Election 2018: Progressive Conservative Platform on municipal issues

UMNB applauds the Progressive Conservative’s acknowledgement that municipalities should get a share of revenues from legalized cannabis, and election commitment to give municipalities more authority and power over taxation.

In their municipal platform for Election 2018, the Progressive Conservatives promised to:

  • Overhaul the Local Governance Act to give municipalities more local authority, including over taxation and property assessment,
  • Give municipalities the ability to diversify tax rates, and to provide different tax levels and credits
  • Audit all regulations to determine which should be controlled by municipal governments
  • Continue equalization and respect the principles of Equal Opportunity

PC Leader Blaine Higgs also said municipalities should have a share of revenue from legalized cannabis sales and that the PCs were open to a hotel levy to support local tourism.

The Progressive Conservatives have previously promised to:

  • Remove the double taxation on commercial properties
  • Support regionalization of any services with willing partners
  • Discuss waiving property assessment charges as part of municipal tax reforms.

UMNB has called for new revenues for municipalities, including 1/3 of the revenues from legalized cannabis and a hotel levy to support local tourism.

The vast majority of municipal revenues come from property taxes, which makes municipalities vulnerable to sudden changes by the province like the 2018 property assessment freeze. Municipalities need new and diverse sources of revenue. In the meantime, municipalities should be consulted on proposed changes to property taxes to avoid unforeseen negative impacts on residents’ taxes and services.

UMNB is tracking campaign promises on municipal issues from all NB political parties and will examine their platforms through the municipal lens. Follow our Facebook page for news and updates: www.facebook.com/MunicipalNB


Progressive Conservative platform on municipal issues

Local Governance:

  • ACTION: Give municipalities more control
    • Overhaul the Local Governance Act to give municipalities greater control over their own affairs – including greater powers over taxation and property assessment.
    • Conduct an audit of all regulations that should be controlled by municipal governments.
    • Support regionalization and partnerships.
    • Remove the “for profit” restrictions on city-owned utilities.
    • Foster community-driven economic growth initiatives.

Property taxes:

  • ACTION: Gradually eliminate double taxation

Tourism:

  • ACTION: Strengthening New Brunswick’s value proposition as a tourism destination
    • We will protect our covered bridges and ferry network.
    • We will support municipalities by giving them the freedom to look at establishing a hotel levy to fund tourism marketing.

Housing:

  • ACTION: Establish mandatory provincial standards for rental properties
    • Work with municipal governments to make sure landlords meet
    • mandatory provincial standards.
    • If they refuse, we will empower municipalities to expropriate, renovate or if necessary, demolish.

Link to the full Progressive Conservative platform: https://www.pcnb.ca/our-platform/