Regional Councillors have approved Peel’s 2021 Budget which sets regional property tax rates for Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon.
Last December, Brampton approved its third consecutive zero percent increase in property taxes for residents on the City’s portion of the tax bill, part of a $1.2 billion budget which includes record contributions to cash reserves.
“With financial responsibility top of mind, we will deliver Brampton’s third consecutive tax freeze to support our community through the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” said Brampton’s Mayor Patrick Brown. “The 2021 Budget also maintains a record contribution to reserves to keep up the investment momentum in priorities that shape our future, such as transportation, sustainability, economic growth, and healthy living.”
Brampton Property tax rates are a blend of three portions from the City of Brampton, the Region of Peel, and an Education levy. These are combined into one tax bill which residents and businesses pay.
Members of Regional Council began budget deliberations at the regional table with a budget proposed by staff that called for an average increase of 3.2 per cent, an estimated value of $79 for a typical residential property.
Regional staff accounted for the proposed increase as a result of ongoing changes to provincial funding and legislation, as well as the emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic which added significant financial pressure on health and social services delivered by the Region of Peel.
Council priorities to address housing, homelessness and community safety in addition to infrastructure costs to support growth had Members of Council nickel-and-diming with staff in order to squeeze the budget as much as possible.
“Our job as Councillors is to review the budget and look at the taxes and find any way that we can to remove the burden on our tax payers,” explained Mississauga Regional Councillor Saito, prior to a vote on a motion to defer a one per cent infrastructure levy.
Staff warned that a pay-later approach on the infrastructure levy would result in a delay of important projects. “All of the plans are critical to meet Council’s long-term strategic outcome,” stated Norman Lum, Peel Region’s Chief Financial Officer. The motion was defeated on a tie vote.
In a compromise move, regional staff suggested that a material recovery facility of $50.6 million be scrapped from the budget. Recent legislative changes to extended producer responsibility meant that it was likely not going to be required. The proposed change would decrease the infrastructure levy by 0.4 per cent, thereby reducing the overall impact on the property tax rate.
On February 11, 2021 the regional budget was unanimously passed to include an annual property tax increase of 1.02 per cent or approximately $50 for a residential property.
“The 2021 Budget maintains and improves services, invests in people and prepares the Region for the future,” said Nando Iannicca, Chair of the Region of Peel. “This year, we’ve passed a budget that invests responsibly in core service levels, promotes community well-being, and protects the vulnerable, while striving for efficiency to mitigate the increase to property tax bills.
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