2800 state houses “transferred”

Written By: - Date published: 10:10 am, April 1st, 2016 - 40 comments
Categories: housing, Privatisation - Tags: , ,

Yesterday 2800 state houses in Auckland were “transferred” / “offloaded” to a new Crown/Council authority. This has been a long and contentious process. From 2015:

Government offloads 2800 state houses to Auckland development company

Ownership and management of 2800 state houses will be transferred to an Auckland redevelopment company, as the Government moves to offload some of its massive stock of housing in Auckland.

The houses will be transferred to the Tamaki Redevelopment Company (TRC), “to encourage regeneration”, said Finance Minister Bill English and Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith in an announcement on Thursday.

Twyford said the TRC was a “fledgling” company, which did not have the expertise to look after 8000 tenants.

“Acting Prime Minister Bill English has been casting around to find someone, anyone, who will take state houses off him, in order to give his sell-off policy some legitimacy after the Salvation Army and the Methodist Mission panned the policy and ruled themselves out as buyers.

“The Tamaki Redevelopment Company has been setting itself up to lead the redevelopment of the area’s housing stock. Now Bill English’s desperation to sell off state houses has seen him foist 2800 houses on them, forcing them to become one of the country’s biggest landlords overnight.”

Twyford said the company had no plans to become a landlord. “They came to Parliament only a few weeks ago and expressed frustration at the slow pace of redevelopment. They expressed no intention to become a landlord or social housing provider and no such intention exists within their annual report, constitution or letters of intent,” Twyford said. “In his desperation to look like he is doing something, Bill English’s risky move at Tamaki could put a half-billion dollar asset, 8000 state house tenants, and an important urban renewal project in jeopardy.”

But English said TRC planned to build about 7500 new houses in place of 2500 existing ones over the next 10 to 15 years. “Over half of the new houses will be sold to help offset construction costs, and the remainder will be retained as social housing. Our bottom line is that there will be at least as many social houses in Tamaki as the 2800 there now.”

Auckland Mayor Len Brown said it was a positive step towards the strategic long-term vision for the area. “Our aim is to create liveable communities and affording housing options for people right across the region and the Tamaki area will be a testament to what we can achieve when central and local government work together.”

There have been a series of protests over this move. Residents feel that they have been left “in the dark” – see their Facebook page.

The TRC has a nice shiny website here. A spokesperson issued a statement in response to criticism on Kiwiblog (how’s that for red-flagging your ideology!). It concludes:

These protest groups can have their hikoi and huis; but we prefer to build high quality homes, provide jobs, reduce the number of people the State is supporting, and provide opportunities for our residents to move from dependence to independence like many others before them.

So they plan to “reduce the number of people the State is supporting”. No wonder residents are worried. They didn’t ask to be in the front-lines of this ideological experiment. The rest of NZ needs to keep a close eye on the TRC and developments in Tamaki.

40 comments on “2800 state houses “transferred””

  1. David H 1

    If TRC have no plans to become a Landlord, then what now for the tenants of these 2800 houses?? 2800 Lease termination notices?

  2. johnm 2

    I agree 100% with these viewpoints, just more privatisation by stealth and ultimate exclusion! 🙁

    Regeneration IS gentrification. The Tāmaki Redevelopment Company is making profits off public land and promising state tenants that they will be able to stay in the community. What about those who have already been evicted? Regeneration has been a code word for displacement of the poor all over the world. Yeah they say they’re building houses for the people, but this will eventually lead to being priced out.

    Don’t be fooled by Tāmaki Redevelopment Company framing this project as regeneration:
    “Rapid gentrification – praised as “regeneration” by local councils and property developers, derided as “social cleansing” by critics – is breaking up established communities. In some cases, families who’ve lived in London for generations are left homeless; in others, they are forced to move across the city or out of it completely. Meanwhile, the real estate opportunities are making lots of people – many of whom do not actually live in London – very rich.”

    https://www.vice.com/en_uk/video/regeneration-game

  3. adam 3

    I’m going to ask the Pope to excommunicate Bill English, it is the only reasonable response at this point.

    • Olwyn 3.1

      In the unlikely event of the Pope acting on your suggestion, it would be interesting to see which way English swung if he was thus pressed. On the one hand, he’s not getting any younger, on the other, he owes a lot to his relationship with mammon. Hard choices. 🙂

  4. tinfoilhat 4

    Something to watch very very carefully over the coming months and years.

    • TC 4.1

      wheels are in motion, this has all the hallmarks of plundering valuable akl property for their backers benefit.

      Twyford needs to step up the tone and get some attention on this. Nationals msm will largely ignore it.

    • Olwyn 4.2

      I agree tinfoilhat. The left has not proved able to prevent this from happening, but it can insist that this company is held to it’s claim that there will at least be no less social housing in that area. And “reducing the number of people the state is supporting” should be held to mean “give them jobs” rather than “kick them out onto the street” and judged accordingly. If the Christchurch rebuild is anything to go by, I will be surprised if they even live up to the more benign “give them jobs” interpretation of that statement.

  5. Ffloyd 5

    Which paper was it reported in? I can’t find it to read it.

  6. Keith 6

    When and where did National get the mandate to walk away from the government’s responsibility to look after the less fortunate.

    I would accept the assurances of a Nigerian phone scammer above those of Nick Smith and Bill English that for state tenants that it will be business as usual for them. Yes that’s right people, your accommodation fifties are in the hands of Nationals property developers.

    National couldn’t care less about the poor but really do care about the wealthy. You scum!

  7. Puckish Rogue 7

    As Aprils fools Day headlines go this isn’t very amusing

  8. Macro 8

    Only the Nats could pull such a sick joke.
    Aided and abetted by a Joke of a council. (Mind you I can see that the new mayor won’t be any better 🙁 )
    We all know what the outcome of this will be.
    Poor people kicked out of their homes which they have lived in for years. The homes will be pulled down and “posh” new houses will be built in their place for the deserving rich. This is called “Redevelopment”. Good name to cover a societal disaster.

    • TC 8.1

      Which has already happened in Glen Innes so TRC will be using the learnings from that going forward.

      • Macro 8.1.1

        I like the use of “going forward” TC. Nothing to do with TRC by any chance? 😉

        • tc 8.1.1.1

          GI had state housing land that now has private dwellings on it when they had a go at this pre election, it was messy all round. Unsure who made what outta that.

          This looks like a much slicker affair with the same end game taking on the learning from the last effort.

          • Macro 8.1.1.1.1

            Yes my thoughts on the matter entirely.
            Nats have little if any moral compass – just a matter of looking after the well to do is all they really care about.

  9. DH 9

    I’d question what ‘transferred’ actually means. They can’t literally transfer ownership of the houses because the Crown doesn’t own 100% of the company. Auckland Council owns 41% of the shares.

    Has to be at least $1.5 billion worth of property there. Are they selling these houses, leasing them, gifting them or what?

    • saveNZ 9.1

      Shocking. The public should demand answers and details. It is outrageous. And if the MSM ignore or spin it for the government – more nails in their coffins.

    • Draco T Bastard 9.2

      Either way it will be a transfer of wealth from the people of NZ to private owners and the people of NZ will feel the hurt as they become further impoverished.

    • Ad 9.3

      Mostly selling.

  10. Puckish Rogue 10

    Labour should definitely make a big deal of this, its a vote winner

    • Bearded Git 10.1

      Agreed Puckish-a real issue for Little to get his teeth into.

      People are calling this privatisation by stealth. It looks like simply privatisation to me, not much stealth involved, but what can you expect with Double-Dipton at the helm?

    • Stuart Munro 10.2

      Yes indeed – a bill criminalising the theft of state assets, and recovering damages from the property of corrupt MPs should be high on Labour’s list of priorities.

    • Keith 11.1

      Wow that sounds really really neat, nearly as good as SERCO when they “officially” ran Mt Eden with all those shining exemplary reports before someone peeked behind the scenes.

  11. kieron 12

    Sounds like rents and property prices on waiheke, pushinh the poor out; what happened to the big cloud of pot smoke from the 1980’s?

  12. kieron 13

    Waiheke rates prop up auckland city and don’t come back to waiheke, anything done is for rich peoples profit, no one else

  13. Smilin 14

    The last act by a traitorous govt to destroy the welfare state

  14. Tautuhi 15

    Who are the shareholders of the Tamaki Redevelopment Company?

  15. Tautuhi 16

    The left do not have the ability to think logically since Roger Douglas grabbed them by the scruff of the neck in the 1980’s, they appear not to be able to critically analyse anything these days.

    They are certainly very weak in opposition these days.

  16. Tautuhi 17

    Glen Innes and Panmure will be a goldmine for private investors especially if they can steal the land off the taxpayers. Looks like another State Asset Ripoff for the benefit of private investors.

  17. Ad 18

    I think the new Tamaki houses should be sold to owner-occupiers only. Give kiwis a chance to own their own home.

  18. International Rescue 19

    I hope this is the beginning of the transfer of all state owned houses to the private/NGO sector. The Govt can then fund social housing, without needing to have so much capital tied up

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    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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