Sinn Féin spokesperson on Housing Eoin Ó Broin TD has expressed his deep concern at the ongoing, incoherent leaks about the new government housing strategy. His comments come as a government spokesperson today distanced Fianna Fáil and the Minister for Housing from a plan which would offer tax incentives for homeowners to downsize.
Teachta Ó Broin said:
“It is becoming increasingly clear that the government’s Housing for All plan is nowhere near ready. The series of leaks to the newspapers would indicate that the Minister for Housing is still scrambling to put together a plan that will be approved by Fine Gael.
“The latest initiative we see in the newspapers this morning are tax incentives to encourage so called ’empty nesters’ to downsize. This proposal is deeply problematic as in most cases if people want to downsize, they have nowhere to downsize to.
“If the government is serious about this becoming policy, they need to ensure that there are appropriate homes available in the local community, beside their existing support network.
“Furthermore, unfortunately due to an ongoing lack of supply of affordable homes and high rents many people are holding on their homes to help their own children access the housing market.
“It was extremely telling this morning that a government spokesperson on housing on the Claire Byrne show sought to distance herself and her Fianna Fáil Minister from this proposal.
“This isn’t the only proposal leaked this week. On Sunday we saw plans to gift half a billion euro to developers to build homes. While we don’t have much detail on this it is clear that Darragh O’ Brien is determined to continue down the failed developer led housing model that will do nothing to ensure affordable supply.
“The government incoherence on this new Housing for All plan is all then more puzzling when it was seemingly ready to be published in July, before being pulled at the last minute.
“Darragh O’Brien must take responsibility and urgently publish his new plan in full and halt the leak of half-baked proposals to the press.”