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Posted: November 19, 2019

Cranbrook and Invermere receive annual grants

Fifty-four B.C. municipalities, including two in the East Kootenay, are getting a piece of more than $16 million grants-in-lieu of property taxes, the Ministry of Citizens’ Services reports.

Each November, the province pays grants-in-lieu of property taxes to municipalities and regional districts for services they provide in their communities, such as parks, sewers, roads and fire protection. The grants are for properties owned by the provincial government, such as office buildings, warehouses and courthouses.

Municipalities use these grants to fund and maintain priority public services and local infrastructure projects.

With provincial courts and government office buildings, the City of Cranbrook ($27,880) and District of Invermere ($10,978) qualify for funds.

Grant calculations are determined under the Municipal Aid Act. Provincially owned properties are exempt from taxes under the federal Constitution Act. However, for certain properties, such as government buildings, the province pays a grant in lieu of taxes.

Invermere’s provincial government buildings

Other provincially-owned properties, such as roads and parks, are exempt from paying grants-in-lieu of taxes under the Municipal Aid Act. Schools and hospitals are also exempt under the law as they are not owned by the provincial government.

“We’re proud to support the important work local governments do every day to create jobs, strengthen our local economies and deliver the services British Columbians rely on,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing and Minister of Citizens’ Services. “These annual grants play a critical role in helping local governments with planning – they use the funding to provide vital services and infrastructure that help improve people’s lives.”

Lead image: A recent (last week) shot of the Cranbrook Provincial Courthouse. e-KNOW photo


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