What are our elected officials thinking? Better yet, are they thinking at all?
They want to increase our taxes to subsidize housing for low-income families. That’s a good idea, but they are handing out a huge tax exemption to a luxury apartment complex on the upscale waterfront where rent for the so-called “affordable” units will be a paltry $20 below the market price, which starts at $1,885 for a studio. That’s absurd!
Affordability is based on median income of $85,000 for a family of two, but studios are far more suited to singles than couples. Those with that much income have many other options. A brief search of Craigslist shows plenty of one-bedroom apartments in Vancouver renting for $1,150 to $1,500.
Instead of giving money away for tiny discounts going to the relatively well-off, let the developer charge full price for those apartments, but tax them at the full market value of the property (which will be higher with the higher rental income) and dedicate the taxes from that property to the Affordable Housing Fund, giving infinitely more bang for the buck while reducing the tax burden on the rest of us.