Changes to Paying Property Taxes in 2020

Posted On Tuesday April 14, 2020

On April 8, Fort Saskatchewan City Council approved to extend the penalty free period for late payments of municipal property taxes due June 30, 2020.

To provide relief to those residents and businesses that are experiencing financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to align the City’s approach to tax penalties with the Government of Alberta’s collection of the non-residential education tax, Council approved that penalties associated with the late payment of property taxes normally applied on July 1, August 1, and September 1 will now be applied on October 1, 2020 at 3%. If still not paid by November 1, 2020 a 6% penalty will be applied. If taxes are unpaid as of December 1, 2020, a 9% penalty will be applied.

This gives property owners an additional 92 days to pay their property taxes without penalty, up to September 30, 2020. In accordance with Bylaw C16-19, these penalties will apply to current year’s tax arrears only. Any existing penalties will not be waived or deferred.

After December 1, 2020, the next scheduled late payment penalties will be applied on January 1 and February 1, 2021 at 9%, respectively, and will apply to total tax arrears (current and prior years).

Industrial, Machinery and Equipment and Linear Assessment

The property tax penalty changes approved by Council on April 8, 2020 do not apply to designated industrial properties, machinery and equipment and linear assessment. Penalties associated with the late payment of property taxes for this assessment for July 1 (3%), August 1 (6%), and September 1, 2020 (9%) will remain in effect. The City will work closely with our industrial partners on payment timelines.

Tax Notices

Property assessment and tax notices will continue to be mailed out mid-May to all property owners stating property taxes are due June 30, 2020. Property owners are encouraged to keep property tax accounts in good standing where possible, and to pay your annual property taxes by the June 30 deadline, or continue with your pre-authorized monthly tax installment plan.

Payments

In light of recent COVID-19 developments and at the recommendation of the Alberta Government for Albertans to stay home, we encourage you to use payment options that do not require direct person to person contact. As many City facilities have limited access, there are a number of payment options available. Payment can be made online through your bank, by credit card through the PaySimply portal on fortsask.ca/taxes, or by cheque in the City Hall night deposit box.

Property owners currently on pre-authorized monthly tax installment plans are encouraged to maintain their payments to keep their tax accounts in good standing. Property owners wishing to pay their annual property taxes via pre-authorized monthly tax installments may do so at any time and are encouraged to call the City at 780-992-6228 or email finance@fortsask.ca for assistance.

Allowances for COVID-19 Financial Hardships

Also, for property owners that are unable to pay their property taxes by the June 30 deadline due to financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the City will be accepting applications to allow them to pay their annual property taxes in six monthly instalments starting from July until December 2020 without penalty. Further details regarding these repayment plans will be forthcoming.

City of Fort Saskatchewan
Tax Department
780-992-6228