Thursday, September 06, 2007

Labor refuses to nationalise Mum-and-Dad landlords!

Tanya Plibersek, Shadow Minister for Housing, last night ruled out nationalisation as a solution to Australia's rental crisis.

Speaking at a Forum on Affordable Housing at Glebe recently, Ms Plibersek made it plain that Labor would not be putting the middle classes out of their misery. Deaf to "mum-and-dad" landlords' cries of unprofitability and their horror stories of tenants who trash the property and abscond with the rent, Labor will instead be offering a raft of proposals to prolong the agony of the small-time property investor, including:

  • A $603 million National Rental Affordability Scheme that will create 50 000 new affordable rental properties across Australia, for rent to low-income families at 20 per cent below market rates;
  • A $500 million Housing Affordability Fund to tackle the undersupply of new residential housing and the cost of infrastructure, saving new home buyers up to $20 000;
  • A National Housing Supply Research Council, to analyse the adequacy of land supply across the nation, as well as rates of construction;
  • Infrastructure Australia – a statutory authority to oversee reform, planning, development and investment in priority infrastructure;
  • A cabinet-level Minister responsible for federal policy on housing; and
  • a $2.5 billion fund to provide all of Australia’s 2,650 secondary schools with vocational training facilities to help combat the skills shortage, including in the building trades.

What is "The Left" coming to? Why, young people these days don't even know what it is to quiver in their beds about the Nationalisation Bogey! Where is the joy of preparing shortlists of class traitors, to be dealt with after the revolution? Where is the promise of bovver and barricades in the streets? Instead, Labor asks us to settle for a basketload of responsible fiscal measures.

(Pictured above, Tanya Plibersek, Professor Bill Randolf - Director of the City Future Research Centre, Michael Coffey - Youth Accommodation Association NSW, Prof Julian Disney - Chair of the National Summit on Affordable Housing, addressing the Glebe forum)

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