Sun. Feb 25th, 2024

Proposed increase in 9% of property tax in Toronto in 2024

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Toronto needs a major property tax hike to restore its financial health, according to budget chief Shelley Carroll.

Radio-Canada

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Torontonians will face a 9% increase in property taxes in 2024, in addition to a 1.5% surcharge for infrastructure, according to the preliminary budget presented Wednesday. This is the largest proposed increase since the 1998 municipal amalgamation.

According to budget chief, City Councilor Shelley Carroll, in total, residents will have to pay an average of $30 more per month if the budget passes in its current form.

On the other hand, public transport fares would be frozen. The police would also get a slight increase in their annual budget.

Ms. Carroll says the steep property tax hike is necessary, despite savings of more than $600 million identified by officials, because the anticipated shortfall stands at nearly $1.8 billion this year.

We can no longer simply postpone solving the problem until later. We need to get Toronto back on the right path.

A quote from Shelley Carroll, Toronto's budget chief

LoadingDenis Coderre interested in the leadership of the Quebec Liberal Party

ELSE ON NEWS: Denis Coderre interested in the leadership of the Liberal Party of Quebec< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">Last year, Toronto drew hundreds of millions of dollars from its reserves to balance its budget, while the shortfall exceeded 1 billion. Ms. Carroll is rejecting that approach this year. You have a new budget chief and a new mayor, she replies.

In Montreal, property taxes will increase by 4.9% on average this year, while it will climb 7.5% in Vancouver after an increase of 10.7% last year.

Toronto also continues to demand 250 million annually from the federal government to house asylum seekers and refugees, accusing the Trudeau government of not currently paying its fair share.

This is a federal responsibility, she says.

Ms. Carroll warns that the property tax increase could jump another 6% if Ottawa does not confirm an additional subsidy by January 26.

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Olivia Chow, however, said during the election campaign that property taxes would increase “modestly” if she was elected. (File photo)

This is the first annual budget for new Mayor Olivia Chow, who warned residents in December that #x27;they would have to pay more in 2024, despite the new financial pact concluded with the provincial government.

Councilor Carroll indicated last week that the property tax increase would be “substantial” this year, without quantifying it.

Property taxes increased by 5.5% in 2023 in Toronto, on top of a 1.5% infrastructure surcharge.

During the election campaign, Ms. Chow had nevertheless affirmed that she would increase the property tax in a “modest” way, without wanting to give a figure.

Budget consultations are expected to take place over the coming weeks. Municipal council is scheduled to adopt the final version of the 2024 budget on February 14.

In Ontario, provincial law requires municipalities to have a balanced operating budget each year.

Former city councilor John Filion says the Queen City has chronic financial problems, in part because elected officials have not had the political courage in the past to raise property taxes beyond of the inflation rate.

The council largely ignored the warnings of a succession of city managers who told elected officials that it was necessary to slash the services to have a low property tax or raise it to have good services, he said.

The former councilor hopes that the mayor Chow will succeed in convincing the public to accept this very difficult [budgetary] exercise.

To increase its revenues, the Queen City is also evaluating the possibility to impose new taxes, among other things on parking.

With information from CBC News

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