- Scroll to the bottom to read the candidates’ full responses
Candidates vying for your vote at the September 9 council elections have offered a range of potential solutions to aid development of more affordable homes.
The Mercury asked candidates for both the Wollongong and Shellharbour council elections this question – what measures do you think councils should take to encourage the development of more affordable homes?
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In Wollongong, Leigh Colacino, lead candidate for the Liberals in Ward 1, said the answer is two-tiered.
“How do we maintain the value of current residential stock while still allowing for ecologically sensible urban growth?” he said.
“I think council needs to look at minimum block sizes. There is a possibility that current restraints are too unrealistic to satisfy the current market expectation and needs.”
Warwick Erwin, lead candidate for the independent ‘Group D’ ticket in Ward 1 proposed requiring developers to have a percentage of their developments allocated for affordable housing.
“That may be able to be done under the review of the 2009 LEP, except for land under state control due to state significant sites,” he said.
“Affordable housing has two branches to me; the affordable to buy housing and the affordable to rent housing. The affordable to rent may be an area where council can develop housing in partnership with state and non-government stakeholders.”
In Shellharbour, Narelle Clay, representing the independentGroup D ticket, offered measures such as advocating to federal government to increase funding in the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement, enabling an increase in social/public housing stock over the next 15-20 years.
She also proposed to advocate to increase youth incomes so they can better afford to enter the housing market; and ensure community housing providers are encouraged to design and develop appropriate social housing.
Peter Moran, who tops the independent Group H ticket said, “given that state governments choose not to mandate social and affordable housing in new developments, local government should be given the power to do so in areas of greatest need”.
“There should be a trade- off by allowing for accelerated approval of developments that do provide such housing types,” he said.
Wollongong Ward 1 covers Fairy Meadow to Helensburgh, Wollongong Ward 2 covers the central suburbs and Ward 3 covers the southern suburbs.
Read the candidates’ responses: