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

 


Government Gives Landlords A Raw Deal

Friday 3 May 2002

ACT Housing Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman says today is a bad day for New Zealand's estimated 170,000 landlords with the first reading in Parliament of the Government's flawed Residential Tenancy Amendment Bill.

"The Bill provided the opportunity for the Government to sort out problems which exist in the rental housing market - but what the Government's come up with fails to address the real issues and targets the wrong areas.

"The Bill gets tough on landlords - but fails to recognise that by far the greatest problems in the whole rental housing area are caused by a small number of bad tenants and inadequate law to police them. Most tenants are good - but a small proportion of tenants are responsible for most of the 39,000 complaints to the Tenancy Tribunal each year.

"The bill fails to address a major problem for landlords - that of locating former tenants for the purposes of serving court orders for payment of outstanding rent or damage to the property. After such cases appear before the Tenancy Tribunal a court order for rent arrears or damages is issued. It then becomes the responsibility of the landlord to provide their former tenant's new address to the Court so that the court order can be served.

"If the former tenant is a beneficiary however, the Ministry of Social Development hides behind the Privacy Act and refuses to provide details of the new address to the Court. In effect, the Department is preventing the rule of law being upheld, presumably because it is a civil matter. In criminal matters, such as the collection fines and other penalties, the information is provided by the Department.

"I have drafted a Private Member's Bill to address this issue. The Social Securities (Facilitation of Deductions and Recoveries) Amendment Bill enables the location details of former tenants to be provided by the Ministry of Social Development to an agent of the court for collection purposes.

"The bill also provides for those beneficiaries who rent from the private sector and who choose to do so, to have their rent deducted at source in the same way that they can so choose if their landlord is the state. Having rent deducted at source is an excellent way for those people who have difficulty budgeting, from falling behind in their rent.

"This is a provision that the government clearly needs to use more often since $1.4 million is owed by Housing New Zealand tenants in overdue rents with $15,651 being owed by one tenant alone. By not addressing issues relating to bad tenants the Government has thumbed its nose at justice and condoned the actions of tenants who habitually break the law and get away with it," Dr Newman said.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news