The provincial government has not been clear on how they lease their lands for social housing, according to a new report from the BC Auditor General’s office.
Province hasn’t fully considered how selling social housing could affect affordability and availability. https://t.co/YiSDJVG0mB
— Auditor General BC (@BCAuditorGen) March 30, 2017
In her most recent report of BC Housing, Carol Bellringer believes non-profits wanting to buy a place of business should get all of the information they need to move forward.
“When we looked at BC Housing’s transfer of assets, we found that its assessment was poorly documented and didn’t consider the non-profit’s ability to develop new units or maintain existing one. This fall short of good practice.”
Bellringer also says the BC Liberals haven’t considered how selling social housing lands could affect affordable housing for others.
She says 4,000 non-profits are funded every year through a transfer program known as NPAT, but the lack of information could affect paying off their mortgages.
“There is an anticipation that some of those units may need to be converted to other types of units. The ministry has not examined how that’s going to affect the program going forward and we think it should do so.”
Currently, BC is funding $35 million every year to cover non-profit mortgages, which will eventually add up to $1 billion in 35 years.
.@BCAuditorGen Bellringer says #bcpoli funds 4,000 non-profit units, agreed to give them $30M per yr until 2036. Goals are unknown @mypgnow
— Kyle Balzer (@KyleBalzer) March 30, 2017
Bellringer also believes important facts are not being properly documented on the matter, and whenever her office has asked for the facts, they’ve focused more on the business side of the decision-making.
“There’s a whole set of principles around confidentiality. We got into a discussion with them as to whether or not it’s a cabinet document and cabinet discussions, which are protected, or whether it’s something that we can look at because it’s actually the business analysis.”
The Audit makes five recommendations to the BC Liberals on how to release information on risks of the NPAT program.
To see the full list and report, you can click here.