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The $400,000 typical residential property was chosen, as a round number, to represent the 2019 average residential assessment in Area C of $402,388. This figure was readily available to the consultants from BC Assessment and CSRD tax reporting.
The Ministry of Municipal Affairs publishes a range of municipal taxation data sheets each year. One sheet presents "Taxes and Charges on a Representative House" for each municipality. The data, unfortunately, are not presented for electoral areas. Representative house values for nearby and CSRD municipalities in 2019 were as follows:
During the engagement phase of the study, public materials will show tax implications for a range of properties and property values.
In the event of incorporation, any costs that are incurred, over and above current cost levels, to provide local services to residents in Sorrento-Blind Bay would be paid solely by taxpayers within the new municipality. Please note: that the province would provide a certain amount of financial assistance to the new municipality to defer cost impacts associated with certain services (e.g., local roads).
Electoral Area C residents who live outside of the Incorporation Study Area would not pay for these costs.
On a related point, the vote to proceed with incorporation would only include residents within the Incorporation Study Area. Residents outside of the Study Area would not be given a vote.
As part of the study, the Committee is identifying service cost implications for residents of Electoral Area C who are outside of the Study Area. The cost of certain services for these residents may be lower without Sorrento-Blind Bay in the service area; alternatively, the cost of other services could be higher. Once all services have been assessed and total cost implications for Area C residents have been identified, the Committee (and community) will be able to gauge any net-cost impact on taxpayers outside of the Study Area. The province is ultimately responsible for ensuring that there are no significant adverse cost impacts on taxpayers outside of the Study Area.
Public boat launches in the South Shuswap are currently maintained and improved by the CSRD Community Services Department as part of the Electoral Area C Community Parks Service. The current level of service provided to all parks, including the boat launches, is determined by the CSRD Board of Directors based on a variety of factors, including input from the seven-member Electoral Area C Parks Advisory Committee, the Area C Director, the community, and CSRD staff. If voters in Blind Bay and Sorrento decided to incorporate, decisions on service level would be made by the new seven-member municipal council, with input from staff and the community. The council could choose, as well, to establish an advisory committee of residents. Decisions to increase the level of maintenance for boat launches and/or to improve the facilities would be determined by the council based on input received.