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Vancouver's mayor-elect talks housing, pipelines, transit with PM


Vancouver's mayor-elect says he's already spoken with the prime minister about the city's need for affordable housing

Kennedy Stewart is already lobbying the federal government for more money to address housing affordability

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The next mayor of Vancouver is making it clear that the city needs some help when it comes to affordable housing.

Kennedy Stewart, who won in Saturday night’s civic election, says he’s spoken with Justin Trudeau about the need.

Speaking on Breakfast Television Tuesday morning, he says his focus is on affordable rental housing, run by non-profits, and adds any funding that would make it easier for people to get into the market would do the same for those who just want to rent.

Stewart admits a lot can be done locally, but additional support from Ottawa would really help.

“Especially when it comes to Indigenous folks in the city,” he said, adding it would go hand-in-hand with reconciliation. “I think the prime minister, that has a special place in his heart, and he’s made a commitment to both those things.”

Many have expressed frustration with the lack of affordable housing options. With the federal election set for next year, Stewart says he’s optimistic.

“I know that there’s a federal budget in February and that will be where it’ll be the election budget, where there’s a lot of goodies in there,” he said. “My job, between now and February, is to make sure Vancouver’s firmly in that budget.”

Stewart adds he’ll be advocating for other priorities as well, like transit.

“When the prime minster asks me ‘what do you need?’ I have a clear list for him that I’ve developed.”

Vancouver’s mayor-elect also plans to rally MPs and MLAs to ensure everyone is pushing for the same thing.

-With files from Breakfast Television