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City council approves raising mill rates

Another year, another property tax bylaw has come for the residents of Lloydminster. City Council has approved the 2019 Property Tax Mill Rate and Taxable Assessment Bylaw and raised the mill rates because of it.

The education and seamless rates are unchanged from 2018, while the total residential mill rate will increase by 1.82 per cent. The total non-residential mill rate would increase by 3.29 per cent. This is because the total taxable assessment for this tax year is down by 1.4 per cent. Currently, it sits at $4.437 billion, which is down from $4.501 billion last year.

While Mayor Gerald Aalbers admits that the mill rates may go down again someday, it’s all a matter of property value. The current state of the economy means a higher mill rate is necessary to get the city’s taxation in order to provide the services they do.

“If the economy comes back, and you’re bidding on houses again, and there are no empty houses and no vacant lots, the mill rate potentially could go down. But at the same time, your assessment goes up, so that math changes,” says Aalbers.

Aalbers adds that the upcoming Alberta budget could mean even more for how the city achieves its budget requirements. The upcoming federal election may also prove to be game-changing. The assessment and proposed mill rate change will collect an estimated $36 million for municipal purposes. Tax notices will be printed and mailed to Lloydminster property owners in mid-May and taxes are due June 30.

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