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REPORTING · 8th November 2014
Walter McFarlane
Mayor Joanne Monaghan was sent a letter by Greg Steves, Executive Director of the Housing Policy Branch on Monday, October 27th. The letter was in response to the recent Housing Action Plan.

In the letter, Steves says the BC Government will be providing addition rent supplements, additional funding for housing outreach in Kitimat, funding for the extreme weather shelter and educational seminars for land lords.

“As a result of the Housing Action Plan, we are now having conversation in your community with local developers and industry who are looking for opportunities to help meet Kitimat’s current and future housing needs. In the short term, we are looking to launch and [sic] Expression of Interest to non-profit housing societies interested in providing and managing affordable housing in Kitimat. We are also meeting with industry partners interested in opportunities to provide housing as a social benefit to the community,” wrote Steves.

Councillor Mario Feldhoff made a motion to incorporate the letter onto the District of Kitimat website.

Councillor Phil Germuth expressed some disappointment in the promise of rent supplements, which will only be available to youth leaving foster care, women at risk of violence, people leaving the hospital or correctional facilities and aboriginal people.

“There are a lot of people in town, workers in the service industry, who need those rent supplements and don’t fall into those categories. I don’t see anything in here for them in the immediate term. I hope something else comes up because this isn’t going to help the vast majority of people who are facing the renovictions or who have faced them,” said Germuth.

Councillor Rob Goffinet agreed. He pointed out there was little in there about the Government coming in and building low income housing save for an expression of interest. He stated there were two non-profits working the affordable housing angle.

The motion was called and carried.

Goffinet made a motion to reschedule a failed presentation from the previous meeting of Council which was attempted by the group that put together the housing action plan. The motion was called and carried.
late to the dance
Comment by L C McGee on 11th November 2014
This is all a day late and a dollar short and Phil is correct, it doesn't help lower income workers at all. All this should have been put in motion BEFORE the housing crunch, now they're playing catch up. I'm sure all the people that were renovicted and lost their homes will be thrilled to know something is finally happening, while they shiver in the cold. Good Grief.