Posted in Business, In the news, Montreal

No geographic tax breaks, except these geographic tax breaks

Hey, remember last week when the city, receiving complaints from businesses along St. Laurent Blvd. that construction was running them out of business, refused to consider tax breaks because they couldn’t legally offer them on the basis of geography? (“If we give one, we will have to give one to everybody.”)

This week, the City of Montreal has announced a $60-million new “business subsidy” program, called rĂ©ussir@MontrĂ©al, which would offer tax breaks for companies who expand or renovate (allowing them to not pay taxes on the increase in property value for a few years).

Here’s where it gets interesting:

The remaining $12 million of the funds would be available to merchant associations on some commercial streets the city wants to revitalize. The money would go to facade renovations and for the association to prepare a business plan.

St. Laurent Blvd. is one of the streets that would be eligible, executive committee member Alan DeSousa said. Other streets include Fleury St. in Ahuntsic-Cartierville borough and Monkland Ave. in Cote des Neiges-Notre Dame de Grace.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t that sound like a geographically-targetted tax break?

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