Region has developed a tax deferral program for seniors - members of council didn't have anything to say about it.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

April 20th, 2016


It is certainly an interesting program and one that will be p interest to a lot of people – but council meeting as a Standing Committee didn’t say a word about – it was consented to without as much as a word from a single member of council.

The program they didn’t talk about offers low income older adults who own and live in their homes in the City of Burlington a full property tax deferral with interest being paid by Halton Region.

It is a Regional program but every member of city council is also a Regional Councilor and get paid more than $50,000 a year to warm a seat at the Region – but the Gazette will tell you about the program.

There are currently two property tax programs to assist lower income seniors in Burlington.

Low Income Seniors Property Tax Rebate
A $525 rebate is offered to eligible seniors that meet the following criteria: 65 years of age or older, receive the guaranteed income supplement (GIS) and have owned and lived in their home in Burlington for at least one year.

Residential homeIn 2015, there were 518 applications processed for the tax rebate program. Low-Income Senior & Disabled Property Tax Deferral Program

A legislated program offered for low-income seniors and persons with disabilities to defer the year over year property tax increase.  There have been no applications for the legislated deferral program.

The provincial government also offers programs to assist low-income seniors including the Ontario Senior Homeowners Property Tax Grant, through income tax filing, and a property tax exemption for those individuals that make modifications to their home to accommodate seniors or persons with disabilities.

Older Adult Property Tax Deferral program (OAPTD).

The city has (and will in all probability) participate in the Region of Halton’s Older Adult Property Tax Deferral program (OAPTD).

The program offers low income older adults who own and live in their homes in the City of Burlington a full property tax deferral with interest being paid by Halton Region.

Criteria for the OAPTD Program include the following:

• All registered owner(s) of a property must apply and qualify
• Registered owner(s) of the property for at least 4 years
• Registered owner(s) must be 65 or older
• Combined income of all owners must be less than $44,800 for 2016. This will change each year as set out in the Region’s State of Housing Report (Notice of Assessment from Revenue Canada is required to verify income)
• No outstanding property taxes for prior years Key highlights of the program include:
• A lien will be registered against the title of the property
• Property tax deferral is interest free to the eligible homeowner. Interest is paid by the Region to the participating municipality.

Residential home 2• The program requires an annual renewal application, which is initiated in January of each year with a deadline of September 30
• When the owner of the property becomes ineligible, there is a one year grace period whereby taxes are deferred without interest
• Full amount of deferred taxes is owing either at the end of the grace period or on the sale of the property, whichever is earlier
• Property owners are not able to participate in either of the existing senior programs offered

Save media that mattersThe OAPTD program includes two fees payable to the city. The first fee is a $50 application review fee. Upon approval of the initial application an administration fee of $200 is added to the deferral amount to cover the legal cost of registering a lien on title.

If the tax deferral is of interest –give your member of council a call – they can or should steer you through the details.

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