The province is giving the RMWB additional funds to cover 2017 education property taxes.
On Monday, Minister of Municipal Affairs Shaye Anderson was in Fort McMurray to announce $2 million for tax relief. This comes after the province allocated up to $5.1 million in tax forgiveness for the 2016 portion of the education tax.
Anderson tells Mix News the difference between 2016 and 2017 funding comes from calculations made by the RMWB.
“You try to get ahead of it but we do rely on a very complicated set of criteria and calculations so once the RMWB updates, we can go from there and see what we might have to do to work with them going forward.”
He notes as long as the municipality continues to request tax relief they will at least contemplate additional funding.
“We want to have the back of the RMWB and the people here,” added Anderson. “There are many different ways we can do that; education tax is one that’s working well and if that is something we need to do in the future then we will have a look at it.”
Back in February, Recovery Committee Member Kim Jenkins spoke to Mix News about the importance of keeping the tax. He says if students are being educated in the community’s schools “then maybe we should be paying the education tax.”
Anderson notes schools across Alberta are still getting most of their funding despite losing over $7 million for the community’s tax relief.
Meanwhile, Mayor Blake says they’re still waiting for DRP funding from the province for municipal property taxes.