What Are Community Benefit Agreements

At the heart of the Community Benefits strategy is community organizing and coalition-forming. [11] [12] [13] Organizing and maintaining a coalition, facilitating compromises, and developing a common agenda are critical to the success of a CBA. Coalitions can include a variety of community groups, such as neighbourhood groups, environmental organizations, good government organizations, unions, and faith-based organizations. [5] Coalitions are generally not registered, but member community groups may enter into a company agreement to regulate their relations within the coalition. A model CBA coalition operating agreement was created by the Public Law Center at Tulane Law School. [14] Vancouver is the first major city in Canada to introduce a formal CBA policy that follows the Community Performance Framework introduced at the federal and provincial levels in 2018. In preparation for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, the City of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, awarded the Millennium Development Corporation the contract to build its 600,600-square-foot (56,000 m2) Athlete Village southeast of False Creek. This development included an ABC with the goal of creating 100 jobs for locally purchased and trained downtown residents and raising $15 million in downtown goods and services. It also included a $750,000 bequest fund to educate downtown residents. [20] The CBA included investments and support from the Canadian federal government, the provincial government of British Columbia, the City of Vancouver, and Building Opportunities with Business Inner-City Society Building Opportunities with Business (a not-for-profit community economic development organization, also known as BOB), which are jointly recognized under the Vancouver Accord. [21] The CBA also received support from Bell, VanCity, Canada Housing and Mortgage Corporation and the Vancouver Regional Construction Association. Building Opportunities with Business oversaw the use of old funds, provided manpower, and supported downtown residents with training and assistance, while the VRCA oversaw resident education.

Although the Olympic Village has been widely criticized for exceeding the budget, a 2008 report from BOB to the city cites the creation of 120 jobs with a supply of just under $50 million. The report also acknowledges that it has been difficult to track real economic activity from development and that supply is not accurate. Regardless of the difficulties in tracking purchases and the fact that the project went over budget, the ABC is widely considered a success. In the United Kingdom, Article 106 agreements and in Canada, Article 37[1] agreements also require certain benefits from developers, but differ from CAAs in that they are part of development agreements with governments, not municipalities […].

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