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Super City mayoral candidate Colin Craig Super City mayoral candidate Colin Craig CREDIT: Vote Colin Craig

Super City Mayoral Candidate Announces Leaky Homes Policy

Tuesday 3 August 2010, 11:44AM
By Vote Colin Craig
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AUCKLAND

Super City mayoral candidate and businessman Colin Craig has released his policy regarding the current Leaky Homes Crisis.

The policy is based on what has been successful in Canada and focuses on working toward a solution that is fair to both ratepayers and Leaky Building owners.

“This is the single biggest issue facing Aucklanders,” said Mr Craig.

“If we continue to go along with the Leaky Homes Deal which Banks and Brown have signed off on, Auckland Super City ratepayers will be liable for both repair and legal costs which could lead to a rates increase as much as 25%.”

“I won’t stand by while people continue to live in unsafe and Leaky Homes without the help they need to fix the problem.”

Mr Craig’s policy consists of four suggested actions:

• An apology is made to home owners that the issue was not addressed sooner

• Put in place a Government loan scheme (reconstruction fund) so that Leaky Homes can be repaired

• Reinstate the NZ Building Performance Guarantee Corporation or adopt a New Home Warranty Scheme like in the United Kingdom

• Together agree a limit on what percentage of Auckland rates go toward fixing the costs of this crisis, with the Government to underwrite the balance

Paul Grimshaw of Grimshaw & Co, the leading law firm involved in Leaky Building litigation in New Zealand, agrees with Mr Craig’s proposal.

“Colin’s policy is a great idea. I’m surprised others in New Zealand hadn’t thought of this before.

“The policy is tried and tested in Vancouver and one advantage of the policy is that it allows owners to get their homes fixed now, rather than wait until they recover funds from those who caused the problem. This allows them to move on with their lives.”

Mr Craig said the upcoming Super City election provides Aucklanders with the opportunity to take a different approach for the benefit of everyone involved.

“It’s time for a change. Auckland needs to take the lead on this issue and pursue a co-operative solution instead of the litigious one that has been adopted by existing mayors.

“Working together reduces cost and gets homes repaired faster. This co-operative approach is the sort of council that I am promoting.

“I will be the mayor who sorts this issue out. Auckland will need sound financial management to overcome the crisis and the challenge is to, at the same time, keep Auckland moving forward. I am prepared to accept this challenge.”

It is estimated that up to 53,400 Auckland homes could be affected by the crisis with costs to Auckland ratepayers starting at $2 billion.

A detailed version of Colin Craig’s policy on the Leaky Homes Crisis can be found on his website at www.votecolincraig.co.nz