By now property owners in Summerland will have received their tax notices.
The page on how our taxes are used is certainly entertaining. I worked out an approximate percentage expenditure based on the example given.
• 55 per cent of our taxes goes to municipal services; 32 per cent goes to our schools. The other 13 per cent goes to useful miscellaneous.
• 28 per cent of our municipal tax dollar goes to roads, sidewalks and drainage.
• 22 per cent to recreation, parks & cultural facilities
• 17 per cent to policing
• 10 per cent to fire protection
• Eight per cent to general government
• 15 per cent to useful miscellaneous.
My family has been in Summerland since 1968. We have an orchard and a couple of small rental homes. And even though we qualify for home-owner’s grant, we still have a substantial tax bill for which the municipality has graciously extended payment to Sept. 30.
We don’t have a view of the lake, just a massive greenhouse operation, which is okay. The roads in our area are in a sad state of disrepair and we don’t have sidewalks, and only recently got a fire hydrant within a half mile.
I’ve used the police once a long time ago to register my hunting rifles which turned out to be a waste of time. We’ve never had call to use fire protection, but do use the landfill and recycling, which, incidentally, we also pay for on a monthly basis through our utility bill.
We all like to help out our neighbours, but it is my opinion that perhaps our taxes should be based on a more equitable footing, established on our use of municipal services rather than supplementing new development, which results in additional police and fire protection, more roads, more services, more taxes, etc.
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