The Columbia Shuswap Regional District will be investigating housing needs in the South Shuswap and rural areas around Sicamous.
The regional district is receiving $33,000 through the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) fund a report on housing needs in electoral areas C and E. The funds are being released through a UBCM initiative called the 2019 Housing Needs Reports program.
A condition of the funding is that the report must be completed by July 15, 2020. It also specifies the report will have to be published online for free public access.
“I think this is a good news story. This is a study that we need to do in these rural electoral areas because we don’t have really good information at this time to allow us to proceed or not proceed, or what target market to go after,” said Electoral Area C Director Paul Demenok.
Demenok added an earlier labour market study concluded that housing has major effects on other areas of the economy. and socially there are major needs as well.
“I continue to hear from folks that there is no place to rent and families are really, really struggling – $1,600 to $1,700 per month has become what people are asking for almost a deplorable place,” said CSRD board chair and Area E director Rhona Martin.
“I hope that we get some good information out of this.”