MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - In an effort to encourage ratepayers to get their taxes in early, council has increased the property tax administration incentive from one per cent to 1.5 per cent for 2023.
The move came by way of motion at the regularly scheduled March 8 council meeting, held in person and on Zoom.
For taxpayers not utilizing the county’s tax instalment plan, the incentive applies when the total current tax levy is received by June 30 of the current year with a reduction of one and one half per cent being applied.
“What we have decided for changes to this bylaw is to add a tax incentive of 1.5 per cent,” Lorianne Marshall, director of corporate services, told council. “The 1.5 was determined by looking at how much the interest rate has increased from June last year to this year.
“What this does is hopefully encourage people to continue to pay their taxes by June 30. What we are looking for a cash influx of about $13 million to cover us for construction projects over the summer. It is also an avoidance of a line of credit of 6.2 per cent.”
If the county has the same uptake in 2023 as it had in 2022 the initiative will cost the municipality an additional $100,000 this year, with a total cost of $300,000.
The county will make interest on the money collected early through investment, council heard.
Council also made modifications to the property tax administration bylaw to change the penalty for outstanding taxes to two per cent on June 16 and four per cent on Sept. 4.
At the February council meeting, council was shown a document outlining penalties charged by various other municipalities in the region, including Clearwater County eight per cent on Sept. 17 and four per cent on Dec. 15, and Red Deer County six per cent on July 1 and six per cent on Dec. 1.
Last year’s rates in Mountain View County were four per cent for June and two per cent for September.
Council carried second and third motion on Bylaw No. 02/23, with all council members in attendance.
Editor's note: This article has been updated from the original to correct the percentage rate for outstanding taxes as well as county’s line of credit interest.