SOUTH GLENGARRY, Ontario – The Council of the Township of South Glengarry heard at their meeting on Monday, July 5 that the municipality ended 2020 with $4.35 million in uncollected property taxes on the books.
“I guess the liabilities of the uncollected taxes, that something of a concern to me. That is quite a bit of our operating budget,” said Deputy Mayor Lyle Warden.
The information was presented to Council as a part of the annual financial review from Ian Murphy of MNP LLP.
The uncollected taxes represents roughly 44 per cent of the township’s annual tax levy of $9.9 million.
“That’s over the high end. You want to be roughly in the range of 15 to 25 per cent of your levy,” said Murphy.
Township Treasurer Lachlan MacDonald said that the bulk of the taxes were in arrears by more than two years.
“We have about 250 some properties that are two or more years in arrears,” MacDonald said. “I imagine Councillor Jaworski will ask what is the one thing we can improve on and this is probably that one thing that came up in discussions with Mr. Murphy.”
Murphy explained that uncollected taxes was really the only blip in an otherwise clean audit.
“Overall, the township is in great financial position,” he said. “You’ve got a lot of reserves and reserves are roughly equal to operating expenditures so you have $13 million in reserves, and just over $13 million operating budget so you’re fine there. Improvement really is the collection of your receivables. You never really want to get too far behind. You want to focus on getting that balance down to a more manageable level.”
According to MNP’s audit, the Township collected $14.5 million in revenue in 2020 and spent roughly $13.3 million.