Like all municipalities, Lac Ste. Anne County relies on the collection of property taxes to provide services; make improvements to their infrastructure; and meet their financial obligations. The Government of Alberta recognizes municipalities’ reliance on property tax revenue. To ensure that everyone who is required to pay municipal taxes does so, the Province has passed legislation that ensures the County can collect the taxes that are due.
Tax Recovery Procedure
Timelines and Protocols for Tax Revenue Recovery
Understanding the County's Tax Recovery Procedure
The following procedural steps are undertaken by Lac Ste. Anne County to satisfy the legislative requirements relating to the various tax recovery processes allowed under the Municipal Government Act (MGA).
- Each year, Lac Ste. Anne County must, no later than March 31, prepare a list of all parcels of land that are more than one year in arrears* and forward the list to the Registrar at the Land Titles Office. *Section 326 (c) of the Municipal Government Act defines "tax arrears" as taxes that remain unpaid after December 31 of the year in which they are imposed.
- A Tax Recovery Notification is registered on the Certificate of Title.
- The person who is liable to pay the taxes must not remove any improvements for which taxes can be levied and for which that person is responsible, without the approval of Lac Ste. Anne County.
- Anyone can pay the tax arrears owing against the property and Lac Ste. Anne County will discharge the Tax Recovery Notification.
- Once the Registrar has endorsed the Tax Recovery Notification he/she must, no later than August 1, send a notice to the parcel owner, to any person who has an interest registered against the parcel, and to each owner of an encumbrance as shown on the Certificate of Title.
- The notice must state that if the tax arrears are not paid by March 31 of the following year, then Lac Ste. Anne County will begin proceedings to offer the parcel for sale at a public auction, and Lac Ste. Anne County may become the owner of the parcel if it is not sold at the public auction.
- Lac Ste. Anne County MUST offer for sale any lands with tax arrears that are shown on its tax arrears list at a public auction.
- Discharge of the Tax Recovery Notification will not be sent to Land Titles until the arrears and penalties are paid in full, or a binding tax agreement has been entered into that addresses all arrears and penalties.
- Lac Ste. Anne County must establish a reserve selling price before it can auction a property. The reserve bid is set as close as reasonably possible to the market value of the parcel. Council must also establish terms and conditions that apply to the sale.
- Lac Ste. Anne County must advertise the public auction in the Alberta Gazetteand one local newspaper. The advertisement must specify the date, time and location of the auction and a description of each parcel for sale. The advertisement must also include any terms and conditions of sale.
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Distribution of Surplus Sale Proceeds
The tax recovery process provides persons ten years from the date of public auction or the actual property sale date, to claim any surplus sale proceeds, if the property was sold at auction.
The property's Certificate of Title shall be reviewed, prior to the County's possession, to determine if there are encumbrances registered against it. For the purposes of this policy, Right of Way and Easement registrations are not considered encumbrances against the Certificate of Title.
Assessment & Taxation Contact
Robert Smyth, Assessment & Taxation Manager
|rsmyth (@) LSAC.ca|