Letter to the editor 2, March 19, 2015

Dear Editor,

I read with great interest the article in the March 12, 2015 Your Local Journal about the 76 per cent pay increase for St. Lazare councillors. Two statements with regard to property taxes in particular stood out.

In the first, Mayor Grimaudo attributes tax increases to higher property valuations and notes that “...the mill rate has essentially remained stable in the last eight years aside from minor fluctuations that occur annually.”

Of course since I receive my property taxes annually, I presume it would be difficult for there to be more frequent fluctuations in mill rates. Secondly, to demonstrate the stability of these rates he notes that “...The mill rate...was $0.64 in 2007. The current mill rate is $0.67.”

Interestingly, the valuation of my house has not changed over the past three years (although apparently it will next year). During that period the mill rate has risen from $0.6053 in 2013 to $0.6356 in 2014 to $0.6716 in 2015. An almost 11% increase in 3 years, and a 5.7% increase this year alone. Could these really be called stable mill rates?

Overall my property taxes increased by more than 5% in 2015, during a period in which inflation is expected to drop below 2% and in which the valuation of my property has remained constant.

Given Mayor Grimaudo’s belief that things won’t change any time soon, and the expected increase in my property valuation next year, I will soon need a 76% increase in my pension. Does anyone know how I go about getting it?

William Sims


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