Waterloo Anticipates Ontario Government’s Revised Plan for Housing Efficiency Facilitators

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Officials in the Waterloo Region are poised in anticipation, awaiting the provincial government’s forthcoming directives on the appointment of regional facilitators across segments of Southern Ontario.

Regional facilitators have a specific remit, assessing the operations of different regional governments to ensure efficiency and efficacy, with a spotlight on housing construction. Steve Clark, the erstwhile housing minister, had promised to appoint individuals to these positions by Monday.

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However, Paul Calandra, the incumbent housing minister of Ontario, unveiled a divergent announcement on social media, revealing a reevaluation of the previously outlined plan.

Calandra underscored the government’s efforts to equip municipalities with the necessary tools to achieve their housing targets and streamline the housing construction process. Hence, he indicated that the appointment of facilitators to assess the regional governments in Durham, Halton, Niagara, Simcoe County, Waterloo, and York was under review, aimed at aligning the provincial action with the objective of enhancing home construction in these rapidly growing regions.

Berry Vrbanovic, the Mayor of Kitchener, expressed little surprise towards the minister’s decision to postpone the appointment. He reasoned that the enormity of the new minister’s portfolio might necessitate an initial slow pace. Nonetheless, Vrbanovic assured of their persistence and readiness to collaborate with the provincial government and municipal partners in the region to expedite the process for homebuilding.

Conversely, Dorothy McCabe, the Mayor of Waterloo, critiqued the continuing deferment of the facilitator plan as a potential deterrent. McCabe asserted her initial hopes for the appointment process to have advanced enough for the identification of the provincial facilitators and criticized the lack of progress despite the change in ministerial leadership. With a current regime of 59 politicians governing a region home to 630,000 people, McCabe emphasized the constant endeavor to streamline governance for greater efficiency.

Finally, Calandra pointed towards an impending update from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, promising to reveal the path forward by the end of September.