Jacques Boissinot The Canadian Press The Minister of 'Habitation France-Élaine Duranceau speaks in the room.
The Minister of Housing, France-Élaine Duranceau, defended the way in which she is piloting her Bill 31 on housing after being roundly criticized by the opposition parties Thursday morning.
The opposition parties said that work to study the bill had to be interrupted because Ms. Duranceau wanted to make significant changes.
According to Québec solidaire, 24 of the 38 articles of the bill must be rewritten. “It’s a lack of respect from the Coalition Avenir Québec towards this housing issue,” said the party’s parliamentary leader, Alexandre Leduc.
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“It’s not a rewrite at all. A bill can be improved. We said we would make changes,” the minister defended. His office claims that the articles in question were instead modified or that additions were made.
“This is absolutely unacceptable”
The Party Liberal of Quebec and the Parti Québécois are in the same direction as the solidaires, affirming that it will essentially be a new bill which will be studied.
“The minister had plenty of time to prepare, but she wasn’t ready. It arrived with amendments which had not received the approval of the council of ministers. […] This shows that the version tabled last June was not ready,” said liberal Virginie Dufour.
“We arrive to study it and we are not prepared. We haven't done our homework and we are literally rewriting it. This is absolutely unacceptable,” said PQ MP Joël Arseneau.
Remember that Bill 31 provoked strong reactions, particularly because of the minister's desire to put an end to the transfer of lease. It remains unclear whether the amendments to the bill relate to this contentious element. The minister did not want to comment on the content of the amendments.
Ms. Duranceau said that the study of Bill 31 must resume next week. “My goal is for this bill to be adopted in the coming weeks,” she said.