MacBride Museum won't pay Whitehorse property tax after all

The City of Whitehorse will not be charging the MacBride Museum of Yukon History property taxes, after an amendment to its grant policy was passed this week.

City council votes to amend new grant policy

Whitehorse's MacBride Museum of Yukon History will have to pay a portion of its assessed property tax for the first time in over 50 years after an amendment to the city's grant program was voted down yesterday. (Facebook)

The City of Whitehorse will not be charging the MacBride Museum of Yukon History property taxes, after an amendment to its grant policy was passed this week.

The city previously granted funds to museums that covered the taxes museums owed. Last month, the city changed its grant policy so that museums would have to begin paying a portion of their property tax and city council voted down an amendment that would have spared the MacBride museum. 

Deputy Mayor Jocelyn Curteanu tabled an amendment to the policy saying that if a museum holds title to its land, it should not be taxed. 

At their meeting this week, city councillors voted to support the amendment.

Keith Halliday, chair of the MacBride Museum's board, says a lot of creative thinking went into finding a solution.

"We are really pleased by this decision by city council," he said.

"The MacBride has had a very productive 60-year relationship with the City of Whitehorse and we look forward to continuing that with great programming for another 60 years."

The museum's tax payments would have been phased in over four years, with a bill of about $5,000 the first year, with increases in following years. 

MacBride Museum's full property tax grant from the city is $24,467.

The MacBride Museum is the only museum in Whitehorse that fits the criteria of council's amendment.

The Yukon government owns the land that all other museums in the city occupy.


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