We want your input on potential changes to property tax policies impacting vacant and excess commercial and industrial property.
We want your input on some potential tax policy changes. The Region of Waterloo is responsible for establishing property tax policies for both the Region and the Area Municipalities in accordance with the Municipal Act.
The Province is now allowing municipalities some flexibility for two (2) property tax policies:
- Tax rate reductions for vacant and excess land in the commercial and industrial property classes
- Vacant unit property tax rebates for properties in the commercial and industrial property classes
While these tax policies benefit commercial and industrial property owners, the cost is paid by all taxpayers, including residential taxpayers.
Vacant land is essentially an empty piece of land with no structures on it. Excess land is a piece of land that has not been developed in any way other than to service the piece of land and is excess to municipal requirements for any existing development elsewhere on the land. The commercial property class includes retail and service businesses and the industrial property class includes manufacturing businesses.
Currently, vacant and excess land in the commercial and industrial property classes receives a property tax rate reduction. In the Region of Waterloo, the property tax rate reduction is 30%.
The vacant unit property tax rebate program provides property tax rebates of 30% for eligible vacant units in commercial and industrial properties.
The Region of Waterloo is seeking input from the public, residential property owners, the business community (commercial and industrial property owners) as well as other stakeholders regarding potential changes to these two tax policies.
Potential changes include:
- Eliminating the tax rate reductions and vacant unit tax rebates
- Phasing out the tax rate reductions and vacant unit tax rebates
- Reducing the tax rate reduction and vacant unit tax rebate percentages
- Changing the criteria / eligibility requirements for vacant unit tax rebates
Results of the consultation and recommended changes to the two tax policies will be brought forward to the Region’s Administration and Finance Committee on March 20, 2018.
For more information on these two tax policies and the potential changes please read the following reports:
How to Provide Input
Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts with us regarding the potential changes by completing the following survey. The survey will be available until March 2, 2018
2) In-person Feedback
You can also provide input at an “open house” on Thursday March 1, 2018 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm at 150 Frederick Street, Kitchener Room 110.
3) Written Submission
Written submissions can be emailed to Angela Hinchberger, firstname.lastname@example.org by March 2, 2018.
If you have any questions regarding this consultation, please contact Angela Hinchberger at email@example.com, at 519-575-4728 or TTY: (519) 575-4608.