Municipalities across British Columbia are getting support from the B.C. government to build more housing for people faster. 

In a news release, the provincial government announced that they will provide $51 million in grant-based funding from Budget 2023 to all municipalities, regional districts and the Islands Trust, starting Jan. 18.

A total of 188 local governments will benefit from the provincial funding, including the City of Merritt which is expected to receive $183,812 out of the total amount.

The funding is intended to support local governments to meet the new legislated requirements approved by the provincial government, which aims to create more housing, especially transit-oriented development and multi-unit housing.

In the release, Ravi Kahlon, B.C.’s minister of housing, said that the provincial government is working with local governments to build housing faster due to the urgent need for more homes for people across B.C.

“With new housing actions to build homes in our communities, it is important that we support local governments to improve the processes to get the housing built that people in our community desperately need,” he said.

According to the release, local governments will be able to use this funding to “update housing needs reports, zoning bylaws, development cost charge and amenity cost charge bylaws, and community plans by hiring consultants and staff, to do research and community engagement, as part of the transition to improve the development approvals process.”

The new funding announced is part of the historic $19-billion housing investment by the provincial government.