Seeing as the condominium conversion moratorium is coming into effect once this last application is considered, I figured now would be a good time to write a blog post about it. So… I cracked it open and read it over. I hadn’t looked at the thing in over year… since it was passed back on December 15, 2008, in fact.

Don’t know where I got it in my head that the condominium conversion moratorium will be in effect until the vacancy rate reaches three per cent (as I wrote in my newsbrief last issue). That isn’t the case at all.

Here’s the text of the moratorium in full…

BE IT RESOLVED that until such time as the Government of Saskatchewan implements a program to support the construction of affordable rental housing, any further condominium conversion would be deemed to significantly reduce the availability of rental accommodations in the area and/or create significant hardship for any or all of the tenants of the existing rental premises; AND

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Part 1 of this resolution does not apply to applications for conversion received by the City Administration prior to December 16, 2008; AND

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that enforcement of the City of Regina’s Property Maintenance Bylaw include rental apartments; AND

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the City of Regina urge the Province of Saskatchewan to implement an affordable housing strategy for inclusion in its Spring 2009 budget, as this is a matter of provincial jurisdiction.

See. No mention of three per cent anywhere. In fact, no mention of vacancy rates at all. I’m no legal expert, but the way I read Part 1, this moratorium is in effect regardless of what happens to vacancies or availability or rental rates. There isn’t even a time limit. The only thing that will nullify the moratorium is if the province enacts a program to support affordable housing construction.

Or, presumably, if council votes to end it.

Part 2, by the way, is what’s caused people the most confusion, I think. It’s the bit that permitted council to continue to consider applications until the queue was exhausted. And with 443 Lorne, we’re there.

And Part 3 is a nice touch I’d forgotten to mention in a while. In theory, it should help keep the city’s affordable rental apartments from getting so dilapidated again.