The Resort Municipality of Whistler town council will consider forgiving up to $1.5 million in municipal property taxes over the next three years to various organizations.
The tax exemption bylaws are proposed to go before council next Tuesday (Aug. 21) for consideration and for a period of one to five years.
While the public notice for the municipal property tax exemptions indicates it could apply for up to five years the amounts shown only specify estimated amounts for the next three worth a total of $1.5 million.
Those include tax exemptions for 2013 totalling $502,259 from: Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church ($22,706), Whistler Children’s Centre ($3,308), Whistler Mountain Ski Club ($5,483), Whistler Sliding Centre ($306,760), High Performance Centre and Lodge ($36,353), Whistler Sport Legacy Athlete’s Accommodation ($24,332), Whistler Community Services ($4,928) and the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre ($98,389).
In an email to The Question the RMOW communication department indicated the exemptions may be granted by council under several bylaws that apply to public daycare facilities, places of worship and not-for-profit organizations.
“A tax exemption must be adopted by bylaw on or before Oct. 31st in order for the exemption to be in effect in the following year,” states the email. “The exemption applies only to the next calendar year and any subsequent years up to a total of ten years that are provided for in the bylaw.
“The current permissive exemptions have been in effect for a five year period. Staff is proposing that we continue with this time structure and approve the exemption for a further five year period.”