My Regional Independent colleagues and I met last night and put the following eight asks to Government on the housing issue taht would make a real difference to the current crisis.
My position on the Private Members vote on housing tomorrow evening and the proposed no confidence vote will be dependent on the Government’s response.
The objective behind our eight proposals is to secure rental accommodation for those facing eviction, provide relief for small landlords to ensure they remain within the market and ensure affordable housing is made available to young couples and families:
- Remove barriers to older people in long term nursing home care who wish to lease out their homes effective from the 1st of May 2023.
- Increase the grant rates for the Croí Cónaithe refurbishment scheme to reflect current building costs, effective from the 1st of May 2023.
- The Croí Cónaithe refurbishment scheme needs to be extended to include properties which are made available for rent and not just owner occupied, effective from the 1st of May 2023.
- Revise the Croí Cónaithe scheme to include properties built prior to 2007, effective from the 1st of May
- Extend the rent-a -room relief scheme to people receiving social welfare payments who rent out a room so that they do not lose supplementary benefits such as the medical card effective from the 1st of May 2023.
- Introduce in Budget 2024 of a tax relief scheme to take effect in the current tax year for small landlords.
- Amend the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) to guarantee payment to landlords where the tenant defaults on payment of contribution to HAP effective from the 1st of May 2023.
- Immediately engage with site owners who have obtained planning under the Strategic Infrastructure Development and that have not yet commenced building due to viability issues to ensure immediate commencement of these projects under the affordable housing scheme.