As Vancouver City Council prepares to consider a reset of its housing strategy, one Councillor is raising a separate housing question.
Melissa De Genova wants to know why Mayor Gregor Robertson isn’t pushing the provincial government to work with them for an affordable homeownership program.
She says she’ll be raising that concern Tuesday when Council meets to look at the housing plan.
“[He] should be calling up the premier, and I’ve asked him several times, he won’t confirm with me if he’s reached out to or had a meeting with Minister Coleman, who is not only the Deputy Premier but is the minister responsible for housing, to ask them if they would work with us to change the charter.”
Last spring Council approved an affordable home ownership program, but provisions within it require a chance to the city’s charter – something only the provincial government can do.
“I think that we need to move forward together and lobby the provincial government and ask them for that charter change so we can provide affordable home ownership as an option under the city program,” De Genova says.
This week’s housing and homelessness strategy reset focuses heavily on rental, and calls for a Rezoning, Development & Building Permit pilot project that would prioritize projects with affordable housing in them.
De Genova says she’s not against more rental housing but says 75 per cent of renters want to buy.
The city’s housing plan calls for almost 48,000 new units, but officials estimate just 27,000 of them completed by 2026.
Council will debate the report Tuesday.