At Trail city council’s regular meeting, held Tuesday night due to Monday’s Family Day holiday, council approved the Boundary Extension Proposal, which has been sent to the Ministry of Community, Sport, and Cultural Development for review.
Included in the proposal are annual payments to cover the potential loss of taxation income and services by the municipalities in Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB) Area A, beginning with an initial payment of over $475,000.
“The idea is that, if the boundary extension proceeds, the RDKB would be made whole for any loss of tax revenue,” said David Perehudoff, chief administrative officer for the City of Trail.
“The province requires the city to mitigate any losses incurred in a boundary extension. The annual payment is intended to have a focus on Beaver Valley recreation funding and will depend on their budget and the taxes required for them to run their service.”
The proposed ongoing payment would continue as long as the recreation services are in place, with a proposed annual cap of $532,280.
“Council approved the proposal Tuesday evening and now it goes to the ministry for review and adjudication,” said Perehudoff. “They’ll determine if it’s efficient and appropriate, see if it needs more work. It’s part of the usual process of boundary extension that happens fairly regularly around the province.”
This latest proposal and offer of mitigation comes in response to a letter Trail council received in late November from the RDKB that expressed a number of concerns regarding services that would have been affected by the boundary extension and the potential tax increases residents of Area A would have faced as a result.
If the extension goes ahead the businesses and homeowners in the newly acquired area will be citizens of the City of Trail with all the blessings and burdens that may imply.
“We’ll be responsible for providing the services; water, sewer, garbage, and what-not,” Perehudoff said. “And they’ll pay taxes to the city just like everybody else.”