Following a recent property reassessment, many businesses in Toronto reported unsustainable property tax increases. As a result, on January 31, 2018, City Council adopted measures to provide a level of protection against these property tax increases. In 2018, properties in the commercial, industrial and multi-residential tax classes will see property tax increases limited (capped) to 10 per cent of the preceding year's annualized taxes, plus a portion of the Council's approved budgetary rate increase.
Council has asked City staff to explore additional tax policy options for businesses impacted by property tax increases and to report back on a policy direction to explore in 2019 and beyond. City staff held public consultations.
Given that many TREB Members work with business clients operating from commercial and industrial properties in Toronto, TREB submitted a letter to the City providing initial input, and requesting the opportunity to be involved in the process of developing any new policies on this issue.
TREB believes that a competitive property tax environment is critical for the City's economy and that making the City's business property tax rates more competitive should be a priority for City Council. With that said, TREB believes that some important questions must be answered prior to implementing any new policies:
- What would be the impact of new City business tax policies on residential property owners?
- What would be the impact of new City business tax policies on small business owners vs. large businesses?