Over the past several weeks, we have been active in representing B.C. members to government officials.
October and November 2021 have been busy months of government relations work for Mortgage Professionals Canada in British Columbia. The challenges facing first-time home buyers continue to be especially acute in B.C. Couple that with increased migration both to the province and within it, public officials understand the need to find sensible and fair housing affordability and homeownership solutions as we all emerge from the pandemic.
This stretch of MPC advocacy on behalf of our 1,500+ BC members began in October with our Budget 2022 submission to the B.C. Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services. The Committee’s Report was released November 15, and we are gratified that the committee cited Mortgage Professionals Canada and its recommendations in its report.
Also in October, MPC met with several senior officials responsible for housing policy in B.C. The meeting included the Hon. David Eby (Vancouver-Point Grey), Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing, Associate Deputy Minister Angela Cooke, Deputy Attorney General Richard Fyfe and Assistant Deputy Minister Cheryl May.
We discussed possible next steps forward, partnerships with the federal and municipal levels of government, possible legislation and timelines, and how MPC staff and members can better support a top objective for the government and British Columbians: Quickly and effectively improving housing supply. This meeting gave all participants a clearer understanding of the government’s path ahead, with a pledge to continue to work together on data sharing and sensible solutions to BC’s important ongoing housing issues.
Subsequent to that meeting, in November MPC held several meetings with numerous MLAs from across the Legislature and the province. Both government and opposition MLAs heard about what MPC mortgage professionals are experiencing in their province, and learned about various policies and recommendations we feel would help to improve the housing affordability issues facing perhaps the most desired province in Canada when it comes to housing.
Representing Mortgage Professionals Canada in these meetings:
- Joe Pinheiro, MPC Chair
- Catherine Ellis, MPC Director (BC), Kelowna
- Paul Taylor, MPC President and CEO
- J.P. Boutros, MPC Director of Government Relations
- Marcie Cyr, Abbotsford
- Nicole Thomson, Saanichton
- Christine Buemann, Prince George
- Irene Strong, Delta
- Sabeena Bubber, North Vancouver
- Jared Dreyer, White Rock
- Dan Pultr, North Vancouver
- Matt Imhoff, Vancouver
On behalf of our MPC Staff and members in British Columbia, my sincere thanks to our team of volunteers.
Representing the Government of British Columbia, the following BC NDP MLAs:
- Hon. David Eby - Vancouver-Point Grey, Attorney General and Minister Responsible for Housing
Not included in photos:
Our sincere thanks to Teresa Scambler of the BC NDP Whip’s Office for helping to organize and coordinate these meetings with our team at Impact Public Affairs and our MPC Staff.
MPC also thanks B.C.’s opposition parties for their time and efforts. These meetings took place after the devastating storm and flooding, so they could not be as well attended as was expected. Nevertheless, we appreciate their time and support.
Representing the BC Liberals:
- Mike Bernier - Peace River South, Official Opposition critic for Finance
- Stephanie Cadieux - Surrey South, Official Opposition Caucus Chair and Critic for Gender Equity, Accessibility and Inclusion
- Tom Shypitka - Kootenay East
- Ben Stewart - Kelowna West, Vice Chair, Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services
Representing the BC Green Party
We will keep our valued MPC members in British Columbia informed of developments and relevant consultations in the months ahead and look forward to further progress with all members of the Legislature.