(File photo)

(File photo)

Stettler County writes off four year’s worth of unpaid oil and gas taxes

Cassidy

Stettler County council has opted to write-off nearly $124,000 in unpaid oil and gas taxes from 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 tax-years.

Per the administration request for council decision, “all avenues” have been exhausted in trying to the collect the outstanding property taxes and they remain uncollectable due to the companies having either gone into recievership, bankruptcy, or moving out of the jurisdiction.

Due to the way the education and seniors lodging requisitions are calculated, the Government of Alberta calculates the amount of tax a municipality is anticipated to bring in, and sends a requisition amount which the municipality is then required to pay.

Even in cases such as this, where a municipality does not collect the full amount of anticipated tax revenue, the full amount of the requisition still needs to be paid to the province.

By writing off the unpaid oil and gas taxes, the municipality is able to apply for the Provincial Education Requsition Credit for Uncollected Education Property Taxes on Oil and Gas Properties (PERC), which then reimburses a percentage of the requisition to the municipality.

“The (oil and gas) company is U.S. based,” said chief administratrive officer Yvette Cassidy.

“They no longer have residence in Alberta, an we have no recourse in collecting outstanding taxes at this point.”

According to Cassidy, while some of the well sites had been purchased, and the associated taxes transferred to the new owners, the ramainder of the assets transferred to the province’s Orphan Well Association.

Coun. James Nibourg motioned to write off the unpaid taxes and apply for PERC, which was carried.