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Housing Accords Bill passes second reading

Hon Dr Nick Smith

Minister of Housing

22 August 2013       Media Statement

Housing Accords Bill passes second reading

Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith today welcomed Parliament’s passing 63 votes to 57 of the second reading of the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Bill.

“This bill confronts land supply shortages in cities like Auckland and will see central and local government working closely together to free up thousands of new sections for housing developments,” Dr Smith says.

“The Auckland Accord will be the first under the bill and will free up the land for 39,000 new homes over the next three years – a huge increase on the current average of 3,600 per year in recent years.”

The bill allows for low-rise greenfield developments within Special Housing Areas to be consented within six months, as compared to the current average of three years, and three months for brownfield developments, as compared to the current average of one year.

“Reversing New Zealand’s generation-long downward trend in home ownership and affordability won’t be solved by gimmicks. The Government is taking action on all the important fronts. This includes this bill on land supply, reining in council development charges, reforming the Resource Management Act, scrutinising building material costs, simplifying building consents, and expanding the Welcome Home Loans and KiwiSaver First Home Deposit subsidies to support first home buyers,” Dr Smith says.

“All of the substantive inquiries into housing affordability make plain that increasing land supply is a critical part of the solution. Labour’s opposition to this bill shows they are more interested in playing politics than addressing the real issues.

“I hope to have this bill passed into law next month, meaning that by Christmas we will have opened up thousands of new housing lots.”


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