City of Kelowna forgoes more than $2 million in property taxes | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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City of Kelowna forgoes more than $2 million in property taxes

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September 14, 2018 - 7:30 AM

KELOWNA - Not everyone pays property taxes in Kelowna.

Kelowna city council will be asked on Monday, Sept. 17, to approve the annual list of tax-exempt properties.

Most people know that churches and hospitals don’t pay property taxes but might to surprised to know that private schools make up almost one-quarter of the tax-exempt values in the city.

For 2019, places of worship are exempt from almost $558,000 in taxes. Add to that the $482,000 for private schools, and that’s almost half of the $2.3 million in taxes not paid.

Private schools are exempt if they qualify for non-profit status with the province.

The list also includes:

  • Public Parks $443,000
  • Cultural $397,000
  • Social Services $265,000
  • Special Needs Housing $64,000
  • Hospitals $49,000

Of the total, $1.8 million is deemed permissive. That means the city can decide not to exempt those properties.

According to city revenue supervisor Angie Schumacher, the city has no control over what is called statutory exemptions for churches, hospitals and qualified private schools. Those do not pay city taxes for the buildings and the land the buildings sit on. It’s up to the city to grant permissive exemptions for the rest of the property including parking lots.

Once exempt from city taxes, that means they don’t have to pay school, regional district or hospital taxes either.

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