By Thomas Miller
The City of Lloydminster approved increases to mill rates for 2012 at the city council meeting on May 14.
In the 2012 budget, the city increased the mill rate from 3.66 mills to 4.1996.
A mill rate is a factor that helps calculate property taxes. Each mill is equal to one-tenth of a penny. To calculate your property taxes, multiply the assessed value of your home by the mill rate and then divide by 1,000.
There is more than one mill rate applicable to property taxes. For instance, The Saskatchewan Education Ministry has a mill rate of 2.4304 for residential properties and the Government of Saskatchewan has a separate seamless education delivery mill rate, which is 0.563.
Saskatchewan residents must factor those three things into the equation for their property taxes.
Recently named chief financial officer for the City of Lloydminster, Nicole Reiniger explained that the increase in the city’s mill rate was done in order to keep revenues stable.
“Right now property taxes only actually cover off a little less than 30 per cent of the actual revenue needs for the city to be able to operate and we’ve kept that level consistent,” she said after the council meeting on May 14.
“We’re trying to maintain the property taxes, sustaining the same level of revenue for the city.
“Just like any other business, costs have gone up, but we’re trying to keep it around that just under 30 per cent of the actual revenue we need to operate.”
The city will receive $17.8 million in property tax revenue in 2012, an increase of $2.6 million from 2011.
According to the city, the total taxable assessment for this year is $3.49 billion, approximately $240 million more than in 2011.
In a press release from the City of Lloydminster, the city shows that residential property taxes are actually down from what they were in 2009, but in all of those cases the assessed value of the property has gone down as well.
“The city has no control over what the assessment rates do,” said Reiniger. “So at budget time we always make a guess, and then of course the assessments fall out where they were and that’s why we wait until the assessments are completed to actually set the mill rate.
“Since we did the prepayment notices that people would’ve received in January, the only increase to the mill rate has been with the education (mill rate).”
Property tax notices were mailed out by May 18 and must be paid by June 30.