Inclusionary housing (and the promise of thousands of new affordable homes in new developments across the province) is one step closer in Ontario as MPP Cheri DiNovo’s Bill 198 passed second reading in the Ontario Legislature this afternoon. The legislation would amend the Planning Act to give municipalities the power to require developers to include affordable housing in new developments. While private member’s bills, especially those from opposition parties, don’t have a good track record in the provincial legislature, Bill 198 was supported today by MPP Lou Rinaldi, the Parliamentary Assistant to Ontario housing minister Jim Watson, which suggests government support. The bill now moves to General Government Committee for review, possible amendments and then back to the legislature for third and final reading. The Wellesley Institute has joined with municipal planners, housing advocates and others to press the Ontario government to permit municipalities to adopt inclusionary housing policies. Inclusionary housing plans are used by hundreds of US cities and a number of states, and would help generate thousands of affordable homes annually.