Last week, the United States Department of Commerce announced it would proceed forward with an administrative review of doubling the Canadian softwood lumber tariffs.
Under the proposal, tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber would increase from 8.99% to 17.9%.
David Siegel, executive director of Housing First Minnesota, sent a letter to Commerce Secretary Gina M. Raimondo on Tuesday, Nov. 30 opposing the increase. In the letter, Siegel wrote:
“While the nature of housing’s regulatory challenges is found at the state and local levels, setting lumber tariffs is one of the few direct ways the Federal government can positively or negatively influence housing affordability and access. By doubling the Canadian softwood lumber tariff from 8.99% to 17.9%, the Biden Administration is needlessly decreasing housing access and affordability.
“Rather than doubling the tariff, Housing First Minnesota strongly urges the Biden administration to engage our Canadian partners in meaningful negotiations surrounding a long-term trade agreement that brings needed stability and affordability to our nation’s housing market.”
Nicholas Erickson, director of research and regulatory affairs, serves as Housing First Minnesota's point of contact for the housing industry's regulatory agencies and local government entities. He also leads the Housing Affordability Institute's research programs. Follow Nicholas on Twitter: @nserickson