Red Deer County has shown a little tax hospitality to a Gasoline Alley hotel.
Council unanimously approved a request on Tuesday by Microtel Inn and Suites by Wyndham to take advantage of a tax payment plan the county rolled out last November to help businesses hit hard economically.
While aimed at the oil and gas industry, the county opened the door to allow other commercial businesses struggling financial to apply to take part.
Under the terms of the repayment plan, Microtel must repay the 2020 back taxes it owes over the next 12 months while staying up to date on its 2021 taxes. The Leva Avenue hotel will be charged 16.9 per cent interest on the back taxes but if paid off on schedule the company will get credit that would effectively reduce the penalty payment to six per cent.
County corporate services director Heather Surkan said Microtel was a year in arrears on its taxes.
“The last year created a lot of challenges for the hotel industry,” said Surkan.
Three oil and gas companies are already taking advantage of the repayment plan, which has been well received, she said.
Mayor Jim Wood said the county is doing what it can to help businesses through tough times.
“I think we would be remiss to not help these folks,” said Wood. “We’re still charging six per cent but we’re getting them back on track.”
No business could have predicted the financial repercussions of a world-wide pandemic.
“If anyone in this industry was to come forward to us I’d have a really hard time saying no.”
Coun. Dana Depalme was pleased that council had earlier chosen to allow companies from all sectors to apply for tax help.
“I think it’s great that we can offer this not only to oil and gas.”
Coun. Christine Moore said the repayment plans shows support for the business community.
“I think it shows us to be understanding in these challenging times.”