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Lethbridge is ranked 4th in Best Mid-Sized Cities to Live in Canada

Lethbridge-based BlackBridge Group is the world's fourth largest private owner of space-based satellites. They also have one of the world's few high resolution, rapid-eye satellites and five other imaging satellites.

 Home Business Cost of Doing Business Taxes
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Taxes

Did you know that Alberta has one of the lowest combined average federal/state corporate income tax rates in the country?  Additionally, there is no payroll tax, sales tax, provincial capital tax or tax on financial institutions in the province. Businesses in Lethbridge benefit further from the lack of Machinery and Equipment Tax.  Canada, also has the added advantage of a publicly- funded healthcare system with no additional health care premiums charged in Alberta.  

A recent KPMG study found that Lethbridge ranks as the sixth most cost competitive city in the world in relation to tax costs. 

Businesses operating in Canada also have access to Scientific Research and Educational Development (SR&ED) tax credits.  The Federal government offers SR&ED credits worth up to 20% of a company’s eligible expenditures while Alberta offers an additional 10% up to $4 million.

All of these components make the tax environment very competitive.

Corporate Tax Summary
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Figure A.21.a
Corporate Tax Summary
Province General Manufacturing
& Processing
Small
Business
Alberta 11.0% 11.0% 3.0%
British Columbia 11.0% 11.0% 2.5%
Saskatchewan 12.0% 10.0% 2.0%
Manitoba 12.0% 12.0% -
Ontario 11.5% 10.0% 4.5%
Quebec 11.9% 11.9% 8.0%
New Brunswick 12.0% 12.0% 4.0%
Nova Scotia 16.0% 16.0% 3.0%
Prince Edward Island 16.0% 16.0% 4.5%
Newfoundland 14.0% 5.0% 3.0%
Federal 15.0% 15.0% 11.0%

Notes

Rates reflect the present conditions in all provinces as of year end 2014 and are based on the rates as published in the spring of 2015.  These include a variety of incremental rate changes scheduled throughout the year, which were announced at that time.

Sources

Alberta Finance, Tax Plan: Budget 2015
KPMG: Tax Facts 2014-2015.

Major Provincial Tax Rates
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Figure A.28
Major Provincial Tax Rates, 2015
  AB BC SK MB ON QC NB NS PE NL
Personal Income Tax
Statutory Rate Range:                    
- Lowest Rate (%) 10.00 5.06 11.00 10.80 5.05 16.00 a 9.68 8.79 9.80 7.70
- Highest Rate (%)  10.00b 16.80 15.00 17.40 13.16 25.75 a 17.84 21.00 16.70 13.30
Surtax (%) - - - - 20/36c - - - 10 -
Combined Fed./Prov.
Top Marginal Rate (%) d
39.00 45.80 44.00 46.40 49.53 49.97 46.84 50.00 47.37 42.30
Personal Amount ($) 18,214 9,938 15,639 9,134 9,863 11,425 9,633 8,481 7,708 8,767
Spousal Amount ($) 18,214 8,509 15,639 9,134 8,375 11,425e 8,180 8,481 6,546 7,164
Corporate Income Tax
General Rate (%) 11.0 11.0 12.0 12.0 11.5 11.9 12.0 16.0 16.0 14.0
Mfg & Processing Rate (%) 11.0 11.0 10.0 12.0 10.0 11.9 12.0 16.0 16.0 5.0
Small Business:                    
- Rate (%) 3.0 2.5 2.0 0.0 4.5 8.0 4.0 3.0 4.5 4.0
- Threshold ($000) 500 500 500 425 500 500 500 350 500 500
Capital Tax
General (max.%) - - - - - - - - -
Financial Institutions (max.%) - - 3.25 5.00 - - 4.00 4.00 5.00 4.00
Sales Tax
         (%) - 7.0 5.0 8.0 8.0 9.975  8.0 10.0 9.0  8.0
Gasoline Tax
         (¢/litre) 13.0 21.17 15.0 14.0 14.7h 19.2g,h  13.6h 15.5 13.1h 16.5h
Tobacco Tax
         ($/carton) 45.00 47.80  50.00h 58.00h 27.95 29.80 38.00 47.04h 45.00h 47.00h
Payroll Tax
         (max.%) - - - 2.15 1.95 4.26 - - - 2.00

Notes

  Note: Rates for provinces other than Alberta known as of March 10, 2015
a Quebec residents receive an abatement of 16.5% of basic federal tax because of the province's decision to opt out of federal cash transfers in support of provincial programs.
b Alberta's highest personal income tax rate will increase from 10% to 11% on January 1, 2016.
c Ontario levies a two-tiered surtax, collecting 20% of basic tax in excess of $4,418 and 36% of basic tax in excess of $5,654
d The top federal personal income tax rate is 29%, except in Quebec where the top federal rate is 24.22% because of the federal abatement.
e After accounting for non-refundable tax credits in the calculation of the individual's income tax, unused tax credits may be transferred from one spouse to another.
f The British Columbia rate includes the carbon tax on gasoline, which is 6.67cents / litre.  An additional 11 cents / litre is imposed in the greater Vancouver area and 3.5 cents / litre in the Victoria area.
g An additional 3 cents / litre is imposed in the Montreal area and a net discount of 3.7 cents / litre applies in the Gaspesie-Iles-de-la-Madeleine region.
h These provinces apply their PST or the provincial portion of their HST on the retail price of the good inclusive of excise taxes.
i Quebec levies an additional temporary payroll tax of 4.48% on wages and salaries paid by financial institutions.

Sources

Alberta Finance, Tax Plan: Budget 2015

City of Lethbridge Tax Rate (Mills)
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Figure A.24.a
City of Lethbridge Property Tax Rate (Mills) 2015
Type City General Total
Residential 7.614 10.153
Multi Family 11.184 13.723
Commercial / Industrial 18.227 21.726

Notes

The Total Tax Rate (Mills) includes Alberta Learning Tax & Green Acres Foundation Tax.

Sources

City of Lethbridge, Department of Assessment & Taxation.

 

City of Lethbridge Tax Levy
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Figure A.25.a
City of Lethbridge 2015 Tax Levy
Type Tax Levy Portion
Industrial $21,028,138 13.9%
Commercial $32,992,575 21.7%
Multi-Family $5,774,021 3.8%
Residential $91,781,227 60.6%
Total $151,575,961 100.0%

Sources

City of Lethbridge, Department of  Assessment & Taxation.

 

Municipal Revenue Sources Lethbridge County
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Figure A.26.a
2014 Municipal Revenue Sources, Lethbridge County
Type Revenue Portion
Taxes $14,025,211 61.6%
Provincial & Federal Grants $2,256,678 9.9%
Sales of Goods & Services $4,385,819 19.3%
Other $2,090,691 19.9%
Total Revenue $22,758,399 100.0%

Notes

Taxes includes both net municipal property taxes and revenue derived from penalties and cost of taxes.

Sources

Lethbridge County, Corporate Services.

 

Lethbridge County Assessed Value by Category
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Figure A.27.a
Lethbridge County, Assessed Value by Category, 2015
Type Value Portion
Residential & Farmsites $933,817,820 49.8%
Commercial & Industrial $648,589,490 34.6%
Farmland $157,272,550 8.4%
Machinery & Equipment $134,636,480 7.1%
Total Assessment $1,874,316,340 100.0%

Sources

Lethbridge County, Corporate Services

 

Lethbridge County Tax Rates (Mills)
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Figure A.29.a
Lethbridge County, 2015 Tax Rate (Mills)
Type General Total
Residential  4.5824 7.0997
Commercial & Industrial 9.2275 12.8778
Farmland 20.4163 22.9336
Machinery & Equipment 9.2275 9.3529

Notes

The Total Tax Rate (Mills) Includes Alberta Learning & Seniors Lodge Requisitions

Sources

Lethbridge County, Corporate Services

 

International Tax Cost Comparison
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Figure A.30
International Tax Cost Comparison
  Average per Operation ($US'000)
  Property Tax Rank5 Total Taxes1 Rank5 Property Based Taxes $US/ft2 Rank5
North America
Lethbridge $99 5 $586 1 $1.31 3
Canada $188 7 $593 2 $2.49 6
US $243 8 $1,152 9 $3.49 7
Europe            
France $51 3 $814 7 $5.94 9
Germany $144 6 $807 6 $1.89 4
Italy $56 4 $869 8 $2.42 5
Netherlands $11 1 $609 3 $0.41 1
UK $267 9 $740 5 $3.51 8
Asia Pacific            
Australia $33 2 $692 4 $0.94 2
Japan $370 10 $1,365 10 $5.99 10

Notes

1. Income Tax is calculated net of generally applicable tax credits, grants and other government incentives.
2. The national results represent the average for the representative cities within each country.
3. For the purpose of apportionment of taxable income in North America, the firm is assumed to be eligible to apportion income among states, but not to maintain a substantial portion of its physical business operations in any location other than the location being examined.  The firm is also assumed not to be subject to material level of taxation in any jurisdiction other than its main location.
4. For North American operations, the company does not qualify as an S-Corporation in the US or a Canadian-Controlled Private Corporation in Canada, and does not receive the preferential tax treatment according to those categories of company.
5. Ranking is based on the 10 geographic locations portrayed in the table and does not reflect the ranking within the overall survey results.

Sources

Competitive Alternatives: KPMG's Guide to International Business Location, 2014 Edition.

International Cost Comparison
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Figure A.3
INTERNATIONAL OPERATIONS COST COMPARISON
Reported in  
US$ '000
Facility Costs2 Labour Costs4 Transportation Costs5 Natural Gas Costs4 Total Operating Costs
Location Lease3 Rank Avg. per Operation1 Rank Surface Freight6 Rank Air Freight7 Rank Natural Gas8 Rank Total Rank
North America
Lethbridge $437 2 $7,534 2 $1,213 9 $291 8 $31 1 $9,737 1
Canada 574 4 7,852 3 930 6 227 3 48 3 9,807 2
US 550 3 9,017 9 820 2 236 4 43 2 10,814 7
Europe                        
France 869 8 8,241 6 900 4 241 5 137 8 10,597 6
Germany 636 5 9,210 10 910 5 184 2 150 10 11,400 10
Italy 669 6 8,139 4 1,234 10 307 9 140 9 10,854 8
Netherlands 390 1 8,208 5 945 7 272 6 135 7 10,156 4
United Kingdom 1,013 9 7,314 1 847 3 476 10 109 5 10,018 3
Asia Pacific                        
Australia 840 7 8,739 8 965 8 286 7 98 4 11,273 9
Japan 1,118 10 8,296 7 469 1 151 1 120 6 10,396 5

Notes

1. Total average labour costs include salaries and wages, statutory benefits and other benefits
2. Industrial and office leasing data were collected by Colliers International real estate professional in each local market.
3. Results are the average for the comparable centres selected for the international results. Care should be taken in interpreting the country average due to significant variations in costs.
4. Results are based on Individual job descriptions, typical salary and wage levels have been collected for each position in each centre studied. Statutory and employer-sponsored benefits have been calculated individually according to the average pay for each job.  Average for 19 operations included in the overall results.
5. Cost are based on a product distribution pattern for each relevant operation which reflects the characteristics of, and the markets for, the goods produced.  Product Distribution has been based on global, continental, national, and regional markets. 
6. The model assumes that all freight movements are handled by third-party logistics providers and each firm is able to maximize the efficiency of its distribution patterns, delivering product to its customers in standard shipment sizes.
7. Higher value products with shorter life cycles are assumed to be shipped via air freight.
8. Average for 11 manufacturing operations included in the overall results. Natural gas costs have not been analyzed for non-manufacturing operations. The electricity and natural gas requirements are assumed to be identical for each operation. Annual energy requirements have been developed based on actual firm and industry average data during the process of defining the standard operating parameters for each business operation.  Costs were calculated based on published schedule rates of relevant energy suppliers or reported statistical rate data as available in each location.
* Ranking is based solely on the reported results of the locations listed in this comparison.  This rank does not reflect the overall ranking of this category based on the competitive study as a whole.

Sources

KPMG. Competitive Alternatives: KPMG's Guide to International Buisness Location, 2014 Edition


Economic Development Lethbridge
308 Stafford Drive South
Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada   T1J 2L1

Phone: (403) 331-0022
Fax: (403) 331-0202
Toll Free: 1-800-332-1801

E-Mail: info@chooselethbridge.ca

Investment Inquiries Contact:
Heather McIntosh-Rivera, Director
Business Development & Operations

Phone: (403) 331-0022
E-Mail: heather@chooselethbridge.ca

Convention & Events Contact:
Kerry Lowe, Vice President
Convention Development & Partnerships

Phone: (403) 331-0022
E-Mail: kerry@chooselethbridge.ca

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