Should we impose sanctions on owners of vacant premises in Montreal?

Faut-il imposer des sanctions aux propriétaires de locaux vacants à Montréal?

Photo: Marie-France Coallier Archives The Duty

For years, merchants have a storefront in Montreal are the hardest hit by rent increases, the projects endless, taxation high, and the competition of e-commerce. The pandemic of sars coronavirus makes their situation even more precarious.

Montreal is expected to impose a tax on the vacancy or to claim a royalty to the owners of buildings that leave their premises unoccupied, it considers a commission of the City of Montreal, in the course of the last few months, has examined the issue of vacant premises in the metropolis. A tighter control of the commercial leases should also be performed to better protect traders from rent increases unfair, believes the commission.

For years, merchants have a storefront in Montreal are the hardest hit by rent increases, the projects endless, taxation high, and the competition of e-commerce. The pandemic of sars coronavirus makes their situation even more precarious.

In a report, which must be adopted Thursday afternoon, the Commission on economic and urban development, chaired by councillor Richard Ryan, recommends that the mandatory registration of commercial leases of a year and more in the land Register of Québec, in order to ensure greater protection for commercial tenants and make a collection of data “consistent and reliable” on this kind of space.

The commission also suggests the establishment of a “coaching, formal and structured” as well as control measures to prevent increases in illegal rent for the traders.

A registry on the occupation of the buildings could also be implemented and the data it contains should be made public, offer the elected members of the commission. Once the registry was implemented, the City could determine whether it is better to impose a tax for the vacancy or require a fee to owners to maintain their premises are unoccupied, precise-t-on.

The mayor Valérie Plant is expected to comment on the report of the commission on Thursday afternoon.

Other details will follow.

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