Our View: B.C. budget biggest shakeup in housing for years

The broad scope of the budget’s measures are likely to have an effect.

If the new provincial B.C. budget announced Tuesday does nothing else, it will try to repair the out-of-whack B.C. housing market.

The lengthy list of measures the NDP and their Green partners announced to repair housing affordability appear to take a “throw everything at the wall and see what sticks” approach.

Increasing and expanding the foreign buyers tax might do something to cool the markets. So might the new speculation tax or the boost to the property transfer tax on $3 million-plus homes.

Then there’s the multiple new regulations or efforts aimed at cracking down on money launderers and fraudsters, who have made the real estate landscape their playground.

Even before that extra money from new taxes and fees comes in, the province will be spending on building new rentals, co-ops, and increasing rental assistance programs. They’re planning to build or support new housing for the homeless.

Some of these efforts won’t pan out.

But frankly, it’s impressive to see the broad scope of the efforts. If even half of them have a measureable impact, it will change the housing landscape in this province.

The BC Liberals had a tendency to attack each housing problem separately. They made some efforts to improve rental affordability, to tackle speculation, and to build for the homeless.

But they never launched a campaign like this. And yet housing is just one piece of a budget that also tackles child care, MSP premiums, prescription drugs, and skills training.

It’s a big budget, the biggest B.C. has seen in years.

– M.C.

Just Posted

Two Langley affordable housing projects get provincial funding

First phase of $1.9 billion program to build residences for low and middle-income people

Court denies bid to overturn Langley City election

Serena Oh won’t be allowed to launch a legal action against the City.

LETTER: Canada should not be selling weapons abroad

A Langley man is critical of Canada for selling arms that are being used to kill civilians.

Langley author pens tribute to the men and women of Canada’s military for Remembrance Day

‘A soldier, a sailor and an airman … stood before the Pearly Gates’

LETTER: Langley candidate pleasantly surprised by campaign

A local woman who ran for municipal council is grateful for the experience.

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

Kuhnhackl scores 2 odd goals as Isles dump Canucks 5-2

Vancouver drops second game in two nights

Fear of constitutional crisis escalates in U.S.; Canadians can relate

Some say President Donald Trump is leading the U.S. towards a crisis

B.C.-based pot producer Tilray reports revenue surge, net loss

Company remains excited about ‘robust’ cannabis industry

Canada stands pat on Saudi arms sales, even after hearing Khashoggi tape

Khashoggi’s death at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul further strained Riyadh’s already difficult relationship with Ottawa

Feds pledge money for young scientists, but funding for in-house research slips

Canada’s spending on science is up almost 10 per cent since the Liberals took office, but spending on in-house research is actually down

Stink at B.C. school prompts complaints of headaches, nausea

Smell at Abbotsford school comes from unauthorized composting operation

Disabled boy has ‘forgiven’ bullies who walked on him in stream, mom says

A Cape Breton teen who has cerebral palsy was told to lie in a stream as other kids walked over him

Letters shed light on state of mind of B.C. mom accused of daughter’s murder

Trial of South Surrey mother Lisa Batstone begins in BC Supreme Court

Most Read