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CHF Canada’s response to Ontario’s Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act

Published April 11, 2024

CHF Canada’s response to Ontario’s Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act

The Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Paul Calandra, introduced the Cutting Red Tape to Build More Homes Act. The Act intends to implement measures to help the province achieve its goal of building 1.5 million new homes by 2031.

Last November, CHF Canada, alongside other housing stakeholders, made recommendations to the government on policies that could have the greatest impact at the Ministry-hosted Housing Forum. We provided input on recommendations from the Housing Affordability Task Force that should be implemented and shared the role co-ops can play in building affordable homes and achieving housing supply targets.

Some of the measures detailed in the new legislation could benefit co-op housing development by reducing costs or shortening the development timelines, including:

  • Bring the affordable residential unit development-related charge exemptions and discounts into force on June 1, 2024
  • Elimination of parking requirements around major transit areas
  • Consulting on an expedited process for standardized housing designs under the Planning Act

These measures are welcome.  However, at a time when housing affordability continues to worsen for many Ontarians, there is no single fix. The solution lies in numerous ideas and investments from housing stakeholders and all orders of government. The co-op housing sector is ready and able to be part of the solution. Specific and targeted investments and measures are needed to get more co-op housing built.

We want to work with the province to help them achieve the goal of building 1.5 million new homes by creating more co-operative homes. In addition to measures announced today, targeted programs tied to requisite funding are needed to build more co-op housing.

– Patricia Tessier, Director, Member Services, CHF Canada

As the province continues to develop policies surrounding the provision of government-owned surplus land, CHF Canada encourages taking an “affordable housing first” approach; the government should focus on getting the maximum, long-term public value out of these lands. Nonprofit affordable housing offered in perpetuity gives the province better value for money over the medium to long term compared to the onetime cash provided by sale at market value.

Co-ops are in high demand, and many have had to close their wait lists due to unmanageable demand. The sector is committed to growing the number of co-op homes in Ontario, through acquisition and new development. We continue to call on the government to invest in a Community Housing Acquisition Fund to move rental homes into community ownership as non-profits and co-operatives, protecting their affordability forever. We also call on the government to ensure that the plan to build 1.5 million new homes includes specific carve-outs for community housing, including co-op housing.

CHF Canada will continue to work with the province to find solutions to make the development of more co-op homes a reality.

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