Victoria West property tax hike hard to swallow

Disproportionate increase in B.C. Assessment values frustrates Vic West resident

Victoria West property owners are being hit this year with a proportionately higher tax increase than the rest of the City of Victoria.

I received my tax notice recently, and noted that in the attached mayor’s message, the average residential tax increase for the City is 2.75 per cent. However, my property tax increase, despite no material changes to my property, is a whopping 8.4 per cent compared to 2013.

The root cause is the unequal increase in property assessments in Victoria West compared to the rest of the area.

Whereas most of the city saw an average decrease in property assessments for single family homes of about 2.82 per cent, in Victoria West there is an average increase of 2.71 per cent. (Perhaps B.C. Assessment thought that having a proposed sludge factory nearby might increase our values?)

Council approved an overall residential tax increase of 2.75 per cent. Victoria West property owners can expect a tax increase of about 8 to 9 per cent, about three times that of the rest of the city.

B.C. Assessment is not yet finished with Victoria West – earlier this year they sent out mandatory surveys to 2,500 area property owners asking for information on any recent renovations and property improvements.

I suspect all my neighbours in Victoria West are seeing similar tax hikes, yet sadly we are seeing precious little increase in services or amenities in this area to justify this disparity.

Roel Hurkens

Vic West