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Municipal tax base threatened by draft Regulated Industrial Assessment Guide

September 5, 2018

AUMA has partnered with the Alberta Assessors’ Association (AAA), Rural Municipalities of Alberta (RMA), and the Alberta Rural Municipal Administrators’ Association (ARMAA) to present a unified voice against the proposed Regulated Industrial Property Assessment Guide (RIPA). AUMA has also requested a meeting with the Minister of Municipal Affairs to discuss this issue in detail.

RIPA is expected to replace the Construction Cost Reporting Guide (CCRG) to set out how assessors are to do their jobs with respect to regulated industrial properties. Originally, the AAA had been told consultations were happening on RIPA to improve consistency, reduce the number of complaints filed, and to develop benchmarks for labour costs.

However, the draft RIPA proposed by the province fails to accomplish these objectives. Instead, it significantly changes assessment practices in a manner that would reduce industrial assessments across the province, with the impact of shifting the tax burden onto homeowners and other non-residential properties. The proposed changes come with no explanation, no impact analysis, and insufficient detail to ensure consistent practice in the future.

AUMA, AAA, RMA, and ARMAA have strongly recommended these changes should not occur to the current CCRG process and that the draft RIPA should be delayed indefinitely to allow for appropriate consultation and review with municipalities and other stakeholder groups.