We are retired Albertans who have owned a condominium in Parksville since 2007. We bought because we liked the area and thought we might retire here. We still own a home in Edmonton as my 91-year-old mother lives there. Our children and grandchildren live in Edmonton and Calgary. We spend about five months in Parksville throughout the year and the rest of the time in Alberta helping our family.
Over the 11 years we have owned the Parksville property we have done our best to support all local businesses. We pay a “sunshine tax” on our property tax which is about 50 per cent more than a regular resident would pay even though we are only here less than half of the year.
Imagine our surprise when we learned that, as non residents, we are going to be hit with another two per cent “speculation tax” (in our case, $10,000) to help the NDP government deal with the lack of affordable housing in this province. When did we become the enemy? What about all the money we have poured into this community over the last 11 years? Is there any real plan to ensure that any of these extra taxes are going to be put toward affordable housing here?
We are assessing our options but feel like we are being held hostage over an issue that is not of our making. While it is convenient for the government to blame someone else for this mess and reach into our pockets, the real issue that needs to be addressed is creating well-paying jobs for young families in this community.
If we do sell, we will take our cash elsewhere and never darken B.C.’s doorstep again. The only advantage we can see if we become B.C. residents is that we can VOTE in the next election.