Town amends property tax repayment bylaw

·2 min read

Strathmore Town Council has passed a bylaw to help local taxpayers in managing the cost of repaying their taxes every spring.

The bylaw, being an amendment to the 2023 Fees Bylaw No. 22-27, was introduced to Council during the March 15 regular meeting, and was presented by Leana Ashbaker, Senior Manager of Financial Services for the Town of Strathmore.

“This amendment is so we would be allowed to charge for tax notifications. As administration has continued to review financial best practices, we noticed that within the rate bylaw we did not have fees for charging for tax notifications,” she said. “In order to start the process for tax recovery, we need a fee to put a tax notification on title.”

Having the bylaw approved, town administration is now able to recover costs for filing Tax Notifications on properties that are in arrears on their property taxes.

Within the bylaw, the table in Section G is now amended to indicate regarding tax notices on properties that have fallen into arrears, a $50 registration fee, a $20 tax notification to third parties, and a cost recovery, plus 10 per cent admin fee on advertising.

The idea with the amendment is to allow taxpayers an opportunity to develop a payment plan with the town instead of having to take the brunt of a potentially large upfront cost to repay their taxes.

“Previously this year, administration brought before council our tax service payment plan (TAP bylaw). This helps taxpayers … develop tax agreements; we also have our TIP bylaw … and that allows us to spread out our taxes for residents or ratepayers over a year,” said Ashbaker. “We are working with our residents, our taxpayers to ensure that it is easier on their budget instead of getting a bill in May … and making sure it is paid by June 30. We are just allowing them to have payment plans to help their pocketbook.”

Following the introduction of the bylaw, Town of Strathmore Council unanimously passed all three readings of the bylaw with little additional commentary.

The bylaw amendment was taken into full force and effect as of March 15, as that was the date of third reading.

John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times