Councillors set to vote on property tax hike

Langley Township is looking at 2.59 per cent tax increase this year, but there will also be increases in sewer, garbage pickup, and water bills.

The Township is preparing to vote on its five-year financial plan next week, and on Monday council voted in favour of a budget that would increase property taxes by $40 per year for a home valued at $498,000, the average in Langley.

The tax increase breaks down with 1.32 per cent covering general inflation, 0.1 per cent for the future Aldergrove community center, ice rink, and pool planned for the former elementary school site, 0.39 per cent to replace fire trucks and Township vehicles, and 0.78 per cent for an infrastructure levy.

The infrastructure levy started last year, and is intended to create a long-term fund that the Township will be able to use to rebuild and replace old roads, buildings, and park equipment without having to hike taxes suddenly in any given year.

The Township started the fund after staff warned that it could be facing larger bills in the future as major replacement projects approached.

The fee increases will be a larger cost than the increase in property taxes.

For residents who are recipients of garbage pickup, and have sewer and water hookups, the increase will be $43 per year on average.

Property tax rates are always calculated based on the value of a property, with owners of more expensive land paying more and owners of less expensive properties paying less tax.

The value of land is based on the valuation given by B.C. Assessments.

The tax increase is the lowest in some years, a fact that Mayor Jack Froese emphasized in a statement this week.

“With a nominal 2.59 per cent increase, we are still funding the important projects and services required to provide the quality of life they have come to expect,” Froese said. “We are really pleased with what has been achieved.”

The Township is projecting tax increases of about 2.95 per cent over the next four years, along with similar increases in solid waste and sewer costs. The cost of municipal water is projected to fluctuate, with increases ranging from 6.18 per cent projected for 2015, to as low as 3.69 per cent in 2016 and 2018.

Tax increases have veered wildly up and down over the past two decades in Langley Township.

Under Mayor John Scholtens in the late 1990s, there were several years of zero increases in taxes. That continued into the early 2000s under Mayor Kurt Alberts, but taxes started to rise slowly in 2003 with a one per cent increase.

By the mid-2000s, tax increases were ranging from around three to five per cent annually. Much of the increase in the latter half of the decade was driven by the Township’s move to create a full-time paid firefighting department, replacing the force of paid on-call firefighters at several halls.

As that program has wound down, the Township has been reducing taxes to under three per cent per year.

Last year’s tax increase was 2.79 per cent, and the 2012 increase was 2.95 per cent.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Stars offer four tickets to tonight’s Langley concert to $500 donors

From country music celebrities to NHL alumni, many famous faces hit the links at Redwoods today.

Langley animals feeling effects of smoky skies

Animal shelters are trying to keep their critters healthy through the smoggy days.

Medevac called to South Surrey business

‘Serious workplace incident’ reported to WorkSafeBC

Langley City in need of some Terry Fox Run helpers

People can help out on run day or be involved in preparations before then.

VIDEO: Mustang Roundup in Langley attracts car lovers from all over

A car show dedicated entirely to one model of Ford drew admirers and collectors to George Preston Recreation Centre.

Prime minister greeted by B.C. premier as cabinet retreat begins

PM Justin Trudeau and Premier John Horgan meet in advance of federal cabinet meetings in Nanaimo

Are your kids anxious about going back to school?

BC Children’s Hospital offers tips to help your children be mindful and reduce stress

New trial ordered for James Oler in B.C. child bride case

Meanwhile, appeal court dismisses Emily Blackmore’s appeal of guilty verdict

This trash heap in Vancouver could be yours for $3.9 million

Sitting atop 6,000 square feet, the home was built in 1912, later destroyed by fire

Date rapist left victims with ‘long-lasting, emotional scars,’ judge says

Klifford Kenyon of Abbotsford sentenced to additional two years in prison

Fire in barn that housed therapy horses has been confirmed an arson

Abbotsford Police Department is now investigating and seeks witnesses

Team Canada’s next game postponed at Little League World Series

They’re back in action on Wednesday against Peurto Rico

Ex-Trump lawyer Cohen pleads guilty in hush-money scheme

Said he and Trump arranged payment to porn star Stormy Daniels and a former Playboy model to influence the election

Most Read