Burlington mayor wants province to work with cities to build new homes


Published December 1, 2022 at 4:48 pm

Burlington city hall power mayor politics

The City of Burlington has ramped up its vocal opposition to Bill 23, the More Homes Built Faster Act.

According to a news release from the City, the changes in Bill 23 will significantly limit its ability to provide and make important housing-related infrastructure and service decisions resulting in increased costs for Burlington residents.

The City says Bill 23 will have an impact on the City’s quality of life and revenues to support complete communities including:

  • Removing tools available to the City to deliver housing which is affordable to many Burlington residents
  • Removing the ability for the City to choose where to locate parkland for new developmentsCapping the amount developers contribute to new parkland
  • Less fees the City can collect from developers for essential infrastructure like community centres, parks, roads and other community amenities
  • Changes to existing heritage property planning: any property added to the heritage register must be heritage designated within two years or it will be automatically removed
  • Changes to conservation authorities that impact our ability to mitigate risks of a changing climate and the Greenbelt boundary

“Bill 23 will devastate municipal finances and our ability to fund things such as parks, community centres, transit – all the amenities a growing community needs. Those costs will be shifted from for-profit developers to taxpayers. We’ll show that as a line item on your next tax bill,” said Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.

“There is no guarantee that savings will be passed on to buyers, or that buyers are first-time homebuyers and not investors. This will simply deliver profit on the backs of residents without doing anything to increase housing supply and affordability.

“Our recently completed Burlington Housing Strategy provides a roadmap for addressing local housing needs. It will help us increase attainable housing options that meet the needs of all current and future residents at all stages of life and at all income levels.

“We are ready to be a partner with the Province on housing supply and affordability, but this Bill won’t deliver either.”

Joan Ford, the City’s chief financial officer also has some concerns about the legislation.

“Bill 23 will have significant and broad detrimental consequences to municipal finances. It will limit the City’s revenue potential to support growth-related infrastructure. The legislative changes are contrary to the guiding principle that growth pays for growth and shifts the burden on municipalities to fund growth-related infrastructure.”

insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising