November 2020
Over $37.3B in New Assessment Added this Year
We exceeded our total new assessment forecasted for 2020 by capturing $37.3B in new construction, additions and renovations for Ontario’s municipalities. Our collaboration with municipalities to source building plans through digital submissions and curbside pick-ups during COVID-19 was important in helping us realize this new growth and we’ll continue to utilize these alternative ways of working as the pandemic continues.

MPAC will deliver year-end roll return files to municipalities as well as your Municipal Change Profile (MCP file) the week of November 30. We will also deliver the same data to Reamined at the same time to support the Online Property Tax Analysis (OPTA) system, in keeping with our accelerated delivery in recent years. Municipal billing partners will receive their 2021 municipal levy calculations in early December and all municipalities will have their paper 2020 Assessment Rolls delivered by December 15.

Property owners across Ontario may receive a notice from MPAC this month if there has been a change to their property. We are in the process of mailing over 875,000 Property Assessment Notices, reflecting changes to property data over the year including ownership, legal description or school support, or due to a change in value or classification. The Notice has a new simple, customer-friendly design to make it easier for property owners to understand.
Responding to COVID-19 restrictions
As we work together to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect our employees, municipal staff and property owners, we are taking a consistent approach to changes in regional restrictions across Ontario.
 
Effective immediately, while regions are subject to ‘red – control’ and ‘grey – lockdown’ measures, we are pausing field work and in-person appointments at our field offices.
 
Our team continues to be available to take calls and assist property owners online. We will also continue to collaborate with our municipal partners on alternative ways to exchange information, including by supporting online submissions of digital building plans.  
Ontario Budget Highlights
The provincial government released its budget on November 5, 2020. Here is a summary of items related to property assessment and taxation:

Postponing the Property Tax Reassessment
The budget mentioned the government’s decision to postpone the Assessment Update but did not provide a future date for the next reassessment.
 
Enabling Property Tax Relief for Small Businesses
In response to concerns about the property tax burden on small businesses, the Province plans to provide municipalities with the flexibility to target property tax relief to small businesses.
 
To ensure appropriate flexibility, the government is proposing an amendment to the Assessment Act that would allow municipalities to define small business eligibility in a way that best meets local needs and priorities.
 
Reducing Property Taxes for Employers
The Province announced immediate action to reduce high Business Education Tax (BET) rates by $450 million in 2021. As a result, the BET will be lowered to a rate of 0.88 per cent for both commercial and industrial properties beginning in 2021.
 
Property Tax Exemptions
The budget proposes amendments to the Assessment Act to apply the existing property tax exemption for Ontario branches of the Royal Canadian Legion, for 2019 and subsequent tax years, to Ontario units of the Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada.
Upcoming webinars
In Review: A look back, and what’s ahead

2020 was a year like no other, and supporting our municipal partners during COVID-19 was as important as ever. Shifting priorities, transforming how we share information, working differently, and staying connected were vital this year, and 2021 will be no different.

Join Carmelo Lipsi, Vice President and COO and Chris Rickett, Director, Municipal and Stakeholder Relations for a brief look back at 2020 and all we achieved in collaboration with our municipal stakeholders. Learn more about what we have planned in 2021, including the launch of a new Municipal Connect and supporting the digitization of building permits.
Date: Wednesday, December 9
Time: 11 A.M. to 12 P.M. EDT
Past webinars
If you missed this month’s webinars on tax applications and our work to monitor the market impacts of COVID-19 on certain property sectors, you can watch recordings on our YouTube channel.
New requirements for sharing property owner address changes
Beginning February 2021, municipalities will be required to confirm they have property owner consent before sharing any mailing address changes with MPAC.

The requirement helps ensure MPAC complies with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA).

Protecting data integrity
We are asking municipalities to refrain from sending us data except in the specific circumstance of a preferred address change received from a property owner, where the municipality has consent to share the change with us.

Tools you can use
Property owners can also update their preferred mailing address at mpac.ca. We will be providing municipalities with shareable content for e-newsletters, websites and social channels to help spread the word.
A marketing campaign to highlight business and industry opportunities in northern Ontario is rolling out this fall, supported in part by MPAC’s property data.

The Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) approached MPAC seeking property data on vacant industrial lands and servicing details to support its campaign, and we were able to provide it through a no-cost data licensing agreement.

“The property details MPAC was able to provide is very valuable and will be quite helpful to us as we roll out our GoNorth campaign and showcase all the opportunities we have to offer,” says Danny Whalen, President of FONOM.

Interested investors can work with the Ministry of Energy and Northern Development’s Trade, Investment & Marketing (TIM) Unit to learn more about the process for relocation or expansion. Anyone interested in learning more about the Go North campaign can email gonorth@fonom.org.