Inclusionary Zoning and Affordable Housing

What is Ontario doing to respond to the surging prices for housing?

March 21, 2017

With prices rising rapidly in markets such as Toronto, affordable housing is becoming more and more of an issue.  The implementation of “Inclusionary Zoning”, a relatively new concept, is aimed at helping to increase the stock of affordable housing.

December 8, 2016 marked the day that Bill 7, the Promoting Affordable Housing Act 2016, was passed by the Ontario Legislature and received Royal Assent. The question now is how will the Bill 7 amendments to the Planning Act R.S.O. 1990 (the “Act”) affect not only developers, but municipalities, the housing market, and most importantly the consumers. Unfortunately without speculating, it is too early to tell. However, it is clear that the amendments will spark debate. The regulations, still to follow, will provide the necessary detail to better evaluate the impact of Bill 7.

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Appeal Court Makes Rare Finding of Incompetent Counsel

February 28, 2017

Parties who lose cases often blame their lawyers. “If my lawyer had done a decent job, I would have won.”

My observations over 25 years lead me to conclude that the majority of these claims are unfair. Frequently the client uses the lawyer as a scapegoat so the client can avoid any responsibility for the loss.

However, there are exceptions. Sometimes, it is the lawyer’s fault. Sometimes, the client has every reason to be angry at the lawyer.

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2% Property Tax Increase Coming to Toronto

New 2017 Budget Gets Approval

February 16, 2017

In an attempt to balance the budget, Toronto City Council has approved a 2% increase in property taxes for 2017, which could cost the average homeowner an additional $90 this year.

The increase will be more like 3.29% once the City Building Fund and other fees are factored in.

The Mayor’s office lauded the move, saying the increase is below the rate of inflation.  Critics, however, are calling the increase unsustainable and disadvantageous to the City’s most vulnerable.