet for 2019. The Municipality will use the 2018 education tax levy in order to collect the education tax. A subsequent increase/decrease to the actual 2019 education tax requisition will be adjusted as part of the 2020 taxation process.

Designated Industrial Property Requisition Tax Rate

The Designated Industrial (DI) Property Requisition Tax Rate was introduced by the province in 2018. This tax applies to designated Industrial Property owners across the province and appears as a separate line item on each DI Property owner’s tax bill. As with Provincial Education Tax, the Municipality collects this on behalf of the province without retaining any revenue from this tax.

For more detailed information, please visit rmwb.ca/taxes.

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Media inquiries:
media@rmwb.ca 

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