Property owners in Nelson won’t have to worry about a tax increase this year.

The City announced, “…reserves will be used to cover possible shortfalls to mitigate costs for residents and businesses.”

Council convened on March 18, 2020 to tackle the financial concerns the community is facing amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

“We understand that these are unprecedented times, and we want the community to understand that we are working hand in hand with senior levels of government and regional partners to lessen the economic impacts moving forward,” said Mayor John Dooley. “This is a top priority for us, and we will continue to work extremely hard to ensure services continue to be delivered while doing our part to lessen the financial burden.”

On top of offering residents a 0% tax increase for the year 2020, Council also approved the following:

  • An extension of the 2020 10% discount period for water, sewer, and garbage fees to April 15, 2020, to provide current financial relief for residents and businesses.In the case of any deficits,
  • A review of revenue and expenses that were presented to Council at the March 13, 2020 budget meeting to explore new opportunities to relieve budgetary pressures. City budgets will be reviewed to determine if some projects or expenditures can be delayed.
  • Projects or expenditures that will stimulate the local economy by employing local businesses and/or can attract grants will be prioritized.
  • A review to be conducted by staff on all fees, charges and penalties and the financial impact of waving or deferring these payments.
  • A request to the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) to implement a tax freeze for the 2020 fiscal year in order to lower overall taxes.

City of Nelson representatives also participated in the weekly Community Futures business round table to hear from the local business community regarding the challenges they are facing.  Together they discussed the creative ways businesses have pivoted to serve the community.