10-year tax exemption for daycare? Kamloops council considering proposal

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Citing a shortage of child-care options in the area, the Kamloops city council is weighing a proposal involving a decade-long tax exemption.

A pitch before council suggests the city revise its tax plan for new commercial daycare facilities.

Presented before council at a meeting this week, the report titled Revitalization Tax Exemption Bylaws cites a study from two years ago on child-care options in Kamloops.

The study indicated a lack of spaces throughout the city, the administrative report presented to council Tuesday reads. According to city staff, "there is a serious need for more registered daycare spaces throughout the community in order to meet the increasing demand."

Now, council is mulling over the suggestion of a revitalized tax exemption bylaw that would offer a "100 per cent exemption on the increased assessed value for 10 years for any new commercial daycare facilities."

The hope is that, if approved, the exemptions would serve as an incentive for the creation of new daycare buildings. The exemptions would only apply to projects that delay construction until receiving an approved application, and owners must maintain a valid business licence as a registered commercial daycare facility through the full 10 years.

An exemption would not allow the owner to skip out on other local service taxes, and anyone who wanted to take advantage of the program would have to show that all taxes, utilities and other charges have been paid. Other details of the proposal can be read on pages 52 to 55 of the report presented to council.

The city is also weighing other potential tax exemptions, including for hotel and motel redevelopment, and for work in the city centre and north shore.