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Municipalities Today is a web-based newsletter published monthly by the Ministry of Government Relations. It lists deadlines, training opportunities, services and programs that may be of interest to Saskatchewan municipal administrators.
View past editions of Municipalities Today by visiting the Publications Centre.
Council may, by bylaw, require every candidate to submit a criminal record check with their nomination papers during municipal elections as per section 89.1 of The Municipalities Act and section 104.1 of The Northern Municipalities Act, 2010.
A sample of the Criminal Record Check bylaw is available on Saskatchewan's Publication Centre.
If your municipality anticipates they will be unable to submit their 2021 financial statement to the minister by July 1, 2022 (September 1, 2022, if a city), your council may pass an extension of time bylaw for financial statements.
If your municipality is going to pass a bylaw for extending the time of submission to the ministry:
A certified copy of the bylaw, the reason for submitting a late financial statement and the expected date the financial statement will be submitted to the minister, should be emailed to email@example.com.
If you need more information regarding this bylaw, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ministry of Government Relations is preparing regulatory amendments that will set an effective tax rate (ETR) limit of 7:1 for the 2023 property taxation year. This will replace the current mill rate factor limit.
The effective tax rate is the total municipal property tax levy for a property class divided by the taxable assessment for that property class. All tax tools, such as mill rate factors, base tax and minimum tax, are included when calculating the total municipal property tax levy for each property class.
The ministry will host a live webinar on September 7, 2022 from 11 a.m., to noon to demonstrate how to calculate the effective tax rate. To take advantage of this opportunity, please register by August 30, 2022.
More information about the effective tax rate limit can be found online. The 2022 Municipal Tax Policy Guide has also been updated to reflect this change.
If you have questions after reviewing the materials, please reach out to the ministry at 306-787-2653 or email@example.com.
Municipal legislation provides several measures to collect arrears of taxes including specific measures related to oil and gas producers.
The Municipalities Act allows municipalities to:
For oil and gas well tax arrears, a municipality may notify or issue a demand letter to a company purchasing the oil and gas of a producer in arrears stating amounts owing be paid to the municipality before the well operator is paid (Section 317). Rural municipalities may contact the Ministry of Energy and Resources service desk by phone 306-798- 9507 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org with a request for oil purchaser information.
Municipal authority to license business activity with terms and conditions could also be used to require oil and gas producers provide purchaser information before being issued a business license.
For companies to participate in the province’s Accelerated Site Closure Program (ASCP), they must be current on municipal taxes where the specific well, facility or flowlines to be considered for the program is located.
More information about the collection of tax arrears can be found online in this article by Saskatoon lawyer Kim Anderson: Non-Title Tax Enforcement by Saskatchewan Municipalities (linked with permission of the author).
The Ministry of Government Relations is working with the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) and the Rural Municipal Administrators’ Association (RMAA) to raise awareness about how to use existing authority in municipal legislation to collect arrears of taxes. Stay tuned to future SARM and RMAA publications and events for more information.
The Ministry of Government Relations established a new online training program for board of revision members and secretaries, as well as regulatory requirements for all boards of revision to be certified to hear property assessment appeals starting with the 2023 taxation year. The Office of the Registrar will oversee the certification and training for boards of revision.
Application for certification is now open! For details on how to apply for certification, visit Board of Revision Training and Certification and refer to the Board of Revision Certification Guide. This guide has more details on the responsibilities of the board, the municipality, and the registrar.
In May 2022, the ministry published an online survey to gauge municipal preference for boards of revision services and receive feedback on the Board of Revision Training, which is now available and administered by the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy at the University of Regina.
The survey, with almost 150 complete responses, revealed:
Thank you to all municipalities for your active participation and feedback! The ministry continues to work in collaboration with the municipal sector to improve the first level of assessment appeal. If you would like to provide further feedback, please send an email to email@example.com.
Saskatchewan's Building Code Regulations require every building with a residential occupancy (e.g., sleeping quarters) to have carbon monoxide (CO) and smoke alarms installed by July 1, 2022, regardless of when the building was initially constructed or last renovated. Any building which people sleep in, even on a part-time or seasonal basis, must be equipped with smoke alarms; buildings must also have CO alarms if there is a fuel-burning appliance.
Building owners are responsible for installing these alarms in their buildings. Alarms with a 10-year tamper resistant battery are permitted to meet this requirement provided the building is not already required by the National Building Code or a municipal bylaw to have a hardwired CO and smoke alarms.
Local authorities are responsible for enforcing this requirement. However, local authorities and their building officials are encouraged to take a passive approach to enforcement. If building officials are present for another reason (e.g., a permit inspection) and notice the building is not in compliance with the new requirements, they could write an order to have the owner to install the missing alarms.
For more information:
If you have questions about the new CO and smoke alarm requirements, please contact the Building and Technical Standards branch at 306-787-4113 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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