More than 500 signatures on chamber's petition for potential affordable housing solution

500 sign land trust petition

The Kamloops & District Chamber of Commerce has received more than 500 signatures in support of its land trust tax policy petition, which means it can now be brought forward to the federal government.

Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo MP Frank Caputo endorsed the petition to explore implementing a Community Land Trust tax policy that seeks to tackle the affordable housing crisis in Kamloops and across Canada by incentivizing land donations to community land trusts.

The policy is modelled off of the existing ecological gifts program, which has garnered almost $1 billion in private equity for ecological preservation.

“The Kamloops & District Chamber of Commerce has been working hard to find new solutions for affordable housing. I congratulate them on achieving enough signatures to have their petition supporting a Community Land Trust Tax Policy meet the 500-signature threshold necessary to warrant a Government response,” Caputo said in a statement.

“I look forward to presenting their exciting initiative to Parliament later in February and relaying the government's response in the months to come.”

The policy was created by chamber director Colin O’Leary, who brought the policy forward through the Kamloops & District Chamber of Commerce, the BC Chamber of Commerce and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in 2020.

Various organizations across the country have signed in support of the initiative, including the City of Kamloops, the Miskanawah Community Services in Calgary and members of the Canadian Network of Community Land Trusts.

“Even though we have reached the Federal Government threshold with our petition, we still need everyone’s help to continue to build awareness and momentum to drive this policy across the finish line in Parliament in February. Affordable housing affects all of us, we need your help to build awareness about this innovative solution,” O’Leary said.

The Chamber will continue to seek signatures until Feb. 28 to strengthen support for the initiative.

The petition and further information can be found on the Kamloops & District Chamber of Commerce website.

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