CRD Board Approves Bylaw Amendments for the Regional Housing First Program

Mar 11, 2020

Victoria, BC- The Capital Regional District (CRD) Board has approved two bylaw amendments in order to extend the Regional Housing First Program (RHFP). The program partners have been in negotiations to extend the program by contributing an additional matching grant of $10 million each for a total equity contribution of $120 million.

The RHFP is an equal partnership agreement between the CRD, the BC government through BC Housing, and the federal government through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The program was initiated to create more affordable rental housing and address the needs of people experiencing homelessness in the capital region.

“The Housing First program is important to everyone in the region, and that support has been made clear through this process,” said CRD Board Chair Colin Plant. “It is a very positive result to have all municipalities and electoral areas working together to support the CRD and the Housing First program.”

The original goal of the RHFP was to invest $90 million to support the development of mixed-market communities in the capital region, including 400 units to be rented at the provincial income assistance shelter rate ($375/month) for individuals experiencing chronic homelessness who are ready to live independently with supports.

Implementation of the program is already underway, with over 900 units complete or under construction to date. Due to escalating construction costs, the program is currently on track to deliver over 1,300 units with 300 of those units at the shelter rate by December 31, 2021. With an additional $30 million, the program will be on target to achieve its original goal of 400 units at the shelter rate.

To confirm the CRD’s participation in the RHFP extension, it has amended Bylaw No. 4326 “Land Assembly, Housing and Land Banking Service Establishment” to remove the limitations to borrowing and Bylaw No. 4327 “Regional Housing First Program Loan Authorization” to authorize the borrowing of an additional $10 million dollars. Now that both bylaws are adopted, the CRD will proceed with the construction of units under the RHFP with funding partner BC Housing and will continue efforts to obtain further funding from CMHC to bring the total to $120 million.

In order to amend the establishing bylaw and the loan authorization bylaws, elector consent was required from 2/3rds of participants which include all 13 municipalities and 3 electoral areas of the CRD. Consent from all 13 municipal participants was sought via municipal council consent on behalf of their electors and consent in the 3 electoral areas was sought via an Alternative Approval Process (AAP). Both processes were conducted concurrently from January 8 to February 18, 2020 and resulted in unanimous elector assent from all participants.

For results of the AAP, please visit

Attachment: Regional Housing First Program FAQs (PDF)

Proud to be recognized as one of BC’s Top Employers and Canada’s Greenest Employers, the CRD delivers regional, sub-regional and local services to 13 municipalities and three electoral areas on southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. Governed by a 24-member Board of Directors, the CRD works collaboratively with First Nations and all levels of government to enable sustainable growth, foster community well-being, and develop cost-effective infrastructure while continuing to provide core services to residents throughout the region. Visit us online at 


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