Assessments have increased overall for the hospital district, providing more taxation income which then reduces what’s required from individual taxpayers. (Black Press File Photo)

Taxpayers get break in new Mills Memorial cost

Rising assessments helping ease taxpayer costs

Property owners throughout the region can expect a tax break from the North West Regional Hospital District this year.

“Residential homeowners are forecast to pay $58.40 per $100,000 of assessed value in 2020, compared to $64.50 in 2019,” reports Yvonne Koerner, the executive director for the hospital district which covers the area from Haida Gwaii to Houston.

And that’s because assessments have increased overall for the hospital district, providing more taxation income which then reduces what’s required from individual taxpayers.

Koerner said residents had been contacting the hospital district asking about taxes because of the upcoming start of the Mills Memorial Hospital replacement project in Terrace, forecast to cost $450.5 million.

She did note, however, that the hospital district had already increased its requisition amount in anticipation of paying for its portion of the new Mills.

READ MORE: Security guard “bitten and punched” in Terrace hospital

The province is borrowing $337 million, with the hospital district putting in $110 million, plus $3.5 million for a business plan already paid from surplus – making for a total cost of $450.5 million.

Those figures from the hospital district fall within a deal it negotiated with the province two years ago so that it would pay no more than 30 per cent of the new Mills cost, to a maximum of $113.7 million. That puts the project cost currently at $450.5 million.

Traditionally the hospital district finances 40 per cent of major capital projects with other sources, mainly the provincial government and the Northern Health Authority contributing the rest.

But given the budget needed for the new Mills, the hospital district negotiated a reduced percentage requirement.

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