QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario Greens leader and MPP for Guelph, Mike Schreiner released the following statement after a Facebook live discussion with housing experts, Mike Moffatt, Senior Director, Policy and Innovation at the Smart Prosperity Institute, and Cherise Burda, Executive Director, City Building Toronto Metropolitan University:
“The Ford government’s housing legislation – Bill 23 – not only fails to address the urgent need for more housing, it also puts lives and homes in danger from flooding by further weakening the role of conservation authorities.
But it’s not just the Ontario Greens saying this – housing experts agree. And they also confirmed we don’t need to touch the Greenbelt to build 1.5 million homes.
As Mike Moffatt said during today’s Facebook live discussion, Bill 23 is ‘the least efficient, most labour intensive and land intensive way of getting to the 1.5 million mark. The (Housing Affordability) Task Force explicitly said we do not need to touch the Greenbelt. If the Ford government is looking for ideas, it can adopt many of the ideas that were in the task force (report) that they’ve punted on.’
Among Cherise Burda’s many concerns were the bill’s impacts on food security and carbon pollution.
She said: ‘We need to house people in a thoughtful way, but we also need to feed them. And an urban area that’s compact has half the greenhouse gas emissions of the suburban fringe.’
It’s clear that experts are on the same page: Bill 23 will not solve the housing crisis, in fact it’s going to make it worse by downloading development costs onto municipalities.”
A full recording of the conversation can be viewed here.