–Grumpy Taxpayer$ media release
Grumpy Taxpayer$ is releasing a tool to help residential, business owners and others compare tax rates across the 13 municipalities of the region.
During the next several months municipal councils will set tax rates (mill rates) for 2018, which when multiplied against your assessment, give your total municipal tax bill. Updated assessments—most in the region have gone up significantly—are now available online and may not result in increased taxes once the tax rate is determined.
“Certainly, paying property taxes is the price we pay for quality services in our everyday lives,” says Stan Bartlett, chair of Grumpy Taxpayer$ of Greater Victoria.
“But are you paying too much compared to taxpayers in other regional municipalities? Could your municipal council be giving you better value for your taxes? In this fall election does mayor and council need a reminder to be more frugal?”
This one-page tool (below) lists all of last year’s Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing tax rates for all property classes including the amount that goes to the municipality for services, regional district, hospital, school, and any other service such as BC Assessment, transit, and municipal finance authority.
In the yellow coloured column, the spreadsheet also compares the difference between what residential property owners are charged and business owners. In the capital region business owners pay from 2.04 to 6.04 times as much as residential owners just for the municipal portion.
The municipal tax rate tool allows you to compare existing 2017 rates for residences, utilities, supportive housing, major and light industry, business, managed forest land, recreational non-profit, and farms.
For example, if you are a Saanich resident with a property assessed at $500,000, you would be paying $2,731 in total property taxes (500 x 5.4624). If you run a business in Saanich assessed at $500,000, you would need to collect from your customers $10,271 (500 x 20.5423) for your municipality. That’s 3.76 times more than a residential property.
Note, tax rates have no relation to fees (water, garbage, sewer) some of which are municipal charges as well. Tax rates of course have a relationship to the municipal services your jurisdiction may or may not decide to provide or receive.
- Find your property assessment, BC Assessment. https://www.bcassessment.ca/
- How many municipalities does it take to screw in a light bulb? Catherine Holt, CEO, Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, Nov. 2017. http://grumpytaxpayers.com/2017/11/09/how-many-municipalities-does-it-take-to-screw-in-a-light-bulb-catherine-holt-ceo-greater-chamber-of-commerce/