On the Tyranny of Forms and the Inevitable Rise of the East Van NIMBY

Tea & Two Slices is a long-running local news round-up by NEEDS frontman and veteran restaurant dishwasher Sean Orr, who lives and works in Gastown. He is very aware of his privilege, so there’s really no need to remind him of it.

Diane Francis: Money laundering by foreigners is what’s really destroying housing affordability in Canada. While money laundering is certainly a problem, this person instantly conflates it with foreign buyers without supplying much in the way of evidence. There are other factors that fuelled the affordability crisis, like sustained low interest rates; increased mortgage protection and significantly lower down-payment requirements; Paul Martin getting the feds out of the housing game; rising construction costs; the transfer of equity from baby boomers to younger generations; shadow flipping; low property taxes; and bare trust loopholes.

And when we finally take action to address it, people complain about having to fill out a form: Comment: Confronting misinformation about B.C.’s speculation and vacancy tax.

On average, investor immigrants paid $1,400 annually in income taxes in the first 10 years after landing. Now consider the average house value of those who entered through these programs: roughly $2 million

A local taxpayer household who bought that $2 million home would usually need to be making more than $300,000 every year. That would mean paying income taxes of about $100,000. But the satellite family can avoid that, if they arrange their finances conveniently. This is a huge incentive for wealthy people from around the world to buy real estate here. No wonder that housing prices have become decoupled from the labor market: the scale of this phenomenon is widespread, with tens of thousands of families in this situation

But I thought Grandview-Woodland was full of YIMBYs, not NIMBYs! Oh, I see…just not when it comes to housing people who need it the most: Public hearing to determine fate of East Vancouver detox/social housing complex. Wasn’t this part of Wendy 13’s 2005 city council campaign? Nice of them to finally clue in…14 years later.

If we can’t even build them a detox centre, I doubt this will go over well: Sell regulated heroin to drug users to reduce overdose deaths: B.C. group.

Some pretty good stuff in the BC Budget. Congrats NDP, you’re not the absolute worst: Nine things to know about BC Budget 2019. I wonder what happened to the renter’s rebate?


Meanwhile: Zapped: Unravelling the NDP’s new spin around power prices and the Site C dam.

The result is that the NDP is now doing precisely what its report justifiably criticizes the Liberals for doing with IPPs — manufacturing a need for Site C’s power while saddling generations of British Columbians with a project which will produce energy that cannot be sold for even close to the price it will cost to produce it.

Unintentionally amazing headline of the day:

Unite we Roll… Up the rim: United We Roll convoy organizer denies allegations he ran off with the GoFundMe cash. Perhaps they should rename it the Tyre Festival.

Bonus: Drop the needle, vinyl record pressing returns to Vancouver.

There are 0 comments

On Feeling Bad for Instagram Influencers and Relying on the Kindness of Landlords

In his latest read of the news headlines, Sean Orr learns how to survive a plague and listens to Roberto Luongo.

On Rent Payments Being Suspended and Prioritizing Those Most at Risk

In his latest read of the news headlines, Sean Orr sees danger in lackadaisical attitudes and grasps at an all-important straw.

On Silver Linings Coming in Tall Cans and the Urgency of Flattening the Curve

In his latest read of the news headlines, Sean Orr tries to go easy on the Mayor and hopes for a socialist response to COVID-19.

On Big Polluters Getting Baffled and Feverishly Stripping Costco of All its Toilet Paper

In his latest read of the news headlines, Sean Orr learns of bureaucratic mazes and comes away with so many questions.