Community Revitalization Levy
A Community Revitalization Levy (CRL) is a unique funding opportunity provided by the province to accelerate the redevelopment of a specific area. The CRL was approved by the province in December 2012. This levy is adopted by municipal council and the province, and is applied to increases in assessed value to the properties within the CRL boundary.
A Community Revitalization Levy is not an additional property tax. When there are increases to assessed property values, the municipal revenue and the provincial education portion of the property tax collected on the increased value will be spent on public improvement projects in the CRL area. This funding mechanism does not require tax revenues from other areas in town to pay for these public improvement projects.
The affected areas included in the CRL bylaw include 23 hectares (57 acres) in the downtown area. Read about the CRL and your current property assessment to see if you are in the CRL area. The Town Council approved the CRL on November 26, 2012. Read Council’s final report.
Current projects funded by the CRL:
- Centre Avenue rail crossing
- Sidewalks on Railway Street
- landscaping in the Centre Avenue commercial area
How a CRL Works
A Community Revitalization Levy is designed to spur redevelopment of an underutilized area like the lands proposed in Cochrane. Once approved by the municipality and the province, the CRL would work in the following way:
- A baseline property value would be established for the CRL area based on the value as of December 31 of the year in which the CRL Bylaw and plan are adopted by the town and the province.
- Tax revenue from the baseline assessment continues to go into general revenue for the municipality; the education tax portion continues to go to the province
- The taxes estimated to be raised from the baseline value over the next 20 years ranges from $5.2 million to $6.9 million. Of this, the Town of Cochrane would receive approximately $3.4 million to $4.4 million and the province would receive the remaining $1.8 million to $2.5 million. The money that the town receives from the baseline value would go into general operating revenue.
- Taxes from the increased value of the CRL properties above the baseline would all go to the municipality. This is estimated to be $13.8 million to $17.9 million over the next 20 years, with the town receiving approximately $4.7 million to $6.1 million that would have ordinarily gone to the province.
- This redirected tax revenue from the province must go into public improvement projects within the revitalization area only. It cannot be used as general revenue for the operation of the municipality.
Council approved a Memorandum of Understanding in March 2010 with Springwood Developments Inc. (Vantage Land Corporation) including terms that would encourage the developer to proceed with remediation and development of 44.5 acres at 304 Griffin Road (Quarry Development). The terms allow the undeveloped portions of the Griffin site to be taxed as brownfield status until development permits are issued on the site. The tax arrangement is a typical tool used to facilitate the cleanup of a contaminated site and eventual development. It is unusual to have such a large contaminated property in the center of a small town. The site could have continued to sit vacant for years to come. The Town’s collaboration with Springwood facilitated the development of this site leading to strong economic development in our downtown.
For more information and a map of the area, check out the overview brochure. Download the information boards from the open house, held April 19, 2012. For all other information, please contactTown of Cochrane Planning.