Hamilton has been experiencing a slow-motion crisis in housing affordability. Do you support an expanded role for the City to provide more affordable housing? If so, what should Hamilton do? If not, why not?

Responses to the question: "Hamilton has been experiencing a slow-motion crisis in housing affordability. Do you support an expanded role for the City to provide more affordable housing? If so, what should Hamilton do? If not, why not? "

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53 Candidate Responses (top)

CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Davis, Jim Yes I have spoke with a third party over the yrs to create 0 labour cost to maintain the houses that already exist in the housing program. This can also be used to build new houses on city owned properties. By building new homes we could set up a lottery program where people could purchase the homes with no down payment. As for private rentals, we could set up a program with set rates and if owners join this program we could offer concessions.
Eisenberger, Fred Yes Yes. I support increased affordable housing. I support inclusionary zoning. I believe in increased density and making it easier to add secondary units as well as laneway units.
Gomes, Carlos Yes Yes ofcourse, the simplest way to develop our city is to develop it ourselves instead of continuing to loaning money with no interest rate and no return mandate. The rich continue to take taxpayers money to develop their business empire, promising lower income housing solution than screwing over the city by selling them to their friends and not paying back the money that was loaned to them in the first place. That ends the moment I become mayor. The fact they didn't live up to their obligations the money should have been good the minute the build got sold. I just don't understand how our current government continues to allow this.
Graydon, Edward HC No As to your question to whether new housing developments should be designated to central Hamilton,I would be neglectful as mayor if I did not support any development that first minimizes rural development in favour of developments in central Hamilton. I am not in favour of hight restrictions on builders that would like to achieve higher building possibilities. I am in favour of waiving hight restrictions in favour of maximizing Available lands that might be used for such a development.Although I am in favour of lifting the height restrictions I doubt very much this action will help ease homelessness.I am not so sure there is much any mayor can do on this issue except blow hot air .I would be inclined to restrict the acceptance of refuges and those immigrates that cross the border illegally in favour of finding shelter and homes for those that where born and raised in Hamilton.I would be inclined to show favouritism to already established Hamiltonians over new comers.I would not be in favour of calling Hamilton a Sanctuary city for this reason alone.I do not support Hamilton as a dumping ground for those with severe mental illness and extensive criminal records. I would however support those that have a history in Hamilton over those that might not. Without sounding or seeming to cliche ,I want to look after those that where born here first that are looking to improve there lives .I cannot see any other alternatives to this issue and would question how much growth is enough? The answer is to go higher and sell to those with money over servicing the poor and homeless.What good will come to Hamilton if all we do is service the poor and homeless we have enough of those it is time to service the rich that might want to move here.Ship our homeless back to Toronto without spending money supporting them might be a good start?
Pattison, Michael Yes I support the City of Hamilton expanding its role regarding affordable housing. As a child, I was raised in a culturally and economically diverse neighbourhood. The opportunity that’s been missed, has been blending social/affordable/inclusionary housing within new developments that have occurred over the past few decades. With the cost of real estate climbing and personal ownership declining, outside of the box or unconventional thinking must now be voiced and explored.

My continuing thought is always ‘how does the city “invest” in affordable housing?’ Engaging and partnering with local Architects/Building Consortiums and Financial Institutions is the vision I see for our planning practices moving forward. Pride of ownership should be the realistic goal of advancing Hamilton’s housing problems while keeping all parties profitable/sustainable through realistic return on investment(s).
Schmid-Jones, Ute Yes Affordable housing is a major issue for a lot of families in a struggling economy. Conveniently, council absolutely has the power to require the inclusion of truly affordable housing in any new development. As the prospect of LRT inspires more developers to invest in Hamilton, it could represent a real opportunity to ensure that the affordable housing people need is a part of growing our city. The struggle seems likelier to be convincing council to make including that housing a priority, rather than having the power to make it happen. We may also need to consider looking at co-housing and other nontraditional housing options to accommodate an aging populace, like a recent program that pairs McMaster students with roommates who are seniors.
Sgro, Vito N/A Please use our website vitosgroformayor.ca as the the answer to the provided questions.
Tavares, Ricky N/A How much are you going to pay me ? $100 and I will communicate with you at your basic level. Otherwise you are useless to me and Hamilton.
Wozny, Mark Yes In order to attract more young people to the City, we should ensure more affordable housing such as geared-to- income develpoment, revisions to our Bank of Canada to re-instate its mandate to pre 1974 and help in creating /contributing to co-operative housing/co-operative work/design/office space by engaging community based bond raising, akin to Tapestry and other similar organizations.
Yan, Nathalie Xian Yi Yes Housing is a basic human right to survive and live with dignity in Canada. Hamilton is claimed the best city to raise children for two decades. it’s a shame for politicians and policy makers to promote dysfunctional policy’s that increase homelessness and raise the poverty line. sustainable housing should be the priority for the city in the next election as a fundamental goal
Ward 01
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Allen, Jason Yes There are a few things the city could be doing to encourage affordable housing in Hamilton. The first is to implement inclusionary zoning in some parts of the city – especially long the proposed LRT corridor – that would allow the city to bargain building height for below market value suites in mid and high-rise buildings. The second thing we could do is encourage laneway suites to possibly ease rental shortages and to revitalize our laneways. Finally, there is an innovative program coming out of Waterloo where they are offering loans to homeowners of up to $25,000 for either building below market value secondary suites in their homes, or to bring existing suites up to code.
Anderson, Sharon Yes Yes. There are three main things Hamilton should do. First make sure the City zoning and planning processes are supportive of smaller developments to increase the amount of housing available. Second in larger developments require a certain percentage of rent controlled units within the development. Third improve and increase the housing stock provided by the City through mixed income developments which are designed to enable those living in them to be resilient in the case of emergencies.
Cole, Sharon Yes I do. In addition to what I have stated in response to the first question, Hamilton should continue to work with organizations like Indwell on the Hamilton Apartment Program, and encourage the continued research of emerging urban design options, including laneway homes, tiny homes and carriage homes.
Eroglu, Ela Yes Affordable housing and endemic poverty in certain parts of the city are top citywide issue. Housing is a human right and a basic need for everybody. Rapidly escalating rents and the price of housing, with graduates in higher education owing mountains of debt, owning a home is a dream for most families. Every Hamiltonian should have access to safe and affordable housing, and people of all income levels should be able to live with dignity. People should not be living and dying on our streets.

Close to 6,000 households are waiting for subsidized housing and this number is expected to be 10,000 in coming years. If done right, inclusionary zoning will provide opportunities to create affordable, mixed-income neighbourhoods that would help solve the growing housing problem.

Creating a diversity of neighbourhoods with mixed housing is very important to build an inclusive and vibrant city. I would support zoning by-laws that require a proportion of new housing developments to be affordable to low-income families. In Ward 1, I would support mid-density growth along major corridors such as Main St. West and adding extra storeys to the commercial buildings. However, I believe that open communication, engagement and transparency are very important for achieving the desired result.
Geffros, Sophie Yes Absolutely. I believe that safe, secure, and affordable housing is a fundamental human right, and the City must step in where the market has failed. While proposals like laneway homes are creative and aesthetically pleasing, they will not be sufficient to address this crisis. The City must use its power to mandate the building of affordable housing in private developments. If elected, I will ensure that all new developments have between 15 and 25% affordable or geared-to-income units. I look to examples like Paris, France, and Leeds in the UK. Leeds in particular shares many characteristics with Hamilton, and has seen enormous success in mandating affordable housing in new developments, with the majority of units being rented at between 60 and 80% of market-rate housing. Further, any developments along transit lines or the new LRT line must have a proportion earmarked for seniors and people with disabilities.
We must also address the crisis in CityHousing. Only ⅕ of CityHousing in Ward One is barrier-free, and this must change. Further, much of it is in terrible conditions, with bedbug and cockroach infestations, water damage, and black mould. Council cannot expect CityHousing tenants to live in conditions that they would never accept in their own homes. We must build new CityHousing and overhaul the existing buildings so that they are safe and accessible.
Massie, Richard Yes Yes the City can use inclusionary zoning to require developers to make a larger percentage of new units affordable, creating mixed income communities. Tax installments leave the City holding lots of cash for periods that may be used to cover the borrowing cost, zero-interest loans for affordable co-operatives.
Miklos, Lyla Yes Capitalism has taken over Hamilton's housing market with a vengeance. 10 years ago I could have bought a cute little home in downtown Hamilton for about 100K. Right now homes in my Strathcona neighbourhood are being listed at half a million dollars or more. Rents have gone up exponentially too. 1 bedroom apartments in Hamilton are listed at $1000 a month or more. Hamilton has become unaffordable for Hamiltonians to continue living here. Landlord and homeowners are listing at these prices because they can and because there are people willing to pay for homes at these rates. So how can a Municipality keep Hamiltonians from being priced out of their own city? One way is to make developers who create multi-unit dwellings make a commitment to units that are subsidized and/or geared to income. Not market driven, because the market is what is driving housing prices up to levels that hardly anyone can reach. I had a conversation with someone who has several investment properties and I have to ask all of us to think long and hard about how much profit is truly enough for anyone. Just because you can ask for that amount, does it mean that you should. Making the profit motive be the driving force for our decisions leads to far too many of our most vulnerable citizens being left behind. If we truly value the lives of all Hamiltonians we have to see housing as a human right and your elected officials need to insure that your rights are protected.
Narducci, Linda Yes Affordable housing is a global growing concern The City must be open to listen to the residents and the needs, it needs to think long-term but also consider immediate needs. It is their responsibility to bring in regulations that encourages a diverse mix of housing types. With much talk about lane houses there are other options such as cluster homes. Affordable housing needs to be close to opportunity/jobs, transit. The City needs to implement a 20% rate on affordability with all new developments.
White, Harrison Yes Affordable housing is a massive problem in the City of Hamilton as well as in the ward. In Ward 1 right now, property owners frequently evaluate the value of their property based on the price per bedroom, a metric which they use to charge student renters. Ward 1 residents face the highest increases in property value throughout the city, paying 172$ more in taxes under the 2018 budget than the year before, with Ward 14 only paying 21$. The student housing issue clearly has drastically inflated the evaluations of property in this area.

At the city level, Hamilton residents on a whole have seen rents increase faster than the average of Ontario, an eviction rates have skyrocketed as landlords seek to improve their profits. Luckily residents are already fighting back, with the adoption of things like ACORN in Hamilton. But the city can do more to facilitate housing, Social Planning & Research Hamilton did a study in June and compared Hamilton’s policies to that of Quebec City. This document makes some amazing policy comparisons that demonstrate the importance of tenant protection policies and the positive impact they have on the rental market, and the broader economy. Landlords love to make people think that improving tenant protection will hurt their profits or discourage development, but Quebec City has had more than 12,000 private primary rental market units built since 2011, compared to only 700 in Hamilton during that same period despite similar growth metrics. Hamilton needs to implement policies that they can to improve the ability that renters have to a safe, affordable living environment. We also need to try and work with the province to establish rules that municipalities just don’t have the authority to do. Jeffery Martin a McMaster Graduate student at the school of Labour Studies reported that he had not seen homelessness like this in Hamilton until this year, demonstrating the clear importance of this subject not just in Ward 1 but across the city. I have plans and am ready to act on this issue as Ward 1 and Hamilton as a city need to drastically improve the way we have, or rather haven’t, addressed the booming real estate market in the city and the problems that have come with it.
Wilson, Maureen Yes Affordable housing is key to supporting the city’s official vision to be the best place to raise a child and age successfully and is fundamental to sustainability, positive educational outcomes, health and prosperity.

The market has not and will not self correct to address this crisis. Intervention on the part of all levels of government (federal, provincial and municipal) is necessary.

Monocultures are never healthy. Every neighbourhood across the city must take advantage of the opportunity to include affordable housing in its development plans.

Finally, I must add that in our affordable housing strategy we must have full awareness of the circumstances and needs of residents. To this end, it is my fundamental belief that we must apply a gender lens to our housing strategy. A gendered lens is a disciplined, informed practice of looking at something - in this case affordable housing - rooted in the fundamental acceptance that urbanization is a deeply gendered process. Women and men experience urban environments differently. A failure to accept this basic premise means that housing policy and housing projects will never be fully informed, and, therefore, will never fully hit its mark.

As Ward 1 City Councillor, I will call for a housing strategy rooted in several pillars:

1. Look for Housing Partners
Identify and work with stakeholders, including our senior orders of government, non-profit organizations and cooperatives, the private sector and individuals, to find opportunities and create an environment that identifies affordable housing as a priority in Hamilton and the responsibility of many.

2. Get the Land and Approvals Ready, Minimize the Risk
Reduce costs and wait times by having the necessary development approvals in place for shovel ready lands across the city for affordable housing projects. This could act as an incentive to private sector investment in affordable housing.

3. Use City Assets for Housing First
Support a “housing first” policy when it comes to identifying and assessing the use of city owned surplus lands.

4. Allow and Encourage Secondary Suites & Laneway housing
Secondary suites, such as basement apartments are the most cost effective means of adding to the available housing supply. Our regulatory environment should facilitate such development along with the development of laneway housing/garden suites. I am very pleased that Hamilton City Council recently approved a regulatory and planning environment that will allow for laneway housing.

5. Utilize Pricing Mechanisms to Encourage Affordable Units
Prices are key drivers of development patterns and housing availability. Municipal government can set prices with its use of development charges, property taxes and user fees. As Ward 1 City Councillor, I would support the suspension of development charges against affordable units.

6. Preserve and Protect Existing Rental Stock
Much of Hamilton’s affordable housing is dependent on the community’s existing private rental stock. But local research is revealing that this stock is being lost to condo conversions. Approximately 2000 primary rental units were removed from the market between 2004 and 2015. (HCF, Vital Signs 2015) As Ward 1 Hamilton City Councillor, I would support a strategy aimed at controlling the rate of conversions and insist that any rental stock lost in demolition be replaced.

7. Support for Low interest Second Mortgage Programs
As Ward 1 Hamilton City Councillor I would support programs that enable residents with low and moderate incomes to qualify for low interest second mortgages, such as those provided by Options for Homes and Trillium Homes. In so doing, individuals can get over the hurdle of a down payment that often serves as a barrier to home ownership.

8. Inclusionary Zoning
The previous Ontario Liberal Government made the legislative changes that give municipalities the ability to insist that a portion of any residential development in excess of 10 units are to include affordable units as part of the overall build. Hamilton must opt in and make use of this land use planning tool.

9 Advocate, Education, Inform
The housing needs of Hamiltonians cannot be met by the City of Hamilton alone. The city must advocate for coordinated action on the part of all stakeholders (Federal and Provincial Governments, private, not for profit sectors) and have continuous conversations with the community about the importance of inclusive, mixed income neighbourhoods and the role of affordable housing in supporting educational, health, economic and social outcomes.

10. Income
The City of Hamilton must continue to champion the need for a level of income supplement from our senior orders of government that will enable lower income persons to secure and maintain their housing needs. Moreover, support for a living wage must also be considered a tool in a basket aimed at improving housing security.
Ward 02
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Daljeet, Suresh Venodh Yes Yes, I support more affordable housing. We should encourage building affordable housing on city owned lands, e.g. land acquired for the stadium, repurposing buildings and develop them for housing. Hamilton has to improve transit and accessibility right across the city which will allow affordable housing in other areas. this issue seems to be concentrated in the lower city.
Farr, Jason Yes The Housing crisis is not exclusive to Hamilton but is certainly a dominant issue that we have been very serious about tackling as a municipality. This past term of council, we devoted 50 million toward restoring and creating new affordable housing units. You would be hard pressed to find another city government that has made as significant a local commitment to affordable housing. In the downtown, Council has supported my efforts to provide housing opportunities where currently City surface parking lots exist (Bay and Cannon/King William near Wellington/191 York).

In the coming Council term, with these and other confirmed projects, we will see more than 300 new units of affordable housing in ward 2. At the same time, seeking further opportunities through partnerships and new planning policy (DTSP) to build more in ward 2 and beyond.

Of course, we need to make certain we receive our share of the Federal Governments 40-billion-dollar National Housing Strategy.

Guiding our efforts in addressing this crisis, is the 2013 Council endorsed and approved 10-year Housing and Homelessness Action Plan for Hamilton.

We have been and must continue to expand our role in providing more affordable housing options.
Kroetsch, Cameron Yes Yes, I support an expanded role for the City in providing more affordable housing. In part, I think that this must be mandated more clearly through implementation guidelines attached to the “Downtown Secondary Plan”. This means inclusionary zoning for new developments, community benefits agreements (CBAs), and incentives for new laneway building. If we don’t have these guidelines in writing, with clear implementation goals, then we’re not going to hit the necessary targets. While the work we’ve done to provide affordable housing in Hamilton is good, we must do more to close the tremendous gaps that exist. We also need to approach each type of affordable housing in a way that demonstrates not only sound planning principles but an effective and meaningful approach to community consultation. Finally, the City needs to find ways to lobby with the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), and on their own, to push for partnerships from other levels of government. Affordable housing is not just a Hamilton issue or even just a “municipal issue”, it’s something that impacts every person living in Canada and we need to work together to stop this crisis from worsening and to make some meaningful improvements. This ultimately means more partnerships with organizations already providing affordable housing like Indwell, the YWCA, and the Good Shepherd, and taking examples from cities, like Waterloo , who are leading the way.
Smith, Nicole Yes Yes, the city can provide incentives to homeowners to create affordable units within their homes as well as ensuring new developments have a significant amount of truly affordable units to get approved.
Tennant, Mark Yes The RGI program has a long waiting list with limited not for profit housing participation. The Portable Housing benefit only permits 3000 Ontarians and you must be on the RGI waiting list to qualify. It only offers 80% of market rent therefore rent is still unaffordable and most low income families are paying full market rent.To answer your question, I support more affordable public housing development. I applaud meeting the need of seniors RGI housing projects in Ward 2 and 4.. More can be done to meet the need of singles and families. I support the Secondary Plan and ask that if the 30 story limit is exercised, that 20% of all new development be RGI housing. Can the Portable housing benefit restrictions be addressed so more low income people can have subsidized housing while waiting for RGI housing. Not for profits agencies (Housing Help and T2H) are doing their part in advocating for low income and homeless people. Efforts on the part of City housing and The Landlord Tenant Board to be more proactive in identifying substandard housing and illegal landlord practices would decrease displacement. In addition, oversight of all private bids to prevent purchases of rental properties for the purpose of land speculation and the consequential displacement of residents. A unified collaborative effort of all partners providing housing oversight and support is needed.
Ward 03
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Bureau, Alain Yes
Farr, Laura Yes Many students would like to stay after graduation - I was one of them, but I had difficulty finding an affordable apartment and good paying job and that was more than a decade ago. It’s gotten worse for recent graduates. The average apartment is $1000 per month, plus utilities. That is 71 hours of work at minimum wage.

We should be looking at incentivizing landlords to keep rents affordable, and continuing to work with partners such as Indwell and Kiwanis, including the “Invest in People” motion passed in 2017 which allocates $50 million over ten years towards affordable housing.

There has also been a huge acceptance of ideas such as laneway and pocket homes. I would also advocate for the expansion of accessory homes across the city, and using incentives such as Kitchener-Waterloo to offset the costs for the property owners to do so.
Kuruc, Ned Yes Yes, I believe the city should have a role in providing affordable housing. I firmly believe that we should be adapting a geared to income housing strategy. I feel that we can innovate outside of the traditional tower approach to affordable housing. We need to think outside of the box to things like modular housing.
Nann, Nrinder Yes Yes, I support an expanded role for the city in affordable housing.

What I'll do:

* I will encourage tenants to organise and advocate for positive change, and help them pressure landlords to comply

* I will crackdown on absent, negligent landlords and slumlords

* I will explore small loans and grants programs for homeowners that create new affordable units

* I will evaluate all new development proposals with an eye to adding more affordable rental units

* I will work with residents to establish a continuum of housing, including cooperative housing.
Smith, Dan Yes I think the city absolutely needs to be dealing with the housing issue. A large part of it is a supply issue. I have worked as a property manager for 13 years and have seen many of the problems that lead to reduced supply. A few years ago Hamilton had a plan to give loans for downtown development. I think a similar plan is needed for housing now. One of the biggest hurdles to providing purpose built rentals is the financing. Loans to provide the mezzanine financing so a bank would back the rest could help significantly in developing new housing. As well, also some of the archaic bylaws that restrict development, mostly in the lower city, need to be changed.
Sprague, Kristeen Yes I absolutely do support an expanded role for the City to provide more affordable housing. This is vital. The government made some space in the Affordable Housing Act to determine how much development must be dedicated to affordable housing. This does not go far enough. We need to make sure that we aren't selling off municipal assets for private development, and we need to commit the funds to repair existing units that are derelict and vacant. This is definitely a challenge for any municipality, especially when successive governments have not provided the support necessary to maintain and build units. We must make the need for provincial and federal support for affordable housing clear in our dealings with higher levels of government.
Ward 04
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Merulla, Sam Yes I have led the charge in affordable housing and I have worked to establish nearly 500 units accordingly, in partnership with Indwell, YWCA, City Housing and private developers at the Roxbourough redevelopment.
Ward 05
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Maldonado, Juanita Yes Housing is not affordable because the City Council has not made it a priority. In the closed-door meetings where City Council decides which developers/contractors get the $$$deals, if the affordable housing component is not satisfactory, who is to blame?
Ward 06
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Jackson, Tom Yes Yes I believe the City should be providing even more affordable housing as I’ve supported during this term of City Council as a voting member of the CHH Board. This term of City Council invested $50m. towards that objective.
Taylor, Timothy Maybe Affordable housing is a touchy subject because it carries a lot of connotation around with it. I believe in quality affordable housing. I believe Ward 6 has a relatively sound approach to providing affordable housing. I am not sure the city needs an expanded role, but definitely could use more funding.
Ward 07
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Benson, Steve Yes The buzz word in Hamilton is Affordable Housing, however, what I support is affordable living for everyone!
A 2016 article in the CBC states that an independent company, hired to look into the Ontario Works program, found that employees were not doing enough to help people find jobs and get back to work.
This independent company actually recommended to release 40+ employees from Ontario Works.
Interestingly enough, the City kept this study under wraps and we now find ourselves in the predicament we’re in.
Affordable housing is not meant to be a lifestyle, it is supposed to be a temporary measure to help individuals and families get back on their feet. If the system was working properly there would be enough housing to support those who need it most.
The City has created a situation whereby is it encouraging whole generations to depend on social services.
What we need to do instead is get people back into the workforce, we need to change the narrative to encourage people back to work and to take advantage of some of the “back to work” programs and retraining available through the City and Province. The longer it takes to do so, the more complacent and dependent people will become and the problems will become insurmountable.
Kazubek, Joseph Yes Affordable housing is a must, and a human right, the city is obligated to ensure that all residents of Hamilton has a safe place to live.

Affordable housing is one of my main platforms focuses, and part of my poverty reduction plan. I have a few ideas that I believe would help with the reduction but also know that I'm not an expert In this, I will work with local groups and put forward a strong plan. I will be considering similar project that other city have used and has been successful at ensuring affordable housing is available, including Waterloo home owner grants, as well as small houses ( alley way homes) community spaces
MacIntyre, Dan Yes I think one of the biggest changes the next city council needs to make is changing what the idea of Affordable Housing it. It isn’t simply city sponsored housing for low income families. Affordable housing is anyone who is forced to pay more than a third of their after tax income on housing, that includes much of my generation who are educated and working in good jobs but still cannot afford to enter the housing market. Across the city we have many opportunities to begin working toward resolving our affordable housing crisis with creative efforts that have experienced success across North America. In particular, a focus on increasing our micro-housing and laneway housing stock is an evidence-based approach that has been gaining momentum in Vancouver and Toronto that could provide very quick returns and alleviate some of the demand. At a very basic level, affordable housing needs to be understood as the crisis it is rather than just another issue, and at our council table currently, it’s only seen as an issue.
McMullen, Geraldine Yes I would be supportive of an expanded role for the City to provide more affordable housing. I believe we do ourselves a disservice when we lack the full capacity to provide our residents with a place to live that they can afford based on wages earned in our city. Furthermore, if we are to be a preferred place to raise a family and age successfully, then we should have the basic means to allow for that in the form of affordable housing. Young people, single parents and seniors are most at risk in this regard.
Pauls, Esther Maybe Housing cannot be supported soley on the residential tax assessment bas our taxes on our homes would go through the roof. We need to advocate for funds from provincial and in particular federal funding. Immigration is driving the need for housing and its affordability.
Ward 08
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Danko, John-Paul Yes It has long been established that neighbourhoods function best with a mix of residents from all backgrounds and economic status. I support affordable housing, including mandated requirements for minimum percentages of affordable units for new development. I also support third party partnerships with affordable housing builders and would work to better streamline the bureaucratic process for City permits - especially for small scale developments.
Wicken, Colleen Yes Yes the City of Hamilton needs to step to the plate and insure a roof over everyone's hear. Hamilton needs to support a safe haven for those less fortunate. We need to work with owners of vacant factories and industrial warehouses that are often vandalized to be used as temporary hostels until such time as Hamilton can complete repairs to the many existing city owned properties that have been allowed to deteriorate to the point where they are inhabitable.. They need to work with the Province to further re-visit their decision of the Century Manor Browlands which would be a benefit to all. They need to enact by-laws with teeth that will police the vast number of unsafe apartments and low income housing across the City to make it both safe and affordable.
Ward 10
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Beattie, Jeff Yes In my community, the affordable housing issue is happening behind closed doors. Young families are quietly living in their parent's basements because they can't afford to enter the property market. The City plays a role, but should act as an 'enabler' for other groups who's primary focus is affordable housing. This is entirely about partnerships and working together to find solutions. Ensuring that a larger percentage of new builds include an affordable housing component is a start.
Ward 12
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Marley, Kevin Yes This city needs to help all of its citizens and that includes viewing housing a human right and working to make sure everyone has a roof over their head.
Scime, John Yes I do support an expanded role of the City. As I briefly touch on in the first question, when we continue to locate our density in the appropriate places, we have an opportunity to quickly catchup with an affordable housing plan. It is important to work with the developers to provide this type of residence and hold account to the provisions set out in the urban development plan.
Ward 13
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Gelder, Rich Yes I believe the city does have a role to play in attracting more affordable housing. And that starts with attracting more dense, infill development to begin with. With such developers come requests for zoning and other variances, which the city needs to leverage so as to require developers to avail themselves of inclusionary zoning provisions in the form of affordable unit quotas.
Mitchell, Pamela N/A Declined to answer
Vanderbeek, Arlene Yes Yes, affordable housing needs to be a priority. I am currently a member of the City's Housing and Homelessness Committee. We have great needs in the City. Council needs to advocate more effectively to the Provincial government, as well as taking steps to address issues at the municipal level, where possible.
Ward 14
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
Iszkula, Robert Yes Every citizen deserves a place to sleep and call home. The city plays a vital role in making that possible. I will work towards higher percentage of geared-to-income housing in new large developments. I will also support small scale intensification that can create more affordable options as well: shared homes, tiny houses, in-law suites, etc can be encouraged through modernized zoning. I believe the city has a responsibility to create and properly manage public housing initiatives, but the solutions require a more holistic approach.
Whitehead, Terry Yes The tax-payers of the City of Hamilton already pay well over the provincial average for residential taxes. People's ability to pay higher taxes will always be a challenge in this community. With this as a backdrop, of course we need to do everything we can to solicit partnerships with private sector and other levels of government to build more affordable housing with fewer burdens to the residential tax base. The City of Hamilton has recently committed $50 million, which a large portion of that is going towards affordable housing over the next 10 years.

Affordable housing is not unique to Hamilton. It is a challenge to every major city in finding the right balance. We also must understand that Hamilton serves as a regional centre, providing healthcare for 2.5 million people in our catchment. It is time that the provincial government recognizes regional centres like the city of Hamilton that take on additional financial burdens in trying to provide healthcare services to people that are drawn to Hamilton for these services. Lastly, I support inclusionary zoning to accommodate a prescribed percentage of affordable housing units in every new development as part of their responsibility to the community. True partnerships with other levels of government to alleviate the pressures on the static residential tax base ensures that the burden isn't being disproportionately placed on residential tax payers while still addressing fundamental housing issues.

Hamilton taxpayers contribute billions of dollars to the other levels of government on an annual basis. For every tax dollar that goes to the federal government, only a small fraction of those dollars comes back to the community for services. The federal government needs to create a national housing strategy and ensure that the appropriate dollars to implement that strategy are being transferred back to municipalities. They need to make a financial commitment to assist municipalities on this significant challenge.
Wilson, Bryan Yes Yes I do affordable housing should be one of the top priorities for a lot of municipalities these days. The price of rent keeps rising faster than the price of a home and most assuredly faster than incomes. I myself have lived in affordable housing at one point and it was a huge stepping stone to getting to where I am today. One of the biggest tools the province has given us is the ability to make all new developments up to 20% affordable housing. We have the means to do this but we aren't yet and I am unsure why. With the building of the LRT we are seeing development come in at a good rate along that corridor and now would be the perfect time to ensure that we have affordable housing available within these new developments.
Ward 15
CandidateBrief ResponseFull Response
McKechnie, Susan Yes Cities have a role to play in ensuring their vulnerable groups are cared for. Housing affordability has much to do with simple supply and demand economics. Location is the key-determining factor in influencing cost of residential units. Irrespective of that, the city does have a role to play in ensuring our most vulnerable are taken care of. More than just our most vulnerable, careful consideration must be given to ensuring there is a real level of affordability considered with new development sites. Affordability in most of Hamilton will drive development toward mid to high-density forms.
Addressing affordability options ensures our seniors have feasible housing alternatives. Affordability provides first-time buyers a chance to live in Hamilton and pursue their new careers, their new research projects, or their new next generation ideas. Positive outcomes are delivered as a result of the city promoting the right types of affordable options across Hamilton.

Response Summary (top)

Brief ResponseCount% of Total

50 Candidates Have Not Responded (top)

Geissler, Henry
May, Todd
Rusich, George
Ryerson, Phil
Ward 01
Bakht, Syed
Geertsma, Jordan
Lazich, Carol E.
Ward 02
Chiarelli, Diane
Unsworth, James
Vail, John
Ward 03
Balta, Milena
Beck, Keith
Denault, Steven Paul
Kavanaugh, Brendan
Lemma, Tony
Rowe, Stephen
Salonen, Amanda
Ward 04
Douglas, Rod
Ward 05
Collins, Chad
Ward 06
Young, Brad
Ward 07
Clarke, Steve
Clowater, Kristopher
Dirani, Adam
Grice-Uggenti, Karen
McColl, Jim
Schneider, Roland
Ward 08
Adams, Eve
Climie, Christopher
Ruddick, Steve
Simpson, Anthony
Ward 09
Clark, Brad
Conley, Doug
Ford, David
Lanza, Peter
Multani, Lakhwinder Singh
Ward 10
Milojevic, Louie
Pearson, Maria
Thompson, Ian
Ward 11
Johnson, Brenda
Shewayhat, Waleed
Ward 12
Bell, Mike
Ferguson, Lloyd
Reis, Miranda
Ward 13
Bonomo, Gaspare
Gray, Kevin
Mykytyshyn, John
Roberts, John
Ward 14
French-Sanges, Roslyn
Samuel, Vincent
Ward 15
Partridge, Judi