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  • Housing plan a mix of good, bad and ugly

QUEEN’S PARK — Mike Schreiner released the following statement in response to the PC government’s housing action plan:

“The PC government has given us a mix of good, bad and ugly in its housing plan.

The ugly
Most disturbing is the revival of the much maligned rules of the Ontario Municipal Board, which allowed deep pocketed developers to run roughshod over communities. If there was any doubt that Ford was in the pocket of big developers, this removes all doubt.

It will once again force millions of dollars of legal costs upon municipalities, while transferring power from elected officials to a politically appointed board. Making matters worse, the Premier is giving developers the right to appeal decisions, while depriving citizens from doing the same.

Why is Ford freezing out the very people he is supposed to represent as Premier?

The bad
Removing the requirement for electric vehicle charging shows the government’s poor understanding of the clean economy and how EVs can help people save money.

As consumers make the switch amidst hundreds of billions of investment from the auto sector, Ford cancels EV charging and continues his obsession with big oil and gas.

Lower density targets and gutting the Endangered Species Act could open the floodgates to more sprawl. Allowing big city developers to build expensive subdivisions on prime farmland will not solve the housing crisis and it will make us even more vulnerable to extreme flooding.

Eliminating charges to developers could increase the financial burden on taxpayers by forcing municipalities to absorb extra costs. Growth should pay for growth, but it appears the province wants to let big developers off the hook.

The good
I commend the government for taking action to expedite the creation of secondary suites in new homes. Laneway suites, basement suites and garage units are important for addressing the housing affordability crisis by using existing buildings more efficiently.

I am also encouraged by efforts to fast-track housing around transit, creating mixed-use employment and housing hubs in transit corridors that will reduce sprawl.”

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