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City Council discussing 2021 Mill Rate increase to keep pace with rising costs

Lloydminster residents are facing a proposed increase on their 2021 Municipal Taxes.

The Mill Rate and Taxable Assessment, Bylaw No. 18-2021 saw the first reading at City Council’s regular meeting on Monday, May 17th.

The Total Annual Impact for residents is a 3.95 per cent increase over the 2020 Mill Rate. Depending on property valuations, residents could be paying annually an extra $93.32 on a $250,000 home, and on the high end for a $500,000 property, it’s an extra $186.65 or $15.55 monthly. Values would change based on prices in the middle.

The Total Non-Residential Impact is a 5.96 per cent rise over 2020 rates. This equates annually to a $689.63 increase for a $750,000 property, and on the high end, a $1379.25 increase on a $1.5 million dollar operation.

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Mayor Gerald Aalbers says he has been listening to the concerns of taxpayers but is faced with the challenges of balancing service delivery.

“It’s challenging. I had a coffee with the taxpayers in the last couple days and they begged me not to raise taxes. We had that discussion, and again I said, ‘What do we cut from City services?’ That is the question. It’s a balancing act of providing what people see each and every day to the taxes that they pay.”

The City is presenting comparable tax information for similar municipalities in both Alberta and Saskatchewan to justify the Mill Rate increases that are being discussed, with Lloydminster sitting somewhere in the middle compared to other municipalities.

In referencing the comparable data, Mayor Aalbers remains hopeful that over this next term, Council will continue to show taxpayers good value for their money.

“I believe that if you take a hard look at your City, what you get from this City, that you are getting good value. We can show comparables that we are in the middle of the road, or in some cases, less than the middle of the road, on the bottom third. But people remind me that they don’t live in those other places, they live in Lloydminster and I do appreciate that.”

The second and third reading of the proposed Mill Rate increase will come up at the next Council Meeting. Property Tax Notices will be mailed on June 18th and taxes which are due upon mailing will incur penalties starting July 25th.

Council also granted second, third and final readings to the Utility Rate Bylaw No. 14-2021. This had been tabled previously at the Governance and Priorities Committee meeting on April 19th.

The next Council meeting is scheduled for June 7th.

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