Letter: Property owners should consider cost implications of suites

Send your letters to editor@oakbaynews.com

While some Oak Bay residents view secondary suites as a mortgage helper, a cash cow or as a low income housing provider, there is clearly many who are simply being forced to pick up the tab for ever increasing demands on all of municipally funded programs and services.

When considering the pros and cons of this issue it always seems to me that one of the major partners and benefactors of the secondary suite discussion in Oak Bay is clearly missing, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). While many local residents have successfully developed and rented illegal suites over the years how many of these people have declared the income to CRA?

It is no surprise that many fail to report such income when our municipal government conveniently chooses to ignore the existence of such suites or to enforce its own by-laws, presumably for some misguided altruistic reasons. If Oak Bay council is truly determined to make suites legal, there should be a mandatory registration process for all secondary suites within the municipality. This list should be regularly updated, a substantial property tax increase should be levied for all properties with secondary suites, and an aggressive proactive search should be lead by the municipality to find and prosecute any people choosing not to comply with secondary suite registration. I would also suggest that this registration list be shared with CRA on an ongoing basis.

Surely the municipality of Oak Bay would be far better off if all property owners considering getting into the suite rental business first had a clear understanding of all of the tax implications, their personal financial reporting obligations and consequences for non-compliance.

Bruce Cline

Oak Bay

Just Posted

Greater Victoria philanthropic food event raises funds for mental health

Oak Bay’s Vis-a-Vis one of 12 restaurants participating in Kitchens 4 Missions

B.C. SPCA Wild ARC seeking donations to replace roofs

Donations made to the roof campaign will be matched up to $10,000

Sidney town crier endorsement of mayor raises ire of resident

Local crier code doesn’t specify personal endorsement rules

Big Brothers Big Sisters seek mentors for kids who need a guiding light

September marks National Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada Month

Oak Bay Councillor Eric Zhelka to seek re-election

Zhelka announces intention to run for council seat in upcoming municipal election

Saanich homeless camp residents at a standstill, evicted, prohibited from local parks

‘Ultimate goal is to get people into shelters and longer-term housing,’ Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

B.C. home to 1/3 of Canada’s overdose deaths in first 3 months of the year

There were 1,036 overdose deaths in the first three months of the year, with 94 per cent accidental

B.C. candidate moves from hospice care to council race

He beat terminal cancer twice and entered hospice when he decided to run for council.

Canadian tobacco exec pushes back against vaping health concerns

A warning from Interior Health about the unknown health risks of vaping is getting a partial rebuke

Ministry of Agriculture commits $300,000 to help B.C. farmers obtain land

B.C. Land Matching Program supports access to affordable farmland for young farmers

Canadian air force short 275 pilots

Attrition outpaces recruitment and training claims Air Force

Teacher suspended after physically shushing, saying ‘shut up’ to student

Grade 5 student reported feeling ‘confused and a little scared’

A B.C. society helps to reforest Crown land after wildfires

Forest Enhancement Society of BC focuses on wildfire mitigation and the reforestation

B.C. marijuana workers may face U.S. border scrutiny

Cannabis still illegal federally south of the border

Most Read