In the City’s ongoing efforts to support economic growth for the region, new property tax incentives will support new industrial projects or expansion of existing developments.
Designed to encourage industrial growth and expansion in Wetaskiwin, Council approved bylaw 1969-20 at their regular July 20 City Council meeting. Under the Municipal Government Act, municipalities can offer multi-year tax exemptions, reductions, or deferrals for non-residential properties to attract investment, development, and revitalization.
“The initiative comes in response to the community’s desire to expand the industrial tax base, a move that will bring with it quality jobs, and in turn, new residential growth,” explains Candace Coughlan, Wetaskiwin’s Manager of Economic Development. “We are listening to what the business community is telling us and responding with initiatives to make Wetaskiwin a desirable, welcoming location for all types and sizes of business.” added Coughlan.
In the 2021 budget process, the City has proposed a comprehensive property tax strategy, reviewing tax rates and structures at all levels in an effort to ensure Wetaskiwin is competitive.
Building a business-friendly community
“The City has been exploring various ways to attract more growth to Wetaskiwin, and our residents have been very clear about their expectations on this front,” says Mayor Tyler Gandam. “The City is confident that this new bylaw will encourage development and help bring new investment into the City of Wetaskiwin.”
The move allows for incentives on municipal property taxes for new industrial developments and expansions on a sliding scale over a three-year period following occupancy of the development.
The bylaw lets the City make local development more appealing, and attract companies seeking to invest or expand in our business-friendly region. It is the latest in a series of measures to build a comprehensive economic development strategy for Wetaskiwin.
Earlier this year, Wetaskiwin’s Economic Development department connected with stakeholders throughout the community to better understand their needs and goals.
Coming up, Coughlan and her team are planning a targeted industry analysis and land analysis, where both will provide valuable insights into Wetaskiwin’s competitiveness and how to approach future developments.
A community visioning initiative looking at the region’s next 50 years is also on the Economic Development calendar, with both residents and businesses encouraged to weigh in. Be sure to watch for the new attraction campaign—Welcome in Wetaskiwin—coming soon!