The Vancouver Sun reports today that “notorious landlord Gurdyal Singh Sahota” was hit with. $115,000 administrative penalty for failing to maintain a healthy building.
It’s the first administrative penalty the RTB has issued, according to the Sun.
And Rich Coleman, the minister responsible for the RTB, is unable to confirm that the penalty was levied, citing privacy legislation.
The complainant in the case and court documents confirm that Sahota is the culprit.
I have to ask a few questions:
Why an administrative penalty?
Why not a court case?
Who gets that money?
Why were damages not awarded to the tenants?
How can the Sun confirm the landlord’s identity through court documents when Rich Coleman feels constrained by privacy law?
How can the complainant identify the landlord when Rich Coleman feels constrained by privacy laws?
Are we losing sight of what kind of society we want to live in?
I think most of us agree that landlords should be required to either provide safe and secure housing or get out of the business.
I think most of us agree that a government sanctioned process seeking to provide justice should not be secret, and should be in fact public.
I think that most of us agree that the results of such processes should be public, and that minister responsible for them should be able to confirm facts in the public realm without fearing a privacy commissioner.
I’m happy that a bad landlord has been punished. I’m not sure it’s enough, or that it will be effective.
I’m not happy that our government is afraid to speak the truth.