Fort St. John Council drops property tax rates

The 2014 Tax Rate Bylaw was given first three readings at Monday’s city council meeting.

The residential tax rate will drop to 5.1888 from 5.2261 for 2013, while the business tax rate will go from 14.7037 to 14.5986 in 2014.

The light industrial tax rate will go from 26.4928 in 2013 to 26.3034 in 2014, while major industrial will go from 29.0013 to 28.7940.

Properties classified as recreation will also see a drop from 11.0151 to 10.9363.

Lastly, the farm rate will see the biggest drop from 14.3865 to 1.5566. As of the last assessment, there were no properties in Fort St. John designated as farm. In 2013, Council also changed the tax ratio for the farm class, so if there ever is a farm property in the City, those properties would face less of a tax burden.

Utilities remain unchanged at 40.00.

Even with the tax rate decrease, that doesn’t necessarily mean your property taxes will drop. In January the B.C. Assessment Office said the assessed value of properties in Fort St. John increased by 8.8 per cent. The average single family residential property increased from $320,000 to $348,000.

Tax bills will be generated once the bylaw is adopted in May and the City receives the school tax rate from the province.