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B.C. government roadblocking affordable housing: Okanagan politician

Local politicians rebuke minister of housing’s claims that municipalities are to blame
Lake Country Coun. Blair Ireland (middle) is calling out Minister of Housing David Eby’s comments that municipalities are roadblocking affordable housing. (Lake Country council photo)

One provincial politician’s remarks putting the blame of lack of affordable housing on municipalities has Lake Country council insisting otherwise.

B.C.’s Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing David Eby said that more rental housing is urgently needed in every part of the province. He said he has ‘little time’ for arguments against new rental projects being developed and that the housing crisis required rapid action at the municipal level.

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“Everything has whole-heartedly been endorsed by council and not had any roadblocks,” Coun. Blair Ireland said. “Everything that we’ve had brought forward for us required senior governments help to get those projects done and senior governments failed us.”

Ireland and Lake Country council are sending a letter to Eby requesting a meeting to discuss these recent comments.

“The new minister of housing has been critical of local governments and their approval of projects coming forward, especially for housing, especially for affordable housing,” Ireland said.

But he points to recent news out of New Brunswick that developers are renovicting people and using financing from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

“Yet they would not approve a building in our community that was creating affordable housing, creating housing that was under market for people at risk, women in particular,” Ireland said.

Mayor James Baker said efforts to build affordable housing will not stop at Eby’s comments.

“We’ve tried and we’ll continue to try,” Baker said.

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Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

20-year-Morning Star veteran
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