THE Sinn Féin party is preoccupied with publicity stunts and has no housing policies or plan for the country, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Ahead of a no confidence motion in Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy proposed by the Sinn Féin party, Senator Buttimer said: “Mary Lou McDonald’s party has spent months playing bad politics and talking about a motion of no confidence in my party colleague.
“Sinn Féin’s primary aim is to garner attention and headlines for themselves and the motion proves that. It is totally devoid of solutions and will not take a single person off our streets, out of emergency accommodation or into a permanent home. The publicity stunt offers nothing constructive.
“Meanwhile at local level, Sinn Féin is voting against the provision of social, affordable and private housing. Look at their actions in South Dublin County Council earlier this month. They are actively blocking homes for those that need them in certain areas of the country.
“Given that we have a minority Government, Sinn Féin could have spent all this wasted time getting support from the Oireachtas for their housing plan. They did not because they do not have a plan.
“Meanwhile, Fine Gael’s focus remains on delivery and solutions, to ensure every person and family who needs a home will get one. The Land Development Agency (LDA), with €1.25 billion behind it, is a step change in the Government’s involvement in the housing market,” Buttimer said.
The Fine Gael politician pointed out:
● The Land Development Agency will build 150,000 new homes over the next 20 years, the next step of Project Ireland 2040.
● The new agency has an immediate focus on managing the State’s own lands to develop new homes, and regenerate under-utilised sites.
● In the longer-term it will assemble strategic landbanks from a mix of public and private lands, making these available for housing in a controlled manner which brings essential long-term stability to the Irish housing market.
Overall Build in Cork City
• In Cork City & County the number of completed newly built homes increased by 2,197 since the beginning of 2017. (CSO do not differentiate New Builds for city & county)
• The number of new homes granted planning permission in Cork City in the same period was 514.
• Commencement notices were submitted for 330 homes.
Social Housing in Cork City
• In the period 2017-Q1 2018, 211 new social housing homes have been delivered through build, acquisition and long term leasing in Cork City.
• Since the beginning of 2017, 1,034 households in Cork City have been supported through HAP & RAS.
• There are currently 328 social houses on site in Cork City and a further 473 social houses going through various states of approval.
“There is no magical solution for supply but all the trend indicators show that targeted interventions under the Government’s ‘Rebuilding Ireland’ plan are beginning to work.
“Planning permissions for 20,776 homes were granted to end March 2018; up 37% year on year.
“By May of this year, commencement notices for over 18,000 new homes were submitted; an annual increase of 18%.
“The numbers of new homes becoming available for use in the 12 months to the end of June 2018 was 19,650. This is a 24% increase on the year to the end of June 2017 (15,874), which is a very positive endorsement of all the work that is being done.
“Of those new homes available for use, the number of brand new dwelling completions added to the housing stock in the year to the end of June 2018 was 16,274 up by 40% compared to the 12 months to the end of June 2017 (11,619).
“817 unfinished homes were completed and 2,559 homes that were vacant for at least 2 years were brought back into use in the year to the end of June 2018 also.
“Increasing new builds, tackling unfinished estates and bringing vacant homes back into use are all targeted as priorities in Rebuilding Ireland so it is very positive to see that we are continuing to make significant progress in these areas. These are not just facts and figures. Each new build, and each vacant unit brought back to use, represents a home for someone who needs it, a new start and a brighter future.” Jerry Buttimer said