Post-secondary student in Calgary are lobbying against a bylaw that collects tax revenue from campus residences.
According to an article in the Calgary Herald, “While other provinces’ post-secondary institutions and their residences are exempt from paying property taxes, campus dorms in Alberta are billed yearly.” In the article Hardave Birk, president of the University of Calgary’s student union argues that the tax is unfair because dorms operate on a not-for-profit basis and cannot be sold.
Kaylene McTavish from Mount Royal University argues that students don’t see the returns on the taxes they’re paying.
The article notes that “according to 2012 property tax assessments compiled by U of C staff for other institutions, Mount Royal University was appraised about $173,000; SAIT was billed a hair under $320,000 and the University of Lethbridge was billed about $145,000. The University of Alberta was assessed about $800,000 in 2011.”
Birk would like to see the money be used on campus.
The issue has been prioritized by the Council of Alberta Student Unions.