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By Mark Cathro, Director | February 9, 2021

Linear assessment complaint deadline is April 8, 2021

The Linear Assessment Department of Alberta Municipal Affairs (AMA) released the linear assessment dated February 8, 2021, with a complaint deadline of April 8, 2021. As the mailing date was January 29, 2021 all ratepayers should have received their assessment by now. Linear property in Alberta includes a wide range of regulated property assessment types, including electric power, telecommunication, cable distribution, pipelines, wells, and railway.

Wells represent the most significant change in value from the 2020 tax year. Due to changes to the regulated system announced October 19, 2020, low producing wells will receive a higher level of additional depreciation (Schedule D) in 2021. For example, an oil or gas well with no production in the previous valuation period received a 90% allowance in 2020 tax year. For 2021 tax year, this allowance has increased to 97%.

Of note, “Observation” and “Drilled & Cased” Wells remain assessed at 10% of their value; no further depreciation was applied to these non-producing wells.

Specifics on the Well Assessment Year Modifier

The Well Assessment Year Modifier (AYM) has increased approximately 1% for 2021. Base Cost (Schedule A) and Physical Depreciation (Schedule C) values remain unchanged from previous, as the more extensive changes proposed during the multi-year Alberta Rate review were not implemented. Shallow Gas wells will continue to receive a 35% reduction in value.

Respecting pipelines, none of the proposed changes from the multi-year Alberta rate review were implemented. The only change is a slight increase to the AYM of 0.3%. Ratepayers should anticipate very little change to their pipeline assessed values from 2020, unless they have changed operating status.

For telecommunication, cable distribution, electric power systems, and railway improvements, there are no year over year changes to the manual rates or scheduled depreciation. The AYM increase is less than 1% for all asset classes except electric power.

Electric Power Systems, which includes generation, transmission, and distribution assets, will see a 3% increase to the assessment due to the updated AYM. This increase may be offset slightly with additional depreciation, depending on the improvement type.

Railway infrastructure has only been classified as linear property since 2018 and includes both traditional rail lines and spur lines. The inventory of linear assessment for rail continues to be updated on an annual basis by AMA through the self reporting of ratepayers.

Manage your property taxes

Have your linear assessment reviewed by the experts, contact us!

If you have not yet received your linear assessment, we will be pleased to direct you to the correct government department to avoid missing the review period and appeal deadline on April 8, 2021.

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