Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Community Housing Provider Regulations- a mixed bag

Community Housing Provider Regulations- a mixed bag

Community Housing Aotearoa (CHA) has reviewed the long-awaited regulations for Community Housing Providers that were published in the NZ Gazette on 10 April.

CHA welcomes Fiona Fitzgerald as the Interim Manager for the Community Housing Regulatory Authority. “She knows the sector well and has built a solid reputation as a pragmatic, forward-thinking leader,” confirmed Scott Figenshow, Director of CHA.

CHA is pleased to note that the recently formed CHRA has moved quickly to demonstrate transparency in how it will work, “to support the growth of a fair, efficient, and transparent community housing sector,” through ‘on-going engagement with CHPs, both from a monitoring perspective, and as a source of best practice and encouragement.”

It is delighted that following feedback from CHA, CHRA’s intention is “not [to be] unnecessarily prescriptive about how a CHP demonstrates compliance’ in recognition that an organisation’s ability to provide a range of information sources will ‘largely depend on the size and sophistication of the organisation and their level of risk exposure”.

There is also recognition from CHRA that the Community Housing Sector has already been conducting voluntary quality assurance through its Accreditation system, with CHRA prepared to ‘make an operational decision on a case-by-case basis to accept accreditation reports in full or in part as evidence to support of compliance with the Performance Standards.’ CHA believes that the discretionary nature of this decision belies a lack of understanding about the robustness of the Global-mark accredited system: a quality assurance process that is highly valued in both the UK and Australian community housing sector.

CHA looks forward to working with CHRA on adopting the Accreditation system as a pre-requisite for specific evidence on CHRA performance standards and on joint recognition that the system provides a performance benchmarking tool for supporting excellence.

“We are disappointed that many of our more strategic points made in submissions were not dealt with in this phase of the reforms. In particular, we find the definition of Community Housing Provider to be structurally flawed in that it does not confirm the organization operates on a not for dividend basis, essential to ensure that public investment is retained and recycled.

We understood such a test was part of tax legislation, and unless the two are aligned there appears to be a ‘disconnect’, which places our members in uncertain territory. We thought officials and Ministers understood this which leaves us wondering why it hasn’t been dealt with,” Mr. Figenshow said.

A key recommendation of the social housing reforms as set out in the Housing Shareholders Advisory Group report was coordination across multiple ministries to ensure transparency and consistency of services. CHA congratulates Ministers Smith and Bennett for securing the availability of the Income Related Rent Subsidy to families who secure their home from a community housing organization as a big step forward in implementing this holistic approach.

CHA does however have concerns that in the absence of an overall strategy, the predominantly piecemeal, rushed nature of reforms will lead to confusion and contradictions in legislation and CHA notes that Ministers Smith and Bennett’s 13 April 2014 press release “Major makeover for social housing” from 13 April now states that 20% of the country’s social housing is to be provided by non-government organisations by 2017, 3 years earlier than the 2020 goal the community housing sector has been working towards. The community housing sector has the expertise and capacity to deliver.

It now eagerly awaits renewed government commitment to make it happen through additional Social Housing Fund capital, an extension of IRRS to community housing tenancies and the decision to transfer HNZC stock. Without this commitment, the traction to deliver on its vision will come to a grinding halt: a devastating outcome for New Zealand communities who are struggling to find affordable housing.

CHA will continue to work collaboratively /cooperatively with officials and ministers to bring about its vision of ‘All New Zealanders well-housed’.

CHA has released a comparison summary of the regulations versus its submission at www.communityhousing.org.nz

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news