Skip to content

Renaud disappointed by housing spending in budget 2024

"I haven't seen a lot of love for St. Albert," she said

The UCP should be “embarrassed by their lack of action” on housing in the 2024 Alberta budget, says St. Albert MLA Marie Renaud.

Renaud hoped to see funding for a downtown St. Albert affordable housing project for which the city has already designated land. But the money did not come through this year.

“The province needs to cough up some money for Homeland Housing to do that project, so that we can create some affordable housing downtown, help the struggling businesses downtown, and meet a real need,” she said.

“I haven't seen a lot of love for St. Albert.”

The province’s planned investment in rental assistance is also lacking, she said. Funding for 550 additional households in need is expected to come through in 2024-25, bringing the total renter households supported to 12,700, according to budget documents released yesterday.

“That is not even half the number they need to achieve their target of 12,000 additional units by 2031,” she said. “That doesn’t add up.”

She also pointed to housing starts, which are projected to amount to roughly 36,000 units in 2023–24. That’s 2,000 fewer starts than were forecast in the 2023 budget.

“This number is really not sufficient to keep pace with the growth in Alberta,” she said, especially considering that the province is hoping to attract more workers with an “Alberta is Calling Attraction Bonus” tax credit of $5,000 for workers in eligible occupations.

Renaud, NDP critic for community and social services, said she expects to have more detailed information about spending on programs such as AISH, income support and PDD in the coming weeks.

“But what I know is in those programs, if they're not keeping pace with inflation and population growth, then it means a cut,” she said.

The government estimates it will spend roughly $5.3 billion on the Ministry of Seniors, Community and Social Services in 2024 –25. Its forecast for 2023 – 24 spending is nearly $5 billion.

The Gazette will have more on the 2024 budget in coming days.

About the Author: Riley Tjosvold

Read more


push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks