How long before Labour try this here?

Almost everything Labour does has been telegraphed first by Labour doing it first in the UK. Helen Clark copied Tony Blair’s third way politics, his pledge card, titles for cash, and corruption scandals.

How long before they try this here? If they are smart they will get Len Brown to propose it first…or whisper it in Clint’s ear so he can get Russel to announce it.

Developers could be forced to build on land they are hoarding or hand it back to communities, under proposals to be outlined by Labour.

Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, will say companies sitting on land while waiting for the price to rise must “use it or lose it” under moves to ease the housing shortage.

In a speech in Birmingham, he will suggest that building firms should be fined if they refuse to develop land that has been given planning permission. Councils could also be given “compulsory purchase” powers to buy back sites that lie empty for years, despite having been approved for development. The proposals will be examined as part of Labour’s policy review and could feature in the party’s next election manifesto. 

Planning permission has already been granted for 400,000 homes across the country, equal to a city the size of Birmingham, but they have not yet been built, in a practice known as “land banking”.

The Labour leader is concerned that property prices have risen too high, making homes unaffordable for many young working families.

He believes that homes must be built across the country but the priority should be to develop land that already has planning permission, rather than seeking to build on new greenfield sites.



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  • Sym Gardiner

    This is so dumb. All that will happen is a developer will add a business unit to grow hay, or lease the property to a farmer, or build one house on it and call it a lifestyle block. I mean seriously… are they dumb or what?

    • Orange

      Mmm yeah. And they’d have to invent a new bureaucracy in order to adjudicate which could well double the price I would think.

    • Kopua Cowboy

      Nice thinking, you should start buying land :P

  • MarcWills

    Although it won’t happen, there is a bit of an emotional sense of rightousness for this to happen in Christchurch. We have Asian owners (absentee and resident) sitting on prime central city land which is allowed to exist in a state of neglect while they wait for the investment value to keep rising. It could certainly be put to better use for the community. (In case you are wondering, I am talking about the Saleyards and Antonio Hall properties specifically, but there are others too.) Maybe compulsary purchase is too harsh, but I think tax “incentives” to discourage this sort of waste should be implemented ie. think – penalties.

    Also to SG, this UK land has been approved for development, so presumably means housing approval, not the faux developments you suggest.

  • Patrick

    Typical Socialists – private property rights do not exist.
    What is wrong with the market – offer a price the owner will accept. If the owner is unwilling to sell then suck it up. Isn’t that how it works?

  • cows4me

    Fucking socialism is like rust, it never sleeps it’s practitioners are insomniacs.

  • Sir Cullen’s Sidekick

    Bros – Sheep has already spoken to Ed Rubberband in UK. Sheep will be announcing this as a policy in the next few weeks. Our internal polling shows that this is a game changer policy and likely to take Labour over 40+ points in the next few polls. Labour is a party of progressive polices unlike National.