The Town of Banff’s property assessor, Frank Watson, told council that the total assessed value of all residential properties in Banff increased by 13% last year in his annual report to council. For non-residential properties, the total assessed value increased by 7%. The Government of Alberta requires all municipalities in the province to assess properties based on market value – the price a property might reasonably be expected to sell for in the open market, on July 1 of the previous year. The municipality then uses the assessed value of each property, compared to the total value of all properties in the community, to determine that property’s share of the community’s total property taxes needed for the budget.
Even though the value of all residential properties increased 13%, the increase in total property taxes was determined by the budget to be 4.9% on average. Therefore, if a residential property’s assessed value increased by more than the average value increase of 13%, they will likely see a property tax increase of more than the average of 4.9%. If a property’s assessed value increased less than the 13% average for Banff, then it will likely see a property tax increase less than the average of 4.9%.
The assessed value of a residential property is determined by its size, age, condition, location, type of dwelling and comparison to actual sales records for similar homes in similar areas.
Banff’s property assessments were mailed on February 15. If home owners are concerned with their assessment, they are encouraged to contact the assessor. Many issues can be resolved without a formal appeal. For a formal appeal of an assessment, the deadline is April 18. Assessments can be appealed, but the final property tax cannot be appealed. Tax notices will be mailed in May.
More information is available at Banff.ca/assessment
Although the average increase in residential property values was 13% across Banff, average value in different neighbourhoods increased at different rates due to recent sales, changes in the area such as changes in the composition of land use.
Council Approves Enhanced Information on Development Applications
Council approved the expansion of the online Development Permit Viewer tool to better inform people in Banff about projects in town. The current viewer at Banff.ca/development
shows a map of Banff and where development permits have been issued and their status. An expanded viewer will provide an overview of the development application, access to application files and plans, opportunity for feedback on the development permit, decision-making timeline, and an ability to sign up for email updates to follow the status of an application.
Notification Sign Redesign
A public hearing has been scheduled for Monday, April 8 at 2 p.m. for a Land Use Bylaw amendment to notification sign requirements for development projects in town. Signs are placed on properties where development permits have been issued to inform the public about upcoming changes to the property. The redesigned signs are more noticeable, provide better information in a clearer format, and will direct the public to an improved development permit viewer for more information. Minor changes have been made to sign sizes to maximize printing efficiency of the small and medium signs, and to allow for the use of large notification signs.