Mayors Task Force on Housing

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About the Project

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The Mayor's Task Force on Housing will provide council with evidence-informed and action-oriented recommendations to increase the supply of a diverse range of housing.  

Below, please find more detail on the mandate of this 2019 Task Force.

Bringing community stakeholders together to increase housing options

The Feb. 19, 2019 council motion that created this Task Force stated that the need for more housing has been clearly identified as a priority in Kingston. The Task Force was forged with the intent of bringing community stakeholders together to explore all possible tools and incentives the City can offer to enable developers, non-profits and community agencies to build more housing in general – and more affordable housing in particular.

The Task Force is specifically focused on increasing the supply of all types of housing, including affordable options, but not on the issue of homelessness.  Interested in what the City is doing to end chronic homelessness? See our 10-Year Housing & Homelessness Plan and visit our Housing page for service and program details.


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By the end of 2019, the Mayor's Task Force on Housing will present a coordinated and practical set of recommendations designed to guide council as it makes decisions to address Kingston's housing supply.

See the "Scope" section for more details on the scope of the Task Force.

The Task Force will rely on:

  • Local experience and knowledge in collaboration with key partners,
  • Relevant policies and studies such as the Population, Housing & Employment Projections Study, the Official Plan, and other identified information sources
  • An analysis of the economics of building both market rate and affordable housing in Kingston, commissioned by the Task Force and conducted by a third-party expert.
  • The application of best practices and principles from other cities.

See the latest updates on this project.


The Task Force will be comprised of the following individuals, representing a variety of different sectors and viewpoints across the community:

Ted Hsu - Co-Chair

Ted HsuAs a former Member of Parliament for Kingston and the Islands, Ted is both well-respected and very knowledgeable about our community and the different stakeholders that need to be at the table to make progress on housing in our community. Ted worked to restore the long-form census as an MP and is keenly interested in making the best use of data in public policy.


Mary Rita Holland - Co-Chair

Mary Rita HollandMary Rita is a veteran City Councillor, having been recently re-elected to represent Kingscourt-Rideau District in Kingston's North End. She has several years of experience on the boards of both Kingston and Frontenac Housing Corporation and Town Homes Kingston, and understands the pressures and challenges involved in building affordable housing.


Mike Cavanaugh

MIke CavanaughMike is involved in the Municipal Affairs division of the Alma Mater Society (AMS), the student government organization at Queen's University. As a tenant himself and through his role with the AMS, Mike brings to the table a perspective on housing from both a student and a millennial viewpoint.


Gennaro DiSanto

Gennaro DiSantoGennaro is the CEO of CaraCo Group of Companies. CaraCo is well-known local developer that brings knowledge and expertise on multi-residential construction, which will be a key focus of the Task Force. Gennaro brings both an understanding of current housing market trends and forecasts, and a private sector perspective that will be vital to developing creative community partnerships.


Bridget Doherty

Bridget DohertyBridget is a newly elected City Councillor representing Portsmouth District. She has volunteered with several non-profits groups in Kingston, and she is a current member of the City's Housing and Homelessness Committee. Bridget has a keen interest in housing, and particularly how housing can contribute to a vibrant community that can help attract and retain young people in Kingston.


Donna Janiec

Donna JaniecDonna is the Vice-Principal of Finance and Administration at Queen's University. She brings to the Task Force an important lens regarding the future plans of the university, including student enrolment and faculty/staff recruiting, both of which will be key to understanding the future housing needs Kingston will have in the coming years.


Tara Kainer

Tara KainerTara is a long-time anti-poverty advocate in our community, who has been involved in many different initiatives and organizations aimed at helping the less fortunate in our City. She currently works with the Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul and also brings an important perspective to the table as a long-time tenant in Kingston.


Francine Moore

Francine MooreFrancine is the President of Homestead Land Holdings, a large and well-known developer of multi-residential construction in Kingston. Francine brings not only the perspective of a key private sector partner, but also a personal appreciation for the importance of affordable housing for our community.


Kieran Moore

Kieran MooreAs the Medical Officer of Health and CEO of KFL&A Public Health, Kieran brings tremendous experience and knowledge from the health sector, and a big picture view of how housing connects with health, income and education in our community.


Beth Pater

Beth PaterBeth is a well-respected former City Councillor and former Board Chair of KFL&A Public Health. She has been involved in a number of important community organizations, including work in the non-profit housing sector. She is keenly interested in how the community can work together to make progress on housing and address the need for more affordable and supportive housing options. Her knowledge of the community and her experience in local government is an important asset to the Task Force.


Robert Rittwage

Robert RittwageRobert is a current Board Member of Tipi Moza, a local non-profit agency that aims to provide affordable housing to the Indigenous community in Kingston. Robert has a great passion and interest in housing and is a current member of the City's Housing and Homelessness Committee.


Martin Skolnick

Martin SkolnickMartin is a broker and Vice President of Cushman & Wakefield Kingston Real Estate Brokerage. Through his decades of experience working in Kingston and the region, he has valuable insight to offer on the issues which can impact selection of sites suitable for housing within the City.


The Task Force will also be supported by Ruth Noordegraaf, the City's manager of housing and childcare, as a non-voting member and a liaison to the current update of the City's 10-Year Housing & Homelessness Plan.


The Task Force is allocated up to $90 000 from the Working Fund Reserve, in order to facilitate meetings, public consultations and the third party analysis of the economics of housing.


The work of the Task Force will be to:

  1. Establish a good understanding of the current state of housing in the City of Kingston (housing needs assessment and environmental scan, current and projected housing development, roles and responsibilities of the municipality, developers, not for profits, community agencies and residents)
  2. Examine and determine the barriers to the development of housing in Kingston. This analysis should identify hindrances leading up to approval from City Council, as well as hindrances to construction following City Council approval.
  3. Examine tools and incentives available to the City to stimulate investment in housing from inside and outside our community, enabling developers, not-for-profits and community agencies to build more housing at a faster pace in general and more affordable housing in particular
  4. Focus on recommendations that are applicable across the community, rather than on those specific to intensification in the downtown.
  5. Establish recommendations to increase the supply of a diverse range of housing and complement the 10-Year Housing & Homelessness Plan.
  6. Establish a process to engage and consult the public. The Task Force will consult with business, labour and community groups. The Task Force will also seek input from a broad cross section of the community with a variety of lived experiences seeking housing in Kingston, such as seniors, students, vulnerable populations, immigrants, and young professionals.
  7. Present a final report to Kingston City Council no later than the end of 2019.