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Development Charges and Housing Affordability: A False Dichotomy?

November 10 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Over the past 30 years, Ontario’s municipalities have relied on development charges to recover growth-related capital costs. At the same time, critics have argued that development charges increase the price of housing, and therefore work against efforts to make housing in the province more affordable.

On November 10, Adam Found reviewed the findings from his new paper for IMFG, which examined the connection between municipal development charges and housing affordability. By considering the effects of development charges on not only housing prices but also on property tax rates and municipal services, Found argued that properly designed development charges in fact improve housing affordability.

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Adam Found has published several peer-reviewed policy papers on topics such as property taxation, development charges, tax increment financing, municipal governance, and business tax competitiveness. He is Manager of Corporate Assets at the City of Kawartha Lakes, and in 2019 he was elected to the Board of Directors of the Municipal Finance Officers’ Association of Ontario. He is also Metropolitan Policy Fellow at the C.D. Howe Institute, a part-time economics faculty member at Trent University, and a public finance consultant specializing in municipal finance.


Enid Slack is the Director of the Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance (IMFG) at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy at the University of Toronto. She has written extensively on property taxes, intergovernmental transfers, development charges, financing municipal infrastructure, municipal governance, and municipal boundary restructuring. She is a commissioner on the Intergovernmental Fiscal Relations Commission and a member of the Advisory Board of the International Property Tax Institute. In 2012, she was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her work on cities.


November 10
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm