Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Help For Low-Income Families

12 December 2000 Media Statement


Housing Minister Mark Gosche has rejected criticism of the Government's new income-related rents policy from former Housing Minister and National MP Tony Ryall.

"The low-income tenants renting privately Mr Ryall refers to in his confusing press release would qualify for an Accommodation Supplement – yet he did not include this important piece of information," said Mr Gosche.

"More than $700 million is spent each year helping low-income people pay their rents to private landlords and in some cases their mortgages via the Accommodation Supplement."

Nationwide there are 164,857 people who rent from private landlords and who also receive an Accommodation Supplement to help pay their rent. There are also 68,446 boarders who receive a supplement to help pay their board and 48,548 low-income home-buyers receiving assistance to buy their home.

Last month Government scrapped National's market rents regime which saw state rents rise 106% while private rents rose 23%. Inflation during this period rose 12%. Turnover in state house shot up from 12% to 34% as families moved from house to house unable to meed the escalating rents being charged. Furthermore the previous Government sold off more than 11,000 state houses despite an acute demand for housing.

"Major Campbell Roberts from the Salvation Army has said National's housing policy was perhaps the most disastrous social policy that his country has seen for some time."

"Decent, affordable housing is fundamental to the health and wellbeing of families and communities – but before we restored income-related rents this was not the case when it came to state-owned housing in this country," said Mr Gosche.

"We restored income related rents because the previous Government's market rents were unfair, were causing undue hardship and were far too high. To use Mr Ryall's own words state house rents were 'at the top end of the market.'"

The new policy is expected to cost around $90 million a year and will mean low-income state house tenants will pay no more than 25% of their income on rent. In the past some tenants had been paying more than 70% in rentals to Housing New Zealand.

"In addition to this our Government has introduced a wide range of new initiatives that include making tertiary study easier, health care cheaper and paying bills less stressful for our elderly."

"In twelve months we have moved to address the legacy of poverty left by the previous Government."

"Other important initiatives we have made that will make a difference in the lives of low-income New Zealanders include:

 New Zealand superannuation increased by an average $11.47 per week. Income thresholds for entitlement to a Commuity Services Card also boosted.

 Income threshold for community services cards raised giving about 48,000 more people access to the cards

 Restored the Training Incentive Allowance to up to 100% of course costs
 Additional $32 million invested over four years to improve access to the Training Incentive Allowance for domestic purposes, widows and invalids beneficiaries
 Boosted youth wage
 Reduced costs to tertiary education by charging no interest on loans while students are studying
 Restored minimum wage
 Introduced Employment Relations Act"

BREAKDOWN OF LOW INCOME ACCOMMODATION SUPPLEMENT RECIPIENTS

Region No. Renting privately No. Boarding No. buying Own Home Total
Auckland Central 17016 4890 2838 24744
Canterbury 17266 5298 5679 28243
Southern 9852 3327 3943 17122
Wellington 14254 5672 3262 23188
Nelson 6182 1826 2487 10495
East Coast 8700 4446 2703 15849
Waikato 11951 5477 3173 20601
Taranaki 7367 3362 2558 13287
Northland 7341 3336 2829 13506
Bay of Plenty 14315 6919 4241 25475
Central 15760 6374 4200 26334
Auckland North 19474 6141 5811 31426
Auckland South 15186 11303 4742 31231
Other 98 62 27 187
Veterans Pension 95 13 55 163

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>

ALSO:

Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>

ALSO:

Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>

ALSO:

Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>

ALSO:

Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>

ALSO:

Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>

ALSO:

School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>

ALSO:

Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels