We just received our annual tax bill along with an enclosed letter that said that White Rock council is pleased that they were able to reduce the bill by 2.2 per cent.
I was hoping that someone from council could explain the math to me, given that our tax bill is just shy of 10 per cent higher than last year.
There were also platitudes like being “more inclusive and welcoming” and “we look forward to working with all members of our community.”
While they are laudable, it’s really more laughable. I might be missing something, but from what I’ve been reading in Peace Arch News over the past few years, this isn’t the impression that I’ve gotten of many of our city councillors, and in particular, our mayor.
It also seems to me the city council has taken a page out of Premier Christy Clark’s tax manual. In 2012, our water bill for two months was $29.98. In June 2015, it was $56. The most recent bill was $102.36, and I should note our consumption is pretty much the same as 2012.
A quick Google search suggests there are 9,500 privately owned homes in White Rock. If this is accurate, and taxes were indeed dropped by 2.2 per cent, then if our tax bill is representative, the city gave up roughly $100 per home or $950,000. If everyone’s water bill increased the same as ours and are also up 90 per cent from last year – 250 per cent from 2012 – then the city took in an extra $3,135,000.
So the city took an extra $2 million and change, but our taxes are down by 2.2 per cent?
I’ll admit I’m extrapolating from our tax bill, and that my calculations are very rough, but something doesn’t add up.
Bruce McIntosh, White Rock