Facing an almost zero per cent vacancy rate, the municipal council is looking at ways to encourage growth by providing tax breaks to home builders and property owners for at least the first two years. (Photo: Dave Lueneberg/Shootin’ the Breeze.Dave Lueneberg, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The municipality of Crowsnest Pass is hoping to encourage builders and property owners to consider more development within the community.

At its Sept. 19 council meeting, two motions were passed that will establish municipal tax cancellation policies.

“It’s an incentive to create additional multi-family housing with tax relief on the improvement portion of the taxes,” said mayor Blair Painter.

“So, if you had a piece of property that was vacant and you were paying, whatever the minimal tax is, five or six hundred dollars a year…it would be the portion of the assessment on the additions where you would get your tax relief for two years.”

The new policy includes 12 separate requirements to qualify including a minimum of $100,000 in building construction cost, it can’t be on crown land, and there can’t be anything owing on the property, such as back taxes.

Multi-family, under the land use bylaw, is considered a residential development of three to nine units in a single building.

For development of 10 units or more, the tax incentive would be carried over five years instead of two.

Along with encouraging construction of large-scale dwellings, the municipality is also hoping to stimulate the building of legal secondary suites with many of the same rules in place, however, with a minimum project value of $25,000.

In this case, the municipality would forego two years of assessed value up to $500 each year.

Last month, there were five new homes built along the corridor, bringing the year-to-date total, as of Aug. 31, to 23. 

By Dave Lueneberg, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Sep 29, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Shootin' the Breeze   Pincher Creek, Alberta

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