Housing fund 'not a fresh initiative'

The announcement of $104.1 million over three years for affordable housing "does not excite him at all", Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust chairman David Cole says.

"This is not a fresh initiative, it is not fresh funding ...

"The announcement has been dressed up. It's obfuscation."

He said $37 million was allocated this year for affordable housing, to be distributed to non-government organisations and local authorities through its Social Housing Unit established last year.

Multiplied out over three years, the $104.1 million was "slightly less" than the single-year figure.

Yesterday, Energy Efficiency and Conservation chief executive Mike Underhill said the Government had rearranged its energy spending to enable money to continue to be channelled into the home insulation subsidy scheme and energy efficiency programmes for business owners.

The home insulation scheme received funding of $347 million when it began and estimates were that would allow 188,000 homes to be insulated by June next year, he said.

But because of efficiencies, not all that money had been used.

"We are delighted the Government has chosen to keep the savings in the scheme and extend it by a year rather than putting the money elsewhere.

"In fiscally tight times, it is good to see."

The money
- $104.1 million over next three years to organisations providing affordable housing.
- Home insulation subsidy scheme extended to extra 41,000 homes.
- $2.5 million to business energy efficiency programme in 2012-13.
- Solar and heat pump water heating subsidy scrapped.


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