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Municipal Designation

Member Services


Have you applied for designation as a municipality? Do not forget that you can get 100% of the GST as well as 57.14% of your PST for the subsidized units in your project! Contact our office if you have misplaced the application particulars or visit our website in the Member Services section to download the necessary information.

We want to make sure it is clear that the Municipal Designation entitles non-profit and co-op projects to a sales tax rebate on expenses related to units whose tenants pay rent-geared–to-income (RGI).

This refers to:

  •  all units of post-1985 projects (projects with all tenants paying RGI based on 30% of income)

  •  units of pre-1986 non-profit and co-op projects  where the tenants/members are benefitting from rent subsidies

  •  rent supplement units of projects developed under the Affordable Rental Housing Program

  • Your project auditor and Portfolio Management Officer can advise you on this.


Government of Canada Documentation

Municipal Designation


This information applies to organizations that may be designated as 'municipalities' pursuant to subsection 259(1) of the Excise Tax Act (ETA) for the purpose of claiming the municipal rebate.

The Minister of National Revenue may designate an organization to be a municipality but only in respect of activities specified in the designation that involve the making of supplies (other than taxable supplies) by the organization of municipal services. The supply of long-term residential accommodation to tenants on arent geared-to-income basis by a non-profit organization (or a charity) that receives government funding to
assist it in providing this accommodation qualifies as a municipal service for designation purposes. We consider the supply of long-term residential accommodation to mean the rental of self-contained housing units (private living quarters which include cooking facilities and a bathroom) for periods of one month or more. The government funding must be payable to subsidize the cost of those housing units that are supplied on a
rent geared-to-income basis. Note that government funding in these situations includes funding provided by a municipality. The activities described above must be undertaken within a program to provide housing to low to moderate income households.

Please note that this designation does not apply to any other activities that the organization may be engaged in such as the supply of residential units that are not on a rent geared-to-income basis or for which no subsidy is payable (sometimes referred to as market rent) and the supply of commercial space. For purposes of municipal designation, a supply that includes accommodation as one element but also includes other elements such as meals, or personal care services, or laundry, or housecleaning may not be considered an eligible supply of long term accommodation.

An organization which has been designated to be a municipality may be entitled to the municipal rebate of 100 percent of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the federal 
portion of the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) paid on property and services acquired by it, but only to the extent that the property or services acquired are intended for use, consumption or supply in the course of the activities for which it has been designated.


An organization may request municipal designation by applying, in writing, with supporting documents, to:


Public Service Bodies and Governments Division

Excise and GST/HST Rulings Directorate

Canada Revenue Agency

Ottawa ON K1AOL5


Supporting documentation

The organization must provide documentation that supports that it meets the above described criteria. These documents include:
* A copy of the Certificate and Articles of Incorporation for the organization;

* A copy of a dated and signed agreement that describes that the organization is providing rent-geared-to-income housing for which the organization receives funding from a government, including a municipality; and,

* A copy of a document that attests to the number of rent-geared-to-income units for which the organization receives funding from a government, including a municipalityrelative to the total number of units in the project. This information is generally provided
to the funding source annually. We will require this information for at least the latest/current year.

Effective date of designation

Generally, a municipal designation for purposes of section 259 is effective the beginning of the month in which the designation is approved. However, we may, on a case-by-case basis, consider an effective date up to four years prior to this time. The organization must
request a retroactive effective date and support the reason for a retroactive application. In addition, the organization must ensure that its supporting documentation demonstrates that it met the above-described criteria during the prior period.


Determination of eligible households
We will also require documentation that supports that the selection of eligible households
that benefit from the supply of long-term residential accommodation on a rent geared-lo-income basis supported by government funding is 
within a program that is geared to low to moderate income households. This may be demonstrated by policies, guidelines and/or operating manuals that apply to the eligibility process.


Entitlements and obligations

Note that the ETA contains other provisions that set out conditions that apply to this rebate, including the calculation of amounts eligible for rebate and filing frequency. In addition, entities that provide residential accommodation, as well as charities and qualifying non-profit organizations may be eligible to claim other rebates. GST/HST technical enquiries may be directed to a GST/HST Rulings Centre at 1-800-959-8287 (service in English) or 1-800-959-8296 (service in French)


Sample Cover Letter



Public Service Bodies & Government Division

Excise and GST/HST Rulings Directorate

Canada Revenue Agency,

Ottawa, ON


Dear Sir/Madame:

We wish to apply for municipal designation under section 259 of the Excise Tax Act,
retroactive to June 2000.

ABC Non-Profit incorporated (insert date), is an (no. of units) unit non profit housing
organization, developed as follows:

__ units - Interest Adjustment Date of September 1, 1987;

- ___ units - Interest Adjustment Date of August 1, 1988;) These are examples only!)

Our organization provides rent-geared-to-income housing services to __ households
through agreements with the Province of New Brunswick.

Enclosed for your information are the following documents:

1) Articles of Incorporation; and

2) New Brunswick Housing Corporation Operating Agreement(s)

Thank you for your attention. Should you require additional information, etc.,
lease contact the undersigned at 506-_________

Yours truly,

ABC Non-Profit Housing


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