Land information in Prince Edward Island
Prince Edward Island is the only province in Canada in which all properties are mapped, and every parcel has only one parcel identifier (PID). There are 1:5000 scale orthophoto maps showing all rural properties; 1:2500 line maps with property overlays in the urban areas; and 1:2500 scale planimetric/topographic maps. Presently, the computerized assessment system is linked with other land-related information, showing area, wooded acreage, clear acreage, land classification, recording of structure and attachment (and condition, age, and size of the structure) of a land parcel in P.E.I. All this information is recorded by the field assessors and received by the land owner, the lawyer, the deeds registry office, the property mapper, and the assessment office. The key item that makes P.E.I.’s land information system unusual is the unique parcel identifier. The PID is assigned by the property mapper, and is used for taxation purposes, assessments purposes, and the identification of land and the structures on it. For the property tax system, a three-digit suffix is added to the PID for use in tax assessment and for other purposes. This also allows its utilization for such items as agricultural loan applications, CMHC loan applications, RCMP surveillance of cottage properties, and by the community administrator for evaluating commercial parcels. As for the private sector, the solicitor utilizes the number for tax and assessment checks, while the multiple listing services apply it for indexing and locating property. As far as organizational cooperation is concerned, three departments were involved: the Registry Office in the Department of Justice, the Assessment Office in the Department of Finance, and the Property Mapping Office in the department of Transportation. With a common PID, the constant updating of maps and files, the conductive registration policy, and continuous upgrading of the system, these offices can co-ordinate at a very high level and avoid duplication of effort.