Lawn bowling club gets reprieve from higher tax bill

Eighty-two-year-old club had warned it would have to fold if forced to pay $6,400 tax bill.

The Lawn Bowling Club's continued existence is in jeopardy if it doesn't receive an exemption from property taxes

The Lawn Bowling Club's continued existence is in jeopardy if it doesn't receive an exemption from property taxes

The Jubilee Park Lawn Bowling Club is again safe from a crippling tax bill.

The City of Abbotsford has revised its new tax-exemption rules after being warned proposed changes would see the club face annual bills of $6,400.

The city is creating a new policy that would formalize which community organizations qualify for permissive tax exemptions. The original proposal would have seen four local organizations that rent property from the city below market value face full tax bills. And that would have marked the end of the 82-year-old bowling club, John Birchfield told council.

The Abbotsford Curling Club would also have been affected, and manager Kent Bird also asked council to take a look at the new policy, with that club set to see its exemption drop from $12,200 to, after four years, just $3,700.

Staff returned with revised rules protecting the exemptions for the curling club, lawn bowling club and Abbotsford Downtown Business Association.

With the new policy in place, the city will now provide a total of $1.41 million in tax exemptions. That figure is $81,000 higher than last year.

Non-profit organizations can receive exemptions, the size of which is dependent on the proportion of services offered to local residents. Exempt organizations range from non-profits like Abbotsford Community Services to religious organizations and churches, to sports and service clubs.