Council to consider reducing tardy tax penalties

by Tristan Turner
Morinville News Correspondent

Councillor Stephen Dafoe brought forward a motion Mar. 28 to have Administration bring back a report on potential approaches to reducing the burden of unpaid municipal tax penalties on unemployed or financially burdened residents.

The Town’s 22-year-old Unpaid Property Tax Penalty Bylaw levies a 15% penalty on taxes not paid by June 30 and an 18% penalty on property tax balances not paid by Dec. 31.

Dafoe’s original motion was for Council to debate potentially reducing the late tax penalties by half, in “light of our difficult economic times”, as put by Councillor Dafoe.

CAO Andrew Isbister suggested the report could include an option to allow the CAO to – at their discretion – approve the reduction or elimination of the penalty if the affected resident makes an appeal to the Town.

Councillor Dafoe responded positively and looked forward to seeing what Administration would bring forward at the next meeting for Council to debate.

That information will next be discussed Apr. 11 when Council is set to pass second and third reading of the property tax bylaw.

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1 Comment

  1. The penalty is a large part of tax paying compliance.
    Reducing the penalty will see an increase in late payments.

    Who is going to be confirming the hardship being suffered, or are we going to just take their word that times are tough.

    There are already plenty of reasons/excuses for late payment, and now, if passed there will only be one reason for late payments………you guessed it. Going through hard times.

    I am not attempting to diminish the hardship people are going through.

    We have single parents, fixed incomes, illnesses, unemployment etc. Are we going to include all of these too?

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