Don’t restrict loan program, expand it
The secondary-suite forgivable loan program offered by the provincial government is positive but too restrictive.
UVic and Camosun College are both close to Oak Bay. Students there are desperate for rental housing close by.
Valuable Oak Bay homes on large lots should be included in this program. Many are not.
The program limits applications to homes worth less than $2.125 million and household income less than $209,420. These restrictions might assume residences not included have the money to do this without forgivable loans.
Oak Bay might be the only municipality on southern Vancouver Island where the population has declined over the past 50 years (1971 population was 18,426, 2016 was 18,094). There is capacity here for additional rental housing.
If the aim of the program is to generate more rental housing, including more expensive homes with higher household income where housing is desperately needed might encourage affordable student rental housing.
President, Woodburn Management
We need to trust supply and demand
What’s wrong with market forces? The government says that the market forces of competition keep prices down and prevent the gouging of consumers.
That’s why they are so interested in preventing price fixing. No monopolies allowed, so they say.
Then the same government wants grocery stores to collude and collectively lower their prices to save the poor consumer.
Then the same government sees no problem in dictating what a landlord can charge for renting his property.
Then the same government taxes people with two habitable residences because they are not renting the vacant one.
People who have worked hard and have capital to invest want to maximize the interest they earn. What’s wrong with that? If they can make more money investing in “pork bellies” or “canola oil” than they can in building or buying rental units, then what’s wrong with that?
Consumers have the power of seeking out the best deals for the things they need. The businessmen that provide those “best deals” will prosper and the ones who charge too much will not.
Basic supply and demand is regulated by market forces. Not mysterious. It looks after itself. No government meddling in our lives required.
Remember that the government has nothing and creates nothing. Anything the government gives to someone it must first take from someone else.
To build bridges, stop shouting
Shouting gets results, sadly one byroduct is further polarization.
Thunberg’s climate book is required reading
I find it interesting but not surprising that the turnout for Wednesday’s SOGI rally and protest far exceeded the attendance at the climate rally the previous week.
How can that be, when one is a social issue and the other an existential one?
Perhaps the answer lies in a new publication called The Climate Book which features brief but incredibly important chapters from more than 100 scientists, writers, influencers, and educators with overviews and comments from Greta Thunberg, the creator of the book.
Without a doubt, it should be required reading for every human being over the age of 14.
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