Average Toronto family could pay nearly $700 more in local taxes, fees

Want to know how much your taxes and fees could go up in Toronto's 2017 budget? We've calculated the impact on an average, homeowning family with two children, one in daycare.

Based on data from December's preliminary budget, tax, fee hikes could add up to big money

Child care costs alone could rise by $350 for the average family if the 2017 Toronto city budget passes as is. (iStock)

Your taxes and fees could increase in Toronto's 2017 budget by a substantial margin.

Radio-Canada has calculated the impact on an average, homeowning family with two children — including one in a school daycare.

The estimate is conservative, as property taxes vary depending on the assessment of a home and water bills are based on the family's consumption rate. The number of recreational activities is a minimum. The more children or activities, the higher the cost.

Property taxes+$96
Garbage collection+$15
Recreational programs+$41
Summer camps+$112
Child care+$350

The unavoidable

Property taxes will increase by at least two per cent for homeowners, plus an additional 0.5 per cent per year with Mayor John Tory's proposed City Building Fund. That tax would increase every year for a period of five years, to 2.5 per cent in 2021.

According to the city's data, owners of a house valued at $587,471 will pay an average of $96 more in property taxes than last year — totalling $2,841 in 2017. That doesn't include the school tax.

Water rates increased by 5 per cent on Jan. 1, costing the average household about $46 more. Residents will also pay two per cent more for garbage collection — an increase of about $7 per bin — plus an additional $8 for the collection of large items.

Recreational programs

The proposed increase to recreational programs and summer camps offered by the city is 2.3 per cent. For example, enrolling two children in swimming lessons for three sessions during the year will cost about $11 more.

However, several sports and artistic activities are subject to a second increase of 10 per cent, which is equivalent to an increase of $30 for the year. Six weeks of summer camp could cost about $112 more.

User fees for facilities like baseball and soccer fields and indoor rinks could increase between 2.3 and 42.2 per cent. Organizations would have to recover those increases by hiking registration fees.

The city's budget committee is expected to wrap up discussions on the 2017 budget Tuesday. (David Donnelly/CBC)

Daycare in schools

Earlier this month, Coun. Janet Davis urged the budget committee to back away from a proposal that would eliminate the annual $4.1 million in occupancy costs paid to local school boards that have daycares in their buildings. School board trustees have already pointed out those daycares — about 350 schools currently get city money to help house daycares — would likely pass the increased costs on to parents.

Eliminating the municipal subsidy would mean some parents may have to pay up to $350 more per year per child.

The city's budget committee is expected to wrap up discussions on the 2017 budget Tuesday. It will go before the executive committee Feb. 7.

The final budget goes to city council for final approval Feb. 15.


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