Released diagram of what the city’s new hospital might look like once completed. (Contributed photo)

Mills Memorial Hospital financing formula released

Regional taxpayers to pay $113.7 million for new facility.

Northwestern B.C. taxpayers will pay no more than $113.7 million to build the new Mills Memorial Hospital, it was announced this afternoon.

According to the North West Regional Hospital District, which helps finance health care projects and equipment through regional property taxes, the $113.7 million works out to 30 per cent of the projected nearly $380 million cost to replace the current facility which is well past its useful life.

What’s more, the taxation cost to northwest property owners is capped, a release from the district indicates.

This means the provincial government will pay for the remaining 70 per cent, representing a change from the traditional 60 per cent provincial and 40 per cent regional hospital district financing formula.

Financing is over 30 years.

Information also released by the regional hospital district indicates the cost to property owners will be $31.15 per $100,000 of assessed value.

By comparison, the Terrace and area refuse function costs $68.92 a year per $100,000 of assessed value.

The projected cost of the new Mills includes equipment as well as construction with the understanding that some of the newer equipment at the current Mills can be moved over.

Health minister Adrian Dix, speaking at the Feb. 9 announcement in Terrace that construction was going ahead, did hint that a deal had been reached to provide relief to regional taxpayers.

And speaking yesterday in advance of today’s announcement, Dix said he was “delighted” an agreement had been reached.

“It’s great news,” he said.

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