Vancouver is on track to implement a tax on empty and underutilized homes before the end of the year, Council will hear next week. The proposed tax targets Vancouver’s known 10,800 empty homes, incentivizing owners to rent out their secondary and investment properties as the city’s rental vacancy rate continues to hover near-zero.
It's frustrating and discouraging to see Vancouver’s rental housing crisis impacting people of all incomes and neighbourhoods. An unprecedented near-zero vacancy rate and lack of quality, affordable rental homes have driven many Vancouver residents to pay far more than they can afford to rent. The stories I hear from tenants who are taken advantage of through bidding wars, real estate speculation, and renoviction loopholes in BC's Residential Tenancy Act are deeply troubling.
August 30, 2016
Dear Minister Philpott,
In the last election campaign, the Liberal party campaigned on a commitment to make public policy based on science and to treat addiction as a health issue, not a criminal issue. We were proud to see these positions taken during the campaign and welcomed a new approach to public policy in Ottawa with the election of your government.
"I am very disappointed that the BC government didn’t adopt the full recommendations from its own Climate Leadership Team and seize the opportunity to put BC back at the forefront of Canadian climate action. Once a frontrunner in setting ambitious climate action targets, BC now lags behind Alberta and Ontario, who in recent years adopted innovative, comprehensive plans to cut carbon pollution while building cleaner, greener economies.