Saanich residents will have to choose other methods to pay their property taxes this year. (Black Press Media file photo)

Saanich property tax notices in the mail, residents unable to pay in person

Payment options, late penalties adjusted due to COVID-19

Saanich property tax notices are in the mail and the District is reminding residents that both payment options and late penalties have been adjusted due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

With municipal hall closed to the public, Saanich residents can’t pay their 2020 property taxes in person. Instead, payments can be made through online banking, mortgage companies and banks. Secure drop boxes have also been set up outside municipal hall at 770 Vernon Ave. and are open 24/7. Residents are asked to practice social distancing when using the drop boxes.

READ ALSO: Saanich staggers property tax penalties, alters payment methods

Drive-through drop-offs will also be available in the parking lot of municipal hall during peak times.

Mayor Fred Haynes emphasized that the municipality recognizes that many residents prefer to pay their taxes and claim their homeowner grants in person but, in the interest of safety, will not be permitted to do so this year.

“While we will miss seeing you this year, we need you to take advantage of the mail, drop off or online methods for the sake of safety,” Haynes said. “We look forward to seeing you again safe and healthy in 2021.”

The deadline for property tax payments and homeowner grant applications is July 2 but those unable to pay on time will face adjusted late payment penalties.

For most residential and farm properties, a three per cent penalty will be applied to taxes not received by July 31 and an additional seven per cent fee will be applied to taxes not paid by Sept. 30. A fee of seven per cent will be applied to most business and industrial property taxes not paid by Sept. 30 and an extra three per cent will be added if taxes aren’t paid by Nov. 30.

READ ALSO: Saanich council trims property tax increase to 2.4 per cent amid COVID-19 pandemic

An informational insert explaining payment options and late penalty dates was mailed to residents along with their property tax notices, said District spokesperson Megan Catalano.

Municipal staff will be available to assist residents during business hours by phone at 250-475-5454 or by email at propertytax@saanich.ca. Anyone who has not received their property tax notice should contact the District.

Those looking to take part in the property tax deferment program must go through the provincial government.


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devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

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