MIL-OSI Australia: $100 million to grow and improve social and affordable housing

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Source: Government of Australia Capital Territory

Released 29/09/2021 – Joint media release

The ACT Government will make one of the single largest investments to increase and improve the amount of affordable and public housing in the history of self-government to provide essential housing for low income Canberrans at risk of homelessness.

Addressing housing affordability is a national challenge impacting all Australians. Building on the ACT’s nation leading commitment to eliminating stamp duty and to grow and renew public housing, today’s commitment of $100 million in additional funding supports the ACT Government’s long-term commitment to provide more and better housing options for all Canberrans.

It’s an investment that will also create and protect local jobs as we work towards our target of 250,000 local jobs by 2025.

The package includes:

  • An additional $80 million for public housing maintenance over the next three years. This funding will ensure that public housing tenants live in safe and secure houses that suit their individual needs.
  • $19 million in additional funding for the Growing and Renewing Public Housing program, taking the total budget funding over the next four years to $96 million to support delivering the Government’s commitment to add 400 additional public housing dwellings and renew another 1,000 properties.
  • $720,000 over four years to enable expressions of interest to build and operate long-term rental accommodation through the Build-to-Rent scheme on nominated land release sites in Turner and Lawson.
  • $640,000 for stage 1 of the Build to Rent model, that focuses on affordable and secure rental housing, on the existing Common Ground site in Gungahlin. This includes due diligence, site feasibility investigations and concept design.
  • Restructuring financial support and negotiating a long-term agreement with Community Housing Canberra Limited to manage affordable rentals on behalf of the government.

Every Canberran, no matter their circumstances, should have access to safe and affordable housing that suits their needs.

This package improves social housing and housing affordability for Canberrans as part of the ACT Housing Strategy, with a broad range of measures, to address the unique and complex challenges that exist in the housing market.

Quote attributable to Chief Minister Andrew Barr:

We are leading the nation in providing social and public housing to those in our community who are most in need.

Build to Rent is an asset class that will be very important to the housing options available to Canberrans moving forward.

The government is committed to improving social housing and housing affordability in the ACT as part of the roadmap outlined in the ACT Housing Strategy and the Parliamentary Agreement.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Housing and Suburban Development

This funding is a strong statement that the government is committed to growing, renewing, and maintaining a public housing portfolio that is better able to meet the needs of our diverse community, regardless of their abilities or circumstances.

In particular, the maintenance funding injection reflects our commitment to continuously improving the efficiency and effectiveness of maintenance services to provide homes that suit the diverse needs our tenants.

The ACT is the strongest supporter of public housing with the highest ratio of public housing in the country. This commitment will enable tenants to live in suitable homes for families, people with disabilities, women escaping family and domestic violence and all households needing the support of public housing, including to age in place.

The Growing and Renewing Public Housing investment as well as the increased funding for maintaining our existing homes, will be the largest investment in ACT public housing since self-government.

Quote attributable to Minister for Housing Services, Rebecca Vassarotti

Everyone deserves a place to call home, but as long as housing is treated as a market instead of a fundamental human right, there are many Canberrans who will need the government’s help. The public and community housing investments we’re announcing today, along with the homelessness funding announced last week, will provide a home for more people and delivers on commitments in the Parliamentary and Governing Agreement.

The $80 million boost to public housing maintenance will ensure that public housing tenants are treated with the respect we would expect from any other landlord, and so people can be proud of their home.

– Statement ends –

Section: Andrew Barr, MLA | Yvette Berry, MLA | Media Releases

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