Letter: I'm being bled dry for offering affordable housing in Burnaby

Editor:

An open letter to Mayor Mike Hurley and council

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I received the notice of a drastic tax increase - new double sewer/water tax, plus business licence fee - which amounts to over $1,200/year.
Please consider the following points against the additional tax grab:
As I am already taxed for the rental income, this comes as a double dip.
Landlords can only raise the rent 2-4% each year, so there is no way to share the burden of this tax with tenants.
There are fewer people using water/sewer in my property than when our family lived there.  (That makes the new tax a triple dip on my dollar.)
We purposely did not build accommodation that is designated a suite by the City of Burnaby so we could offer affordable housing to the community. This tax is making it impossible to keep the rents down. (FYI: the accommodation has been inspected by Burnaby bylaw officers.)
Please answer these questions.
The legality of a sudden, large tax hike?
The point of the new tax, other than the obvious increase in city revenues?
How Burnaby is helping renters to afford to live in our community?
Where am I (a pensioner on a fixed income) supposed to find these extra tax dollars when the rent only just covers the expenses as they stood before this tax hike?
Louise Bradley, Burnaby

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