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Letters: New West responds to possible commercial rent controls

One letter writer believes if commercial rents are controlled, then property taxes should be adjusted.
Two For Lease signs on display outside buildings during daytime.

The Editor:

Re: Rising rents: New Westminster wants to explore commercial rent controls (Feb. 28, 2024).

I fully agree with commercial rent controls, but property taxes need adjustment as well.

Many properties are not taxed for what they are but for what the development potential could be.

Not fair to the property owner.

I am not sure what the commercial tax rate in New Westminster is, but I hear it's four times the residential rate in other municipalities.

Doesn't make sense to me as these businesses bring jobs and prosperity to their neighbourhood.

- Ron Marriott, New Westminster

It's about time some government takes the side of businesses struggling with exorbitant rent increases year after year.

I hope this New West initiative spreads like wildfire to all jurisdictions in B C and be implemented as soon as possible.

- Barb Fraser, New Westminster

I run after school programs for children and I just received another 75 per cent increase in my lease.

I am one lease renewal from closing down, and I am not alone.

At this rate, there will be no daycares and after school programs of any kind from the private sector left.

It is sad, but in 40 years I have been offering my programs, nothing can prepare you for these increases.

I can't pass on these increases to my customers as they are strapped and hurting too.

- John Fraser, New Westminster