The Manitoba government has extended its moratorium on increases to park land lease and service fees for cottages in provincial parks for another two years.
“We believe cottagers are prepared to pay a fair price for the services they receive and for the value of using provincial park land for their vacation retreats,” Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires said. “We are continuing to explore the development of a fair and sustainable fee structure, and are working in partnership with cottagers to ensure Manitobans can enjoy their cottages and be able to pass them on to future generations.”
Cottage service fees cover a variety of services including garbage disposal, water and wastewater, and road maintenance. Lease fees are based on a percentage of assessed land values. Service fees are calculated annually based on the cost of delivering services over the previous season.
“Cottagers derive great joy from the year-round beauty and tranquility of Manitoba’s wonderful provincial park system,” said Daniel Klass, of the Manitoba Provincial Parks Cabin Owners Association. “The extension of the current freeze is a positive indication of faith on the minister’s part that will provide an additional period of cost certainty for cottagers.
“Also, it will allow the continuation of current productive discussions we’ve had with the minister to reach a funding formula that will support the park system and benefit the province, Manitobans and cabin owners in the long run.”
The moratorium, initially established in 2016, had been set to expire in July. This extension means cottagers in provincial parks will pay the same fees in 2019 and 2020 as they did in 2017. Cottage owners and associations will continue to be consulted and future changes will be developed with their input, Squires noted.