Brampton considering application-based deferral program for 2022 Interim Tax Levy

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Published November 22, 2021 at 1:05 pm

The City of Brampton is debating the possibility of allowing residents to defer tax payments for the 2022 Interim Tax Levy.

Billing for the levy, which will go towards the new hospital to be located at the former Peel Memorial Centre, will begin as of January 1, but there is concern some residents may be unable to afford payments, as well as late penalties.

“I would like staff to be able to provide some options for the late payment charge,” Paul Vicente, Regional Councillor for Wards 1 and 5, said during a Committee of Council meeting on November 17.

“Councillor Santos and the Mayor and I have received letters from residents who are still dealing with the effects of the pandemic—they’re not fully employed, they’re still getting back into the workforce, and they’re struggling,” he said.

However, according to Martin Finnegan, director of Revenue for the City of Brampton, changing the late charge would not be feasible before the new billing process comes into effect.

“The main interim billing goes live on January 1, so there is very little time to make any changes,” he said.

Currently, residents who do not pay their taxes on time are subject to a 1.25 per cent late fee, something Vicente is concerned about regarding some residents’ precarious working situation.

“Our residents are doing their best, but it’s quite daunting with the 1.25 per cent late fee,” he said.

While changing or omitting the late fee seems extremely unlikely, it’s possible the City could implement a deferral system similar to what was implemented this past year, allowing residents more time to pay their taxes without being subjected to late fees.

“For 2021, we did offer the deferral program by application, which is something we could continue into the new year,” Finnegan said. “We could possibly get that program up and running for the installment billing in January.”

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