City of Powell River councillors will be sending a resolution to the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities (AVICC) to increase homeowner grants.
At the January 20 city council meeting, councillor Cindy Elliott requested that council support a motion that read: whereas exponential increases in home ownership costs have resulted in financial hardship and contributed to unprecedented levels of homeless; and whereas the BC Home Owner Grant Act supports home ownership by offsetting a modest amount of annual property taxes for BC residents; therefore, be it resolved that the AVICC request the province of British Columbia to increase eligible homeowner grants by $300, and establish a method in which eligible homeowner grant amounts are annually adjusted to account for inflation.
Councillor CaroleAnn Leishman said she wanted to thank Elliott for bringing the motion forward.
“It is very timely and a really good idea,” said Leishman. “I almost feel perhaps, additionally, since the process of going to AVICC and then to the Union of British Columbia Municipalities is a year down the road, practically, perhaps we could send a similar letter to the appropriate ministers, maybe in February. We could draft a letter and send it to the ministers sooner and ask them to consider it. This is a timely issue.”
Elliott said a backgrounder is being developed and it might formulate a good rationale for a letter from the city to the ministers.
Council unanimously carried the recommendation to send the resolution.
Council also approved two other resolutions for the AVICC. One was for zero emissions buildings. The resolution requested the province accelerate its timelines for requiring zero emissions new construction and mandating the sale of greater than 100 per cent efficient space heating equipment to 2025 for coastal regions of BC, and that the recommendation represent a 50 per cent decrease from current levels for new construction for other regions of the province by 2025. The resolution stated that buildings are a major source of greenhouse gas emissions in the province.
The other resolution was for a clothesline act. The resolution requests that the province enact such an act to ensure that no law, bylaw, covenant or agreement prevents, prohibits or unreasonably restricts the installation of use of a clothesline outdoors at a single-family dwelling, or on the ground floor of a multi-unit residential building, or clothes drying racks on any outdoor balconies.