Fred Harding and the NPA council team will address the broken public trust between the development community, our civic politicians and the public.
Most of us have seen the found donor list from the Kennedy Stewart campaign. There has been significant reporting about the development community on that list. With Kennedy’s voter base being in large part anti-developer, it must be quite a shock for them to see this.
It is the politicians in Vancouver who are to blame for the breakdown in public trust with home builders.
There was a time when our home builders were invited to the table to add housing and add amenities like parks, pools and childcare to the city, and the city was grateful for their contributions.
But largely starting in 2008 under Vison Vancouver we started to see the mayor and council vilify developers to get votes. At the same time, they were taking large political donations from developers, playing favourites and leveraging Community Amenity Contributions (CAC’s) for their own political gain.
Under Kennedy Stewart, this activity has continued and the public is tired of this hypocrisy.
There is further hypocrisy around another group of politicians on the centre-right of the spectrum. We see it in this election. Ken Sim and ABC know that housing supply is the only answer to our housing crisis yet they avoid the hard conversation because they want the anti-development NIMBY vote. This is a pure political unprincipled calculus on their part. It is the NIMBY anti-development vote TEAM is also coveting. Meanwhile, ABC is backed by developers.
Fred Harding and the NPA council team are going to end the hypocrisy and quid pro quo around development in our city and restore the public trust.
We have a simple three-point plan to accomplish this:
- We will move to flat rate Community Amenity Contributions (CAC’s) based on market conditions so every home builder gets certainty and fairness when dealing with the city regarding the taxes they will pay. This will also end lengthy and unfair negotiations.
- We will invite home builders to the table and ask them for their plans to help us reach our affordable, rental and other housing needs, instead of vilifying them.
- We are going to pre-zone where possible so home builders do not come to the city council to fight for council votes building-by-building which has led to a system where the city council has too much power over each development.
Without the private sector building our homes, we are not going to get out of this crisis. Nowhere in the world can the public sector build the volume of needed housing we need without bankrupting the taxpayer.
It is time to end the political games and broken trust around home building, donations and politics.
We need to restore your trust. Fred Harding and the NPA council team are promising to do that.