Lloydminster City Hall. (Ezzah Bashir, 106.1 The Goat)
The City of Lloydminster is offering new payment options to residents unable to pay their utility bills and property taxes.
In response to COVID-19, the city has developed a short term relief plan for residents. City council unanimously passed a resolution to payment deferrals during the April 6 meeting.
Residents and businesses are now able to defer payments toward their utility accounts until September 30 and property taxes until November 10. No late payment or interest charges will be applied to residents in good standing with the city before April 6.
“If you have an outstanding balance with the city as of today you will still be charged interest,” says Mayor Gerald Aalbers.
Invoices will be sent out monthly but water service will not be disconnected due to late payment during this time. Outstanding payments will be transferred to property taxes after 180 days.
Property tax notices will be mailed out in May but Aalbers says there are still some processes that’ll take place before then.
“We’ll be looking at the city budget and city administration will be bringing forward a recommendation of a mill rate which will lead to the tax notice. We want to give assurances that when the notice comes if you don’t have the money to pay your taxes currently we are prepared to work with businesses and residents.”
Residents with taxes in arrears will still have to make payments and penalties still apply.
Those with pre-authorized debit plans can cancel their ongoing payments and get a full refund of their contributions towards their current property taxes. They will have to make those cancellations before May 8.
Other Opportunities Business licenses will still be issued but business license fees will not be due until September 30.
Aalbers encourages residents to pay what they can based on their current financial situation.
“We asked [city staff] to bring us options to help relieve some of the stress in people’s lives. We [as council] live in the community and are fully aware of what’s going on in the community. Whatever work people can do towards paying that bill would be appreciated and we’ll work through this together.”
Aalbers notes the payments will still have to be paid in full eventually in order for the city to operate. If not, then the city would have to borrow money which will cost taxpayers’ money.
Anyone with questions about their property value assessment or the payment deferrals is asked to call the city.