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Expanding the First Nation Property Tax Base – Understanding Leasehold Interests (2001)


This paper focusses on the role of the lease document, in the context of the larger land administration system, in facilitating economic development on reserve. Clear, concise, and equitable lease documents can help reduce the cost of doing business on reserve, thereby stimulating economic development and increasing the First Nation property tax base. Furthermore, the Glass decision, which held that that land interests in the Musqueam reserve are worth 50% of comparable fee simple lands off-reserve, has important implications for the ITAB since First Nation Taxation Authorities could potentially lose 50% of the value of their property tax base. This paper will examine how the use of good lease documents can increase property values on reserve and reduce the gap between on reserve and off reserve assessed values.


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