(Photo by Melissa Hellmann/Black Press)

Lacombe Council to fix bylaw which treated mobile homeowner’s taxes differently

Mobile homeowners previously had to pay taxes by Jan. 15 of each year

The City of Lacombe is working swiftly to remove an antiquated bylaw (Bylaw 238) which treated mobile homeowners different than other residents in the city.

The bylaw forced mobile homeowners to pay taxes by January 15th every year, rather than in May like other dwellings. The concern stemmed from a Coffee with Council session earlier this year, where a new resident brought up the different dates to Councillor Cora Hoekstra. Hoekstra and City Director Diane Piche informed the resident they would immediately look into this discrepancy.

“Historically, there was probably good reasons why some of these decisions are made but that doesn’t mean those decisions still apply to today and for these citizens, it was fantastic they came forward and asked why,” Hoekstra said. “There wasn’t anger, they just asked and we were able to respond to their question and now tonight start the process to say we treat all residents in Lacombe in the same way when it comes to taxation.”

The bylaw, which was instituted in 1996, was originally, “To limit the risk to the municipality of not collecting taxes on mobile homes located on leased or rented land. The risk is due to the ability of moving mobile homes off the land before tax bills are levied and payments received.”

The actual risk of not collecting taxes on these properties has negligible — with the city historically collecting 100 per cent owed on these properties.

“I think your average citizen in Lacombe would never have imagined that some residents get their tax assessment in May, whereas if you live in a mobile home park — that would happen in January. The citizens were saying, “Why are we treated differently?”,” Hoekstra said.

Administration wanted to solve the problem immediately by moving all three motions in one council meeting, however, Council chose not to break precedent in order to stay keep procedure consistent. The third reading will happen at the Sept. 9 council meeting.

“We don’t want citizens thinking they are being treated differently and I commend those citizens for asking us to look at this,” Hoekstra said, adding she encourages other citizens to bring questions forward.

“Sometimes the rationale is 100 per cent a good reason, whereas in this instance it didn’t make sense anymore. I commend the city staff for helping us make that change,” she said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

City of Lacombe passes revised 2020 Operating Budget

Average house valued at $380,000 will see an increase of $30.10 for the year

Town of Blackfalds proposes 1% tax increase

1% increase will see a $23 per year increase for an average house valued at $286,000

City of Lacombe council highlights – Dec. 9, 2019

The next scheduled council meetings is Jan. 13, 2020, at 5 p.m.

Lacombe FCSS forced to scale back programming

Alberta Ministry of Children’s Services announced the termination of a number of programs

PHOTO: AA Lacombe Generals support Food Bank

Food donations and $127 dollars raised

WATCH: CP Holiday Train supports Lacombe Food Bank

Madeline Merlo and JUNO Award nominee Scott Helman both performed

Alberta premier opens war room to promote ‘truth’ about energy industry

Effort includes a $2.5-million public inquiry into foreign funding of anti-oil advocacy groups

Feds urge Air Canada to fix booking problems as travel season approaches

The airline introduced the new reservation system more than three weeks ago

Almost 14,000 Canadians killed by opioids since 2016: new national study

17,000 people have been hospitalized for opioid-related poisoning

Thunberg ‘a bit surprised’ to be Time ‘Person of the Year’

‘I could never have imagined anything like that happening,’ she said in a phone interview

Toronto Raptors, Don Cherry top the list of Canadians’ Google searches in 2019

‘Champions’ was the theme of the last year, Google said

Day parole revoked for man who strangled wife, buried body in their Calgary home

Parole Board revoked Allan Shyback’s day parole after he had sex with a massage parlour worker

Alberta plans to reduce surgery wait-times by building operating rooms, using private clinics

Health minister says goal is to have 80,000 more surgeries done over the next 3 1/2 years

Sylvan Lake woman charged with fraud over $500,000

Rimbey RCMP launched an investigation in July 2019 with the suspect turning herself in on Aug. 30

Most Read