August 13, 2004, For Immediate Release
Today the Ontario Government announced the annual rent guideline for 2005 as 1.5%. This confirms the promise made last April to end the bonus provisions contained in the annual guideline since 1987.
"Freezing the 2% per cent bonus will provide relief for tenants who are fed up with years of unfair rent increases." said Vivienne Loponen, Chair of the Federation of Metro Tenants Associations. "We applaud this action by the Liberal Government."
The Federation is calling for a permanent removal of the bonus provision in the guideline. The guideline calculation should remain the same as this one in future years. This has been the Federation's consistent message and we trust that the McGuinty Government has been listening to tenants.
"The minimum we expect from a fair Government is an end to unjustifiable increases as promised." Stated Dan McIntyre Program Co-Ordinator of the FMTA. "That means ending the compounding bonuses for landlords who apply for more than the guideline, such as forcing tenants to pay over and over again for allowed increases for major expenditures."
McIntyre continued, "Tenants expect this Government to stand up for them. The landlord excuse of a temporary change in the vacancy rate is no reason to allow future exploitation of tenants, like we have had for the last six years."
New rent legislation is expected in the Fall session of the Legislature. The Government carried out a consultation process last Spring. Thousands of tenants made it known that they need real rent control, maintenance assurance, and a fair system to resolve problems.
Rising rents have put an unfair burden on tenants, resulting in more evictions, longer line-ups at food banks, and a staggering waiting list for rent geared to income housing. Rent is taking more than ever out of people's incomes.
"We are counting on the Premier to keep his promise of real protection for tenants at all times." Said Ms. Loponen.