City council has approved the revenue department to accept credit cards to pay for property taxes beginning this year.
“Historically, the city has not accepted credit cards as a form of payment for property taxes,” said Patrick Gramiak, revenue supervisor. “This has been a common request from our customers.”
Gramiak told council that the department has previously been unable to offer the option due to software limitations.
“With an upgrade in software, the revenue branch will now be able to provide this option for customers.”
It will cost the city $6,000 a year in licencing fees and an approximately 2.3 per cent transaction fee to offer the service.
Coun. Luke Stack said it was his understanding that it should be a revenue-neutral situation.
“This is not about making money make for the city, we want to offer an additional service because we were asked. We want to break even.”
Stack also pointed out that the transaction fee should be made clear to those using a credit card for payment.
“So that they are not surprised when they realize there is an extra cost involved.”
Gramiak noted that other B.C. municipalities that allow credit card payments charge between 1.75 and 2.2 per cent, with at least one community admitting it is not charging enough to recover costs.
Mayor Tom Dyas suggested the option be reviewed after one year.
“To see what the uptake was on it and whether we should look at reviewing the percentages,” he added.