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Shelter Tas welcomes the State Government’s commitment of $62m over the next 2 years in its Budget 2017-18. While this creates a solid base for implementing Affordable Housing Strategy, without additional investment in social housing, Tasmania will continue to fall well behind meeting demand for affordable housing. We are disappointed that the $60m Stamp Duty windfall created by the current housing boom has not been re-invested into social housing to alleviate the growing rental crisis that is squeezing low income households out of the housing market.

The key features of this year’s Budget that we particularly welcome are:

  • $15m for further implementation of Tasmania’s Affordable Housing Strategy
  • The major projects announced, including the completion of the Devonport Youth Supported Accommodation Facility, the relocation and expansion of the Hobart Women’s Shelter, additional units for young people at Thyne House in Launceston and Moonah
  • $12m for social housing units in major urban centres
  • The establishment of the Affordable Housing Working Group to investigate government land potentially available for increased housing supply. As a participant in this Working Group, Shelter Tas will be seeking an increase in the supply of social housing along with more innovative approaches in the planning system
  • $6m funding for a HomeShare program to assist low-income Tasmanians purchase their own home and the continuation of the First Home Builder’s Grant and reduced Stamp Duty on new house and land packages.

Shelter Tas urges the Tasmanian Government to negotiate away the State’s public housing debt as part of the new national housing agreement that was announced recently in the Federal Budget.  Tasmania can no longer afford to return half the State’s annual funding allocation, almost $16m each year, back to the Federal Government.

Click here for further information on housing and homelessness initiatives in the Tasmanian Budget 2017-18, read the Shelter Tas media release here or ABC article ‘Tasmanian budget report card: Generally good results, but some room for improvement’ here.

Reprinted with thanks to Shelter Tasmania’s eNews