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Tax rebates available for vacant industrial buildings

Dear Editor:
I wonder how many of our citizens and business owners are aware of the Ontario Property Tax Rebates for Vacant Commercial and Industrial Buildings legislation? To be helpful to those businesses in our community that qualify for such rebates I have re-searched the following key information:
1. The rebate program is governed by section 442.5 of the Municipal Act of Ontario.
2. To be eligible for a rebate, a building or a portion of a building must satisfy the following conditions:
(a) a whole commercial or industrial building will be eligible for a rebate if the entire building was unused for 90 consecutive days.
(b) a suite or commercial building will be eligible for a rebate if, for at last 90 consecutive days
(c) it was unused; separated from the used portions of the building; capable of leasing for immediate occupation/ or not capable of being leased because it was undergoing or in need of repairs or renovations.
(d) Businesses that operate on a seasonal basis are not eligible for the seasons they are closed.
(e) Leased buildings that are vacant but leased to a tenant are not eligible for a rebate. The same applies to buildings that are included in a vacant and sub-class (e.g. new buildings that have never been occupied.).
3. There is a formula based partly on the value of the vacant area that can provide 30% to 35% commercial and industrial tax rebates!
Any business persons who think they would qualify for such rebates should go down to the Town Office and request the necessary application forms from the Clerk Administrator. After the application is completed it will be checked by the Clerk who then must send it to the Municipal Assessment Office in Fort Frances where it will get further processing. It then goes back to the Town and you must be notified of the rebate decision within a specified time period from the date of your application. If it is more convenient you can get information directly from the Assessment Office in Fort Frances on the procedure.
Other councils have further acted on this legislation providing By-Laws to fully comply with the legislation.
The Town of Smiths Falls by-law 7709-2002 is an example. Check it out
Perhaps the Clerk-Administrator of Rainy River has yet to up-date council on the provisions of the legislation?
Well, dear Editor, there it is in a nutshell! Tax Rebates are available for qualifying businesses who take the time to ask for and file applications. To those who would like follow-up discussion I can be reached at 852-3581...or by mail at Box 328 Rainy River, Ont. POW 1L0.
Have a great Day!
Ed Tymkin