Greens Housing spokesperson Jenny Leong MP has called on Shadow Planning Minister and Member for Wollongong Paul Scully MP, to make a clear commitment to higher affordable housing targets, given Wollongong Council’s ALP councillors joined with Liberal councillors at Monday night to vote down the Greens proposal for strong affordable housing targets instead settling on very weak targets.
Rather than support the Green’s 10%-30% affordable housing targets on new housing developments, the plan adopted by Wollongong Council last night starts with an extra 1% levy on large developments with over 100 units from 2026. This will increase by 1% each year until hitting a ceiling at 10% in 10 years time.
Greens Housing spokesperson Jenny Leong MP said:
“Siding with the interests of property developers is something we expect from the Liberals, but it’s disappointing to see the Opposition blocking affordable housing targets and is reminiscent of the dark old days of NSW Labor.
“State Labor might be talking big on anti-privatisation, but it appears that it’s not the public interest, but private developers profit that’s still driving their housing policy.
“This is why the state need to step in and mandate serious affordable housing targets.
“If Wollongong Labor Councillors are too afraid to the development lobby, Wollongong MP Paul Scully should show some backbone and step in,” Ms Leong said.
“Developers are making huge windfall profits from rezoning that mean they can turn single homes into huge apartment buildings, and the public should get some benefit for that.
Cath Blakey, Greens Councillor and Wollongong candidate for the state election said:
“A 1% affordable housing target, that doesn’t even start for another 3 years is a sad joke.
“Councillors stand up and pretend to care about rough sleepers camping in the sand dunes at south beach, and older single women and mothers who are left homeless after escaping domestic violence - but given the opportunity to act, they are too worried about the impact it might have on developers.
“The Greens tried to amend the policy to increase the target to between 10%-30% but the Labor Councillors joined with the Liberals and voted this down, citing fears that it would make multi-unit developments non-viable,” Cr Blakey said.