Winston goes all Green and wants to ban something

Winston Peters hates the Greens but he doesn’t seem to worry about using their ban hammer at times.

Winston Peters has come up with a radical solution to Auckland’s housing crisis – force speculators to develop their land.

As the government and Labour find common ground to tackle the shortage, the NZ First leader says they’ve lost the plot.

“Instead of addressing the real issues of artificial demand and speculative land banking, they want to create an ugly, urban sprawl with no supporting bus and rail links or other critical infrastructure,” he said on Thursday.  

“New Zealand First would legislate to outlaw land banking just as Hong Kong does, where no one can sit on land for more than two years without developing it – if they don’t develop they are penalised.”

I guess Winston has joined the bandwagon of politicians attacking the useless Auckland Council and their stupid intensification policies.

I’m not sure his ban would work though. It would be easily got around.

The easiest way to prevent land banking is to remove the incentive that the Rural Urban boundary provides to land bank but axing the RUB.


– NZ Newswire


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  • OneTrack

    Is this the land that the developers have to jump through the building consent hoops set by Auckland Council and their Labour mayor, just to start thinking about building? What will Winston do to get the council jobworths out of the way and speed up the consent process?

    Centralisation of administration is a very bad idea. ACC have proved it. Time to break the city up again.

    • Wheninrome

      The nice thing about individual councils is that you get different character in areas, the one size fits all creates a sameness about areas. The people running the show are locals and know their area and what suits. Maybe not as cost effective, but the areas of importance to individual places get addressed, rather than a blanket “we are going to do this for the whole area” of larger councils which is supposed to lead to savings, but leads to lengthy discussion on the whys and hows which of course removes the cost effectiveness.

      • sheppy

        I much prefer the pre “super” city way, apart from anything else it didn’t allow North Shore money to be diverted into a massive hole in the ground that most will likely never use. In no way, shape, or form has amalgamation lead to savings. It has however lead to massive empire building with zero accountability all on the Ratepayers tab. The “super” city is a failure and should be scrapped. The Auckland region would be better served by the previous system with perhaps a few much needed tweaks such as recall elections to prevent lame duck mayors hanging around wasting time and money

    • Doc45

      Having sat thru a couple of transport meetings of all the old councils plus a few govt depts and seen the chaos and inability to agree on even detail as to which council would pay for newspaper ads for public meetings for example I am not too sure that breaking up the ACC would advance the cause much.

  • Asian_driver

    Having a large unused back yard is a form of landbanking, force them to subdivide I say ! Maybe Winston lives in a house with a large section, far too big for a Superanuitant

    • johcar

      Many “ordinary” Kiwis would have large backyards, not for the express purpose of subdividing or cross-leasing at a later date, but because that’s how they grew up: lots of room for the kids to run around in, kick a ball and cause mayhem in a relatively confined/controlled space. Great for the backyard BBQ too, with friends and neighbours and all their kids!!

      These days, if you go to the auctions in Auckland (of which I have had the dubious pleasure in the recent past), most Asian investors won’t even look at a site unless there’s potential for an additional dwelling. And these are the ones that get the 2 (or more) times CV prices. So all those lovely, traditional, Kiwi backyards are going to disappear over time.

      Sad for the traditional Kiwi way of life….

    • XCIA

      Just as long as they legislate for at least two car parks per dwelling on site. There are roads on the shore that have been turned into one way tracks as a result of this sort of nonsense and very poor planning. Otherwise, get the yellow paint out.

    • Platinum Fox

      I don’t think Winnie has a big back yard in St Marys Bay.

      To an extent, the way that local authority rates are applied can act as an incentive for owners of large sections to subdivide or sell out to a developer. However, the way that council valuations are calculated does not always take account of the potential value of a land holding based on its highest or best use.
      News reports of properties selling for significantly more than their council valuation are common, but minimal analysis frequently identifies that the area of the section is such that it is capable of subdivision based on its existing zoning.
      In contrast there was a case reported in 2015 where a council value was halved after it was identified 35 per cent of the site on which there was a single dwelling was unusable for further dwellings due to it being cliff face.

  • rua kenana

    If people want to bank their own land that’s their own business.
    The fact they had more foresight than government or developers about future value of their land is no reason, quite the opposite in fact, for them to be forced to give it up cheaply to increase developers’ profits or to make it easier to enforce idiotic government policies.
    Interference in private affairs of this kind is socialism at its worst.

    • 10cents

      You are totally right. Property rights is a cornerstone of capitalism, and capitalism is what supports our society (along with democracy).

      Forcing land owners to subdivide or sell is utterly against the foundations of how modern, progressive society works. Land gets subdivided or sold where there is sufficient commercial pressure or desire to do it, but not because the owner is forced to by some politician.

      I am not a Winston supporter but I did think he was smarter than that.

  • Wayne Hodge

    I am not sure Winston has the correct understanding of the Hong Kong position. In HK the situation since 1841 is that the government owns all land and then grants leases to bidders. The government uses it’s ability to release new land/enable redevelopment as a means of controlling building supply and of creating government revenue. Effectively the HK government is a land bank and manipulates land supply to it’s advantage.

    Plus the very small area of HK means the situation is radically different from that in NZ., especially Auckland. Forcing redevelopment means nothing if infrastructure is lacking and there is no labour to build property. In fact the proposal could be counter productive as it may lead to an over supply of ‘cheap’ developments which become slums in short order.

    It seems to me that this is a media exercise rather than a well thought policy which has regard to all the ramifications.

  • Abjv

    While at it, legislate to require the council to provide the infrastructure to allow that development in two years. Then legislate to require the banks to lend money to the council to fund it because that council can’t afford to build that infrastructure…unless of course winston, you are happy for the rates to go up by 10 percent plus to fund it, or the taxpayer is going to stump up, in which case does that mean higher taxes or fewer hip replacements?