Bill C-13

The federal finance committee is holding public hearings on Bill C-13, which is the legislation that implements much of the recent federal budget. Politically, the decision is pretty much of a foregone conclusion ” it is unlikely that the opposition parties will defeat the government at the moment. But there is considerable room around the edges. I was invited to present on housing and homelessness. I have attached a copy of my speaking notes to the committee.

The Liberals, NDP and Conservatives all expressed interest in housing issues. The Conservatives are still interested in tax-based measures regarding housing (such as a U.S.-style low-income housing tax credit). The Conservatives are seeking to erode the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s role in mortgage insurance ” and the NDP is seeking to put some limits on the government’s plans. I also did a backgrounder on mortgage insurance for the finance committee.

Amendments to the draft federal legislation on mortgage insurance are being drafted now and could be voted on very soon.