The B.C. government has distributed $290,551 in compensation for municipal property taxes to the City of Kelowna.
Altogether, the Province has distributed nearly $16 million in compensation for municipal property taxes to 56 communities around B.C.
Grants-in-lieu of property taxes are distributed every November and reimburse municipalities for services that benefited government properties, such as municipally run sewers, roads and fire protection.
Grants are issued in accordance with the Municipal Aid Act and are payable on land owned by the provincial government such as courthouses, provincial government office buildings and warehouses.
Schools and hospitals are exempt from paying municipal property taxes and are not part of the grants-in-lieu calculation. Other provincial assets such as highways, forests, parks or land under the control, management or administration of a Crown corporation are also excluded from compensation under the act.
Since 2002, the Government of British Columbia has distributed more than $254 million in grants-in-lieu to B.C. communities. A portion of the funds is paid by each community to its regional district, and both levels of local government use grants to help pay for local services.
Premier Christy Clark, MLA for Westside-Kelowna –
“This funding will help the city make investments that will ensure Kelowna continues to be one of the best places to live and visit, without putting pressure on local taxpayers.”
Steve Thomson, MLA for Kelowna-Mission –
“This grant is provided without conditions and therefore provides our local government with complete flexibility to choose its own priorities.”
Norm Letnick, MLA for Kelowna-Lake Country –
“The city has the option to spend this grant of over $290,000 on either public services or capital expenditures. It represents a substantial boost to the city’s annual budget.”