City council will vote to pass the 2017 budget Tuesday, and by the slimmest of margins the expected tax hike won’t be as high as first thought in December.
“The long story short is residential property tax will be an average of 2.7 per cent this year, which is a little bit lower than what we’d been forecasting, which was already the lowest in ten years,” Mayor Don Iveson said to reporters.
“I’m reasonably happy with the news in the report.”
A little over $578,000 in unanticipated revenue came in.
“I don’t know whether it was a condo building, or whether it was a neighborhood, or whether it was a warehouse that was built and became taxable that we might not have been expecting and now it is, and by having that property contribute that just lightens the load to all other taxpayers proportionately,” Iveson said.
Another dollar amount that helped the bottom line is the education property tax requisition from the province isn’t as high as first thought.
“It doesn’t have much of an effect, it bumps up business taxes a little bit, and it bumps down residential taxes a little bit and these things all come out in the wash over a couple of years,” Iveson said.
“We tend to forecast conservatively but especially in this economic climate you don’t want to wind up moving in the wrong way.”
Another $64 million in savings over the past year will be ear marked for the city’s rainy day fund. A large chunk of that savings came from the snow removal budget in 2016 that wasn’t spent because of the extra mild winter.
Taxes are due June 30.