“There are several questions that need to be answered through an inquiry into the ill-fated Rotorua housing experiment,” says ACT’s Deputy Leader and Housing spokesperson Brooke van Velden.

“Residents of Rotorua are fed up with being guinea pigs for a Government that has no idea how to address housing, and has plonked people into motels instead. Parts of their city have been run down as a result and they deserve answers.

“An inquiry would need to address the following:

• Has the Government been sharing data with Corrections to ensure criminals are not put next door to chidren?

• Has the Government been continuously assessing value for money or signing ‘set and forget’ contracts that enrich moteliers to the tune of millions?

• Has the Government been tracking how often children change schools and seeking to minimise it, acknowledging that transience is a major challenge for educators?

• How long have people been staying in emergency housing and why have the longest stayers’ not moved on?

• Has the Government run an accessible complaints process to hold providers accountable?

“Buying motels won’t solve the housing crisis. We need long term, sustainable solutions.

“My Member’s Bill currently before Parliament would create a GST-sharing scheme estimated to deliver $1 billion every year to support local development enabling infrastructure, but councils that consent more, get more.

“ACT would also scrap the Resource Management Act, replacing it with a new Urban Development Act that respects existing property rights while making it easier to increase housing supply.

“It’s time for the Government to start treating taxpayers with some respect and start coming up with solutions that will actually solve the housing crisis. Motels aren’t the answer.”

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