John Horgan appoints new task force to review BC's rental housing laws

Apr 10 2018, 7:59 pm

BC Premier John Horgan has announced the appointment of a task force that will review BC’s rental housing laws and the Residential Tenancy Act.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Horgan said the new task force – led by Vancouver-West End Spencer Chandra Herbert – will travel throughout the province speaking to landlords, tenants, and municipal governments this summer.

“Everything is on the table as far as I’m concerned,” said Horgan.

The Premier said he chose the Vancouver MLA to lead the task force because of his “unique ability to bring people together.”

For his part, Chandra Herbert said “issues of security, affordability and fairness have been ignored, with the voices of renters and landlords sidelined for too long.”

As a result, “we need to bring renters, landlords and all those who care about rental housing to the table to improve our tenancy laws so they work better for everyone.”

“Our laws haven’t kept up with the changing housing market, and that has left both renters and landlords vulnerable,” added Horgan. “This task force will connect with British Columbians, review laws in other jurisdictions and deliver the first full review of our residential tenancy laws in 16 years.”

The goal of the task force is to give British Columbians “throughout the province an opportunity to offer their ideas on how our laws can be updated to protect renters and give landlords the confidence to put more homes on the market,” explained Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Selena Robinson.

The task force also hopes to better understand what further changes may be needed to modernize B.C.’s tenancy laws, including:

  • Consulting the public, landlords, tenants and stakeholders on their views and experiences with current tenancy laws and processes within the rental industry.
  • Identifying options to improve security and fairness for both renters and landlords, while addressing the challenges of affordability.
  • A review of the existing laws and how they apply to different housing models.
  • A review of innovative approaches in other jurisdictions.

Herbert will work alongside MLAs Adam Olsen and Ronna-Rae Leonard, who will make up the remaining two positions on the three-member task force.

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