Should Downie Timber be taxed like a business or taxed like a heavy industry?

Downie Timber's Jack Heavenor's makes his annual pitch for lower taxes to Council on March 20. This year's pitch had a new wrinkle — he has asked City Council to change the company's taxation category from heavy industry to business. Council will consider a motion to lower its taxes during a special meeting at 2 pm on Tuesday, March 27. David F. Rooney photo

By David F. Rooney

For years now, Downie Timber has, come spring, asked City Council for a break on its taxes.

A couple of weeks ago there was a new wrinkle. The company, which is easily one of the largest single employers in town — asked to be considered as just another business and therefor taxed at the business rate — not as a heavy industry.

That was the first time Downie has publicly made that pitch to Council. It did, however, ask for the same consideration during an in-camera meeting of Council at this same time last year.

A motion put forward by Councillor Tony Scarcella asks Council to consider lowering the company’s taxes but makes no mention of the company’s request to be considered a business like any other.

Council will consider lowering Downie’s taxes during a special Council meeting on Tuesday afternoon at 2 pm.

It will also consider a motion by Scarcella to lower the operating budget by three per cent. That will, he said in his motion, reduce and control Revelstoke’s public debt.

Council will also consider a recommendation that the City new draft financial plan by released to the public.