Your 2020 Notice of Tax Levy shows a tax called Asset Renewal Levy, introduced in 2019. The Levy is set at $50 per property in 2020, and will be included in your Tax Notice every year. The amount is subject to change. The other two taxes—the District Tax and the Connection Tax—are each $5 more in 2020 than they were in 2019.
The Asset Renewal Levy is being collected to increase SSID’s reserves. At present, the amount in reserves is not enough to maintain the waterworks infrastructure as the parts get old and need replacement.
SSID’s infrastructure is 50 years old. It is comprised of 16,000 feet (4,900 metres) of pipes, 2 wells, 2 pumps, 2 generators, 2 reservoirs totalling 50,000 imperial gallons of water, 5 outbuildings and a steel tower, 2 pump meters and 167 household meters, 13 hydrants, 13 hose cabinets, 4 standpipes, 17 gate valves and 4 air relief valves. In 2019, we started replacing old water meters, with funding from the reserves.
The reserves may also be used for unforeseen events, as in 2009, when $100,000 was used to fix the broken 40,000-gallon water tank, and for protective measures, as in 2012 when SSID bought a backup generator, well, and pump.
The reserves are not used for the ongoing operations, maintenance, and administration of Savary Shores Improvement District. Those costs are funded by the District Tax and Connection Tax.
The Asset Renewal Levy is calculated by determining how much longer each part of the infrastructure might last, and how much it will cost to replace each part, so that we know how much to collect through taxes. The current value of the entire infrastructure is $2.3 million, and over time is estimated to cost $6.4 million to replace. Most of that is in pipes, at $5.4 million, which fortunately are expected to last for another 60 years.
Last year, 2019, we compared SSID’s taxes per household to similar water districts, and found SSID taxes to be less. They remain less in 2020:
• 2019 Lund Water Works $850.00 after early-pay discount. Source: Lund Water Works Improvement District
• 2019 Myrtle Pond Water System, south of Powell River, $1,275. Source: 2019 Financial Plan, qathet Regional District
• 2019 Beddis, Sticks Allison, Fulford, and Highlands/Fernwood households, all in the Capital Regional District, ranging from $1,465 to $2,030. Source: Lund Water District Water System Condition Assessment, McElhanney.