Cold Lake city council is looking to lighten the load on residents and businesses with some new property tax and utility bill options. Council voted unanimously in their latest meeting to offer relief to people currently going through the COVID-19 outbreak.

The city says payments under the Tax Installment Payments Plan and charges on utility bills are both being given a three-month deferral of payments for the months of April, May, and June 2020. They stress that the money isn’t being waived, but is instead a deferment without penalty.

Residents and businesses in the city will continue to be billed so they can choose to pay all of the bills, a portion of the amount, or none of it until a later date.

The MD of Bonnyville is also working on a plan to allow deferrals. That council agreed to provide the option to suspend participation in the MD Installment Tax Payment Plan, at the enrolled property owner’s request, without penalty, for a period of three months, beginning April 1st.

The MD says water (including bulk water accounts), sewer and door-to-door waste collection bills can also be deferred.

“We are working through unprecedented times,” said Reeve Greg Sawchuk. “We recognize some of our residents and business owners may be struggling during this time of economic hardship, with the current health crisis keeping businesses closed and workers at home.”