Habitat For Humanity CK holds groundbreaking ceremony in Pain Court. Apr. 27, 2018. (Photo by Paul Pedro)

CK Considers Waiving Fees For Habitat For Humanity

Chatham-Kent is looking into whether development-related fees should be waived for Habitat for Humanity projects.

Councillor Darrin Canniff’s motion to have administration bring back a report to council on August 13 was approved unanimously at Monday night’s meeting. The report will consider the possibility of the Municipality of Chatham-Kent waiving building permits fees, planning application fees, development charges, and any other associated charges and fees for construction or renovations on:

1. Habitat for Humanity housing projects which are built and transferred to low-income families at no profit to the organization.
2. Habitat for Humanity administrative offices and/or ReStore, which support their not-for-profit work in Chatham-Kent.

Habitat for Humanity has now constructed four homes over the past several years across Chatham-Kent and has opened the ReStore in Chatham, which helps generate funds to support Habitat for Humanity’s Home Building Program. This year’s house is being built in Pain Court for a single mom of two.

“I’ve seen over the years the wonderful work they’ve done in the community and it’s up to us as a municipality to do whatever we can to get them going,” says Canniff. “It’s a great effort and things that they’re doing are needed in the community.”

Canniff says there are a number of different fees and applications related to these projects.

“They’re charged all the fees but historically, the municipality has forgiven them on all but one of the houses they’ve built… but they have to go through the whole process to do that through the various departments etc.,” he explains.

Canniff says this would simply save time and effort for the organization, as well as the municipality, by eliminating the process.

“There’s a lot of process to all that and then there’s a process to them coming and relieving it,” he says. “If we just pass a motion that’s going to forgive them right out of the gate, it saves them numerous hours and they can plan for it.”