Cariboo-Chilcotin tax structures favour small business

The Cariboo-Chilcotin region is one of the two most tax friendly regions for small business in the province.

  • Jun. 21, 2016 10:00 a.m.

The Cariboo-Chilcotin region is one of the two most tax friendly regions for small business in the province according to the latest report from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

In the Kootenay-Rockies and Cariboo-Chilcotin regions, the average tax gap in 2015 was 2.32, the narrowest regional gap in the province and 11 per cent below the provincial average of 2.60, the CFIB report states.

A tax gap of 2.32 means a commercial property owner pays nearly two and a half times the taxes of a residential property owner on the same valued property.

The CFIB’s 10th annual Property Tax Gap Report analyzes the disparity between what residential and business property owners pay in taxes (based on the same assessed property value) for each municipality and scrutinizes their inclination to place a much larger tax burden on businesses.

The ratio between business and residential rates is known as the property “tax gap” and is an indicator of tax fairness (not tax levels).

This year’s report shows the tax gap grows as municipalities grow.

The tax gap for the 20 largest municipalities in B.C. stood at 3.04 in 2015, compared to the provincial average of 2.60. And the worst tax gaps were some of the most populous cities — Coquitlam (4.24), Vancouver (4.15) and Burnaby (3.98).

“CFIB has long warned municipalities, as they grow, to resist the urge to over-burden small businesses, says Richard Truscott, vice-president for B.C. and Alberta. “This report makes it crystal clear that there is still a large discrepancy between how small and large cities treat the local business community,” notes Richard Truscott, vice-president for BC and Alberta.

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