Janine Freeman MLALabor Member for Mirrabooka

Your local Labor MP

Barnett Government fails to build planning solutions for affordable housing

Tuesday 13 Dec 2011

The bipartisan report,  'A Fading Dream - Affordable Housing in Western Australia' report was damning of the Department of Planning's inaction.


"The report revealed the 'Directions 2031 and Beyond, Metropolitan Planning Beyond the Horizon' framework made no mention of the State's acute social housing needs," Shadow Minister for Planning, John Hyde said.


"It concluded recent strategies and frameworks prepared by the Barnett Government's agencies showed a lack of a whole of government approach to the social housing needs of WA.


"It also revealed the Department of Planning supported the introduction of 15 per cent affordable housing quotas on new developments, but questioned if 15 per cent was really enough."


Mr Hyde said the report's Recommendation 5 called for the Mr Day to establish affordable housing quotas on all green-field and large redevelopments and include quotas into the Planning Development Act 2005 by December 2012.


"The Minister has failed to declare if his Government can achieve all of this within 12 months. It also leads to great uncertainty for developers in Western Australia," he said.


"Mr Day must reveal if green-field developers will face a 15 or 30 per cent compulsory affordable quota and if Government green-field projects like Perth Waterfront or Riverside will be subject to a 30 per cent quota.


Mr Hyde said that Labor had lobbied the Minister for three years about the need for an electronic land development program, which was already planned and budgeted for but defunded by the Barnett Government in 2008.


"This report rightly found there was a need for an electronic land development program," he said.


"This program would speed up the development process, making approvals quicker and would also free up affordable land. It is a very simple initiative, yet the Minister refused to say when it will be implemented.


"The Barnett Government needs to stop talking about affordable housing and actually start doing the hard yards by making good planning decisions."