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Councils offer solutions to housing crisis

housing crisis summit
The LGAQ has welcomed the news of an urgent roundtable to be hosted by the State Government to address the Queensland housing crisis ahead of next month's housing summit.

An urgent housing roundtable will be hosted by the State Government on Friday to address the Queensland housing crisis ahead of next month's housing summit.

The news was announced by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on her Facebook page this week.

“Nothing is more important than having a roof over your head – it’s a basic need,” she said.

“So, we’re getting all of Queensland’s most important housing decision makers together on Friday for an urgent roundtable ahead of the Queensland Housing Summit in October.”

Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) Chief Executive Officer Alison Smith said it was a welcome step in the combined efforts of all levels of government, industry and stakeholders to find solutions to the housing crisis.

She said councils were acutely aware of the impact the housing crisis is having on local communities across the state and have been working hard to help find and deliver solutions.

“Our members have been urging all levels of government and industry to tackle Queensland’s growing housing crisis,” Ms Smith said.

“The roundtable and summit announced by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today are welcome critical steps in ensuring all levels of government, industry and stakeholders are working together to provide more secure, liveable and available homes.” 

“As the Premier said today, catalytic infrastructure funding is key to helping unlock land for development, and councils have a track record of opening up more lots for homes when they are given the tools and funding to do so.”

Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey also welcomed the housing summit and roundtable news and said it was a step in the right direction to creating solutions.

“As a member of the LGAQ Policy Executive and a board member of the Australian Local Government Association, I have long been advocating for a national housing summit to help all levels of government, industry and community come together in unity to tackle the challenges our state is currently facing,” he said. 

“The housing crisis is beyond the capacity of any one Council to resolve but local government across Queensland stands ready, willing and able to play whatever part we can.”

Mayor Dempsey said he took confidence from the fact that Bundaberg Regional Council had been proactively working towards some of the key actions identified for local governments, including maintaining land availability through forward planning.

Ms Smith added the LGAQ would bring to the round table the innovative housing solutions the Premier had asked for to get more people into homes and guaranteeing community liveability and great lifestyle right across Queensland.

The LGAQ released a six-point action plan in February this year, calling for State and Federal Government support to help councils address the housing crisis.

This included support to unlock abandoned, unused and empty properties and a national housing summit.

The full six-point plan:

  • A National Housing Summit to create a national housing strategy with all levels of government, industry and community groups;
  • Quadrupling investment in social housing with an extra $4.8 billion over four years;
  • Extending the First Home Owners’ Grant to existing dwellings, renovations and refurbishment;
  • Unlocking abandoned, unused and empty properties;
  • An extra $100 million a year for five years in Closing the Gap funding for Indigenous communities; and 
  • $200 million over four years to help councils develop and implement innovative housing partnerships.

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