Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy TD has described Budget 2018 as a Budget of squandered opportunities in so many ways but in particular on addressing the housing emergency.

She said there are lots of carrots but very few sticks, for example the Vacant Land Levy announced is still less than land price inflation.

Deputy Murphy drew attention to the fact that not only is there no mention of any affordable housing scheme but the grandiose funding promises in the area of housing are almost all aimed at funding the private sector to provide homes.

Speaking immediately after the Budget Catherine Murphy TD said:

“The only mention of Social Housing provision directly from Government is a pie in the sky promise about going further than the provisions of Rebuilding Ireland which have already been debunked as unachievable in their current format so we need to see real detail about how this can be achieved.”

“The establishment of a new body the Homebuilding Finance Ireland agency is to rely on what the Minister calls the expertise of NAMA. I don’t think you would find many who would find confidence in hearing that NAMA will be a key player in addressing the housing emergency. The Social Democrats have consistently called for a Housing Delivery Agency which would have a coordinating role to coordinate local authorities, housing agencies and the private sector where economies of scale could help reduce costs. A key focus of all housing initiatives must be the establishment of sustainable and vibrant communities rather than just units.”

“All in all, this Budget is hugely cautious and devastatingly unambitious. Its primary function seems to have been to keep Government partners happy. Unfortunately, as was to be expected from this Government, the focus was only on the next General Election and not the next generation. “


10th October 2017

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