Surrey councillors Jack Hundial and Brenda Locke. (Photos: Now-Leader files)

Surrey councillors Jack Hundial and Brenda Locke. (Photos: Now-Leader files)

Locke, Hundial, quit city committee in protest against Surrey parcel tax increase

Surrey Connect councillors say 200 per cent tax increase defies ‘spirit and intent’ of levy

Two Surrey city councillors say they’ve stepped down from the Parcel Tax Review Committee in protest against a 200 per cent increase in the 2021 budget capital levy.

Councillors Brenda Locke and Jack Hundial, both of the Surrey Connect slate, issued a press release Monday saying the increase defies the “spirit and intent” of the levy.

“It is unfair and punitive during this time of financial insecurity,” Locke said. “It hurts everyone, especially those who can least afford it – seniors, single parents and families in modest housing will feel the brunt of this tax.”

READ ALSO: Surrey mayor, councillor, a canyon apart on proposed tax hike

Budget 2021 will be up for approval tonight during council’s virtual meeting. A public hearing was conducted last Monday, before the finance committee, after which the Safe Surrey Coalition members approved corporate reports related to the budget on a five to four vote.

During the public hearing callers slammed the capital parcel tax increase, which currently sits at $100 per parcel but under the budget will increase to $300.

“Are you guys aware that’s an increase of 200 per cent?” Whalley resident Dave Amero asked. “Not 10, not 20, not 30 – how about us pensioners?”

Former Surrey mayor Bob Bose called the $300 capital parcel tax “obscenely regressive.”

Mayor Doug McCallum, however, sang the budget’s praises.

“This, for the times, for where we’re sitting right now, for the times, it’s the best budget I’ve ever seen, put together by anybody,” he remarked. “It is historic, and it will go down in the records, over the next few years, as an historic budget, especially with all the problems that are out there.”

READ ALSO: Surrey mayor taking in on the chin during budget public hearing

Meantime, Surrey Connect says that with the addition of this levy the tax increase on an average single family house will be 11.25 per cent and for an average townhouse, 14 per cent.

Hundial said these increases are designed to “shore up” funding for replacing the Surrey RCMP with the Surrey Police Service, “for which a final cost is yet to be determined and the majority of Surreyites still do not want.

“These are unprecedented times and there is only one taxpayer to support spending for all levels of government,” Hundial said.

Meantime, a group of “angry women taxpayers” is set to deliver 200 parcel tacks to city hall this afternoon (Monday, Dec. 7), in a gesture of protest against the property parcel tax. Organizer Annie Kaps noted in a press release that a resident living in a studio apartment with a murphy bed, and a small business owner, will under the levy pay the same $200 parcel tax increase as an owner of a “mega-house” with multiple families or a large business, like Costco on King George Boulevard.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Tom on Twitter

City of Surrey

Just Posted

The Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) (File Photo)
Police watchdog investigating after man found dead in South Surrey following a wellness check

IIO says officers ‘reportedly spoke to a man at the home before departing’

Surrey RCMP in the 4900-block of 148th Street, a short road just off of King George Boulevard, on May 15, 2021 after a male was allegedly assaulted with a “pipe-like” weapon that morning. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
Surrey RCMP investigating after person reportedly injured with ‘pipe-like’ weapon

Police investigating incident in the 4900-block of 148th Street

The leadership team at Johnston Heights Secondary is looking to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society through the Relay for Life, planned as an online and in-person event (following COVID-19 restrictions) for the week of June 1 to 7.
Pushed back a year, Surrey students well on their way to Relay for Life fundraising goal

Johnston Heights Leadership Team aims to raise $6,500 for Canadian Cancer Society

A detail of White Rock artist Marilyn Dyer's painting New Mountains, one of her works in the show Delineations at Surrey Art Gallery until June 6
White Rock artist Marilyn Dyer featured in SAG show

Dyer and Vancouver sculptor Gailan Ngan team for Delineations exhibit

An animated Gordie Hogg introduces his ‘Community Connections’ videos. (YouTube screenshot)
Community Connections: Gordie Hogg speaks with Doug Stone

Former mayor, MP began posting conversations on YouTube in June

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

The first Black judge named to the BC Supreme Court, Selwyn Romilly, was handcuffed at 9:15 a.m. May 14 while walking along the seawall. (YouTube/Screen grab)
Police apologize after wrongly arresting B.C.’s first Black Supreme Court Justice

At 81 years old, the retired judge was handcuffed in public while out for a walk Friday morning

Dr. Steve Beerman, of Nanaimo, shows off his Dr. David Bishop Gold Medal, awarded for distinguished medical service. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Queen presents Vancouver Island doctor with award for global drowning prevention

Dr. Steve Beerman receives Royal Life Saving Society’s King Edward VII Cup at virtual ceremony

Former UFV Cascades wrestling coach Arjan Singh Bhullar is now the ONE heavyweight champion after defeating Brandon Vera via TKO in round two on Saturday in Singapore. (ONE Championship)
Former UFV wrestling coach wins MMA championship

Arjan Singh Bhullar captures ONE heavyweight title, first Indian origin fighter to achieve honour

Most Read