SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES COMMITTEE MOTIONS
Amendment to 1.23:
NSW Labor believes that tenants in private rental should live in safe, secure, quality housing and will encourage an adequate supply of appropriate and affordable private rental housing across NSW. NSW Labor supports residential tenancy legislation that:
adequately protects the rights of all private tenants;
removes no-grounds evictions;
prohibits punitive and discriminatory practices, including rent bidding,by landlords; and
disallows "no pets" clauses.
This includes those residing in boarding houses, hostels, retirement villages, caravan parks and relocatable homes.
Currently our tenancy laws lag significantly behind those of other countries in providing tenants with protections against punitive or discriminatory landlords. In one area in particular we do not have world class regulation:
No-cause evictions: Once a tenant’s lease has gone past this initial 6-12 month period,
tenants can be evicted with no reason given. This creates a difficult power imbalance, where landlords can (and, according to the Tenants Union of NSW, regularly do) unlawfully demand things of tenants, threatening to evict them if they don’t comply.
Removing the ‘no cause’ eviction option for landlords, while at the same time increasing the number of legitimate reasons a landlord could evict a tenant, will bring balance back to the tenant/landlord relationship – and ensure that more people live in safe and secure housing in NSW.
Motion to NSW State Conference:
NSW Labor calls on the State Parliamentary Labor Party to adopt a policy of Inclusionary Zoning, with specific percentages of social and affordable housing in all new development across NSW.
This policy should include a requirement that every new residential development on private land that is zoned residential larger than ten dwellings has 15% social and/or affordable housing from 2019, increased incrementally to 40% by 2037. Additionally, new development on Government-owned land that is zoned residential over ten dwellings will require 50% social and/or affordable housing from 2019.
New section in the platform:
NSW Labor believes social affordable housing should exist in every community and supports inclusionary zoning to deliver on this goal. We support a requirement that every new residential development on private land includes a substantial proportion of social and affordable housing, to be owned by social and community housing providers. This proportion will increase over time. NSW Labor will use government-owned land to help deliver more social and affordable housing where appropriate.
While Sydney has seen enormous economic success over the past few decades, it has become one of the top two most unaffordable cities in the world. Prices across Sydney for homes are rising at a near-unbelievable rate of 15% per year, while wage rises struggle to keep up with inflation. The NSW Liberals believe that increasing the supply of new homes is the only way to bring down prices. in reality, while increasing supply is useful, alone it will never dampen the growth of house prices. Despite the Liberal’s obsessive commitment to trickle-down economics, no city has ever, in recorded history, seen house prices drop because of an increase in supply.
Many other global cities, however, are dealing with the same housing affordability pressures. Most are successfully dealing with it by providing a significant amount of social and affordable housing through an ‘inclusionary zoning’ requirement on new development. For example, London’s conservative mayor, Boris Johnson, required a minimum on 30% social and affordable housing any time a new development of private housing is being built. Amsterdam, New York and San Francisco similarly require significant portions of new housing be put aside for low-medium income people. By developing an inclusionary zoning policy for NSW, we will simply be catching up to a policy that most cities we aspire Sydney to look like are already doing.
By phasing in an inclusionary zoning target, we provide the building industry (a major employer) with the opportunity to adapt their current model to deliver affordable housing. Many developers are already in favour of this process – and just want to ensure that they have enough early notice of the change.
Social housing refers to Public, Aboriginal and Community Housing. Affordable housing refers to housing that costs less than 30% of income for very-low, low and moderate-income households, either for purchase or rent
Motion to NSW State Conference:
NSW Labor calls on the State Parliamentary Labor Party to adopt a policy to enact Agent of Change principles, will put the responsibility of noise mitigation on new development rather than the existing businesses and residents nearby.
Once these regulations are in place, established pubs and clubs will not be forced to close due to noise complaints from new neighbours.