Poverty funding, refugee loans top of mind for Surrey council at UBCM convention
Tuesday, September 22, 2015

 

VANCOUVER — Surrey city council is zeroing in on poverty funding and the elimination of government-assisted refugee loans at this week's Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Vancouver. 

One of the issues Surrey has tabled at the convention is a resolution calling for a provincial funding program for local poverty reduction initiatives.

"It's something the UBCM has endorsed," said Mayor Linda Hepner Tuesday. "Quite frankly, I think we are one of only two provinces that doesn't have a provincial poverty reduction plan…. In the absence of having that plan, let's at least have the government administer local grants. That would also encourage municipalities to create their own plan."

Coun. Judy Villeneuve said Surrey is supporting the resolution pushing for tax incentives for building rental housing, as well as the issue of government-assisted refugees having to pay back transportation loans.

Villeneuve and the city have been vocal in calling for the loans to be axed, saying it cripples newcomers who are overwhelmed by the debt.

 

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Source: The Now