The Town of Strathmore council, during the Nov. 8 Committee of the Whole meeting, heard a report regarding the current Off Site Levy Bylaw.
The town’s current bylaw is in use in order to assist in the cost burden of new development being placed on those directly impacted, rather than on existing tax payers.
Local municipal administration presented to council during the committee of the whole meeting with the aim of helping to encourage both council and the public to better understand the bylaw, the most recent study, and how the town compares with other municipalities.
“From the (most recent off site levy report, which is dated Nov. 2020), and from discussions with council, the levy rates that we currently have in Bylaw 2-07 range between $113,000 and $168,000 depending on the area,” said Ethan Wilson, manager of infrastructure for the Town of Strathmore. “We have three benefitting areas of the town; we have the Northeast, the Northwest and the South, and the reason that the levy rates change throughout those areas is due to sanitary and storm water requirements.”
Wilson explained in the Northwest area, indicated to council during the report, which is publicly available for viewing online, there is a need for future stormwater sanitary services because there is currently not a lot in the area.
In the Northeast, there is some need for sanitary services, however, the town does have existing infrastructure already in place. The stormwater solution is different from the Northwest region, which Wilson noted to be slightly cheaper as well.
In the South region of town, sanitary services were not indicated by Wilson to be an issue, as there is a main trunk line that is able to be tied into.
“Water and transportation are a need for all areas of town and they are shared equally, and in the South, they also share in that new stormwater solution,” said Wilson. “In terms of payment of levies, what we require now is, 30 per cent of the levies are due at the time of the development agreement. Basically, whenever a development agreement comes in, it gets approved and an agreement is put in place between the developer and the town, we expect 30 per cent of the levies for that area to be paid.”
As construction is completed on respective projects, an additional 30 per cent of the levies are expected to be paid, however a timeline exists on that payment, stating that the town must be paid within two years of the development agreement being signed.
The remaining 40 per cent of the levies must be paid within three years of the signing of the development agreement for any respective project.
More information regarding municipal levies and the local bylaw is available via the Nov. 8 Committee of the Whole meeting, as well as via the associated meeting agenda.
John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times