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

 


Tribunal fee hits low income tenants: Labour

Labour
2000 web siteLabour housing spokesperson Graham Kelly says low income tenants in rental houses are being priced out of justice in tenancy disputes.

Mr Kelly said figures from the Audit Office estimate a 28 per cent drop in the number of applications lodged to the Tenancy Tribunal for the coming year. A $20 fee, to be paid by applicants to the tribunal, was introduced for the first time last year.

At the time, the social services select committee expressed its concern that "although the $20 fee would not be a barrier to landlords, it may be a barrier to tenants".

"Sadly this has proved to be correct," Mr Kelly said.

"The Ministry of Housing's chief executive David Smyth has told the select committee that the fee has had a considerable impact on the number of people using the tribunal.

"My concern is that the impact has been greater on tenants than landlords, and greatest on those low income families who can least afford the charges. Once again the government's adherence to its user-pays ideology is showing itself to discriminate against the most vulnerable.

Last financial year more than 50,000 applications were made to the tribunal. In the next financial year, when the full impact of the $20 fee is felt, the figure will drop dramatically to an estimated 38,000, according to the Audit Office figures.

"Low income families are missing out on justice. They are already paying for the cost of running the tribunal through their bonds - now they are being asked to pay more. It is grossly unfair," Mr Kelly said.

"Justice should be available to all - not just to those who can afford it.

"Last year the Ministry told the select committee it would undertake a full review of the impact of the charges in February 1999. That was not done.

"Through the select committee, I have asked that the review now be given priority."

© 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