Tax increase hits 2.06 per cent

Abbotsford council agrees to add 0.7 per cent capital levy to original 1.36 per cent hike.

Abbotsford taxpayers can expect to see their municipal taxes rise by 2.06 per cent this year.

Council has given initial approval of the increase after deciding to add a 0.7 per cent  hike for a capital levy.

Last week, the projected tax increase was 1.36 per cent. However, staff asked council to consider a capital levy ranging from 0.3 to 0.7 per cent.

“I lamented the year we dropped the levy,” said Coun. Dave Loewen. “The levy was a savings account to put money away for a rainy day.”

Most councillors agreed, with the exception of Moe Gill and Henry Braun,  who opposed a tax increase for capital spending.

Council chose the 0.7 per cent option which will inject close to $800,000 in the reserve fund for future projects.

The 2013 increase breaks down to 0.16 per cent for city operations, 0.42 per cent for policing, 0.78 per cent to make up for lost revenue due to the provincial increase in farm exemptions, and 0.7 for capital.

Coun. John Smith pointed out that had there been no need for the farm exemption adjustment, the city’s tax increase would have been 1.28 per cent.

“I think that’s pretty darn restrained spending. That’s below inflation,” he said, adding he was satisfied that council had done the best it could do.

Water rates will not increase this year, while sewer rates will rise by five per cent in 2013. Solid waste fees will not increase in the coming year while a storm drainage increase of two per cent has been approved.

The average homeowner (based on a home valued at $400,000) will see their taxes go up by $39, sewer rates by $11 and drainage rates by $3 for a total impact of $53 this year.

In total, the average homeowner will pay $4,025 in taxes and fees in 2013.

While council approved the recommendations, it was not a unanimous decision. In addition to objections from Braun and Gill, both Loewen and Patricia Ross voiced their disapproval of the budget due to the fact it does not include money for five new firefighters.

Council’s initial approval allows staff to create a bylaw for the budget and five-year financial plan. Council is scheduled to give three readings to the bylaw on Dec. 10 with final approval on Dec. 17.

Just Posted

Abbotsford couple to release video for song about domestic abuse

Saint Soldier and Rozsa held Kickstarter campaign for Dark Shades

Four new exhibitions at The Reach focus on the human body

Opening reception takes place Jan. 24 at Abbotsford gallery

Abbotsford parent OK with manure facility near school getting permit

Shannon Gaudette says permitting the currently illegal operation would mean tight regulations

Filmmakers tackle topic of youth and the social media epidemic

Mother and daughter from Abbotsford and Mission team up to create Selfless documentary

Mount Vernon defeats Burnaby South in Snowball final

Knights down Rebels 95-77 to earn 2019 championship, Abbotsford’s Mouat Hawks finish third

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, personal expense claims

Clerk Craig James, security chief Gary Lenz call allegations ‘completely false’

B.C. man fined $10,000 after leaving moose to suffer before death

Surrey man was convicted last week on three Wildlife Act charges

‘Blue Monday’ isn’t real, but depression can be

CMHA encourages people to prioritize their mental health

South Surrey mother didn’t have the intent to kill her daughter: defence

Closing submissions in case of Lisa Batstone underway

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

B.C. man charged in 2014 snake venom death of toddler

Henry Thomas was taking care of the North Vancouver girl the day before she died

Parole granted for drunk driver who killed B.C. RCMP officer

Kenneth Jacob Fenton will be able to attend alcohol abuse treatment, nearly three years after crash that killed Const. Sarah Beckett

B.C.’s largest public-sector union wants inquiry into money laundering, drugs

Union officials say Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby have not ruled out the possibility of a public inquiry

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Most Read