When it comes to judging Vision, Tim takes the cake
In January 2009, I proposed seven benchmarks we could employ to measure Vision Vancouver at the end of their term. As it has now been two years since Vision Vancouver took power, it is time to revisit the seven benchmarks.
1. Social Housing
Indicator: 1200 units of social housing initiated and completed
In their first two years in power, Vision Vancouver has been responsible for the construction of NO new social housing. Although the current Council recently announced the construction of new market rental housing and have, as well, made arrangements for a small portion of the Olympic Village to be turned over to social housing, Vision Vancouver has failed to enforce Council’s longstanding policy of ensuring that 15% of all major new development be set aside for the construction of social housing. Grade: D
2. Property Taxes
Indicator: no further shifting of property taxes from businesses to homeowners
In Vision’s first budget, in the spring of 2009, Council approved a budget that shifted $5.68 million in tax dollars off of businesses owners and onto beleaguered homeowners.
They continued that tax shift in 2010, which in the end will put a total of $23 million on to residential tax payers after five years.
We do not yet know yet with certainty what Vision will do with their third budget, just a few months away, but it is not too early grade Vision Vancouver on this indicator. Grade: D.
3. Ethical purchasing
Indicator: vigorous inspection of apparel manufacturers within Vancouver to identify and address local sweatshop issues.
Although the City of Vancouver Ethical Purchasing Policy adopted by Council in 2005 remains in effect, in fact Vancouver City Council has failed to expand the policy beyond purchases made by City Hall, the net result being that sweatshops across the City are not covered, as I proposed they should be two years ago. Grade C-