by Colin Smith
Morinville homeowners could be paying property taxes at a higher rate than expected this year.
A 3.39 per cent rate increase is set out in the 2015 Property Tax Rate Bylaw, which received unanimous first reading at the regular meeting of Town Council Apr. 14. Second and third reading is anticipated for the Apr. 28 meeting.
The proposed rate is a .39 per cent increase, up from the three per cent municipal tax increase in the Town’s 2015 Budget, approved in December. The increase is due to the assessment figures it was based on were too high.
With a rate increase of 3.39 per cent, the municipal taxes for a home assessed at $300,000 will rise by about $65 per year.
The Town of Morinville needs to raise $8,160,137 in municipal taxes to meet its expenditures and debenture debt, in line with its 2015 Operating and Capital budget approved in December.
In addition to municipal taxes, it has to cover this year’s Education Property Tax Requisition in the amount of $3,091,592.65 for the Alberta School Foundation (ASFF) and Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools. There is also the Sturgeon Foundation Tax Requisition in the amount of $115,861.26, for a total of $11,316,388.
Tax calculations for 2014 are based on property assessments as of July 1, 2014, with changes made to properties up to Dec. 31 recorded as if they had been made by July 1.
Real growth in assessment for 2014 was 3.11 per cent as compared to the budgeted 3.5 per cent. As a result, homeowners will pay a higher rate in order to generate the budgeted amount of revenue for the Town.
For a property valued at $300,000, total taxes for 2015 would be $2,735.84 compared to $2,664.73, an increase of 2.67 per cent or $71.11 per year.
That is based on the assessed value of the home rising 2.44 per cent to $300,000 from $292,855 in 2014. Municipal taxes will go from $1,917.68 to $1982.89, school taxes are up by .069 per cent or $4.98, and the sum that goes toward the Sturgeon Foundation requisition rises by 4.05 percent, $1.12.
Tax assessment notices will go out later this month and in May.
The Town administration points out that individual ratepayers may see their municipal portion vary from the average increase due to market adjustments on individual properties and improvements made.
Residential and occupied non-residential properties are both assessed at a tax rate of 6.09618. Vacant non-residential properties are assessed at 19.192351 and vacant farmland at 31.970466.
Morinville’s 2015 projected revenue also includes $51,202 in local improvement taxes collected from ratepayers in the Business Park.