Communities across Ontario will each have to fork out tens of thousands of dollars to one of the largest chain stores in the country.
Canadian Tire reached a Memorandum of Understanding with the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC), meaning the values of the stores will be reduced.
The company wanted to reduce the value of the land stores sit on, while also addressing issues of obsolescence, and the possibility that the stores could one day become vacant, and difficult to sell. It ultimately means the stores will pay less in taxes, and will also receive a tax refund.
"These big box stores go vacant, they tend to stay on the market for a long time," said Rose McLean, the Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of MPAC.
"They're not easy to repurpose. That's why we've made a decision to increase the depreciation on the stores, because they don't hold their value."
The amount of taxation refunded to the company will be different for every municipality.
"For every store in the province, the land values differ depending on the locational circumstance, so that was very site specific," said McLean.
In Dryden, the tax refund covering the 2013 to 2016 year is $88,708.84. The estimate for the refund for the two Canadian Tire stores in Thunder Bay will not be known until the new year.
Other communities impacted in the northwest include Fort Frances, Kenora, Marathon and Nipigon.
Other retailers in Ontario have also applied to MPAC to have their property valuations reduced, including the Home Depot and Costco.