Ladysmith’s Town Council met on May 4 and set a 0.52 percent increase for 2021 property taxes. (Town of Ladysmith/YouTube)

Ladysmith’s Town Council met on May 4 and set a 0.52 percent increase for 2021 property taxes. (Town of Ladysmith/YouTube)

Town of Ladysmith sets 0.52 percent tax increase for 2021

Mayor Aaron Stone praises the increase as among the ‘lowest in the province’

Ladysmith’s Town Council has voted to proceed with a 0.52 percent tax increase for 2021.

This increase is Ladysmith’s smallest in the past two years. Property tax rates were increased by 3.4 percent in 2019 and 1.92 percent in 2020.

RELATED: Ladysmith hikes property taxes by 3.4 percent

RELATED: Town of Ladysmith adopts 1.92 percent tax increase for 2020

“We’re seeing tax rates pop up all over the province,” Mayor Aaron Stone said. “We should all be very proud of the work our staff has done and our work as a team here in Ladysmith because I believe we’re going to be one of the lowest [increases] in the province and definitely one of the lowest on Vancouver Island.”

Neighbouring municipalities like Nanaimo and Duncan are looking at increases of three percent, while North Island municipalities like Campbell River and Courtenay have managed to keep increases below two percent.

“To be able to go into the second year of a pandemic with an under one percent increase is pretty remarkable,” Stone added.

During budget discussions which were held in November and December 2020, Town Council confirmed the amounts to be included in the 2021-2025 Financial Plan Bylaw for a total of $9,346,450 (Municipal $7,565,288, Police $1,355,338 and Library $425,824).

RELATED: Council discusses 2021 preliminary operating budget

That represents an overall budget increase of 2.51 percent, though when non-market change — a term that refers to new construction —is factored in, as well as adjustments due to supplementary assessment changes, the budget increase is 0.52 percent. This includes the changes in the Library Tax which saw a decrease of $3,705, an increase of $39,375 for policing and an increase of $158,873 in municipal taxation.

Council opted to keep the tax increase low for the residential property class. There are nine taxable property classes in Ladysmith: residential, utilities, supportive housing, major industry, light industry, business, managed forest, non-profit, and farmland. Each class is taxed at a different rate with residential properties making up a bulk of the tax base.

Municipal property taxes make up only a portion of the overall tax bill. The biggest change on the 2021 tax bill will be an increase in school taxes.

Last year the provincial government provided a one-time exemption from school taxation for commercial and industrial properties due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, however, rates have returned to their normal level and will result in higher tax bills for major industry, light industry and commercial properties. Residential properties will also see a four percent increase in their school tax bill.

Regional tax rates also increased by five percent for residential properties. However, the Town of Ladysmith does not rely on the Cowichan Valley Regional District for many services, so the five percent increase represents roughly $10.70 for the average home in Ladysmith. Rates per class for regional taxes are set by the province.

Property tax bills are based on assessed property values, which are conducted by BC Assessment at the beginning of each year. The average assessed value of residential properties in Ladysmith rose by seven percent in 2021.

RELATED: Assessed home values in Ladysmith rise by seven percent

Property tax notices will be mailed out in the coming weeks. Taxes are due July 2, 2021. Residents are encouraged to direct their questions and comments to council or staff by emailing info@ladysmith.ca or call City Hall at 250-245-6400.

Just Posted

Rick Ruppenthal of Saltair will host a 12-hour talk-a-thon Friday, June 18 over Facebook live. (Photo submitted)
Talk-a-thon to focus on men’s mental health issues

Saltair man spearheading a campaign to generate more conversation during fundraiser

(File photo)
Poverty reduction survey identifies 10 poverty themes

Poverty reduction plan will be finalized in July 2021

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Paul Manly says he has no intentions of leaving the Green Party. (House of Commons image)
Island Green MPs have “no intention” of leaving the party after ‘heartbreaking’ departure

Manly, May only remaining Green MPs after Jenica Atwin left for the Liberals over internal disputes

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

A still image from security camera video recorded June 8 shows an individual lighting trash on fire in the doorway of 19+ Cannabis Store on Victoria Crescent. RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue are investigating numerous fires set in downtown Nanaimo in the past three months. (Photo submitted)
‘It’s out of control’: More than 20 fires set in downtown Nanaimo in past 3 months

Authorities asking business owners to keep dumpsters locked

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

Most Read