Page 4666 - Week 12 - Thursday, 1 November 2018

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older people looking to move to more suitably sized housing at certain stages of their lives.

MS CODY: Chief Minister, what steps has the government been taking to improve residential housing supply and ensure a strong pipeline of building approvals?

MR BARR: The most important way that we can support housing supply and a strong building pipeline is through our forward land release program. This year’s program stepped up the number of properties that we will deliver, detailing a plan for a further 17,000 new homes over the next four years from 2018-19 to 2021-22. Delivering this program over four years will add 10.5 per cent to the ACT’s total housing stock in four years.

Under the new housing strategy that the Deputy Chief Minister and I released during the week, the government has renewed our commitment to providing land and housing development opportunities that meet demand and see us maintain a healthy four-year building pipeline. This will include dedicating 15 per cent of the annual land released through this program to affordable, community and public housing which, as the Deputy Chief Minister has outlined, is around 630 new homes each year.

We are also supporting a strong building pipeline through urban renewal efforts in our city and town centres. We are investing in high quality transport infrastructure like new light rail and new roads and bridges, and we are reviewing policies on planning and taxation across government to ensure that the policy direction of government is one clear direction to provide more affordable and accessible housing across our growing city.

What will complement this policy agenda that is comprehensive at a territory level is a similar policy direction from a federal government interested in increasing housing supply and removing distortions within the federal taxation arrangements. As the Deputy Chief Minister has pointed out, these are changes to negative gearing to incentivise new build only, a very significant policy shift that this country should adopt, and revision of capital gains tax policy being equally important to support, particularly, owner-occupiers and first homebuyers entering the market, just as we have done by abolishing stamp duty for first homebuyers.

I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Supplementary answer to question without notice

ACT Health—SPIRE project

MS FITZHARRIS: I am pleased to rise in response to matters raised during question time earlier this week, on Tuesday, about the government’s SPIRE project. I am very pleased to provide an update to the Assembly on the significant work underway to meet Canberra’s future health needs, in particular the government’s significant commitment to investing in health infrastructure to meet these needs, and I am pleased to update the Assembly about the building health services program and the SPIRE project in particular.

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