Vernon homeowners could face 7% tax increase - InfoNews

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Vernon homeowners could face 7% tax increase

Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK
April 10, 2019 - 4:58 PM

VERNON - Vernon homeowners are staring down the barrel of an over seven per cent property tax hike, while businesses may see a tax reduction.

Vernon city council voted in favour of a proposed 7.11 per cent residential property tax increase at its April 8 meeting, choosing from four options presented by city staff.

Administration had recommended council chose an option which would see businesses taxes increased by roughly 8.74 per cent and residential taxes rise by 4.24 per cent. The other three options presented where a 3.14 per cent increase to homeowners with a 10.96 per cent business increase; a 5.35 per cent increase to homeowners with a 6.53 per cent increase to business; and a 7.11 per cent increase to homeowners with a 2.98 per cent increase to business.

However, the majority of councillors didn't support the staff recommendation.

"I just can't support burdening the business community any more than we already are,” Coun. Brian Quiring told council and Coun. Scott Anderson agreed.

"I can't see business taking on more burden, we're nailing them in the social realm and now we're nailing them in the financial realm," Anderson said.

But none of the options on the table appeared to sit well with the council.

Vernon Mayor Victor Cumming said he had "difficulty" with the 7.1 per cent tax increase option and favoured the option of a 5.35 per cent increase for residents and 6.53 per cent for businesses. Cumming did not get support from the rest of council for this option.

The average price of property in Vernon went up 8 per cent from 2018 to 2019 from $402,984 to $435,395. Based on the price of an average property the 7.1 per cent increase would cost taxpayers an extra $97.59 a year.

The increase still needs to be finalized and will be back at council's April 23 meeting.

Regardless of which option council chooses, tax bills will be mailed out shortly afterwards and are due July 2.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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