The city has granted a property tax exemption for the Olive Tree’s Reclaim Store for the year 2020.
In order for the Olive Tree to get the exemption for this year, they would have had to send in their application by September 30, 2019. However, the organization did not have the lease ready by the deadline.
Another issue was the property would need to be used for a charitable and benevolent purpose 60 per cent of the time while active to be allowed exemption. Due to COVID-19, the facility wasn’t open to the public for nearly three months and opening plans were pushed to May 19.
Mayor Gerald Aalbers says had the store opened a year or two ago, it wouldn’t have been brought before council as it would meet the requirements. But, because of the timelines it would need council’s approval for the exemption.
“We know there is challenging times ahead of us and they’re dealing with it as best they can.”
The city calculates the total property tax on the Reclaim store to be $8,440 with $6,213 from municipal levies and $2,226 from education levies. Aalbers says the store provides a great benefit to the community and keeps still useful items out of the landfill.
“This has been on the drawing board for sometime and they were able to get it off the ground. I’m really excited about that because it filled a void in our city after Restore left a number of years ago.”
The city is once again taking in applications for non-profit property tax exemptions and have a deadline of September 30th. If approved, the exemption lasts for three years.