Exempting Non Profits from Paying Property Taxes
Therefore be it resolved SUMA lobby the provincial government to allow municipalities to exempt local non-profit and fraternal organizations property from taxation without having to reimburse local school divisions an equivalent amount of tax.
Reponse: Municipal councils have the authority to exempt, property from taxation for any given financial year and for a period of up to five years. If a municipal council gives a property tax exemption that is not for economic development purposes and the school division does not agree to forgo its portion, the municipality is required to collect an amount equal to the school divisionâ€™s portion from the other properties in the municipality. However, if the school division agrees to forego its portion, the municipality is not obliged to raise the equivalent amount of the tax exemption. Everyone elseâ€™s taxes stay the same and the school division receives slightly less tax revenue. The Property Tax Exemptions Review Committee (1999) recommended that property tax exemptions for organizations of a local nature should be determined by local governments, rather than by the provincial government in legislation and/or regulations. In principle, Government Relations (GR) continues to concur with that recommendation. However, the new circumstances brought about by school division restructuring are acknowledged. At its February 27 meeting, the Municipal Forum agreed that GR, Learning, the Saskatchewan School Boards Association, SUMA, and the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities should work together to review the issue of tax exemptions for non-profit and fraternal organizations. Currently, terms of reference for the review are being prepared.