Candidate Questionnaire Response: Jak King
Vancouver resident Jak King, has prepared a list of policy proposals he would like to see the city implement. He has sent inquires to the declared council and mayoral candidates about whether they support the proposals.
Below is my response.
The City should officially adopt the CHMC definition of “affordable” in which “affordable housing” is defined as housing costing a maximum of 30% of gross annual income;
ALL City-owned land must be used for affordable housing, either as secured rentals with rents tied to suites not tenancy or for cooperative housing projects or for very low-or-no-income projects;
In general, if city land is to be used for housing, the housing built should be primarily social housing, with market rental housing considered only in special cases. If city-owned land is to be sold, the proceeds should be used to purchase additional sites for social housing.
My view on CACs have been spelled out often enough. They sounded like a good idea but have become just an addiction for the City without giving us commensurate benefits. Moreover, they have removed all democratic control over the kind of community amenities with which we furnish the city and improve the lives of our residents. CACs should be eliminated and replaced by a rezoning charge (or land tax);
A major part of my platform is to replace discretionary spot rezonings with prezoning. In order to retain the city’s portion of the land lift, I want to merge the land lift (CAC) and DCLs into a single, non-negotiable fee.
All proceeds from rezoning charges must be used solely for affordable housing;
A portion of the funds should be allocated for affordable housing. The remainder allocated to other investments which benefit the community, including transportation infrastructure upgrades, parks and community centers.
The rezoning charge should be 75% of land lift for projects selling as private property;
The rezoning charge should be 70% of land lift for purpose built rentals renting at rates above affordability and/or with rents attached to tenancy;
The rezoning charge should be 50% of land lift for secured rental project meeting affordability criteria and with rents tied to suites not tenancy;
I support reduced land lift for purpose built rentals and affordable housing. Land lift capture is absolutely critical in ensuring that the benefits of redevelopment are distributed as widely as possible, and I believe in a clear, predictable system with reduced rates for purpose built rental and social housing developments.
ALL development projects must pay 100% of associated infrastructure costs (DCLs);
I am in favour of infrastructure and service fees accurately reflecting the cost of providing the infrastructure and services.
We must return to the former system of paying for community amenities: bi-annual plebiscites for bonds backed by property taxes through which all Vancouverites have the chance to determine what amenities they want and are willing to pay for; no longer can amenities be determined by secret backroom deals between developers and unelected officials.
Public input should play an important role in the decision making process. However our system of representative democracy provides decision makers with greater access to city staff expertise and other important decision making tools than plebiscites allow. Therefore I believe the final decision should rest with City Council.
I do strongly support ending backroom dealings. I want to limit in kind amenity contributions in favour of applying a transparent, non-negotiable fee.