NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT Alberta Urban Municipalities Association petition the Government of Alberta to review the practice of collecting the education tax from all residents.
WHEREAS education funding is the responsibility of the Provincial Government;
WHEREAS the Provincial Government collects funding for education from each taxpayer in the Province;
WHEREAS in the past there was no education tax collected from each taxpayer;
WHEREAS the responsibility to collect this education tax has become the duty of each municipality in the Province through their own tax system;
WHEREAS this extra education tax portion creates a burden for many in the Province, especially seniors; and
WHEREAS a goal of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs is to create an environment where senior citizens can remain in their homes as long as possible.
Nov 23/11 – Municipal Affairs
An accessible, quality education system is a priority for this government, and for all Albertans. All Albertans benefit from a quality basic kindergarten-to-grade-12 education system. About two thirds of the funding for Alberta’s basic education system comes from provincial general revenues. The remainder comes from the provincial education property tax requisition. Property taxes have been used to help fund education in Alberta since the early 1900s. Prior to 1994, school boards received education funds from both the provincial government and from local property taxes.
The Education Property Tax Assistance for Seniors program is available to all senior homeowners, regardless of income. This program provides an annual rebate to senior homeowners in Alberta who experience an increase in the education portion of their property tax over their base year.
While the province is aware of the impact of education property taxation on property owners, this tax adds stability to the revenues available to fund this essential service.
AUMA considers this response.