Inglewood businesses shocked by property tax hike

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Kelly Doody, owner of The Social School in Inglewood, said she is "shocked and disappointed" after learning her property taxes from $ 1,500 a month to $ 6,400 a month

Brendan Miller / Postmedia

A chalkboard sign outside the Social School in Inglewood expresses owner Kelly Doody's concerns over a massive increase in property taxes.

"The sign says the property tax on our building went from only $ 1,500 a month last week to $ 6,400 a month this week. . . I feel shocked and disappointed. "I terrified for my small business friends in Inglewood and throughout the city," said Doody.

Business owners had to go upstairs. Around 64 for central property owners will see double-digit tax increases this year two to redistribute non-residential taxes as a result of plunging property values ​​downtown.

Doody said that just a year ago when she moved her company to the Inglewood building, the property was valued at $ 800,000. Now it’s valued at $ 2.2 million, which led to a significant increase on her tax bill.

"I would like to see a city and a council that is actually business-friendly like they say they are," said Doody. "They need to start walking the walk instead of gutting us."

"To know that the city of the obstacle to deal."

A sandwich board is posted outside of Inglewood business

Jim Wells /

Postmedia

Last week, city council drafted for $ 190-million tax relief package for non-residential taxpayers.

Despite the proposed tax relief, Coun. Gian-Carlo Carra said business owners' reactions to the tax increase are understandable.

"They opened their tax bill and they're seeing massive increases. . . "They're feeling gut-punched and let down and it's all rational," said Carra.

“Nightmare” before tax bills went out, which is why they want to move forward with plans to send out checks to non-residential taxpayers to offset the increase, according to Carra.

"We are going to look at doing other things to drive costs down to get more savings into businesses that are suffering from the financial situation we are in."

Carra said Inglewood is a neighborhood that was hit hard because of the desirable qualities of the area pushed up property values. He wants the city to address Calgary's "new normal" and accept the devaluation of the city's core.

"It would have been better if we had avoided this," Carra said of the tax hikes. "It is important that we commit to the solution we have identified for this year and pull together to find the structural changes that we need to make, because this can't keep on keeping."

Brian Imeson, who has owned About Vintage Art Glass in Inglewood for 17 years, can´t believe his property taxes have tripled since 2016. His property value was reassessed in 2016, which is when he started to laugh.

“We are dealing in an economy where people are skittish to begin with. . . "When you are saddled with these large tax increases on top of that, it only compounds the problem," he said.

Imeson said he´s happy to see the city stepping in, but he believes they need to prioritize finding a solution to the downtown tax shift or businesses don’t continue to suffer.

"It’s like, you can’t put a Band-Aid on a cut that’s still bleeding, you have to stop the bleeding first," said Imeson.

– With files from Meghan Potkins

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