The WWTA Board has heard from several members about concerns with significant increases in MPAC market value assessments on small, unbuildable islands. For more information about this issue, see the article in the current issue of GBA UPDATE. The Georgian Bay Association is taking action on this issue and recently met with senior MPAC officials to communicate GBA members’ concerns. Here is a brief update from Bob Duncanson, GBA Executive Director, on that meeting.
Representatives from GBA met with officials from the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) to discuss our concerns with how MPAC assess small undevelopable islands. Attending from MPAC were senior managers as well as assessment modellers. We expressed our position that their current model for assessing small undevelopable islands is unfair and illogical. Under their current model the assessment on undevelopable islands of 1 acre and less is reduced by 90% but by only 50% on undevelopable islands between 1 and 2 acres and by nothing on larger undevelopable islands. We pointed out that some municipalities along the coast have regulations that preclude development on islands that are even larger than 2 acres. We stated that we feel strongly that all small undevelopable islands under the minimum size threshold for that location should be discounted by 90%, regardless of size, and thereby have relatively nominal assessed value.
After much discussion there was agreement that their current model may not be defensible and should be reviewed. They made a commitment to us to: review all small islands that are zoned as undevelopable under the terms of the Municipal Official Plans to determine how many of these there are; determine what the impact would be if MPAC applies a 90% discount across the board; and review the overall policy. If MPAC does adjust their model it will not apply until 2018 on islands whose owners have not filed a Request for Approval (RfR) in the recent 2017 assessment window.
Once GBA hears back from MPAC to confirm what they propose to do about this situation we will post a further update.
The Wah Wah Taysee Association welcomes the Kofman family’s recent donation of 51 acres in Moose Bay to the Georgian Bay Land Trust (GBLT) to create the Kofman Moose Bay Reserve. The Kofmans have been long-standing members of our Association. The donation is the legacy of the late Oscar and Joyce Kofman.
Moose Bay, also known as Freeman Bay, is a long, shallow bay in the north part of Wah Wah Taysee, just south of O’Donnell Point. Currently it is in pristine condition, with only a few cottages near its mouth. Its shallow waters and extensive natural wetlands areas shelter a number of species at risk. We are certain that all WWTA members will join us in thanking the Kofman family for this valuable and generous donation to the GBLT.
Wah Wah Taysee is very fortunate to host many significant land reserves and parklands, including seven GBLT properties, the Georgian Bay Islands National Park islands near O’Donnell Point, and of course the 8.75 square km O’Donnell Point Provincial Nature Reserve. In addition, the Tadenac Club maintains an extensive area in its natural state. The six other GBLT properties in the Wah Wah Taysee area are:
Here is GBLT’s description of the Kofman Moose Bay Reserve.
This is designated a restricted use property. Please contact the GBLT for visiting details.
Size: 51 acres
Location: Wah Wah Taysee
Year Acquired: 2016
The Kofman Moose Bay Reserve is a large and centrally located property south of O’Donnell Point in the Wah Wah Taysee community. This property is in a remote and undisturbed section of Georgian Bay. This factor coupled with ideal rock barren and large coastal marshes makes it a haven for reptile species; in fact five reptile species at risk were identified on Kofman during the baseline visit in June 2015: Massasauga rattlesnake (Sistrurus catenatus), Eastern ribbonsnake(Thamnophis sauritis), Northern map turtle(Graptemys geographica), Eastern milksnake(Lampropeltis triangulum) and Snapping turtle(Chelydra serpentina).
The Kofman Reserve was selected by the federal ministry of the Environment and Climate Change in 2016 as one of four signature protected properties to be showcased and celebrated due to its wonderful diversity.