Edmonton property tax notices in the mail Thursday

This year’s property tax notices are offering Edmonton ratepayers a few months of interest-free grace if they cannot meet the June 30 deadline to pay.

Because of COVID-19 pandemic, late-payment penalties won't be charged until Sept. 1

Property taxes are rising by 2.85 percent for 2017.

This year's property tax notices will be in the mail Thursday, and Edmonton ratepayers are being offered a few months of interest-free grace if they can't meet the June 30 deadline to pay. 

But for those who can afford it, the city adds this message: Please, please pay on time.

"We understand some property owners have been financially affected by the pandemic and this is why we are offering some flexibility with the payment deadline," interim city manager Adam Laughlin said in a Wednesday news release. 

"But I ask all property owners who can pay their taxes on time to please do so, to support essential municipal services such as police, fire rescue, roadway maintenance and public transit."

More than 400,000 notices for 2020 property taxes will be sent on Thursday — through regular mail or, for paperless subscribers, posted online at MyProperty.edmonton.ca

The deadline to pay is June 30 but late-payment penalties will not be assessed until Sept. 1 on the education and municipal portions of tax bills for residential and non-residential properties.

Property owners enrolled in the city's monthly payment plan can request to reduce or delay their payments until Aug. 31.

The deferral was one of the measures offered by the city to help people whose incomes have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mayor Don Iveson has expressed concerns about pressures on the city's finances because of COVID-19 measures. He has mused about shutting down public transit for the summer.

At the end of April, city council voted to increase the municipal portion of residential taxes by 2.5 per cent but to freeze the rate for businesses.

Because of a March decision by the Alberta government to freeze the education portion of the tax bill, rather than hike it by 3.4 per cent, most homeowners should not be paying any more than they did last year.

The owner of a typical single-family home assessed at $387,000 will pay $3,609 in property taxes this year. 

About $2.2 billion in property taxes will be collected by the city this year, of which $484 million will go toward provincial education.