Kingston City Council to vote on 2023 final tax levy and rates

At a meeting on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, Kingston city councillors will vote on the final tax levy and rates for 2023. Photo by Josie Vallier.

At a meeting on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, Kingston City Council will vote on a proposed bylaw representing the final tax levy and rates for 2023, which will see the average property tax bill increase by a little more than $150 over 2022 rates.

According to the Municipal Act, 2001, The City of Kingston is required to pass a bylaw enabling the levying and collection of property taxes for the year. In March, City Council approved the 2023 municipal operating budget, which included more than $261 million in taxation revenues; staff have now prepared a formal 2023 tax bylaw.

During budget deliberations, Kingston City Council approved an average property tax increase of 2.35 per cent, with a one per cent incremental levy bringing the increase to 3.35 per cent. This year’s tax rates also reflect an increase in the annual requisition from the County of Frontenac, which covers the City of Kingston’s share of services managed by the County. 

According to a staff report circulating in advance of Tuesday’s meeting, this year’s annual requisition will cost the City more than $14.7 million, an increase of $2.1 million, or 16.64 per cent, over the 2022 amount. The report notes that the requisition covers “the City [of Kingston]’s share of the operating, capital, and debt financing requirements for Fairmount Home for the Aged and Frontenac Paramedic Services.” 

Factoring in the County of Frontenac budget requisition, as well as a $2.5 million tax levy for the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation (UHKF), the average Kingston property owner will see a 3.49 per cent increase in their taxes for 2023, which works out to $153.83 more than 2022’s bill. 

This year’s tax rates were also impacted by the stagnation of provincial education tax rates, which have remained unchanged in recent years. According to City of Kingston staff, an “education tax room” has allowed the City to reduce the overall impact of municipal tax increases.

In terms of how the 2023 tax rates will be felt across the City, west end residents will see the biggest increase over 2022 rates, with their bills set to go up by an average of 3.73 per cent. While property owners in the west end will see the biggest average increase, those in Central Kingston will have the highest tax bills overall, with the average property owner in that part of town paying $4,739.74.

A breakdown of tax rates across the City’s three assessment areas is as follows:

  • Central residents – Total average residential tax bill, including education: $4,739.74 (Increase of 3.23 per cent)
  • West end residents – Total average residential tax bill, including education: $4,460.29 (Increase of 3.73 per cent)
  • East end residents – Total average residential tax bill, including education: $4,345.16 (Increase of 3.60 per cent)

Estimated tax totals for 2023 are based on an average property value of $328,099, which the staff report indicates is “the average residential property assessment for both 2022 and 2023 taxation purposes based on the January 1, 2016, reassessment.” 

Most property owners in the City of Kingston receive two municipal tax bills throughout the year. This past January, the City set the interim tax levy and rates, which represented 50 per cent of the previous year’s tax bill and were due at the end of February. The final tax bill makes up the balance of this year’s taxes and is based on the approved municipal operating budget for the year.

Once approved by Council, final tax bills for 2023 will be sent out by the City on or before June 9, 2023, with payment due by June 30, 2023. A number of different payment options will be made available to property owners, including in-person at City Hall (216 Ontario Street), at any financial institution in the city, by mail, or online via Visa or MasterCard. A complete list of options can be found on the City’s website. 

The proposed tax bylaw will be presented to Council at a meeting on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, which begins at 7 p.m. inside Council Chambers. The meeting will be open to the public and can also be streamed online through the Kingston City Council YouTube channel.

Kingstonist has reached out to the City of Kingston for a map breaking down what areas are officially considered Kingston West, Central Kingston, and Kingston East. This article will be updated if/when that information becomes available.

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