The Role of the Finance in Tax Collection
The Finance Division is responsible for the billing of interim, final and supplementary property taxes; tax, provincial offences and miscellaneous receivables; payment processing and cashiers; review and appeal of property assessment information received from the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC); and property tax policy.
This site will explain who sets property taxes, where the information comes from upon which property taxes are based, who plays what role in the process leading from the creation of taxation policy to your tax bill, and many other tax questions.
The Town collects property taxes on behalf of the Town of Fort Erie, Region of Niagara, and the Province of Ontario (Education). Each level of Government is responsible for its own tax rates.
Assessment and Tax Legislation - Province of Ontario
The Provincial Government sets the legislative framework for assessment and taxation in Ontario. It does this by creating legislation, called Provincial Statutes. The Government also creates regulations, which are authorized under the Statutes. The principal ministry involved in setting assessment and taxation policies is the Ministry of Finance, through the Assessment and Municipal Acts.
Assessed Value - Municipal Property Assessment Corporation
The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) is responsible for assessing all property in Ontario. It operates under the authority of the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation Act. Every municipality in Ontario is a member of the Corporation. The Corporation is governed by a Board of Directors who are appointed by the Minister of Finance. MPAC does not set assessment policy but it does administer these policies. Its main responsibility is to calculate assessment values and to classify properties according to their use, for each of the over four million properties in Ontario. These values are also provided to municipalities on an annual assessment roll. The Town, Region and the Province use these values when they calculate property taxes and education taxes.
Additions and improvements to your property will create a change to the market value. For questions concerning assessment and property valuation, please contact the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation office (MPAC). Call 1-866-296-6722 or visit the MPAC web site at www.mpac.ca.
The following videos will help you understand how MPAC assesses a property and how property taxes are calculated.
MPAC: How MPAC Assesses Property
MPAC: How Your Property Tax is Calculated
Frequently Asked Questions About Taxes and Assessment
How does your assessed value work for you?
Accurate property assessment is the basis for fair property taxation and ensures everyone in your community pays their fair share of property taxes. You want your assessed value to be accurate.
The 2016 phased-in assessment is based on property values as of January 1, 2012, and will be used to determine 2016 municipal and education taxes.
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How do you know if your property's assessed value is accurate?
- Does your assessed value reflect what you would have expected to sell your property for in January 2012? If the answer is yes, then this is a good indication that the assessed value is accurate.
- Does your assessed value reflect what other similar properties were selling for at that time? If the answer is yes, then this is a good indication that the assessed value is accurate.
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How are Assessed Values determined?
The assessment act requires that your property's assessed value be based on what it would likely have sold for on a specific date. For the 2016 taxation year, that date is January 1, 2012.
To establish a property’s assessed value, MPAC analyzes sales of comparable properties in the property owner’s area and all the key features that affect market value. This method, called Current Value Assessment, is used by most assessment jurisdictions in North America. For residential properties, there are five major factors that generally account for 85% of a property’s value:
- Lot dimensions
- Living area
- Age of the property (adjusted for any major renovations or additions)
- Quality of construction
Values for the 2016 Assessment Update are derived from market analysis, data collection and preparation, and property level reviews. For more information, refer to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uikghy2Yz10
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How can I get information on my property and neighbouring properties?
Visit the MPAC web site at www.mpac.ca and click on the AboutMyProperty link. If you haven't used the site before, you will be required to register by calling the MPAC toll-free Customer Service Line at 1-866-296-6722 to obtain your access key. Be prepared to give your 19 digit roll number (found on your assessment notice), name, date of birth, mailing address, email address and telephone number.
You can also find our access key on your most recent Property Assessment Notice.
Once you are registered, you will be given free access to:
One (1) Property Profile Report for your property.
Twenty-Four (24) Properties of Interest Reports on properties of your choice.
One hundred (100) Property Detail Snapshot Reports on properties of your choice
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What can you do if you disagree with your assessment?
The Request for Reconsideration deadline for RESIDENTIAL PROPERTIES in Fort Erie is November 30th, 2016.
1. Contact MPAC
They are there to answer your questions. If you think your assessment is incorrect, please call them toll free at 1-866-296-6722 to verify details about your property.
You can also visit them at www.mpac.ca and click on the AboutMyProperty link.
2. Ask MPAC to review your assessment
If you believe your assessment is incorrect, MPAC will be pleased to further review your assessment through a Request for Reconsideration (RfR). There is no fee for an RfR and your request may be made any time before March 31, 2016.
RfR forms are available on their web site, www.mpac.ca, or by calling them toll free at 1-866-296-6722. RfR forms are also available at Town Hall’s Customer Service desk. You may also write a letter requesting a reconsideration of your assessment. Please include the following information in your letter: your 19-digit roll number; your full name, address and phone number; and all the reasons why you feel your assessment is incorrect.
To assist MPAC's review, it is necessary that you provide specific details about your property that support your concerns. The more information you provide, the quicker and easier it will be for MPAC to perform a review on your behalf.
3. File a formal appeal if you still disagree with your property assessment
Residential property owners must file a Request for Reconsideration (RfR) with MPAC and receive the RfR decision before filing an appeal with the Assessment Review Board (ARB). The RfR must be filed by March 31, 2016 for the 2016 tax year.
For all other property types you may choose to either file an RfR with MPAC or file an appeal directly with the ARB. The ARB appeal must be filed by March 31, 2016.
The ARB is an independent tribunal of the Province of Ontario. Both the property owner and MPAC will be asked to appear at a hearing to present evidence to support their arguments.
To find out more about assessment appeals please visit the ARB's web site, www.arb.gov.on.ca, or call their toll free number at 1-800-263-3237 or 416-314-6900.
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Who is MPAC and what is their role?
MPAC is a not-for-profit corporation funded by all Ontario municipalities. It is their responsibility to ensure your assessed value is accurate. Their job is to classify your property and assess its value, not to determine your property taxes.
MPAC is also responsible for producing municipal and school board voter lists and determining the population of every municipality in Ontario every three years.
MPAC Customer Contact Centre, toll free at 1-866-296-6722