What are we asking for?
Support for local government’s efforts in addressing affordable housing and homelessness by providing funding of $200 million over four years to assist councils to develop and implement innovative housing partnerships.
Why is it important?
There is less social and affordable housing stock available than there was a decade ago, and more low-income Australians are experiencing housing stress.
The shortage and rising costs of rental properties and affordable home ownership are having significant social and economic impacts in cities and towns across Australia, including rural and regional communities.
This is due to a range of factors including changes to recent migration patterns, cheap finance and labour and material shortages in the construction sector.
While the provision of affordable housing is not a local government responsibility, councils often facilitate affordable housing within their communities, operating within state/territory planning, financial and other legislation requirements.
For councils looking to drive a locally led economic recovery and create new jobs in their communities, an appropriate supply and mix of housing to suit diverse community needs is crucial.
In addition to new funding partnerships, councils are also seeking a national housing summit as a precursor to the development of a national housing strategy, which includes local government in the national dialogue.
How would it support our communities?
Attracting and retaining key and essential workers has become an increasing challenge across Victoria’s south coast over the past ten years.
There are currently more than 4,000 key worker jobs being imported from outside the region, due in large part to a shortage of appropriate or affordable housing for these workers and their families.
The Glenelg, Moyne, Surf Coast, Corangamite, Colac Otway and Southern Grampians Shires have worked with the Victorian Planning Authority to release an action plan to address this and identify where planning for new communities should be developed to provide affordable housing.
The Mayor of Colac Otway Shire Kate Hanson said: “If we don’t address the housing shortage, our shire won’t continue to grow, there will be a decline in families moving or staying in the area, which in turn will affect community services, sports organisations and overall liveability of Colac Otway.”