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Housing Affordability Bill could fulfil aims if changed

Local Government New Zealand says Housing Affordability Bill could fulfil aims if changed

Local Government New Zealand, the peak body representing New Zealand’s local authorities, says the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Bill will more effectively tackle housing affordability if the “over-ride” provision is removed.

Speaking after the Bill was reported back from Parliament’s Social Services Select Committee, LGNZ President, Lawrence Yule said “this is an important opportunity for central and local government to together make progress on housing affordability in the interests of the country.

“While councils and LGNZ have worked closely with central government, we are still concerned that the Select Committee has not recommended removing the Bill’s contentious over-ride clauses where local Housing Accords could still go ahead without local councils agreeing to them.”

Local councils represent communities around the country. In addition to stipulating that new housing built under the Accord must be affordable, the Bill could leverage off local and central government standing shoulder to shoulder. The Christchurch rebuild under which the different tiers of government are funding different anchor projects is a great example of the power of partnership.

“LGNZ urges the Government to re-think its over-ride provision,” says Mr Yule.

LGNZ considers that a number of the Committee’s recommendations will add value. For example, clarity has been added regarding development contributions and plan changes.

LGNZ will continue to discuss housing affordability with central government, with the aim of securing the best outcomes for the country.

#Ends#

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