Runaway housing prices, soaring gas prices, and inflation were covered by Conservative MP Dan Albas and Liberal MLA Ben Stewart at a Greater Westside Board of Trade luncheon on April 20.
Albas told the mostly-business crowd that he’s been working on the finance committee trying to get to the basis of the housing situation in Canada.
He added housing prices have risen about 43 per cent over the past two and a half years which has contributed to putting homeownership for many, especially young people, out of reach.
“The fact remains if you can’t get a place to call your own it’s going to be difficult for you to hold your job because you may have to move.”
Stewart said when it comes to inflation and affordability in general we are in uncharted territory and added that governments get in the way of themselves on occasion.
“The fact that governments think that they know best,” said Stewart. “It’s not about the size of government, it’s about listening to solutions and trying to get out of the way of people like yourselves that are actually trying to deliver products and services.”
On gas prices, Albas reminded the crowd that the Conservatives pushed the federal Liberals to temporarily remove the GST, which would save drivers about eight cents a litre depending on where they live.
“If you’re talking to a business owner right now who’s having to add a fuel surcharge to their clientele, that’s a big deal because they’re going to get a lot of angst back. When you look at a family that’s trying to fill up a mini-van, right now I’m seeing people that are saying ‘my mini-van never cost me $100 to fill up.’ The government says it understands there is an affordability issue, but they are not doing anything substantially to address that.”