B.C. Finance Minister Carole James and Premier John Horgan have put a heavy emphasis on housing construction. (Chad Hipolito/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

B.C. welcomes Ottawa’s help on rental housing construction

Federal funds slow to arrive for child care, marijuana, Carole James says

Targeted funds in Tuesday’s federal budget to increase construction of rental housing adds to B.C.’s own effort to increase the supply of affordable homes, B.C. Finance Minister Carole James says.

Ottawa’s budget commits more than $1 billion to a fund for low-interest loans to builders of rental projects.

“I was glad to see the rental housing mentioned in the federal budget, but I haven’t seen any long-term plans,” James said. B.C. launched a 10-year housing plan last week.

James also praised the measure in federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s budget to increase data collection on housing purchases to identify the beneficial owner behind numbered companies and trusts that buy real estate. B.C.’s budget last week increased the foreign buyer tax from 15 to 20 per cent, and introduced Canada’s first speculation tax on empty homes, in a bid to cool down high urban housing prices and encourage long-term rentals.

But the federal budget’s multi-year spending plan doesn’t begin immediately, with Morneau continuing to deal with deficits three times as big as what he and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised in 2015.

James was also concerned about immediate effects of federal spending on other areas of interest to B.C., including child care and preparing for the legalization of marijuana.

“We put $1 billion into child care, a major investment into helping women back into the workforce,” James said. “But it’s a long-term plan and long-term funds are going to be necessary.”

Morneau’s budget includes $65 million to provide education on marijuana use. James said education is needed, as other jurisdictions have found, but B.C. needs help with licensing marijuana production and roadside enforcement of cannabis-impaired drivers.

Just Posted

Petition for free hospital parking presented to MP Jody Wilson-Raybould

What started as a Langley-based campaign became a national issue, organizer said

Aldergrove sees Centurion tank, tears, and war veterans march

An estimated 2,500 people paid their respects at the Aldergrove cenotaph on Nov. 11

Aldergrove eagles soar like planes in the Remembrance Day sky

Jim Sclater of Aldergrove penned his second poem in remembrance of Canada’s soldiers and veterans

Artists go incognito for new exhibition

Langley Arts Council display anonymous artwork up for sale at Township Civic Facility.

Suspect in Langley child’s murder appears in court

Kerryann Lewis is awaiting trial for first degree murder

‘We love you, Alex!’: Trebek gets choked up by ‘Jeopardy!’ contestant’s answer

The emotional moment came in Monday’s episode when Trebek read Dhruv Gaur’s final answer

Judge rejects Terrace man’s claim that someone else downloaded child porn on his phone

Marcus John Paquette argued that other people had used his phone, including his ex-wife

Bargaining to resume in Metro Vancouver transit strike as bus driver overtime ban looms

Both sides might be headed back to the table to prevent new overtime ban

Petition to ‘bring back Don Cherry’ goes viral after immigrant poppy rant

Cherry was fired from his co-hosting role for the Coach’s Corner segment on Nov. 11.

B.C.’s high gasoline prices still a mystery, Premier John Horgan says

NDP plans legislation this month, seeks action from Justin Trudeau

Group walking on thin ice at B.C. lake sparks warning from RCMP

At least seven people were spotted on Joffre Lakes, although the ice is not thick enough to be walked on

VIDEO: Don Cherry says he was fired, not sorry for ‘Coach’s Corner’ poppy rant

Cherry denies he was singling out visible minorities with his comments

B.C. teacher suspended for incessantly messaging student, writing friendship letter

Female teacher pursued Grade 12 student for friendship even after being rebuked

Disney Plus streaming service hits Canada with tech hurdles

Service costs $8.99 per month, or $89.99 per year, in Canada

Most Read