After two days of budget talks at City Hall, council approved a budget that includes a 2.23 per cent residential tax increase.
But the 2014 capital and operating budgets, approved Jan. 30, also include a tax cut for many residents.
“Forty to 50 per cent of our residents live in multi-residential buildings,” Deputy City Manager Roberto Rossini said. “They will actually get a tax decrease of 0.79 [per cent].”
The residential tax increase is designed to help balance high tax rates on apartments and industrial properties, which pay 2.5 to 3 times what residential property owners pay, Rossini said.
The 2.23 per cent residential increase translates to an additional $56.30 from average homeowners when added to the 0.48 per cent increase in the current value assessment, which is a provincial tax policy designed to bring consistency to property assessments across Ontario.
Even with the tax increase, Toronto residents pay significantly less than other cities in the GTA, City Manager Joe Pennachetti said.
Nonetheless, the budget and the 2.23 per cent tax hike it contained met resistance from Mayor Rob Ford and Coun. Giorgio Mammoliti before being approved 32 to 13 by council.
The hike includes a 1.73 per cent budget levy as well as a 0.5 per cent levy to pay for the Scarborough subway.