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Tzeachten First Nation considering transfer tax law

A 60-day deadline for written comments on a new property transfer tax law proposed by Tzeachten First Nation is up on Nov. 26.

"In the past, there has been a gap because purchasers of homes in B.C. paid the property transfer tax except on Reserve land. This law will close the gap," according to an online release.

Under the proposed law the transfer tax would be:

• 1% of the first $200,000 of the fair market value of the interest in land at the time of the transfer; and

• 2% of the remaining fair market value of the interest in land at the time of the transfer.

Tzeachten has the power to enact the transfer tax law under the First Nations Fiscal and Statistical Management Act.

"Tzeachten Council has determined that it is in the best interests of Tzeachten to pass a law to generate taxation revenues for local purposes from certain interests in lands on the reserve at the time of transfer of these interests," reads an online notice under the 'what's new' tab at Tzeachten.ca. "Under the proposed law, people who buy a home on leased or sub-leased land on the Reserve would pay Property Transfer Tax, similar to off-Reserve."

Tzeachten has been administering its own property tax since 1995, and in September it became the second First Nation in Canada to access loan financing at rates below prime, at 2.5 per cent.

Written comments on the proposed property transfer law will be considered by Tzeachten council members before they vote on it.

The deadline for written comments is Nov. 26, 2012.

Anyone wishing for more information, or to submit written comments must deliver them to Tzeachten property taxation manager Deanna Honeyman, #29-6014 Vedder Rd., Chilliwack, phone 604-846-4888 or fax 604-846-4889.

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