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Massive Waiting List No Sign Of Success

Hon David Carter
National Housing Spokesperson

5 March 2004

Massive waiting list no sign of success

The Income Related Rent Housing policy claimed as a success by Helen Clark last night has been a dismal failure, says National's Housing spokesman David Carter.

"Around 13,000 New Zealand families are on waiting lists for state houses, with 5137 of them in desperate situations. Income related rents are to blame for this, and the policy has become nothing more than failed window dressing.

"The accommodation supplement worked under National, and Labour has kept the policy going for those renting from private landlords.

"The Government promised more state houses, but very few have actually been built. The 4000 houses Helen Clark talks about are leased from private individuals to on-lease to state tenants.

"National's previous Housing policy allowed this to happen, and a subsidy was paid to assist rent costs. The process was much simpler and didn't involve any sub-leasing.

"The tired old response has been to blame National for selling state houses. Yes we did, and we are proud of it. Our Home Buy Scheme actively encouraged previous state house tenants to buy their state house and become independent from the state.

"Labour may like to foster state dependency, but National doesn't. We want to give people the chance to stand on their own two feet," said Mr Carter.

Ends

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