Federal budget must make housing more affordable, Canadian cities urge

The head of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities says the federal Liberals must be ambitious about lowering the cost of housing in the federal budget later this week.

Joanne Vanderheyden says the pandemic has shown how dire Canada’s housing needs are and delaying spending because of competing demands for public spending is not an option.

She says the government can rely on existing programs that have proven successful during the pandemic to boost the supply of housing such as the popular and successful rapid-housing program.

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That program gives cities money for quick construction of modular homes or to buy buildings that can be turned into affordable housing units.

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The Liberals promised a reboot of the popular program as part of a political pact with the New Democrats made last month and NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh says he expects to see something in the budget to that end.

Rising housing costs was a key issue for all parties during the last federal election and prices have continued to rise in the months since.

Click to play video: 'Jagmeet Singh outlines NDP priorities ahead of 2022 budget'

Jagmeet Singh outlines NDP priorities ahead of 2022 budget

Jagmeet Singh outlines NDP priorities ahead of 2022 budget

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