By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News
Coaldale town council has amended their 2019 mill rates for annexed lands.
During their regular May 13 meeting, Coaldale town council reviewed a proposed amendment to Bylaw 758-C-05-19 — or the 2019 Property Tax Bylaw bylaw.
Although council had previously passed the 2019 Property Tax Bylaw Bylaw at their April 23 meeting, according to the two previous annexation agreements with Lethbridge County, the mill rate for those annexed properties would remain the same as Lethbridge County’s so long as the triggering mechanisms outlined in those agreements are not invoked.
The town’s 2019 Mill Rate Bylaw had included the 2018 mill rates for Lethbridge County. Since then, county council has passed their 2019 mill rates, and the bylaw amendment aims to reflect those changes in the bylaw.
“There is no change to any of the residential and non-residential mill rates from last time,” said Kyle Beauchamp, director of corporate service for the town. “This bylaw is simply to amend the annexed mill rates to agree to Lethbridge County in the 2019 tax year.”
Coun. Bill Chapman asked if the town had to abide by the mill rate set by county, as the town was “carrying those taxes”.
“There’s two annexation agreements, but, for example, the last one we did, for tax, (we’ll) use the mill rates for Lethbridge County for the next 25 years,” said Beauchamp. “It’s just to ensure we are onside with the agreement.”
According to the amendment, there will be no change to the town’s residential or non-residential mill rates as previously approved.
However, the annexed residential mill rate will decrease from 7.4282 to 7.3894; the annexed non-residential mill rate will increase from 12.8652 to 12.9438; and the annexed farmland mill rate will increase from 7.4282 to 27.5616.
Referring to the overview section, where it states ’the annexed farmland mill rate increased from 7.4282 to 27.5616.’ coun. Roger Hohm asked Beauchamp to clarify that, as it looks like it could be a typo. Beauchamp said in the previous bylaw, the annexed farm land mill rate was the same as the residential mill rate.
“However, Lethbridge County splits up their farmland in their residential rate. The reason is farmland assessment are quite low, so they do have a higher mill rate for that,” said Beauchamp. “It does show quite a big jump, but it’s still consistent with Lethbridge County.”
Council unanimously approved all three readings of the bylaw amendment.