Ontario’s Big City Mayors Statement on Minister Calandra’s Announcement – “Ontario Taking Action to Support Municipal Partners in Building More Homes and Protecting Taxpayers”
December 13, 2023
BURLINGTON, ON – Today the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the Honourable Paul Calandra, announced new actions to support the building of more homes in Ontario. Ontario’s Big City Mayors (OBCM) is encouraged that the province has listened to our request to consult with municipalities directly, so that we can inform them of the funding and support we need when it comes to doing our part in the home building process. We are also pleased to see other partners in the home building process being held to account for their roles in increasing housing in Ontario.
Today the Minister confirmed that “the province will engage in consultations with its municipal partners on the impacts of the More Homes Built Faster Act and municipalities’ ability to fund growth-related infrastructure that will support the construction of more homes, including a review of the five-year phase-in of development charge increases and fee refund framework.”
We look forward to these consultations, so that we can work together to achieve our shared housing goals. The goal of these consultations to “enhance municipalities’ ability to invest in housing-enabling infrastructure” is key to ensuring municipalities can do their part in building complete communities. Over a year ago the province committed to keeping municipalities whole from the impacts of Bill 23, and we are optimistic that this is the first step towards fulfilling that commitment.
OBCM also looks forward to being part of the province’s consultation process on a new Attainable Housing Program. Innovative housing technologies and the use of surplus government lands can both play a role in reaching our shared goal of 1.5 million homes built by 2031.
Finally, OBCM appreciates that the government has paused the consideration of zoning order requests as they consult on a go-forward framework. We believe that zoning orders should only be used in consultation with municipalities and look forward to discussing this further with the province.
“We are pleased to see that the province is looking to consult with municipalities on these important housing issues,” said Marianne Meed Ward, Mayor of Burlington and Chair of Ontario’s Big City Mayors. “By working together we can achieve these housing goals, while ensuring that investments are made in the essential infrastructure that will support these new homes and communities for years to come.”
About Ontario’s Big City Mayors
Ontario’s Big City Mayors (OBCM), formerly known as the Large Urban Mayors’ Caucus of Ontario, includes mayors of 29 single and lower-tier cities with a population of 100,000 or more, who collectively represent nearly 70 percent of Ontario’s population. OBCM advocates for issues and policies important to Ontario’s largest cities.
Mayor Marianne Meed Ward, Chair Michelle Baker, Executive Director