Update for late tax payment to one annual 10% penalty being considered

City of Kelowna

Kelowna City Council has given first, second and third reading to the proposal to update the Property Tax Penalty Bylaw to an annual 10 per cent penalty if taxes are not paid by the July tax due date each year. Final review of the new bylaw will be given at an upcoming Council meeting.

The Province legislates a non-discretionary 10 per cent penalty for taxes unpaid by the due date each year. Historically, the City of Kelowna has split this into two: a first five per cent penalty applied to taxes outstanding after the July due date, and an additional five per cent late payment penalty (for a total of 10 per cent) applied to taxes still outstanding in early August.

“Kelowna taxpayers have a proven track-record of paying on time with 90 per cent submitting payment by the July due date each year,” said Angie Schumacher, City of Kelowna Revenue Supervisor. “Moving to a one-time penalty would offer efficiencies in staff time, reduces mailing costs and also aligns us with all other similar sized Okanagan and Interior BC municipalities who apply the one-time penalty structure.”

Property tax notices will be mailed to Kelowna property owners in late May 2020. In addition to the municipal portion of taxes, the City of Kelowna collects amounts on behalf of other taxing authorities including the Province (e.g. school tax and BC Assessment), the Regional District, library and the hospital which are reflected on the property tax notice. This year’s property taxes are due on July 2, 2020.

Residential property owners in Kelowna can use the online property tax estimator tool to estimate what their 2020 property taxes will be. You will need your 2019 and 2020 property assessment value (can be found on the BC Assessment website by typing in your address) to use the estimator tool.

On Dec. 12, 2019 Kelowna City Council approved a provisional overall taxation demand increase of 4.15 per cent for 2020. This translates to an $86 increase, or $7.17 per month, for the City portion on an average single-detached home tax bill in Kelowna. Council will review the final budget and set the City’s tax demand increase in late April 2020.