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The latest updates on Covid-19 in Cobourg can be found on this special page here.

Many residents complain that taxes in Cobourg are high and compared to Toronto they are. But this page will not make a case for lower taxes but will simply report on what they are.

The mechanism:

The Town of Cobourg collects taxes for itself plus the County and the School Board. They are then billed and expected to be paid in three installments although if you elect to pay via automatic installments from your bank, it can be in 10 approximately equal amounts.

The first invoice in late February is one third of the previous year’s taxes.  This is called an interim payment since the levy amount is not yet known. The next one in late May bills the balance to be paid in an installment in late June and the final installment in late October – although you can pay the full remaining amount if you prefer.

Tax calculation

The Provincially operated MPAC decides a valuation for each property and separately, the Town and County decide how much money they want to raise with their tax levy.  In time to decide the final tax rate, MPAC calculates what the average valuation for Cobourg will be and that valuation is used to calculate what the tax rate should be to raise the amount needed/wanted.  For 2020, the residential rates are:

Town County Education Total
0.0082450 0.0047114 0.0015300 0.0144864

So for a property valued at $350,000, the tax will be $350,000 x .0144864 = $5,070.  Note that although the MPAC valuations are intended to be realistic, that is not always true.  See the page with the latest market values here.  MPAC mails property owners notifications of any changes.

Tax Increase

IF (a big if) the MPAC valuation of your property increases by the same amount as the AVERAGE increase for all Cobourg properties, then your annual increase will be the same as what Council announces as the tax increase.  For 2021, their target is 0 to 1%.  If your valuation is higher or lower than the average MPAC increase, then your taxes will increase by more (if higher) and may even go down (if significantly lower).

Services received

These numbers are for the 2020 budget.  Note that the actual spending will have significant differences because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A "typical" tax bill for the average assessment (in 2020) of $275,250 is $3,987 with $2,269 going to the Town, $1,297 going to the County and $421 going to Education.

Below are some of the services you receive from the Town for this, and how much you pay for them.

Service $/year $/Month
Police 563 46.92
Engineering & Roads 334 27.83
Fire 279 23.25
Governance & Administration 235 19.58
Parks 219 18.25
Recreation 148 12.33
Victoria Hall/ Concert Hall 86 7.17
Library 80 6.67
Community Grants & Services 71 5.92
Transit 67 5.58
Tourism/ Economic Development 56 4.67
Planning/ Building Standards 41 3.42
Streetlights 28 2.33
Conservation Authority 22 1.83
Winter Maintenance 14 1.17
Waste Disposal 11 0.92
Animal Control 8 0.67
Crossing Guards 7 0.58
Total   2,269 189

Major services provided by the County include garbage collection, County roads and bridges, paramedic services, welfare services, subsidized housing and the Golden Plough Lodge.  Note that the Town's "Waste Disposal" amount above is for emptying public garbage bins etc.

Municipal Budgets

Here are some documents for 2020 showing actual budgets.

On Town of Cobourg web site

2020 Approved Budgets

On County Web site

News item on Town's 2020 Budget here.

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