Why do Property Taxes change from year to year?
Property assessment promotes fairness by ensuring that two similar properties within a similar geographic area will be assessed and taxed at the same rate. All property values change over time, but not all change at the same rate. Some properties increase in value faster than others. If assessed values are not updated as market values change, some taxpayers would soon pay a disproportionate share of taxes compared to current values. To maintain a fair sharing in the tax rate between properties, assessed values must be up-to-date. A Property’s tax may change each year, for a combination of two reasons:
1. There is a change in annual budget requirements for the Municipality, Libraries, Seniors Management Services requisition and/or Education requisition. The County determines the requirements except for the Education portion which is determined by the Province. These are added together to produce the total amount of funds needed to operate. These combine to affect the total tax paid.
2. A particular property assessment (market value) changed more or less than the average. This affects the share of taxes paid by one property versus another.
Some assessable properties such as some oil & gas installations have their values determined by the Province.
The total value of all the property in the County is added up. In 2012, that figure was $717,000,000. The total budget requirements of the Municipality, Libraries, Seniors Management Services requisition and Education requisition are added together. In 2012, this figure was approximately $16,314,000. The budget is divided by the assessment to give the mill rate for County expenses. This figure is combined with education and other requisitions to give a combined Mill Rate, which is what you pay. The base Mill rate in the County in 2010 is 0.084%, and the combined Residential Mill Rate is either 0.117397 or 0.113747 Mills depending on which waste service area you live in. This means that for every $100,000 of assessed value, you should expect to pay approximately $1,174 or $1,137 in combined taxes.