Much to the displeasure of the County of Wetaskiwin council, the Government of Alberta has decided to stop paying the education property tax on properties where grants in place of taxes are provided.
This change will affect between 207 and 210 properties within the county; the majority are grazing reserve parcels that are not being leased.
The change will leave a $7,5000 gap previously covered by the grant program. Rene Boutin, director of assessment services, says the missing funds will be re-distributed for payment among the rest of the parcels in the county.
Reeve Kathy Rooyakkers says council had no choice but to accept the data presented as information. “We can’t do anything.”
School Requisition Tax
The government mandated school requisition tax was also increased within the County of Wetaskiwin.
All municipalities must collect the tax in accordance with the Municipal Government Act.
A total of $7,572,889 will be collected, which is a $210,549 increase from 2015; $4,744,728 for residential and $2,828,161 for non-residential.
The county was forced to accept the five per cent increase at its April 26 meeting.
“It’s legislation,” said CAO Frank Coutney.
“We don’t have any choice,” added Kathy Rooyakkers, reeve.