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Budget 2016: Does Nothing For Housing

Denis O’Rourke MP

Spokesperson for Housing
27 MAY 2016

Budget 2016: Does Nothing For Housing

The housing crisis is our most serious problem, but the government still says there isn’t one, says New Zealand First Housing Spokesperson Denis O’Rourke.

“This attitude is reflected in this week’s Budget. Billions are being devoted to many other priority areas, but there is little for solving the housing crisis.

“There will be a very modest $100 million for the development of Crown land in Auckland for residential purposes. Last year a similar provision of $52 million only resulted in a paltry 13 hectares of additional housing land, so this year’s $100 million won’t go far either.

“The complete absence of anything at all in the Budget to help young Kiwis into their first homes, shows that the government has no real commitment to them at all. Instead it will continue to allow uncontrolled immigration to soak up housing, health, education and other services; and it will not even curb the ability of overseas speculators to buy dozens of homes in competition with struggling Kiwis.

“Even more serious is the government’s appalling approach to the social housing shortage.

“While continuing with the state house sell-off, Minister Paula Bennett has thrown some Budget crumbs at the problem by providing $200 million for “the most pressing housing needs and to meet the rising costs of social housing rents”, which are themselves of course, caused by the government’s own failure to control house prices.

“Other measures include $41 million for emergency housing places in a new “emergency housing Special Needs Grant” (presumably to pay for more motel accommodation for homeless families), and a ludicrous grant of $5000 per family to resettle homeless Aucklanders to jobless regions.”

ENDS

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