In 2015, Cheam enacted the Cheam First Nation Property Taxation Law, pursuant to the First Nations Fiscal Management Act (FMA). The First Nations Tax Commission (FNTC) is the body that provides institutional and regulatory support to First Nation property taxation. Property taxation under the FMA requires taxpayer notice and an opportunity for written input, the enacting of property tax and assessment laws, and the passage of annual laws for expenditures and rates. Laws are subject to review and approval of the FNTC.
Property taxation is a tax on real property. Real property consists of land and the improvements on the land (e.g., buildings, towers, pipelines, and other structures). On reserve lands, taxable properties include any land and improvements that are held or occupied, such as leases (residential, commercial and other), permits, licenses, rights of ways and simple occupations (whether authorized or unauthorized). Linear properties such as transmission lines, pipelines and railways are also taxable interests.