Edson, Alberta, April 29th, 2020 – Council met on Tuesday to discuss possible mill rate distributions for the 2020 emergency budget. During the previous budget meeting, Council approved a 5% tax revenue decrease from the original 2020 budget, passed in December. As well, a $100 credit for residential utility bills was also approved. During Tuesday’s discussion, council gave direction to move forward with a 20/80 split in those tax revenue reductions between residential/non-residential.
This means, per $100,000 in assessment, residential taxpayers will get a reduction of about $13 from the original 2020 budget. Non-residential taxpayers will get a reduction of about $100 per $100,000 in assessment from the original 2020 budget. Actual figures will differ depending on changes in property assessment. This still requires official approval at an upcoming Council Meeting.
In the emergency budget, approximately $1.8 million was removed. About $564,000 will be used for the tax revenue reduction plan. The remainder is being put in a reserve for future economic recovery strategies. The reserve will also act as a buffer in the event of possible tax defaults in 2020. The utility credit was funded from a reserve.
The savings do not come without some sacrifices and service disruptions. A list of some of those impacts can be found online at www.edson.ca/covid.
Some other measures being taken to help residents and business owners at this time include a change to the tax payment due dates.
- Taxes due – September 30, 2020.
- First penalty run – October 1, 2020
- Second penalty run – November 1, 2020
Utility Bill Payment Deferrals and Credit
- The Town of Edson will continue sending out utility bills but suspend processing penalties on unpaid utility accounts until the bills due on August 25, 2020. From that date on, penalties will only apply to new balances.
- Give utility customers until the end of 2020 to catch up on the unpaid balances. This allows them to spread the payments over a number of months if necessary.
- A $100 credit will be applied to residential utility accounts to assist during this pandemic.
Automatic payments for utility and tax accounts will continue unless the account holder contacts the finance department with further instructions. Customers that can make payments on time are encouraged to do so. These payments will still need to be made up in 2020.
Please stay apprised on the evolving situation through the following websites.
Edson – www.edson.ca/covid
Alberta – www.alberta.ca/covid19
Canada – www.canada.ca/covid19
App users can watch the COW Meeting HERE *Note that the figures have changed since this discussion.