Businesses lobby for equitable tax rates

Published: June 21, 2017


Local business owners are urging municipal councilors to overturn a decision that has allowed a hobby shop to operate on residential property in Red Lake.

Appearing before municipal leaders at their Regular Council Meeting on June 19, Lakeside Marina Ltd. owner Mike Smith told those gathered the decision to grant an Application for Temporary Use Provision to 79 Howey Bay Road in May is counter to the interest of businesses in the community.  

“The Council and the Planning board have worked for years to try to get commercial properties out of residential areas. It has been an on-going thing and all of a sudden you want to let it back in.”

Smith says the tax rate applied to commercial property exceeds that of residential, giving the shop an unfair advantage when it comes to overhead profit margins.

“You can’t sit there and have a person doing commercial stuff on a residential tax. It just doesn’t make any sense.”

Planning Advisory Committee Chair Gary Ripley also appeared as a delegation to discuss the “refusal” of the leadership body to accept the group’s decision to deny the application.

“The applicant requested a home based business license to repair primarily boats and snowmobiles and include small engine repair and welding which are not permitted in residential [homes] in section… of the zoning bylaw.”

Ripley says a vote held by planning advisory committee members was split with three votes for each side and one abstention. By default the application was refused. At the Regular Council Meeting on May 16 Council voted to overturn the rejection and approved the Temporary Use Provision.

At the Monday night meeting leaders thanked the delegations for their presentations however did not offer any response to the concerns.


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