Top Story

Inverness council holds tax rates

June 8, 2022

-by Rankin MacDonald
    Inverness Municipal Council decided not to increase the property tax rates for the coming year pointing to the fact that almost everyone is having trouble just making ends meet.
    On Thursday of last week, county council set the tax rates for 2022-2023 and they will remain at $1.05 per one hundred dollar assessment for residential and resource property and $1.91 per one hundred dollars of assessment for commercial property.

Area rates
    The following area rates are billed based on $100 of assessed value: (2023, 2022)
– NE Margaree Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– West Bay Road Volunteer Fire Department, $0.15, $0.10;
– Port Hastings Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Port Hood Volunteer Fire Department (Residential), $0.10, $0.10;
– Port Hood Volunteer Fire Department (Commercial), $0.06, $0.06;
– Inverness Volunteer Fire Department, $0.08, $0.08;
– Judique Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Whycocomagh Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Lake Ainslie Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Cheticamp Volunteer Fire Department (Residential), $0.10, $0.10;
– Cheticamp Volunteer Fire Department (Commercial), $0.06, $0.06;
– Valley Mills Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Margaree Volunteer Fire Department (Residential), $0.10, $0.10;
– Margaree Volunteer Fire Department (Commercial), $0.10, $0.10;
– Blues Mills Volunteer Fire Department (Residential), $0.10, $0.10;
– Blues Mills Volunteer Fire Department (Commercial), $0.05, $0.05;
– Lemoine Volunteer Fire Department, $0.10, $0.10;
– Wastewater Services Area Rate (District #1), $0.367, $0.374;
– Wastewater Services Area Rate (District #2-6), $0.356, $0.363.
    The following area rates are billed based on dwelling unit: (2023, 2022)
– Mabou Volunteer Fire Department (1 dwelling unit), $100, $100;
– Mabou Volunteer Fire Department (more than 1 dwelling unit), $200, $200;
– Pleasant Bay Volunteer Fire Department per dwelling unit, $125, $125;
– Bay St. Lawrence Volunteer Fire Department (Meat Cove) per dwelling unit, $60, $60.
    The Municipality of the County of Inverness Financial Condition is considered Green (Low Risk). This means that, although the municipality has a few challenges, it is considered low risk for fiscal instability.
– The municipality is pleased to announce that the Residential, Commercial, and Resource Tax Rates will remain the same.
– The average Residential Assessment is $135,000.
– The Residential Tax Effort for the Municipality is 2.1 per cent. This means that 2.1 per cent of the median household income is required to pay the average tax bill. Any percentage under four (4) is considered low risk.
– Total expenditures required for the Municipality of the County of Inverness to operate for the 2023 fiscal year is $20,499,500.
– Total revenue required for the Municipality of the County of Inverness to operate for the 2023 fiscal year is $19,736,200.
– Total financing and transfers required for the Municipality of the County of Inverness to balance the 2023 General Operating Budget is fiscal year $763,300. This includes $943,000 of the surplus in the 2022 fiscal year.
– RCMP costs have increased over the previous year by 11.04 per cent, which is an additional $302,165, bringing the total amount paid for policing to $3,040,244.
– Thirty-seven per cent (37%) of the total expenditures budgeted by the municipality ($7,510,200) are paid to five entities: Eastern Counties Regional Library, Strait Regional Centre for Education, RCMP, Property Valuation Services Corporation, Correctional Facilities, and roads.
– The 2023 General Operating Budget includes 104 staff, which includes contract, seasonal, part-time and full-time employees.
– $1,077,150 in grants is included for organizations that provide services to residents of the municipality.
– The municipality will provide $326,500 in property tax exemptions to not-for-profit and charitable organizations.
– With the ending of the COVID-19 pandemic, additional budget has been allotted for new recreation programs including Disc Golf, Atlantic Outdoor Forum, Race Network, and Community Playbox Project.
    The total revenue to come in is $19,736,000, but the total expenditures stand at $20,499,500 so money from last year’s surplus was used to top up the revenue figures to keep the tax rate stable.
    Wind turbine tax is $40,000 this year and for forest property, based on acreage, the rate is $0.25.
    Revenue from the sale of goods or services to federal, provincial, or local governments and their agencies, which are, or will be, used by that government to supply a good or service to its citizens that it would normally be responsible for providing accounts for one per cent (1%) of revenue. The municipality provides garbage collection and wastewater services to We’koqma’q First Nation, as well as the treatment of leachate for the Municipality of the District of Guysborough: We’koqma’q First Nation Wastewater Services, $90,000; We’koqma’q First Nation Solid Waste, $65,000; Leachate Revenue, $140,000; for a total of $295,000.
    For sales of services the municipality accumulates $375,000.
    Transfers from other governments amount to over $800,000.
    Budget department allocations (department, percentage of budget, total budget):
– General government services, 14 per cent, $2,787,350;
– Protective services, nine per cent, $1,772,200;
– Transportation services, seven per cent, $1,474,100;
– Environmental Health services, 19 per cent, $3,959,400;
– Environmental Development services, eight per cent, $1,573,350;
– Recreation & Cultural services, five per cent, $1,143,100;
– Mandatory contributions, 37 per cent, $7,510,200;
– Extraordinary items, one per cent, $379,800;
– Total $20,499,500.
Mandatory contributions:
– Strait Regional Centre for Education, $3,585,000;
– RCMP, $3,038,500;
– Corrections, $211,400;
– Property Valuation Services, $411,200;
– Regional library, $95,000;
– Provincial roads, $169,100;
– Regional Housing Authority, $0;
– Total $7,510,200.
    “I worked with council and staff to ensure that we pass a budget that continues to provide services to residents, during a time with increased costs, while ensuring the tax rate is not increased.
    ‘I realize that people are experiencing rising costs for gas, food, and heating and we must do our best to not add to their financial burdens.
    ‘As an example, looking at our RCMP contributions alone rose $302,175, the total is $3,040,244, a 20.74 per cent increase over the last five years.
    ‘But, by using our surplus from previous year’s budget we were able to offset these increases which are non-controllable.”
    The budget passed but it did not pass unanimously.
    Councillor John MacLennan voted against the budget saying he doesn’t agree with taking money from one account to prop up another.
    He also said that the municipality is top heavy with staff which in itself is a major expense.






































Share this article

Join the conversation


comments powered by Disqus

Oran Dan - The Inverness Oran -

The Inverness Oran
15767 Central Avenue. P.O. Box 100
Inverness, Nova Scotia. B0E 1N0
Tel.: 1 (902) 258-2253. Fax: 1 (902) 258-2632
Email: [email protected]