Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Crowded houses

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  • Russell Brown, in reply to izogi,

    It just seems so stupid that people eligible for social housing are being instructed to borrow money for paying what’s apparently the full commercial rate to stay at motels, before becoming liable to pay it back at their own expense, which by definition of being eligible for social housing, they already can’t afford.

    The rate quoted on Checkpoint – $1330pw – is bizarrely high. Would a motel like that earn nearly $200 a night on casual rentals? I can't imagine it. And the fact that they're contracted to W&I to provide these units on a consistent basis surely means the negotiated cost should be far lower. Can anyone explain this?

    But of course, the major problem is that this unreasonable cost is passed 100% to people in the worst possible position to pay it or carry it as a debt. No wonder the minister refused to come and discuss it on Checkpoint – especially given that on Monday John Key held out this exact same emergency provision as an example of how much the government was doing to help its citizens.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    The wee minion in the bowels of the Beehive who pushes the kill button for Natrad was at it again.

    That was weird. While I don't want to contribute to any conspiracy theory, the sound didn't cut out abruptly... it was faded out by someone. Much strangeness.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1437 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Alfie,

    It did sound weird, but it's probably a technical issue, because we also lost the beginning of Guyon's back-announce.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie,

    Excellent piece in the Press by Vicki Anderson on attending WINZ humiliation meetings.

    Joining the queue at Work and Income: Where no one seems happy.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1437 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    I tried playing that a few times, but it does not work. Either my browser has a sudden issue with this audio, or it has been “neutralised” (blocked) now.

    We live in “strange times”.

    Who is that Minister for Broad-(Bored) Casting again?

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Russell Brown,

    we're from the Govt, we're here to help...

    John Key held out this exact same emergency provision as an example of how much the government was doing to help its citizens.

    No one gets ahead in a 'Company town' - next he'll be sending in the Pinkertons!

    I suspect John Key somehow read the Andrew Carnegie 'How to make friends and influence people' rather than the Dale Carnegie version...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7950 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The rate quoted on Checkpoint – $1330pw – is bizarrely high. Would a motel like that earn nearly $200 a night on casual rentals? I can't imagine it.

    If there ever needed to be an example of a government driving revenue to business at the ultimate expense of poor and vulnerable people, who'll eventually face the debt collectors for money they're unlikely to have, this would have to be right up there.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C,

    Today John Campbell and RNZ seem to have got more info exposing the facts that most of the debt beneficiaries owe is to Work and Income and not others!

    It seems WINZ do under this government drive people into poverty. Also did the New Zealand Herald reveal this a while back:
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11565259

    And newly obtained papers reveal, Bennett knew for a year the emergency housing sector was not functioning, and severely underfunded, and did nothing:
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/304288/emergency-housing-sector-‘unaccountable’

    The sale of Housing NZ homes continues:
    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/304291/queenstown-state-house-auctioned-for-$665k

    According to MSD there is no need for emergency housing in Queenstown.

    Silence on all this from Paula, what's her name again?!

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Marc C,

    And newly obtained papers reveal, Bennett knew for a year the emergency housing sector was not functioning, and severely underfunded, and did nothing:

    Bennett and Bill English. We don't know that they actually did nothing, but what they have been doing is starting to look like a policy fuckup of generational proportions.

    It really is starting to seem that bad.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Marc C,

    ‘unaccountable’

    Also "incoherent" and "unfair".

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Russell, I do also sense this is a "game changer" of sorts in the wider media now, something that "dirty politics" could never achieve. The times they are a changing. The shit has started hitting the fan, and nobody in government can hide anymore, but they are nowhere to be heard and seen. It is a public relations disaster they never expected.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    I agree with the Greens – jumping on the bandwagon – Things can be done about the crisis created by the economic and policy settings pursued by this govt that favours wealthy migrants over the people that live and work here.

    The State House next to my Mum’s place sat vacant for well over three or maybe even four years before it was removed and the land sold to developers who are only just now building on it having sold two dwellings off the plans.

    Have we finally reached the point where the policy vacuum/omission/doing nothing has become enough is enough?

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/80163373/Housing-NZ-should-keep-118m-dividend-build-450-new-state-homes-Greens

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to Russell Brown,

    It really is starting to seem that bad.

    "seems bad" or is a "disaster" depending on where you sleep - in or out of doors.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald, in reply to Marc C,

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1346 posts Report Reply

  • John Farrell, in reply to Marc C,

    The hardcore Key supporters see homeless people as a reason to scoff. Read the trademe messageboard, to get the flavour.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 499 posts Report Reply

  • izogi,

    Also in this day and age, many people simply don't get their coverage from the same traditional sources. There's so much more choice when looking for excuses to justify what's already believed.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1141 posts Report Reply

  • Rosemary McDonald, in reply to Russell Brown,

    like a policy fuckup of generational proportions.

    Ditto, it seems, in Queenstown.

    Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust 2016 renters' survey, in which 92 per cent of renters said housing affordability was a barrier to their long-term commitment to the area.
    The full results were published yesterday.
    Problems highlighted include crammed houses, bad insulation, cut-throat landlords and fierce competition for accommodation.
    "We are living in a truck," one renter says. "We couldn't find anywhere to rent that would let you have pets and that we could afford. Winter is coming and I have 3-year-old twin boys."
    Another says: "I am homeless at 65."
    One employer says their staff are living in cars.

    "Queenstown rental prices are out of control. I pay $610 a week for an uninsulated, single-glazed, wooden house which is FREEZING in winter."

    ...rent has increased by $160 a week in less than a year, adding: "We now pay $700 a week for a freezing cold house."

    One business's human resource manager says: "I am nervous about offering employment to anyone who hasn't already secured accommodation in Queenstown."
    Several people say they are moving from the resort.
    "Can't afford it anymore," says a person who lived in the town for 15 years.
    A 76-year-old says they've given up their home to the local council.
    "I could not afford to buy another property in Queenstown."

    The less-than-rich at both ends of the age scale are being pushed out of town....

    Hah! But according to the local real estate agents...the fact that,

    Queenstown's seasonal population results in high rental demand and, with the creation of many new jobs over the past year, the rental shortage has reached a crisis.

    ...makes them

    believe Queenstown has all the key factors for property investment.

    Just wait until the rich pricks in both towns need some low wage worker to clean the shit off their toilets.....

    Waikato, or on the road • Since Apr 2014 • 1346 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    So Mr Goof is neither here nor there, as usual, and all this may have been a bit of a "slip up" by Phil the Twyford, who may have rushed ahead with some thoughts, he may now regret?

    What a shocking situation. Thanks for that link, at least that worked.

    Credits to Guyon, he is doing a good job, but that is not hard with Paul Henry on TV3 and the other gigglers on TVNZ in the morning.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • Marc C, in reply to Rosemary McDonald,

    This was totally predictable, years ago, with John Key and his government setting the perfect investment environment for wealthy "investors" and immigrants to come here, buy into real estate and business, and turn many local residents into nothing else but tenants in their own country.

    Once upon a time it was only Maori who felt like being taken over and invaded, now it is wider New Zealand, white, brown, whatever their colour, but it tends to hit the ones at the very bottom first and harder than the rest, as usual.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2012 • 437 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    the fact that they're contracted to W&I to provide these units on a consistent basis surely means the negotiated cost should be far lower. Can anyone explain this?

    Work and Income are piss-poor negotiators, just like the current cabinet?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Work and Income are piss-poor negotiators, just like the current cabinet?

    It's starting to sound like they're stuck with policy settings that don't work. They have to go to the market and the market is enjoying a premium for taking poor people.

    I suspect the current climate of woo over "methamphetamine contamination" isn't helping. That seems to have well and truly slipped the surly bonds of science.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22848 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Someone please acquaint Labour with this sort of evidence:
    http://thecostofsprawl.com/

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    They have to go to the market and the market is enjoying a premium for taking poor people.

    Who knew markets wouldn't work in desperate asymmetric situations like emergency housing, eh?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19740 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX, in reply to Marc C,

    This was totally predictable, years ago, with John Key and his government setting the perfect investment environment for wealthy “investors” and immigrants to come here, buy into real estate and business, and turn many local residents into nothing else but tenants in their own country.

    Once upon a time it was only Maori who felt like being taken over and invaded, now it is wider New Zealand, white, brown, whatever their colour, but it tends to hit the ones at the very bottom first and harder than the rest, as usual.

    Pretty Much - another element is money laundering on a grand scale - there was an article in Metro on Money Laundering a while back - one of the currents in that article was (the Auckland) Ppty Market as effective money laundering mechanism in both light commercial rentals and residential ppty.

    I feel whole thing - the economy - is so out of whack it could collapse.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • B Jones, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Also “incoherent” and “unfair”.

    You have to run that through the bureaucratic anger translator to get the full impact of that. I'd guess at least three or four measured, cautious folk with eyes on what their bosses and minister would be prepared to accept wrote and reviewed that paper. Words like unfair aren't used often in reports - normal usage would be something like "the potential to lead to inequitable outcomes", sadly.

    Also, topping the poetic heights with easy grace there Russell?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 976 posts Report Reply

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