Earlier today, there was a Letter to the Editor from Dennis Nabieszko of the Cobourg Taxpayers Association about the true tax increase this year. The extra is the stormwater charge which was previously included in the tax bill from the Town but will now be included on your Electricity/ water/ sewer bill from Lakefront. So far this year, I have received two such invoices with no sign of the stormwater fee so I called LUSI. They said that there will be a new line item on invoices when the details are sorted out. LUSI is simply administering the bills and will pass the amount collected to the Town. This idea was first approved earlier in 2022 and the subject has been discussed extensively on this blog – see Resources below.
The fee will use a rate per property provided by the Town and will start to be included soon – possibly in the March or April invoice.
The fee will be due each month although the first amount will be a catch up. Because the fee depends on the area of the property, properties with large parking lots like the mall will pay a large amount but large residential properties will also be charged quite a bit more than smaller ones – even if they don’t use any stormwater drains.
When this subject came up in Council, Director Laurie Wills was asked whether a transfer of stormwater costs to a separate fee would mean that the Public Works amount on the tax levy would be correspondingly less. She said yes. My read of the 2023 Budget is that Public Works did not ask for an increase so Laurie seems to have delivered on her promise. The close to zero increase for Public Works was however overwhelmed by increases in other departments.
2023 Tax Increase Announced
The 2023 budget was given formal approval at the regular Council meeting on 27 February – it was essentially as discussed at the 9 February meeting as reported here.
The budget increase will be 8.1% resulting in a tax levy increase of 6.6% (the reduction is because there are 1.5% more properties to tax). Your total tax bill for 2023 will include County taxes which went up 6% and School taxes which did not increase at all. But note that these numbers are overall for average properties and individual properties could well be different.
But as Dennis points out, there are other bills to pay with the Electricity/ water/ sewer bill from Lakefront being a major one. Watch for a jump in that one coming soon.
Letters to the Editor
- Another View of Storm Water Management – 1 February 2023
- Do Taxpayers know what is Really Going On? – 5 March 2023
Previous News Blog articles
- Cobourg to increase Stormwater Charge – 16 November 2021
- Consultant’s report with “funding assessment” – pdf – 28 April 2022
- More on Separate Stormwater Tax – 4 May 2022 – includes expected “tax increase”
- Council approves new Stormwater Fee – 23 June 2022 – includes table of rates (per hectare) for 2023.
- Water Rates to increase – plus Stormwater Charge – 10 December 2022
- Second Meeting to review budget – 9 February 2023 – effectively the last time Council discussed the 2023 budget.