TODD Stone, BC Liberal Critic for Municipal Affairs and Housing, said on Tuesday he is troubled by the NDP’s months-overdue strata legislation that does nothing to provide actual relief for thousands of British Columbians hit hard with skyrocketing strata insurance costs.
“The government should have taken action to address this crisis months ago,” said Stone. “We have repeatedly called on the government to address the strata insurance crisis and they have continually ignored our solutions. Now, the government has put forward a bill that provides zero financial relief to condo and townhome owners who desperately need it. We’ve heard horror stories of British Columbians facing significant financial stress and anxiety as a result of being hit with huge increases in their monthly strata fees and one-time special assessments in the thousands of dollars, and yet the government’s bill does nothing to keep money in their pockets.”
The BC Liberals have proposed over a dozen solutions to fix soaring insurance costs for condo and townhome owners. Those solutions include the creation of a water damage prevention program to provide a financial incentive for preventative maintenance as well as ideas like a temporary tax holiday on the Insurance Premium Tax and extension of the Property Tax Deferment Program. The legislation introduced on Tuesday contains none of these measures and will do nothing to provide relief for hard-hit strata owners.
“It is disappointing to see the NDP has passed over much-needed relief measures for partisan reasons,” said Stone “Not only that, but it looks like they are also planning on launching further consultations on today’s proposed changes, which will mean even more delays. This is a province-wide crisis and the people impacted don’t have time to wait any longer — they need to see action and financial relief today.”