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COVID-19: Updated information on paying city taxes; utility bills

The City of Prince George has provided some information for residents about payments for utilities and property taxes in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Options for Payment

The city provides multiple options for payment of both utility bills and property taxes. These include payment online through financial institutions, using a credit card through the PayTM mobile app, mailing or dropping off cheques at City Hall, or signing up for a pre-authorized payment plan. While payment in-person at City Hall is presently available from 8:30am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday, the City encourages residents to utilize remote payment options in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the importance of practicing social distancing. Online payments are also accepted for monthly parking and dog licences.

In recent years, roughly half of utility and tax payments were paid in-person at City Hall.

Deadlines

The City of Prince George is continuing to follow existing deadlines for payments of utilities and property taxes. This means that property taxes will continue to be due on the first Friday of July (July 3 in 2020) and utility payments for the first half of 2020 are due April 3 for properties on a flat rate. Even though the deadline for filing 2019 income tax has been extended to June 1 by the Federal and Provincial Governments, municipalities in BC don’t have the authority to change tax collection dates or waive penalties/interest for late payment; these are governed by provincial legislation. In addition, nearly 30% of the funds collected through property taxes are directly transferred to cover hospital and school taxes, the regional district, BC Assessment, and the Municipal Finance Authority.

The City utility bills provide all of the annual operating funds for the water, sanitary sewer, and solid waste services. Delaying collection of fees for these services would have a significant impact on the City’s cash flow.

More information about property taxes, utility billing, and options for payment is provided on the City website: www.princegeorge.ca/payments

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