On May 16, 2022, Council approved the Operating and Capital Budget for 2022. On May 17, 2022, Council approved the Mill Rate Bylaw for 2022. The 2022 Budget value is $21.7 million compared to the 2021 value of $20.19 million.
What impact does the budget have on taxes?
The average residential ratepayer (based on a $300,000 assessment) will see a 3.88% increase to the municipal portion of your taxes on your tax notice. However, this may vary for properties that have experienced an increase or decrease in market value. Overall, residential taxes will go up by 4.65% due to increases in RCMP contribution. The average non-residential commercial ratepayer will see a 4.83% increase on their tax notice and farm will see a 4.43% increase.
“The whole team has worked very hard to limit the impacts of the 2022 budget while also maintaining effective levels of service for our residents. Over the last three years Council has kept the municipal portion of taxes at a status quo with a total increase of only 1.5% from 2019-2021,” stated Reeve Bishop. “We knew that the past 2 years were very difficult financially and decided to postpone increases necessary to maintain operations and you are now going to see that in the 2022 budget, a variety of challenges including increasing inflation and continued supply chain issues has resulted in increasing the cost of providing services to our residents. We have worked hard to identify areas for improvement and efficiency in our service delivery to keep costs as low as possible and this has allowed us to soften increases as well. Going forward these issues will continue to put significant pressure on the budget in the years ahead. When you look at vehicle and gas prices compared to 4 years ago it is obvious that 5.5% in 4 years is not sustainable to remain status quo never mind providing any increased or additional services. To combat this problem Council is actively investing time and resources into economic development and has seen positive results in recent years. We remain optimistic about the future and will continue to seek out opportunities for advancement of our goals.”
When reviewing your tax notices, you will see four (4) line items: Municipal Tax, Alberta School Tax, Wetaskiwin and Area Lodge Authority and Provincial Policing Costs. The Provincial Policing Cost is as a separate line item on your tax notice to show the additional cost of policing due to the Government of Alberta’s download of police costs. This year the County is required to pay $534,077 which is a 32% increase from 2021.
Government of Alberta legislation requires all municipalities to collect education property taxes on behalf of the province. The County also collects on behalf of the Wetaskiwin and Area Lodge Authority for seniors housing facilities.
Breaking Down Your Tax Notice (based on $300,000 average assessment)
Tax Notice Line Items:
Average Amount paid
% of Total Tax Bill
Covers the cost of providing municipal services at the level outlined by Council during Strategic Planning.
Alberta School Tax
Taxes collected on behalf of the province to pay for schools.
Wetaskiwin and Area Lodge
Dollars collected on behalf of the Wetaskiwin and Area Lodge Authority to support the operation of the West Pine and Peace Hills Lodges.
Provincial Policing Cost
Dollars collected to cover the downloaded cost of policing from the Government of Alberta.
The total amount of taxes you pay to the County of Wetaskiwin
Please note the assessment notices for the County will be mailed by the beginning of June 2022.
Please notify the County of Wetaskiwin No. 10 if you have not received your notice within a reasonable time frame.
Any County ratepayer that would like to have their assessment explained by an assessor may do so by contacting the Assessment Department at (780) 361-6237 or toll free at 1-800-661-4125.
What do I get for my Residential Tax Dollars?
Level of Service
Cost to provide that service:
Inspect and enforce annually 6,350 accessible privately owned properties within the County for noxious and prohibited noxious weeds, with every property being inspected on a 2 year cycle, in compliance with the Weed Control Act
Mow Road Right of Ways to protect road infrastructure and traveling public (once per year).
Review Municipal Development Plan (MDP) to ensure long term sustainable development (including 6 public engagement sessions).
Provide residents with access to recreational activities including 6 campgrounds, Winfield Area, community recreational grants, and recreational agreements with the City of Wetaskiwin and Town of Millet.
Provide residents with access to Family and Community Support Services (80% funded by the provincial government).
Provide fire services through six existing fire departments operated by volunteers
Complete road maintenance program through the establishment of 12 grader patrol areas with 100 miles of roadway per patrol area including 72 hour snow clearing.
Maintain appropriate bridge infrastructure (197 bridge structure in the County) in order to ensure all roads remain open to the public. (This is maintenance only and does not include capital upgrades)
Host Open House in Wetaskiwin and Buck Lake annually as part of the County’s Public Participation Policy.
Provide access to safe water and wastewater services.
Provide solid waste management services that protect the environment (including 9 transfer stations).
Provide safe progress communities through Community Peace Officer and Bylaw Enforcement Programs.
Complete an external in-depth annual review of an average of one department per year.
The above list is only a snapshot of the services provided by the County, to review all 101 levels of service that the County provides please review the 2022 Strategic Plan on the County’s website.
For further information on the County’s budget, please contact Rod Hawken, Chief Administrative Officer, at (780) 361-6225 or email.