Calgary Minute: Hotel Taxes, Council Raise, and a New 311 Feature
Calgary Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Calgary politics
This Week In Calgary:
There will be a meeting of the Infrastructure and Planning Committee on Wednesday at 9:30 am. The Committee will review the feedback to its public notice process regarding the development of land near Glenmore Landing. There are also three confidential items on the agenda - a Non-Market Housing Land Disposition Strategy, a proposed lease in Winston Heights/Mountview, and request for approval related to Eau Claire.
The Calgary Planning Commission will meet on Thursday at 1:00 pm. Several land use amendments are on the agenda.
- You’re getting a big tax increase, but Council is getting a raise! Mayor Jyoti Gondek and City Councillors are set to receive an automatic 2.41% wage increase this year, prompting criticism amidst rising fuel taxes, utility costs, and property taxes. Gondek’s new salary will be $213,000, while Councillors will make $120,000.
Last Week In Calgary:
Calgary hotels received news that their tax increase will likely be more in the neighbourhood of 23% than the originally projected 42%. We’re not going to call that good news, because a 23% tax increase is insane. The City Assessor said that a preliminary assessment in November indicated a big increase in the values of the City's 108 hotels and motels, but after gathering more income information from hotel property owners, the increase became less dramatic. Industry representatives are anticipating challenges, and operators may need to mitigate higher taxes by cutting costs, potentially impacting employment. Higher taxes impact everyone - not just property owners.
Fees have increased for transit and City recreation facilities. A single adult ride will cost 10 cents more per ride, after the fare freeze granted in 2023 was lifted. Prices for City-operated amenities like gyms, skating rinks, swimming pools, and leisure centers have risen as well, with monthly passes seeing close to a 3% increase for basic adult rec passes and a 6% increase for seniors.
- The City has introduced a new feature to address the high call demand for city service requests. If the expected wait time exceeds one minute, callers will be informed of the estimated wait time and given the option to receive a call back. This feature will be active on the 10-digit 403.268.CITY (2489) and 311 lines from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm, seven days a week.
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