Historic and Vibrant Saskatchewan Community

Town Financials & Taxes

This section is to provide residents with information about the Town of Langham’s Audited Financial Reports, and the Town’s budgetary and taxation processes.

Our Audited Financial Statements have been prepared by Davies & Drury Chartered Accountants and copies are available for a nominal fee by request through the Town Office.

2015 Financial Statement Town of Langham

2014 Financial Statement Town of Langham

2013 Financial Statement Town of Langham

2013 Budget | Town of Langham

2012 Financial Statement | Town of Langham

2011 Financial Statement | Town of Langham

Taxes

The following section is to provide residents with information about how residential taxes are calculated in the Town of Langham.

The following is an excerpt from the Province of Saskatchewan’s A Guide to Municipal Property Tax Tools to provide some basic information about the budgetary and taxation steps taken by the Town of Langham each fiscal year.

Budgetary and Taxation Decision Making Process

Each year town council considers and decides on the services that the community needs and/or wants. Budget deliberations are crucial. Council sets the direction of the community by prioritizing its capital projects, its infrastructure maintenance program (both current and future via an asset management plan), and its commitment to health, safety and welfare of its residents.

The next considerations are: “How much will this cost the community?” “How much revenue is required to meet the goals and objectives of council?” “How do we, as council, distribute the tax incidence fairly and equitably?”

Once the council has a draft budget formed, town administration works with council to go through the following steps:

Step 1. Estimating the Municipal Mill Rate

One of the first starting points each budget season is to estimate the uniform municipal mill rate. A uniform mill rate is determined by dividing the amount of tax revenue required by the total taxable assessment for the municipality. This tax rate is then applied to the taxable assessment of a specific parcel of land to determine the4 amount of property taxation to be levied against that parcel. This is referred to as the ad valorem method of taxation.

When the current year budget is finalized and council has determined the total amount of expenditures for the current year, along with determining other sources of revenue, the actual uniform mill rate may be calculated (using the formula taxes required divided by taxable assessment equals mill rate) and used throughout the tax policy formulation process.

Step 2. Minimum Tax/Base Tax

Councils have the authority to establish a minimum tax or base tax, by bylaw, for the municipal portion of the levy. As the Town of Langham has chosen to exercise its right to utilize a base tax and a minimum tax it must then decide the set amount and the property class or classes to which it will apply.

Utilizing a base (or minimum) tax allows for more predictability by council in what the revenues will be for the fiscal year.

Step 3. Apply (Adjusted) Uniform Mill Rate to Property Classes

After reviewing the base tax, council then reviews any possible shifts (changes) in taxation levels between property classes compared to the previous year. If these shifts are acceptable council is finished selecting its tax policy tools and can skip to the final step of implementation. If the shifts are not acceptable, council would look at the remaining tax tools options to determine which best adjusts the tax shifts between property classes at an appropriate level.

Step 4. Acceptability of Tax Shifts

With the minimum and base tax decisions dealt with, the estimated uniform mill rate should then be applied to all properties. The shifts in taxes, if any, which occur between the three local property classes, should be examined to determine whether the size and incidence of the shifts is acceptable. If the shifts are acceptable based on the goals and objectives that council has previously established, the process stops (except to communicate the choices council has made to the public). If the resulting shifts are not acceptable to council, it could use mill rate factors to manage the shifts among the three local property classes.

Step 5. Mill Rate Factors

Different mill rate factors may be applied to the uniform mill rate to effectively changes the mill rate for one, a combination of, or all local property tax classes to manage tax incidence among the property tax classes. Factors may be used on a revenue neutral basis (total amount of taxes raised does not change compared to the previous year, but the distribution of the taxes among the property classes changes). Mill rate factors may also be used to generate more or less taxes from a certain property class or classes (e.g. a lower mill rate factor could be applied to a property class to decrease the tax burden to those properties).

Step 6. Finish

At this point, if the goals and objectives council previously established have been met, the tax policy formulation process ends. The implementation process should follow, beginning with communicating council’s tax policy decisions to the public (newspaper, mail-out(s), radio, etc.). If council’s initial goals have not been achieved, other measures must be examined (e.g., individual property tax abatements or exemptions) or the goals themselves may need to be re-examined.

2013 Revaluation

Every four years the Saskatchewan Assessment Management Agency (SAMA) updates its database of the value of residential properties in Saskatchewan. 2013 was a revaluation year.

Quoting SAMA, “Saskatchewan has experienced unprecedented economic growth, and as a result, the 2013 Revaluation will report significant increases in property assessments.” This is very much the case for the Town of Langham. According to SAMA, the value of all property (including improvements such as buildings) has more than doubled since the last valuation.

The value of the property is only one factor in calculating residential property taxes:

Assessed Value X Percentage of Value and Exemptions X Mill Rates = Your Property Tax Amount

Definitions:

Assessed Value: Established by SAMA. Assessed value is public information and can be found on your assessment notice, phoning the SAMA regional office at 933-5385 or online at http://sama.sk.ca/sama
Percentage of Value and Exemptions: Set by the Provincial Government
Mill Rate (municipal): Set by Langham Town Council (based on the annual Town budget)
Mill Rate (education): Set by the Provincial Government

The 2013 assessment information was released in March 2013. Each revaluation year is important to take a look at your property’s assessment. If you believe there is a mistake in your assessed value you have the right to appeal your assessment. The appeal process starts by filling in the form on the bottom of your assessment notice, and delivering it to the town office between March 15th and May 21st.

Only once SAMA assessment values and the Province’s education mill rates are set, can it be possible for the Town to establish its municipal mill rate and release the tax amounts.

In light of the recent increase in assessed values from SAMA the 2013 education mill rates (provincial) and municipal mill rates (Town of Langham) have remained unchanged since 2012.

For further information please visit:

SAMA Revaluation 2013 Information Sheet #1: Understanding Assessment

http://www.sama.sk.ca/pdfs/infosheets/2013/1.pdf

Government of Saskatchewan: Understanding the Property Assessment Appeal Process

http://www.municipal.gov.sk.ca/Assessment/Revaluation/UnderstandingAssessmentAppeals

SAMAView (searchable database of assessed values)

http://sama.sk.ca/sama/

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