Tax rates explained

According to CFIB, the highest business/residential tax ratio gaps are in the province's most populous cities

A recent news release from Canadian Federation of Independent Business that District of Clearwater has the second highest ratio between business tax rates and residential tax rates in the Thompson-Okanagan does not tell the whole story, says the district’s chief administrative officer Leslie Groulx.

According to the CFIB release, Ashcroft has the worst tax ratio in the region at 3.83, followed by Clearwater at 3.50 and then Logan Lake at 3.28.

The ratio means that a Clearwater business owner would pay 3.50 times as much as a homeowner for a property with the same assessed value.

For the 33 municipalities in the Thompson-Okanagan, the average tax ratio gap was 2.44.

The lowest tax ratio in the region was Lumby at 1.57, followed by Osoyoos and Penticton at 1.60.

According to CFIB, the highest business/residential tax ratio gaps are in the province’s most populous cities – Coquitlam at 4.24), Vancouver at 4.15, and Burnaby at 3.98.

A number that possibly is more important than the tax ratio is the actual business tax rate, Groulx pointed out.

Clearwater’s business tax rate for 2016 is 15.4779, she reported. This is lower than at least four other municipalities in the region: Ashcroft at 20.4953, Lillooet at 20.2343, Clinton at 19.6009, and Merritt at 15.6109.

The chief administrative officer also pointed out that some other municipalities have a large industrial base to draw from, which helps to keep the other taxes low.

Logan Lake, for example, has a business tax rate of just 9.9699.

Some other business tax rates for small municipalities in this area are Barriere at 8.77356, Valemount at 9.22531, Cache Creek at 5.0596, Chase at 11.1579, and 100 Mile House at 10.3371.