Government’s housing plans ring hollow

The Government’s Auckland housing plans lack substance and are years behind where they should be, the Green Party said today.

Bill English has said he has no information about how much land he plans to sell off as part of planned redevelopments, and can’t say how many new houses will be sold at affordable prices, in answers to written parliamentary questions from the Green Party.

“The Minister responsible for Housing NZ has no idea how much land he’s going to sell and no idea what the price will be,” said Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei.

“On the one hand Bill English is saying Housing NZ will build 30,000 new houses in Auckland, but he seems to have zero detail about how this will actually work.

“The Government’s lack of detail reminds me of Nick Smith’s plans to build on Crown land that turned out to be already occupied by cemeteries and electricity substations.

“The Government needs to explain how all these new houses are actually going to be funded and if we’re going to see a massive sell-off of state housing land to pay for them.

“The Green Party launched a plan before the last election to build thousands of affordable homes. National is years behind.

“Bill English says his definition of an affordable home is $650,000, which is still out of reach for many Auckland families.

“But he won’t say how many of his new houses will actually be affordable at $650,000. We could end up seeing most of them being flogged off for over $1 million.

“Just like with so much that National does, the idea of building more affordable houses looks good but when you scratch below the surface they’ve got no actual plans and no idea how it’s going to work,” Mrs Turei said.

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