Heritage Grants/Tax Relief Programs
The City has developed a Heritage Incentive Program for properties designated under the Ontario Heritage Act. This program was initially conceived as part of the Planning Initiative of the Strategic Plan and was developed jointly by Planning Division and Financial Services to reflect the many and varied needs of designated property owners in Kingston. The Heritage Incentives Program was conceived not as a single program, but as a system of three programs that are supportive of diverse property owners through a series of interconnected initiatives.
Heritage Property Grant program update
The City has been undertaking a review and update to Kingston's Heritage Property Grant Program to address a number of identified issues, as well as an anticipated increase in the number of grant applications. Following a comprehensive review, an online public survey, discussion with the Heritage Properties Working Group, and an Open House in August 2017, the program bylaw is in its final stages of review.
The major changes being proposed are:
- Section 3.1: Increased maximum amount of funding per grant from $2,000 to $5,000. Note: staff have requested an increase in the annual program budget from $36,000 to $50,000, subject to Council's budget approval.
- Section 3.3: Grants for replacement of asphalt shingles, aluminum eaves troughs and masonry cleaning to be limited to a maximum of $2,500.
- Section 5.1: A grant application may be associated with a heritage permit that has already been approved, provided that the approval was within the last 12 months and the work has not yet commenced.
- Section 8.4: All applications to be reviewed by staff and awarded by the Director of Planning, Building and Licensing.
- Section 8.5: Applications will be received between January 1 and the last business day in March in order to review all applications together. If all eligible applications exceed the amount of available budget, criteria will be used to allocate funding to applications scoring the highest.
Additional technical changes have been proposed to help with administration of the program. For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Heritage Property Grants Program
An owner of an eligible property may receive a per annum maximum grant that does not exceed 50% of the total cost of an eligible project to a maximum of $2,000 once every two years. Only a limited number of grants will be issued per calendar year. Grants will be awarded on a first-come-first serve basis starting on March 1, 2016.
Heritage Property Tax Refund Program
Under the provisions of the Municipal Act, 2001, a 40% tax refund per property (subject to a maximum of $5,000 or the total cost of maintenance and eligible work as well as specific eligibility criteria) has been established for properties which have a heritage easement agreement. This refund would be awarded at a maximum of once every three years to ensure the longevity of the program. The tax relief will be processed as a refund after payment of taxes. Consistent with the deadlines that are applicable to other refund programs under the Municipal Act, 2001, property owners would have until the last day in February of the year following the tax year to apply for the tax refund (for example, the deadline for the 2015 tax year would be February 29, 2015).