Markham’s 2016 budget brings lowest eight-year tax rate increase across GTHA municipalities

MARKHAM – Markham Council approved the City’s 2016 Budget and a tax rate increase of 2.44 per cent at the Council meeting on December 15, 2015.

The 2016 Budget includes a 2.28 per cent tax rate increase to support day-to-day city operations, and a 0.16 per cent tax rate increase for continuing costs associated with the December 2013 ice storm.

The 2.44 per cent tax rate increase represents an additional $27.52 for the average residential household in Markham.

Based on public reports on 2016 municipal tax rate increases, Markham’s eight-year tax rate increase of 10.43 per cent or 1.3 per cent per year is the lowest among 27 GTHA municipalities.

“Markham is proud of our continuing fiscal leadership among municipalities in Canada,” said Mayor Frank Scarpitti. “I would like to acknowledge the efforts of Council and staff to achieve further operational improvements to programs and services while creating a healthy workplace for our employees and achieving greater value for taxpayers. Our recent Gold Award from Excellence Canada reflects our commitment to operational excellence and continuous improvement, and further builds credibility with the public we serve.”

The 2016 Budget includes $2.71 million for growth-related services, including maintenance for 19 km of new roads and 69 acres of parkland, and an increase of 2,700 tonnes for waste collection associated with servicing 1,222 new homes and 2,335 new high rise units in Markham.

“Markham’s eight-year record of low tax rate increases is unmatched in the GTHA. We continue to keep tax rate increases low through our innovative E3 program which has achieved over $22M in operational savings and revenue enhancements since 2009,” said Budget Chief Councillor Logan Kanapathi. “Our 2016 budget focuses on continued service delivery, ensuring value for money, investing in infrastructure, retaining jobs and investment, and minimizing the impacts on individual and family household budgets.”

“Through collaboration and teamwork by Markham staff and Council, each department took on the challenge to find ways to bring the budget shortfall down and reduce the tax rate increase from the original proposed 3.63 per cent to the approved 2.44 per cent, a reduction of 1.19 per cent equivalent to a savings of $13 for the average residential household. We are proud of the excellent services we provide and we respect taxpayer’s hard-earned dollars,” said Budget Vice Chair Councillor Amanda Collucci.

Markham collects property taxes on behalf of York Region and the Province of Ontario, with more than 50 per cent of all Markham taxes going to York Region. The City of Markham retains about 25 per cent of the taxes collected with the remaining 25 per cent going to the Province for education.

Mayor Scarpitti also said, “Markham’s efforts at keeping tax rates low, and providing superior municipal services and infrastructure ensures our residents enjoy a high quality lifestyle, attracts new economic investment and establishes us as a community of choice to live and visit.”

2016 Budget Highlights

  • $23.02 million to address the renewal of existing assets
  • $12.55 million for the design and construction of 19 new city parks totaling 66.9 acres of parkland
  • $3.24 million for 3 new pedestrian bridges and 0.75 km of new multi-use pathways
  • $6.58 million for the West Thornhill Flood Control Program

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