ake heed of the old phrase, “Be careful what you wish for.” Back in 2005, when Nova Scotia introduced its Capped Assessment Program, the stated goal was to keep seniors and families in their homes
that might otherwise have been priced out. The solution of the day was to limit property tax increases to no more than the annual inflation rate. It sounds considerate—and indeed, it worked. But then the price of homes in Halifax rocketed to the moon, and nothing has ever been the same.
On this week’s Grand Parade
podcast, writer Deny Sullivan joins Coast reporters Matt Stickland and Martin Bauman to discuss the unintended consequences of the cap—namely, how it has led to some mansions being under-taxed by $3 million, and how it has also shielded investment property owners with multiple homes from paying more for their additional assets. Sullivan proposes what he describes as “The Perfect Tax Hike”
: A way to return $100 million to the HRM annually.
Plus, all the news from HRM council’s July 11 meeting—including a spirited debate on the Halifax Forum renovations and the future of the Integrated Mobility Plan.
And here is the map referenced in the show. The teal areas are the areas of mandated density.