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Federales pony up $11 million for social housing

By johnboy - 7 April 2009 24

[First filed: April 06, 2009 @ 14:06]

John Hargreaves has been able to do an exciting joint media release with the his commonwealth parliamentary colleagues Jenny Macklin and Tanya Pliberseck.

The cause of the exhilaration is $11 million for social housing:

    The Australian and ACT Governments have committed to deliver 56 additional social housing dwellings across the Territory by July 2010.

    The Federal Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, said the investment was part of Stage one of the $6.4 billion social housing component of the Government’s $42 billion Nation Building – Economic Stimulus Plan. Stage one comprises $692 million nationally.

    “We are determined to do everything we can to support jobs and apprenticeships in the construction industry in these turbulent economic times,” Ms Macklin said.

    “In turn, this will have a positive flow on effect to suppliers, small businesses and local economies.

    “This funding will also make significant progress on the Rudd Government’s plan to halve homelessness in Australia by 2020.

56 dwellings for $11 million sounds like pretty good value.

UPDATED: Zed Seselja’s found a good issue in this:

    “This is another example of a Government Minister who has been forced to by-pass the Government’s own planning system.

    “The $11 million dollars was gifted to the ACT from the Federal Government on the proviso that building of the 56 homes would be completed by July next year.

    “By sidestepping around ACTPLA the Minister is admitting that the planning system is cumbersome and could not cope with such a short turn around.

    “Mr Hargreaves has said that most of the new development would be on greenfields sites and land already owned by the Government, otherwise they would be subject to delays in the planning system.

Zed makes the argument that this shows how slow and useless ACTPLA is. Another question is what development will get lobbed on neighborhoods without notice?

What’s Your opinion?


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24 Responses to
Federales pony up $11 million for social housing
deezagood 1:23 pm 07 Apr 09

There aren’t enough rental properties as it is (friends of mine have literally waited months to find a rental property and agents hold bidding wars!) – issuing rental vouchers probably won’t help needy people to find accommodation.

SheepGroper 12:18 pm 07 Apr 09

chewy14 said :

Why don’t they sell most of the government owned properties (keep a small amount for people in exceptional circumstances) and issue rental assistance vouchers to people who need them?

Possibly because no private landlord would want to touch some of the people that would be looking to rent.

chewy14 12:10 pm 07 Apr 09

deezagood said :

I think the housing concept is wonderful; sidestepping ACTPLA’s planning processes (which apparently exist for good reason) is not-so-wonderful. What is the point of even having a planning authority if major building projects are able to side-step the processes? And if the ACTPLA processes are deemed too long and painful for short-time-frame projects … well, what does that tell you about the said processes???

So – the government will allocate ‘greenfield, government-owned’ land to this project without community consultation, without adhering to ACTPLA process and presumably without conducting an EIS. Those most affected/environmentalists/community groups will complain about the said process and lack of EIS … the building project may be delayed due to those community concerns, all concerned citizens will be branded NIMBYs by an outraged Canberra community and the entire project could potentially be compromised. Why can’t they just do the f(*&ing thing properly in the first place? Surely a job worth doing (and such an important job) is worth doing well?

What like when they did the right thing with the Data Centre and the residents complained the process wasn’t fair?

I don’t understand why the government has any housing stock. Why don’t they sell most of the government owned properties (keep a small amount for people in exceptional circumstances) and issue rental assistance vouchers to people who need them?

deezagood 11:58 am 07 Apr 09

I think the housing concept is wonderful; sidestepping ACTPLA’s planning processes (which apparently exist for good reason) is not-so-wonderful. What is the point of even having a planning authority if major building projects are able to side-step the processes? And if the ACTPLA processes are deemed too long and painful for short-time-frame projects … well, what does that tell you about the said processes???

So – the government will allocate ‘greenfield, government-owned’ land to this project without community consultation, without adhering to ACTPLA process and presumably without conducting an EIS. Those most affected/environmentalists/community groups will complain about the said process and lack of EIS … the building project may be delayed due to those community concerns, all concerned citizens will be branded NIMBYs by an outraged Canberra community and the entire project could potentially be compromised. Why can’t they just do the f(*&ing thing properly in the first place? Surely a job worth doing (and such an important job) is worth doing well?

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_ 11:14 am 07 Apr 09

If local govco are putting up the land, then the money allows a smidge under $200k per dwelling, which is about right for a basic home. No doubt they will build a range of dwellings, including 1,2 and 3 bedroom units, and 3 and 4 bedroom houses.

I wouldn’t have thought that 56 new places would be a reasonable start, but that more would still be needed.

Ralph 9:37 am 07 Apr 09

More slums for the local miscreants to congregate and breed.

Skidbladnir 9:10 am 07 Apr 09

So, how many of you actually read the policy doco?

luther_bendross 9:01 am 07 Apr 09

Oh goody, I hope they put them in my street. I don’t have enough axe-wielding meth-head houso’s at the moment. I would also like to see my dog finding more syringes on my patio.

poptop 8:31 am 07 Apr 09

I think the realisation that $11M from the Australian Government = 56 properties (which is quite a few for the money) makes it obvious how little impact this particular river of gold in dealing with underlying homelessness.

Homelessness is, as Granny says, a lot more than ‘rooflessness’ but getting a place to live is often the first step in addressing all the other stuff.

The ACT Government must, almost inevitably, be kicking in some of the land. In order to hit the timeframe, they are either buying from the market (which isn’t the stimulus the Federales are looking for) or things already well progressed in terms of planning and approvals.

hax 11:30 pm 06 Apr 09

caf said :

The ACT Government must be kicking in something too – maybe the land?

That’s probably where more than half the money is going..

Joker 9:38 pm 06 Apr 09

More social housing?! There goes the neighborhood.

poptop 5:14 pm 06 Apr 09

So all the ACT Government has to do is deliver 56 newly constructed dwellings by July 2010?

What could possibly go wrong?

Granny 2:37 pm 06 Apr 09

This is so badly needed. Although, it’s not just the bricks and mortar. Homelessness is so much more than that.

caf 2:21 pm 06 Apr 09

The ACT Government must be kicking in something too – maybe the land?

Granny 2:20 pm 06 Apr 09

That’s great news!

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