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How many HNZC tenants will National boot out?

12 March, 2008 Media Statement

How many HNZC tenants will National boot out?

National appears to have today confirmed it will evict HNZC tenants paying a market rent – even though most of them were given houses under the last National government, says Housing Minister Maryan Street.

“Displaying a remarkably short memory as well as an astonishing lack of logic, National Housing spokesman Phil Heatley has criticised HNZC for failing to asset-test tenants paying a market rent. Doesn’t he understand what a market rent is?”

“He would have a point if tenants receiving an income related rent were not asset-tested – but of course they are,” Maryan Street said.

“Mr Heatley appears to have forgotten that it was the last National government which created an influx of market renters into state houses and that this was made possible because it didn’t bother to asset or even income-test them.”

“The Labour-led government inherited a large number of market renters as a result. It has actively reduced that number down to nine per cent by encouraging those on market rents into the private rental market and through its Social Allocation System which ensures the families in most need get state houses.”

“Ninety-nine per cent of new tenants are on income-related rents. However this government will not evict existing tenants. It understands that forcing our tenants who have improved their circumstances could create incentives not to do so – and that would be counter-productive,” Maryan Street said.

“Mr Heatley however today appeared to confirm that this was what a National government would do – which is rather unjust since it wasNational which gave most of them the homes in the first place.”

“Perhaps National is simply planning another state house firesale and is trying to mislead the public to justify it. Tell us Mr Heatley, is National planning to sell off state houses again?”


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