No extension of city utility bill, property tax deadlines

The City of Prince George is encouraging residents to take advantage of several remote-paying options for utility bills and property taxes.

Residents can pay online through their bank or credit union, use a credit card to pay via the PayTM mobile app, mail a cheque to city hall or sign up for a pre-authorized payment plan, a statement released by the city said.

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"In recent years, roughly half of utility and tax payments were paid in-person at city hall," the city statement said. "While payment in-person at city hall is presently available from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., 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."

There is no change to payment deadlines for utility bills or property taxes, the city statement said.

Utility payments for the first half of the year are due April 3 for properties on flat-rate billing. Property tax payments are due by July 3.

"Even though the deadline for filing 2019 income tax has been extended to June 1 by the federal and provincial governments, municipalities in B.C. don’t have the authority to change tax collection dates or waive penalties/interest for late payment; these are governed by provincial legislation," the city statement said. "In addition, nearly 30 per cent 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."

City utility bills provide the full operating funds for the city's water, sanitary sewer and solid waste services, and delaying collection would have a "significant impact on the city's cash flow," the statement added.

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.

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