Nelson city council has approved a 2.5 per cent property tax increase for this year, but a regional tax cut makes the actual increase 1.5 per cent.
Council passed the 2018 financial plan Tuesday, which includes an increase of 2.5 per cent in taxes for the city’s businesses and residents.
But that raise in taxes is mitigated by a 2.5 per cent cut to the city’s taxes owed to the Regional District of Central Kootenay, which means the increase for Nelson is essentially 1.5 per cent.
That happened after an agreement was reached between the city and RDCK to lower the amount of taxes made available to the Recreation Commission following completion of work on the Nelson and District Community Complex and the Civic Centre.
Councillor Valerie Warmington said the city worked to keep the increase as low as it could.
“I think this council is very cognizant of how expensive it’s become to live in Nelson,” she said. “We don’t really have high average wages here so the pressure is going to felt somewhere and it’s going to be felt on the homeowner and the taxpayer so we really don’t want to force people out of our community. We want people to stay here and to live here comfortably. We pay a lot of attention to that.”
Here’s the breakdown of the taxes in Nelson: a $40 municipal tax increase; a $14 cut in RDCK taxes; a $3 increase in hospital tax and a $21 provincial school tax.
That means the average single family dwelling, which rose in assessed value from $363,000 last year to $393,000, will pay $50 more this year than in 2017.
Initially a three per cent increase was announced, but that was reduced last month after the city received a $137,000 grant from the Columbia Basin Trust to help pay for a new emergency operations centre.