Looking for tax exemptions
Six community organizations have been given approval to seek tax exempt status from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.
SYDNEY — Six community organizations have been given approval to seek tax exempt status from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.
CBRM finance director Marie Walsh released a list of additions to the tax exempt list that includes churches, volunteer fire departments, museums and seniors clubs.
The groups must provide its financial statements and prove its value to the community before a committee of senior CBRM administrators.
The corporate services committee approved the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design, the Community Development Association of Alder Point, Transition House, Harvest House ministries, as well as the Point Aconi Road Development Association and the Community Development Association of Millville.
In early January the Cape Breton Post reported on the dire financial situations of the Millville and Point Aconi devel- opment associations due to a failure to pay back property taxes. Both groups have been taxed at the commercial rate.
The Millville community association owed $17,809.84 and the Point Aconi community association had $ 23,253.60 owing in back taxes to the CBRM. Both groups were slated for a CBRM tax sale Jan. 28, however the CBRM finance department attempted to work out a solution for the groups.
Both Jake Link and Blair Jessome, the presidents of the Millville and Point Aconi associ- ations respectively, had said there was no attempt to pay the hefty tax bills because area councillor Wes Stubbert said he would take care of the situation.
Walsh said at the time that both groups shouldn’t have ignored overdue tax notices and still owed the municipality the back taxes. She said the associations could set themselves up as seniors and pensioners clubs by changing their groups’ names to qualify for tax exempt status.
At Monday’s committee meeting Walsh said the CBRM is exempting their back taxes like the other seniors and pensioners clubs in the same category.
But she now says a name change isn’t really necessary.
“ To change the name to get a tax exemption didn’t make sense to me,” she said.
“ We’re basing it on what activities they provide to the community and what their financial situation is.”
A proposed external organizations tax exemption bylaw will be brought before council for first reading later in the month.