Williams Lake City Councillor Scott Nelson says the recent rise in property values is a good thing for the city.

“The good new is we have a very strong, very diversified, very laser sharp economy in Williams Lake right now,” Nelson said.

“The better news is that if you own a house, it’s a solid investment. We’ve said it for many years, buy in Williams Lake, things are going to continue to go up. The fantastic news is that I think you’re going to see this happen for years to come in our community. The value of real estate is going to continue to increase, so we’re going to have to look at things a little bit differently in terms of how we budget.”

According to Nelson, there was a 21.2% increase across the board in Williams Lake, resulting in an estimated $280-million gain in assessments in the City. Last year, with a zero percent tax increase, the city made around $450,000 in through an increase in development and an increase in assessments. This year, Nelson says the city will receive approximately $2-million with a 0% increase.

“We can afford to adjust the mill rates, and put some money back into the pockets of taxpayers,” Nelson said.

Mayor Walt Cobb added his assessment went up $126,000 or over 50%.

“My concern is that, I know mine went up over 50%, and the average is only 26%, but if mine went up over 50%, the average is only 21-22, that means there’s a whole lot of people below that are going to be paying less so that’s the dilemma that we’re going to have to deal with come budget time.”