At the City of Duncan Council Meeting on 4 February 2019, City of Duncan Mayor Michelle Staples announced that she had spent most of the day at a Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD) Budget Meeting. The City of Duncan has one seat on the CVRD Board.
We know several Cowichan Valley Regional District residents who follow CVRD matters closely and we asked one of them for comment on the CVRD Budget and tax increases for 2019.
Here is that CVRD watcher’s response:
“The Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD) is in the process of completing its property tax plans for 2019 and the CVRD is planning on a substantial tax increase for homeowners in the City of Duncan. Based on the average assessed value of a home in the City of Duncan, $335,625.00, Duncan homeowners can expect a property tax increase of $32.57 or 7.26 per cent in 2019 compared with 2018. That will bring the average tax paid to the CVRD by an average homeowner in Duncan to $481.29. That does not include the taxes that you will have to pay to the City of Duncan in addition to these CVRD taxes.
The major increases in property tax in 2019, from the CVRD, are due to two new taxes levied on Duncan as a result of the “Affordable Housing Tax“ [CVRD Bylaw 4201 – Cowichan Housing Association Annual Financial Contribution Service Establishment Bylaw, 2018] and the “Water Service Tax” [CVRD Bylaw 4202 – Drinking Water and Watershed Protection Service Establishment Bylaw, 2018] being approved by residents of the CVRD in the referendum questions that appeared on the election ballot in October 2018.
Those taxes are $11.29 and $7.53 respectively. Additionally, the “Solid Waste” levy went up $8.56, with most of the balance of the increase due to rising costs of running the Island Savings Center (ISC). [note: here is a link to the CVRD Island Savings Center Commission]
Currently, the average home in the City of Duncan, annually pays about $200.00 to subsidize the operation of the Island Savings Center, $75.00 to operate the solid waste facility [note: here is a link to PDF of the CVRD Solid Waste Management Plan, revised 24 October 2018 following the Municipal Election on 20 October 2018] and about $40.00 to operate the transit system. The balance of the $481.29 average tax bill is used to acquire park land, pay for CVRD administration, operate regional parks, and now to manage the regions water service and fund the affordable housing plans. “
In short, if you are a City of Duncan homeowner, the taxes you pay to the CVRD will increase significantly in 2019.
Here are the CVRD Bylaws 4201 and 4202 which were passed in the Ballot Referendum on 20 October 2018:
CVRD Bylaw No. 4201 – Service Establishment
“CVRD Bylaw No. 4201 – Cowichan Housing Association Annual Financial Contribution Service Establishment Bylaw, 2018“, will allow the CVRD to annually requisition up to the greater of $765,000 or an amount equal to the amount that could be raised by a property value tax of $0.04584 per $1,000 of net taxable value of land and improvements within the service area to assist the Cowichan Housing Association with costs associated with providing programs and services related to affordable housing and homelessness prevention in the Cowichan Valley.
CVRD Bylaw No. 4202 – Service Establishment
“CVRD Bylaw No. 4202 – Drinking Water and Watershed Protection Service Establishment Bylaw, 2018“, will allow the CVRD to annually requisition up to the greater of $750,000 or an amount equal to the amount that could be raised by a property value tax of $0.045050 per $1,000 of net taxable value of land and improvements within the service area to establish a service for the purpose of drinking water and watershed protection within the Cowichan Valley Regional District.
Here is a link to the CVRD’s projected tax increases for 2019.
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