Speculation tax made an appearance on the Oak Bay council agenda last tonight. (Keri Coles/Oak Bay News)

Oak Bay proposes speculation tax alternative

Council wants province to empower local gov. to collect levy on vacant homes

Oak Bay council weighed in on the speculation tax by passing a motion June 11 seeking to empower local government to collect a levy on vacant homes and to invest the revenues in non-market housing.

“This would be a much more focused solution that would help to increase the rental pool,” said Oak Bay Mayor Nils Jensen who presented the motion. It asks the Union of BC Municipalities to urge the province to amend the approach in the current proposed Speculation Tax.

Local governments are in a better position to know what their community needs, says Jensen. What can work in one community may not work in another.

“Taking it through UBCM would provide more strength and a stronger voice,” said Jensen. “There is greater strength in numbers.”

The next municipal meetings will be committee of the whole on June 18 and council on June 25.


 

keri.coles@oakbaynews.com

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