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Budget 2012 reinforces the Prime Minister’s Cloud Cuckoo Land notion that New Zealand doesn’t have a housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Annette King says.
“Over the last two years report after report has shown the government there is a problem.
“That problem has now become a crisis, something the Minister of Housing got close to admitting recently.
“Unfortunately John Key either appears not to be listening to his Minister, or the Minister was just trying to placate the ‘naysayers’, because the budget is pretty clear - cuts have been made to social housing funding,” Annette King said.
“The Social Housing Unit was supposed to assist the most needy New Zealanders into housing, yet there will be fewer homes for them under this budget.
“And those wanting to own their own home can kiss that dream goodbye; funding for the Welcome Home Loans' has been slashed in half.
“Renters should also be concerned. The budget references changes to the Accommodation Supplement - support given to help people pay high rents - but is surprisingly short on details. That begs the question of whether the supplement might be about to be dumped.
“Budget 2012 was an opportunity to stimulate building activity, train young people in much needed construction skills, put forward a long term plan to address the shortage of affordable housing, and keep Kiwis in New Zealand.
“It failed on all counts, so that’s a D- for Housing Mr Key,” said Annette King.