Businesses along Cook Street may end up paying thousands more than originally expected for infrastructure upgrades after an error in calculations was discovered by city staff prepping local improvement charge documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Improvement charge could be higher than expected for businesses, government

An error has been discovered in the city’s calculations

Businesses along Cook Street between Fourth Avenue and the escarpment could end up paying thousands of dollars more than originally expected if a local improvement charge (LIC) is eventually approved by the City of Whitehorse.

An error in the original calculations was discovered when city staff was prepping documents about the LIC to be sent to property owners, city engineer Taylor Eshpeter told council at its meeting April 1.

He acknowledged it as a “human error” during a brief interview the next day.

Residential rates were mistakenly entered for non-residential properties that pay a higher rate.

LICs are charges to benefitting property owners when work is done to a street. In this case the city is proposing to rebuild Cook Street, including underground utilities, from Fourth Avenue to the clay cliffs.

A total of six properties would be impacted by the mistake including four commercial properties.

In all but one case for the four business properties the charge increased from $9,837 to $19,675 each. Amortized over 15 years, that would put the annual payments at $2,059.

For one property owner though the increase is significantly more substantial. The frontage of 407 Cook Street (Qwanlin Cinema) had originally been entered with the same frontage as the other commercial properties at 15.24 metres with a total charge of $9,837.

With the correction now in place, the assessed frontage is 60.96 m, bringing the potential total LIC charge up to $78,701 in total or $8,236 annually for 15 years.

The two other properties impacted are owned by Yukon government and would see the corrected amounts changed from $37,441 to $82,323 for Birch Lodge at 6189 Sixth Avenue at Cook Street and from $11,806 to $35,419 at 702 Cook Street, which has a duplex on it.

Given the mistake, council is being asked to approve sending out a notification package that would provide the corrected amounts.

An explanation detailing the error and the corrected amounts for non-residential property owners would be included with the notice, Eshpeter said.

It is now expected that the LIC would bring in $632,409 for the work with the increase to the non-residential rates.

If that’s approved next week, the notices would be sent out April 11 with a deadline of May 21 for any objections to be submitted.

Property owners will get a chance to vote on the LIC after the correction is approved.

A public hearing on the proposed LIC would be scheduled for May 6 with a report coming forward May 27 after the submission deadline. Second and third reading would follow on June 10.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

XX
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for May 5, 2021.… Continue reading

Crystal Schick/Yukon News Premier Sandy Silver, left, and Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speak at a COVID-19 update press conference in Whitehorse on Nov. 19. They formally announced that as of Nov. 20, anyone entering the territory (including Yukoners returning home) would be required to self-isolate with the exception of critical service workers, those exercising treaty rights and those living in B.C. border towns
Vaccinated people won’t have to self-isolate in the Yukon after May 25

Restaurants and bars will also be able to return to full capacity at the end of the month.

An RV pulls into Wolf Creek Campground to enjoy the first weekend of camping season on April 30, 2021. John Tonin/Yukon News
Opening weekend of Yukon campgrounds a ‘definite success’

The territorial campgrounds opened on April 30. Wolf Creek was the busiest park seeing 95 per cent of sites filled.

Visitors from Ushiku, Japan visit the Carcross Desert as part of the exchange program Ushiku and Whitehorse have. The previously annual exchange has been cancelled for 2021 due to COVID-19. (Submitted)
Whitehorse-Ushiku sister city exchange cancelled

Officials said the exchange is cancelled due to COVID-19

The site of the Old Crow solar project photographed on Feb. 20. The Vuntut Gwitchin solar project was planned for completion last summer, but delays related to the COVID-19 pandemic pushed it back. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Old Crow is switching to solar

The first phase of the community’s solar array is already generating power.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
One new case of COVID-19 in the Yukon

Case number 82 is the territory’s only active case

Flood and fire risk and potential were discussed April 29. Yukoners were told to be prepared in the event of either a flood or a fire. Submitted Photo/B.C. Wildfire Service
Yukoners told to be prepared for floods and wildland fire season

Floods and fire personelle spoke to the current risks of both weather events in the coming months.

From left to right, Pascale Marceau and Eva Capozzola departed for Kluane National Park on April 12. The duo is the first all-woman expedition to summit Mt. Lucania. (Michael Schmidt/Icefield Discovery)
First all-woman team summits Mt. Lucania

“You have gifted us with a magical journey that we will forever treasure.”

Whitehorse City Hall (Yukon News file)
City news, briefly

Whitehorse goings-on for the week of April 26

The Yukon Department of Education in Whitehorse on Dec. 22, 2020. The department has announced new dates for the 2021/2022 school year. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News file)
Yukon school dates set for 2021/22

The schedule shows classes starting on Aug. 23, 2021 for all Whitehorse schools and in some communities.

Letters to the editor.
Today’s mailbox: rent caps and vaccines

To Sandy Silver and Kate White Once again Kate White and her… Continue reading

Most Read