By Rob Vogt, Local Press Writer
Claresholm town council has agreed to waive the $6,387.79 municipal portion of taxes on the Claresholm Medical Clinic, which is owned by the Municipal District of Willow Creek.
In return, the M.D. will increase its unconditional recreation grant to the town from $25,000 to $50,000.
The decision came at council’s May 28 meeting after a report from administration explained the situation. Before any discussion began on the matter, Coun. Brad Schlossberger declared a conflict of interest and left the meeting, not returning until after a vote was held on the subject.
The M.D. purchased the clinic at the end of 2014. In December 2014, the M.D. sent a letter to the town asking the property taxes be waived as long as the building was being operated as a medical clinic. Council deferred the decision on this matter to the physician recruitment committee, who decided against the use of physician recruitment funds for this purpose.
Council received this response from the physician recruitment committee and decided not to budget the waiver of taxes in the Town of Claresholm’s 2015 budget.
When the reply was sent to the M.D., they reduced the budget from $50,000 to $25,000 for their unconditional recreation grant to the Town of Claresholm.
From 2011 to 2014, the M.D. had contributed $50,000, but prior to that had contributed $25,000 from 2008 to 2010 and $15,000 for many years prior to that.
The municipal portion of the 2018 property taxes is estimated to be $6,387.79. By waiving these taxes, the town would stand to increase the recreational grant received by a net of $18,612.21.
Council then agreed to waive the taxes.