Restructuring Simcoe County: A Triple Whammy for Higher Taxes
1. Boundary Changes:
Tiny will lose approximately 4700 acres AND 85% of Tiny’s commercial assessment, including:
• the commercial plazas and properties on Highway 93
• the Brooklea and Midland Golf Courses
• the Huronia and District Hospital
• most of the Penetanguishene Bay marinas in Tiny
Tiny Township will lose $400,000 in tax revenue every year from now on.. With these losses our property taxes must rise to replace the lost revenue.
Restructuring will bring “downloading” of many services from the Province to the local governments; e.g., policing alone could cost Tiny taxpayers $1.1 million more per year in the future
3. Market Value Assessment
It is possible the restructured county could adopt 1992 market values for assessment. This would cause greater tax increases for properties in beach communities than for inland areas. The most authoritative estimates peg the total effect of the “triple whammy” from restructuring as a 300% increase in beach property taxes.
Synopsis of the Process
Prior to July 1991, your Federation made 4 presentations opposing restructuring to the Simcoe County Study Committee. The final report of the Study Committee thankfully dropped the option to give Tiny Concessions 1 through 4 to Wasaga Beach, Flos and Tay.
• Last summer, several hundred taxpayers wrote to the Premier and the Minister of Municipal Affairs to register their disapproval of the whole restructuring process.
• In last November’s election 5090 Tiny voters opposed restructuring and only 420 supported it.
• Despite this clear mandate, on February 21st Tiny Township Council met with the Joint Consultation Committee of Simcoe County and the Ontario Government and offered to give away 4700 acres, including 85% of our commercial tax base. On April 29th, Council formed an ad hoc committee to lobby the Province to accept this “gift”.
• On June 10th, one ratepayer appeared before Council asking them to withdraw that position. He pointed out that seasonal residents would soon be returning, and “it would be far better to have the efforts of this sizeable, vocal portion of the ratepayer base directed…”(against restructuring rather)”…than to have those same energies directed against Council for seemingly cooperating with the disembowelling process.”
• Council forthwith disbanded the original committee and set up another one mandated to lobby against restructuring. On July 25th, the new committee held a well-attended special meeting to rally support for lobbying the Provincial Government. At the July 25th meeting, Reeve Hastings stated it has always been his position to give Tiny’s commercial strip east of Highway 93 to Midland.
Last Chance To Stop Restructuring Depends On You!
• Although it seems that most of the damage has already been done, the last chance to stop the restructuring is to convince the Ontario Government to drop the legislation (Simcoe County Act) it proposes to introduce in the Fall. If the residents of every home receiving this Newsletter would write to the Minister of Municipal affairs Dave Cooke and to Premier Bob Rae to demand that the restructuring of Tiny be stopped, they would be deluged with thousands of letters that would be difficult to ignore.
If you care, will you write? ….