Tax and Utilities

Federal/Provincial Taxes

British Columbia’s combined federal and provincial corporate tax rate is lower than any jurisdiction in the United States. Personal tax rates are similarly competitive. British Columbian businesses will enjoy one of the lowest corporate income tax rates in the G7 by 2012.

  • B.C. residents pay the lowest provincial personal income tax in Canada for incomes up to $119,000. Taxes have been reduced numerous times since 2001, benefitting businesses, individuals and families.
  • B.C. taxes businesses at a rate of 2.5 per cent on their first $500,000 of business income, a threshold that has been increased by 150 per cent since 2002.
  • B.C. has no general corporation capital tax, no employer payroll taxes, no franchise tax and no machinery sales tax.
  • B.C. provides refundable tax credits and exemptions for software development, manufacturing, research and development, mining, oil and gas, film and TV production, new media, international financial activities and licensing intellectual property from a British Columbia location.

Municipal Commercial Taxes

Castlegar’s commercial taxes (2011) are competitive:

  • Utilities: $5794/$100,000 assessment
  • Major Industry: $3950/$100,000 assessment
  • Light industry - $2228/$100,000 assessment
  • Business Other - $2177/$100,000 assessment

Commercial property taxation (per $1000 commercial assessment, 2011) is comparable to Vancouver and Calgary, and is lower than the Canadian average:

  • Canada - $27.56
  • Vancouver - $13.861
  • Calgary - $15.932
  • Castlegar - $21.57
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The 'wildcard' in any tax competitiveness calculation is assessment value – which is relatively low in Castlegar, generating lower taxes for comparable enterprise operating space. This tax advantage is demonstrated by comparing the assessed values, per square foot, of similar properties in each city:

  • Castlegar: $6.05/sq. ft.1
  • Vancouver (near downtown): $810.90/sq. ft.1
  • Vancouver (elsewhere): $97.00/sq. ft 1
  • Kelowna: $39.53/sq. ft 1
  • Nelson: $8.37/sq. ft 1

Electricity/Natural Gas Utilities


Electricity: FortisBC: 1-866-436-7847 or
Natural Gas: FortisBC Energy Inc.: 1-888-224-2710 or

Current Market Rates

Electricity and gas rates are variable based on market pricing. Utility costs can be a significant business cost depending on the type of business. To help you plan costs associated with your business venture, current market pricing is available at the FortisBC website:

  • Fortis Electricity Rates

    Canadians pay average electricity prices that are lower (in many cases substantially lower) than most other industrialized countries in the world. B.C. rates are lower than the Canadian average.
  • Fortis Gas Rates

Municipal Water/Sewer/Garbage Utilities

The City of Castlegar provides a full range of municipal services, including legislative services; fire protection; garbage collection; cemetery interment; land use planning; building inspection; transportation services; parks, recreation, and leisure services; and water and sewer services.

Municipal Utility Rates (2011):


Water (metered): flat rate $35.00 per quarter + $0.35/cubic metre consumption rate; (unmetered) – range of commercial rates depending on land use (rate and connection fee information - Water Rates).

Sewer (metered): flat rate $35.00 per quarter + $0.35/cubic metre consumption rate; (unmetered) – range of commercial rates depending on land use (rate and connection fee information - Sewer Rates).

Garbage: commercial/industrial enterprise is responsible for arranging private sector pick-up.


See here for residential rates. Rates are metered for multi-family housing.