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Valuation ruling questioned


February 1, 2009
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Windsor, QC – Quebec’s Municipal Affairs Minister Nathalie Normandeau is questioning a ruling by the Tribunal administratif du Qubec (Quebec administrative board) in December 2008 that reduced the va…

Windsor, QC – Quebec’s Municipal Affairs Minister Nathalie Normandeau is questioning a ruling by the Tribunal administratif du Qubec (Quebec administrative board) in December 2008 that reduced the valuation of Domtar Inc.’s Windsor mill by 20%.

According to a report by the Montreal Gazette, the poor state of the pulp and paper industry was behind the Tribunal’s ruling, which would see the mill’s valuation drop from about $116 million to just under $67 million – representative of a $900,000 reduction in annual property taxes.

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Noramandeau was quoted as saying the ruling could set a “dangerous precedent” for other municipalities home to slumping industries.

In the article, Windsor Mayor Malcolm Wheeler said the ruling put the municipality in a dangerous situation. The mill’s property taxes represent about 40% of Windsor’s annual budget. The Tribunal’s verdict would also require the municipality to pay Domtar $2.5 million to partially refund taxes paid over the past three years.

Windsor had 30 days from the ruling date in late December to appeal to the Quebec Court of Appeal.

Domtar’s Windsor mill employs about 800 people.


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