(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.



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Lacombe Chamber annual Scholarship winners unveiled

Successful applicants for 2019 are Bryna Figursky and Aden Grose

Lacombe’s Morrison House Cafe to close Aug. 30

Morrison House recently celebrated 100 years in Lacombe

UPDATE: Four Lacombe athletes named to Team Canada Ringette team

Team Canada will compete at World Championships in November

City of Lacombe council highlights – Aug. 12

Next scheduled council meeting is Sept. 9

WATCH: Lacombe Days parade rolls through city

Hundreds turn out for annual tradition

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Toronto activist calling on federal parties to nominate more black candidates

Fewer than 20 black Canadians have been nominated so far, including some Liberal MPs seeking re-election

First Nations women finally to be treated equally under Indian Act: Bennett

Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action thanked the feds

‘Easy Rider’ star Peter Fonda dies at 79

Actor and writer was nominated for an Oscar for co-writing the 1969 psychedelic road trip movie

What could be next? Five questions in the SNC-Lavalin saga

Will police lay charges? Will report resonate with voters? Will Jody Wilson-Raybould get re-elected?

Alberta government strikes panel to advise on wage cut for alcohol servers

Panel is tasked with consolidating existing studies on the effects of a minimum-wage increase

‘Tips on steroids:’ Social media both a help, hurdle for Canadian police investigations

More than 1,000 tips were received by police in the hunt for fugitives Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky

B.C. homicide victim’s brother says he may never know why she was killed

Stetson Deese the family is preparing for the possibility they’ll be left in the dark on motive

Most Read