POP: Affected Acres Income Loss Fund

POP: Yes
Res #: POP 6-19A
Number: 6
Year: 2019
Midterm: No
Expired: No
Responses Received: Yes

WHEREAS the long term flooding of the Quill Lakes and other lakes in the province has affected many thousands of acres of deeded and Crown lease land;

WHEREAS the affected rural municipalities have abated taxes to the landholders to relieve an unfair burden on them;

BE IT RESOLVED that SARM lobby the provincial government to establish a fund to replace all or a portion of the income lost by rural municipalities, resulting from the abatement of taxes to landholders unfairly burdened by the long term flooding of the Quill Lakes and other lakes in the province.

Responses From: The Ministry of Government Relations

April 18, 2019

Choosing to offer a property tax abatement to a ratepayer affected by flooding is a municipal council decision. Alternatively, the municipality could ask the Saskatchewan Assessment Management Agency to re-inspect properties affected by flooding, possibly resulting in lowered property assessments. This would result in the ratepayer owing less taxes on the affected land and allow the municipality to then adjust their mill rate to make up for the lost revenue from decreased property assessments.

The Provincial Disaster Assistance Program (PDAP) is a program that assists Saskatchewan individuals, municipalities, small businesses and organizations to recover from specific uninsurable disasters. PDAP's focus has always been and continues to be on replacing or returning damaged assets back to pre-disaster condition. However, PDAP is not intended to be a program to replace lost income.

The Quill Lakes situation is a result of multiple years of excess moisture which cannot be linked to a specific disaster and would, therefore, not qualify for benefits under PDAP, nor would it qualify under the federal Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements under which the province cost shares disaster recovery expenses.

Warren Kaeding – Minister of Government Relations