The Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) Council will hear a presentation about the proposed Provincial Speculation Tax by UBC Professor Tom Davidoff on Tuesday, April 10. The public is welcome to attend the Committee of the Whole meeting at Maury Young Arts Centre from 2 to 3 p.m.
While Whistler is exempt from the “speculation tax” and “foreign buyer’s tax”, Council is staying informed about the changes and any impacts that may be relevant to the Whistler community. The Province of British Columbia made the decision around which areas of the province would be subject to these taxes beginning this fall, exempting resort municipalities and focusing on major urban centers.
Whistler has 8,800 units of purpose-built tourist accommodation of all types zoned for nightly rentals for resort visitors.
Mayor Nancy Wilhelm Morden reflected on Whistler’s ongoing efforts to address the community’s housing challenges. “While we understand the potential value the Speculation and Foreign Buyers Taxes might offer in some cases for other regions, Whistler has a variety of existing and emerging initiatives in place to work toward ensuring we have housing options for full time, seasonal and part time residents. Still, we look forward to learning more about the emerging details of the provincial taxes.”
Comprehensive research has been done by the Mayor’s Task force on Resident Housing to monitor real estate ownership in Whistler, using data from BC Assessment, Statistics Canada and the Whistler Housing Authority to determine how properties are used. A number resident housing recommendations are underway that are expected to add a total of 1,000 resident-restricted beds over the next 5 years.
About the Mayor’s Task Force on Resident Housing
The Mayor’s Task Force on Resident Housing is a committee of Council established in November 2016, charged with the objective to address the increased demand for resident housing in Whistler. After extensive community consultation, actions were established to optimize the current housing supply and identify additional housing initiatives to overcome the current challenges. The Task Force’s primary objective is to maintain Whistler’s target of housing 75 per cent of its workforce locally, by ensuring appropriate and affordable housing supply for both permanent and seasonal staff, through the creation of flexible and diverse housing options. Learn more: whistler.ca/housing.