Tax increase in Charlotte

  • May. 10, 2013 4:00 p.m.

Queen Charlotte residents can expect an increase in property taxes this year. The financial plan and tax rate bylaws were given first, second and third reading at council’s meeting Monday evening. The village will be collecting around four percent more in property taxes this year, from $258,485 in 2012 to $265,500 in 2013, a change CFO Debra Uliana attributes to cost of living increases. If nothing happens to offset these increases, then property taxes must go up, she said. “For the first four years we were incorporated, the small community grant increased so there wasn’t as much need to increase the property taxes over those years,” she explained. There have been some differences in spending for the village, she said, as village office now has one more staff member and has taken responsibility for the fire department, as well as put money towards operating the youth centre when it opens. Residential property owners will probably not notice the municipal increase, according to Ms Uliana, as the 2 percent rate increase increase will translate to less than a $4 increase per $100,000 of property value. Ms Uliana could not say if the total property tax bill will be going up significantly as the village has no control over taxes due to the regional district and hospital district, although she pointed out that the village did keep the water, sewer and frontages costs the same, “none of those were changed at all.” The total operating budget for the village is just over $1.6 million, around 16 percent of which is covered by property taxes, the other 84 percent; around $1.35 million is made up grants, fees and transfers. The village will be spending $361,461 on capital projects in 2013, including water meters, the new community park, boat launch improvement and village road repairs. Most of that money will coming from grants and gas tax funds, said Ms Uliana, $50,453 will be coming from the village’s reserves, around 13 percent of the total money being spent. The tax rate and financial plan bylaws will adopted by the council at a special meeting on May 13.