A Vancouver Appeal Court Monday upheld an earlier ruling that approximately 1,000 condo-hotel units in Whistler should be taxed at the Class 6 business rate rather than the Class 1 residential rate.
The ruling affects condo-hotel taxes for 1995 and could be worth millions of dollars to the municipality, the provincial government and the condo owners.
The municipality has held a contingency fund since 1995, pending a final ruling on the assessment appeal. However, Ken Derpak, director of finance for Whistler, is waiting for advice from municipal lawyers before taking the money out of the fund.
The Class 6 assessment was challenged by owners of units in the Delta Whistler Resort, the Tantalus, the Listel, Whistler Village Inns, the Glacier Lodge and the Blackcomb Lodge.
The appeal was the latest in a series stretching back several years. One of the contentions of the appellants was that comparable units in the same building shouldn’t be assessed at different rates. That is now the case, in some instances, depending on who controls the units.
However, the appeal court dismissed the challenging as the judges were not persuaded that the previous judge had erred in his ruling.
Monday’s decision by the appeal court was made less than a week after the appeal was heard.