Rebuilding Ireland has failed & Fine Gael Housing Manifesto is the same plan with the same people and money
Fianna Fáil Housing Spokesperson Darragh O’Brien today launched a detailed analysis of Re-Building Ireland based on PQs assessing each individual action outlined in the plan.
The figures compiled show that out of the 84 promised actions set out in the plan, over half, or 52 per cent, have failed.
Deputy O’Brien said: “Last week Fine Gael launched their manifesto. Out of €8.7bn of spending and a whopping €2.8bn of tax cuts they committed and costed an extra total of €0 to building housing. They have not allocated an additional euro beyond current pre- committed spending levels to building homes. The Fine Gael manifesto is clear. The same plan, the same people and the same money.”
“The failure of Re-Building Ireland is startling. that have been implemented have been minor in scale and impact. These specific failed policies are laid out in detail. The document comes after the Fine Gael manifesto did not commit any additional money to capital spending on housing.
“Homelessness have increased by 3,206 or 49% since Re-Building Ireland was launched. Re-Building Ireland set a target of Doubling of output to deliver over 25,000 units per annum on average over the period of the Plan 2017-2021. It has reached just 72% of that target with an average of 17,992 per annum for 2017-2019.
“Rents have increased by 30% since Re-Building Ireland was launched according to the RTB. Re-Building Ireland did not reverse the 2011 government decision to remove Home Ownership as a policy goal. Ireland’s Home Ownership rates is the lowest since 1971 and is now below the EU average.
“Fine Gael have clearly abandoned addressing the housing crisis by deciding not to invest any more money into solving it. In contrast Fianna Fáil has a six-part plan to get Ireland building again including an ambitious €250m SSIA scheme for First Time Buyers. We are committed to building 50,000 social homes and 50,000 affordable homes by 2025. We are ramping up spending by €2.2bn overall in comparison to Fine Gael’s €200m. We are also slashing red tape on local authorities to drive on building levels,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has said that while the reduction in the number of people homeless people is welcome, there is a long way to go to fix the housing crisis created by Fine Gael.
Figures released by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government data showed a decline in people in emergency accommodation with 9,731 in homelessness at the end of 2019.
Figures the previous month showed that there was 10,448 people living in emergency accommodation.
Deputy O’Brien said: “There is usually a seasonal decrease in homeless figures in December, we still have 9,731 people without a home in Ireland and this is a crisis which has been created by the legacy of the Fine Gael led government. The ongoing failure of the Fine Gael government to resolve the homelessness crisis is an affront to the basic decency of our country.
“The number of children living in emergency accommodation remains at an unacceptable level. Their record of missed targets and the continued plight of families in hotel rooms is a damning indictment of government policy. Achieving some 50,000 new social housing units by 2025 will address the long-term issue of supply of affordable units for households.
“Ending the rough sleeping of homeless people on our streets is a moral and social imperative. Unfortunately, this group of people has not been a priority under Fine Gael,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has said effective taxation tools are needed to incentivise proper development and the maximum use of land.
Fianna Fáil plans to reform and increase the Vacant Site Tax to 14% to ensure it tackles land hoarding and penalises speculation.
Deputy O’Brien said: “The Vacant Site levy introduced by the government is far too limited to genuinely drive on development and does not over underutilised lands. What we need to do is strengthen it by increasing the penalty on land hoarding to help stimulate development.
“We have seen the housing legacy Fine Gael has left behind in terms of the record number of people now homeless. We want to get homeownership moving again in Ireland and this is one of the measures Fianna Fáil is proposing as part of our manifesto.
“I have seen issues of vacant properties in my own constituency and it is a problem in every community across Ireland. There are a number of vacant properties in Rush, Co Dublin which needs to be addressed and I hope the increase to this levy can help to fix the problem,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has expressed his shock following news that a homeless man has received life altering injuries in Dublin City Centre.
The homeless man received life-changing injuries when the tent he was sleeping in was removed by an industrial vehicle conducting works of Dublin City Council and Waterways Ireland.
The man was admitted to St Vincent's University Hospital where he underwent surgery for what are described as life-changing injuries.
Deputy O’Brien said: “The number of homeless in the State remains over 10,000 according to the latest figures and this is a direct result of a Fine Gael led Government. Their legacy is now a national crisis with over 3,000 children homeless.
“I was shocked to learn of news that a homeless man was seriously injured when his tent was removed by an industrial vehicle. This is a national disgrace and demonstrates a lack of empathy and understanding for our homeless communities.
“The number of homeless people in the State according to the latest official figures show 10,448 people are currently living in emergency accommodation, with 3,752 of these being recorded as children.”
Deputy O’Brien explained that Fianna Fáil would prioritise solving this housing crisis by building public homes on public land and delivering affordable housing for working people.
“We are now in a period where we can bring change to key issues such as housing and I believe that a Fianna Fáil led government can bring about this change,” concluded Deputy O’Brien.