FOUND: Kevin Falcon’s Missing Housing Plan

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For much of 2023, Kevin Falcon confidently promised to announce his housing plan before the end of the year. Six weeks into 2024, Falcon’s plan is nowhere to be seen, leaving British Columbians to wonder what he has in mind.

Wonder no more: we’ve pieced together Falcon’s plan based on his own words and record.

1. Cancel David Eby’s actions to build more homes

David Eby’s unprecedented actions to reduce barriers to housing construction are projected to create nearly 300,000 new homes over the next decade.

But Falcon is against those bills, including one to speed up project approvals and another to build more middle class homes by eliminating cumbersome zoning processes for small multi-unit developments.

2. Get government out of housing construction (again)

After Falcon and the B.C. Liberals spent years refusing to build housing, David Eby is building again. Falcon has promised to cancel those investments and leave it all up to the private sector, just like before:

“I wouldn’t have government try to do it. Government doesn’t know how to build houses. This is the silly thing. David Eby is talking about having government build, what did he call it? Middle class affordable housing? I just laughed. It’s ridiculous.” (CKNW, 24-Jul-2022)

3. Give public land to his big developer friends at a discount

In Falcon’s defense, he does believe the government has one job: selling off public land to developers at a discount.

Falcon and his party sold off public housing at Little Mountain to campaign donor Holborn properties, with a secret contract that included an interest-free loan and no actual deadlines for building new housing. Holborn knocked down the existing housing and refused to build more.

As part of his land sales program, Falcon also sold off land in Surrey marked for the site of a second hospital, calling it “surplus.” The land went for less than it was worth to a BC Liberal donor.

4. Hand subsidies to big developers and real estate speculators

Falcon has promised to “review” the speculation tax and other measures aimed at investors who treat the housing market like the stock market. He has directly criticized the Speculation tax more than a dozen times.

Falcon has also talked about using public funds to subsidize private developers who are currently paying for infrastructure upgrades required to service their new developments.

5. Evict long-term tenants to create Airbnbs for the Taylor Swift concert

Falcon had a number of objections to David Eby’s crackdown on short-term rentals – with his housing critic saying that the impact on investors should take priority over making more long-term homes available.

But Falcon’s strangest reaction to the legislation is his promise to evict long-term renters to create Airbnbs for major events, like the Taylor Swift tour.

6. Raise or eliminate the cap on annual rent increases

Don’t expect Falcon to highlight this in his “plan,” but his position is clear: he opposes capping rent increases.

Falcon’s B.C. Liberals allowed maximum rent increases to exceed inflation by 2%. Since the BC NDP capped increases at inflation in 2018, numerous BCUP MLAs have spoken against it. And when Eby capped rates at 2% to save renters from 8% hikes last year, Falcon spoke against it.