NB ACORN’s Response to the Provincial Budget
Posted March 24, 2023
The Government of New Brunswick has let tenants down yet again with the 2023-2024 budget that was announced on Tuesday 21st March 2023. The budget offers nothing at all to tenants here in New Brunswick, despite reports of massive rent hikes since the rent cap was removed at the beginning of the year. With another huge surplus of $862.2 million, they had a chance to improve people’s lives rather than worsen them, yet that is not the path they wish to follow.
Tenants on low-moderate incomes, single parent families, people living with disabilities and seniors on fixed incomes have been disregarded yet again when it comes to housing. The PC’s had the chance to reinstate a rent cap to give tenants security in their homes and to help many people manage the cost of living crisis that we are all currently facing. Their counterparts in Nova Scotia have agreed to a 5% rent cap until the end of 2025 so there is absolutely no reason why the PC’s in New Brunswick can’t reinstate a rent cap to help tenants out in our province.
ACORN have seen people reporting rent hikes of up to 80% since the rent cap was removed, not to mention renovictions that are still going on. Without proper tools to deal with these hikes the RTT is using Google or Facebook Marketplace to determine what reasonable rents are in our communities. Arbitrary decisions made that have a huge impact on people’s lives. Reinstating the rent cap and tightening rent control laws would have been the right thing to do, yet this PC government simply cannot do the right thing to help those who need it the most.
With this budget the PC’s have proven yet again that they only care about those with money. People are genuinely struggling to put food on the table and to pay their utilities because they have to put up with huge rises in rent. In order for them to keep a roof over their heads they have to make some tough decisions where their money is spent.
NB ACORN will continue to fight and demand a permanent rent cap in the province, a complete ban on renovictions, a complete overhaul of the RTA that has not been updated since 1975 and a proper rental registry.
ACORN believes that housing is a basic human right for all. In the year 2023, people should not be struggling to keep a roof over their head and feed themselves. The government can still do the right thing and reinstate the rent cap as well as tighten up rent control laws. Everyone deserves to feel safe and secure in their homes and it is time tenants had their voices heard.
Chair of NB ACORN