Richmond’s New Secondary Suites Policy a Win for Residents, Complements New BC Government Housing Strategy

For Immediate Release

October 4, 2006

RICHMOND – The recent decision by Richmond City Council to accept secondary suites is long overdue for our city, Richmond City Councillors Derek Dang and Bill McNulty announced today.

“Councillor McNulty and I were one of the few advocating before the last election that secondary suites should be legalized in Richmond,” said Dang. “We need affordable housing solutions in our city and we have always seen this as a step in the right direction.”

Prior to the recent approval by Council, the City of Richmond estimated that 2700-5000 non-approved secondary suites existed in the city.

“This was an easy decision given the sheer number of suites in Richmond and the possibilities it provides for rental space,” said Councillor McNulty. “With the dwindling number of freestanding rental complexes in our city this is an option we should embrace.”

Complementing this decision is Tuesday’s announcement by the BC Government to implement a new plan for rent subsidies that will assist approximately 15,000 low-income working families and homeless individuals. Eligible households will receive direct financial assistance that can be applied toward rental accommodation that best suits their needs.

“We’re working to keep Richmond ahead of the curve to provide adequate rental accommodations to meet the growing needs of our city,” said Dang. “Our new secondary suite policy is in perfect position for families to take full advantage of new government funding, providing more options for our residents.”

According to Statistics Canada, multigenerational households are on the rise in Canada. Richmond’s new secondary suite policy also benefits many of these families in a variety of ways.

“The new policy allows families to be together, longer,” said McNulty. “In our growing multigenerational households this a major benefit to everyone involved.”

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