• Jan. 26, 2011 5:00 a.m.

As reported in the Courier on January 12, many property assessments in Fort St. James have increased significantly for 2011. BC Assessment reported an average increase of 15 to 20 per cent.

The Council of the District of Fort St. James understands the concern that some citizens have expressed about the property tax implications of this increase.

While property assessments provided by BC Assessment are used to calculate property tax, increases to one, are not necessarily reflected in the other.

Municipal property taxes are calculated by multiplying the assessed value of the property by the appropriate rate to arrive at the dollar value.

The appropriate rate in this calculation is reverse calculated using the required tax dollars. As a result, an increase in property assessment will usually result in a decrease in the rate used to arrive at tax dollar amount approximate to the previous year.

Council and District management are currently preparing the operating budget for the 2011 year.

This budget has a goal of increasing the operating budget by approximately 2.5%, and therefore a tax dollar increase of 2.5%. This increase is intended to keep up with the rising costs of labour and materials used in maintaining the current level of service within the municipality.

To illustrate:

If your residential property was valued at $100,000 in 2010, the District collected approximately $875.

With a 20% increase in assessed value in 2011, the same house is now assessed at $120,000.

The District will adjust the mill rate downwards in order to collect the amount needed for this year.

Assuming a 2.5% increase, the amount the District will collect should only increase by a similar percentage. So the home now valued at $120,000 will have municipal taxes of about $897.

There are, of course, variations in the assessments. Owners with higher than average increases in assessments will end up paying more property tax, while those with lower than average increases (or decreases) will pay less property tax.

But the average property owner will not see dramatic change in property tax this year.

Please note that the Municipal Property Tax we have discussed above is only one component of a property tax notice.

Other items include: RCMP, Regional District of Bulkley Nechako, BC Assessment, Provincial School and Regional Hospital.

Questions regarding these other items should be directed to the appropriate taxing body. Questions regarding your assessment should be directed to BC Assessment.

For more information please contact the District of Fort St. James finance department:

Phone: 250-996-8233

Fax: 250-996-2249


Just Posted

Here’s what Fort St. James councillors refused to hear

Citizens express frustration and anger

Citizens ejected from Municipal Hall – Locked out

Mayor refuses to allow discussion on controversial Bylaw regarding marijuana

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Renewed plea for answers in 40-year-old B.C. cold case

The family of Lawrence Wellington Allard is hoping a private reward will get them some closure

UPDATED: Arrest made after van hits pedestrians in Toronto

Police are not saying what is the extent of injuries yet

B.C. farmland values grew at slower rate in 2017: report

Vancouver Island saw the highest growth in the province

Lt. Governor back in the saddle, with a legacy of land stewardship

Judith Guichon ends term today, returns to Nicola Valley ranch

NHL playoffs weekly roundup

Maple Leafs look to stay alive tonight as they face elimination against Boston on home ice

Electric vehicles more affordable than you think: BC Hydro

Myths blocking road to electric vehicle adoption

Kinder Morgan bungled pipeline public relations: poll

The survey suggests 58 per cent of Canadians believe the company is to blame for poor perceptions

Most Read