Press Release: Oil & Gas Assessment Changes

Camrose County is pleased with the announcement made in late October on the Assessment Model Review.  Minister Allard has worked with the Rural Municipalities of Alberta to find a fair balance between enhancing oil and gas industry competitiveness and supporting municipal viability.   Short-term measures are now in place, and the Rural Municipalities of Alberta (RMA) will work with the Government of Alberta in the coming years to determine how best to update the assessment model for the long term.  The new changes result in a decrease of approximately $134,000 in tax revenue in 2021- much better than the proposed model changes of up to 3 million.  Camrose County Council and Administration are actively working on operating budgets that reflect efficiencies and reductions to make up for this loss.

Camrose County would like to express our thanks to Premier Kenney for listening to County concerns, to Minister Allard for so quickly including the rural voice in the Assessment Review discussions, for our local MLA’s Rick Wilson and Jackie Lovely for representing their constituents in the Legislature.  Thank you to the RMA for their tireless work on behalf of all rural municipal residents.

Finally, and most of all, Camrose County Council would like to acknowledge the many, many residents, and business owners of Camrose County that took the time to express concerns about the proposed Assessment Model to their representatives.  Your voice was heard!

Reeve Cindy Trautman

Camrose County

 

To see a full copy of this press release - click here!

RMA Position Paper 

RMA Assessment Model Review Impacts Report

RMA Assessment Model - Final Detailed Information

Template letter for you to use to send to your MLA

What do my County Taxes Pay For?

Camrose County was notified this week of changes proposed by the Province of Alberta to reduce the property tax of oil and gas companies through changes to the assessment model for regulated properties in this sector.


Council and administration are extremely concerned about the serious impacts of this decision because it will mean an increase in property tax, reduction of services, or combination of both to make up for this lost revenue.


While the stated intention of this decision is to increase the competitiveness of oil and gas companies in this hard time, these changes will disproportionately benefit large oil and gas companies and harm smaller local firms.


In addition to this, there are no regulations to ensure that this money from the reduction in taxes will be spent in Alberta to improve the struggling oil and gas sector here. For these reasons there seem to be few benefits to outweigh the added costs that county residents will be faced with. Four possible scenarios are being presented by the technical committee (made up of Industry representatives and government advisors). Based on the information provided to Camrose County from the Province, the impacts to Camrose County from the 4 scenarios indicate a loss of approximately 9% of tax revenue,
which equates to between $2.1 million and $2.9 million in overall lost revenue for Camrose County in the first year, and increasing in subsequent years.


To compensate for the loss of industry assessment and corresponding tax revenue, Camrose County will have to adjust operations in one of the following ways (or a combination of these):
 Increase the residential mill rate between 41% and 56% AND/OR
 Increase the non-residential mill rate (businesses in Camrose County) between 22% – 32% AND/OR
 Cut the County workforce by 24% – 32% (16 to 22 full time positions) and lose the corresponding services.

If this proposed change is passed YOU WILL BE IMPACTED – financially through property taxes, and in a loss of service from Camrose County.  Many services provided by the County would have to be cut, County support of other municipalities and organizations will have to be
decreased or eliminated, and there would certainly be an increase in property taxes for residents and business in the County. With the additional changes to the Police Funding Model, on top of historical unpaid taxes from oil & gas, County residential taxpayers will see significant property tax increases in the coming years.

The Province is proposing these changes to give reductions in property taxes, and education taxes to the oil and gas industry. This loss in municipal revenue has to come from other rate payers (You!) – either through increased taxes or decreased services.

What can you do?


 Please let your MLA know your thoughts on this issue.
o MLA Jackie Lovely Ph# 780-672-0000 camrose@assembly.ab.ca;
o MLA Rick Wilson Ph#780-360-8003 maskwacis.wetaskiwin@assembly.ab.ca)
Your local Councillors will be meeting with MLAs and working with the RMA (Rural Municipalities of
Alberta) to advocate on your behalf as well.
 Please call your local Councillor if you have questions about this or want additional information.
 Take a few minutes and read the RMA position paper on this Assessment change – found at
rmalberta.com under Position Statements.

The final decision on this proposal is expected by mid to late August, so please take action now.

On behalf of Council,

Reeve Cindy Trautman