Councillor Josh Matlow

City Council Votes to fight Bill 184 in Court

I am pleased to report that City Council voted overwhelmingly in favour to stand up for Toronto tenants by sending City Legal staff to fight Bill 184 in court. The ironically titled Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, 2020 would make it easier for Landlords to evict tenants in Landlord Tenant Board proceedings.

The Bill removes the right of tenants to enter evidence of a Landlord’s failure to provide services required as a mitigating factor in non-payment of rent and eliminates the requirement to have a final hearing before a tenant is evicted.

Further, in an amendment by the Standing Committee on Social Policy reported to the Legislative Assembly July 6, 2020 additional direction was provided to the Landlord and Tenant Board regarding eviction hearings. Under Power of Board re eviction Section 83, the committee added a section stating that when an LTB member is “…determining whether to grant an application to evict a tenant based on arrears in rent arising during the period beginning on March 17, 2020 and ending on the prescribed date, the Board shall consider whether the landlord has attempted to negotiate an agreement with the tenant including terms of payment for the tenant’s arrears.”

Without further direction, this amendment provides a tacit direction to the LTB to grant evictions if any repayment plan was offered. There have already been reports of Landlords proposing repayment plans that add rent arrears on top of existing monthly rents and that start immediately despite the tenant’s job not having returned.

I will provide updates on this case as it moves through the court system. Please click here to help take action.

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