By Alison Taylor
There is still time to add your two cents to the Whistler Housing Authority.
More than 30 community members have taken part in two recent roundtable discussions and with two more to go, WHA general manager Marla Zucht is hoping to hear more feedback from the community.
She described the most recent discussion as “respectful and well-rounded” from a wide cross-section of the community.
Among the concerns raised at the table were:
• the one-year waitlist restriction for applicants;
• the three-strike policy for waitlisters who turn down opportunities;
• the restrictions for people who own market real estate in Whistler;
• should businesses be allowed to buy restricted units, and
• the change to the appreciation formula on existing units.
That formula change, which takes existing units off the Vancouver Price Index upon resale and attaches a more conservative appreciation formula, sparked widespread concern among affected owners.
A heated meeting in July revealed a divide between WHA policies and community members.
“It was a catalyst for us to do a better job at engaging the community in our reviews and taking a step back and saying ‘let’s embark on a comprehensive review of all of our policies and programs’,” said Zucht.
With several large employee housing projects in the pipeline, such as Rainbow, Cressey and the athletes’ village, it was time to make sure everything was “tuned up and in context,” said Zucht.
Many of the existing policies were created with the WHA in the late ’90s.
“It’s a fine balance between meeting the needs of the owners that are currently in it, the waitlist applicants that are trying to get into the units, and then the future community as well,” said Zucht.
Share your ideas or concerns at the two upcoming roundtable discussions. The first will be held on Saturday, Sept. 30 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the multipurpose room in MY Millennium Place. The second will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 3 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the lounge in Myrtle Philip School.
For more information go to www.whistlerhousing.ca .