Question of the day

Phil Twyford has no answers to Judith Collins’ questioning:

Question No. 10—Housing and Urban Development

10. Hon JUDITH COLLINS (National—Papakura) to the Minister of Housing and Urban Development: How many KiwiBuild houses have been built in the 145 days he has been in Government?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD (Minister of Housing and Urban Development): The KiwiBuild programme kicks in on 1 July this year, with an appropriation of $2 billion and the ambition to build 100,000 affordable homes in response to the national housing crisis. The first houses will begin to reverse the deficit of over 71,000 houses, inherited from her Government. The number of houses built so far is the same as the number of cars that she crushed. But don’t worry, there are thousands more on the way.

Hon Judith Collins: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. The Minister did not answer or address a very straight question, which was: how many? If the answer is none, which is not what we could have got from what he said, he needs to say it, I suggest.

Mr SPEAKER: I’m not sure that the answer was accurate, but the Minister did address the question.

Hon Judith Collins: When he said on The AM Show last Friday that he was confident of meeting his KiwiBuild targets from 1 July this year, did he include in his estimates any of the developments that were already consented prior to the change of Government?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: The number of houses that have been set out in the KiwiBuild pipeline is far, far greater than the number of affordable houses that the former Government could say that they built over nine years, and that was none.

Hon Judith Collins: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. I do not believe that the Minister has addressed that question. He’s talking about pipelines. No one is suggesting people should be living in pipelines.

Mr SPEAKER: I think the member can ask her question again.

Hon Judith Collins: Thank you, Mr Speaker. When he said on The AM Show last Friday that he was confident at meeting his KiwiBuild targets from 1 July this year, did he include in his estimates any of the developments that were already consented prior to the change of Government?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: Firstly, the number of houses consented is irrelevant because everybody knows you can’t live in a consent. Secondly, the former Government did not plan to build any affordable houses. This Government is committed to building houses that young Kiwi families can afford to buy and live in.

Hon Judith Collins: Has he discussed with developers how he plans to convert existing consented housing land into KiwiBuild land?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: The task is not to actually convert existing consented housing into KiwiBuild land. We’re working with the private sector on plans to buy and underwrite KiwBuild properties off the plan. Our land for housing programme is working with third-party developers to develop vacant Crown land and private land that’s been acquired for that purpose, and we’re building KiwiBuild homes on Housing New Zealand land that’s been developed, and we’ve got large-scale urban development projects under way that will include thousands of KiwiBuild houses.

Anahila Kanongata’a-Suisuiki: How many KiwiBuild houses will be built in the first three years of the programme?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: Once the KiwiBuild programme’s up and running from July 1, we expect around 1,000 KiwiBuild homes in the first year, 5,000 in the second year, and 10,000 in the third year, delivering the promised 100,000 affordable homes by mid-2028.

Hon Judith Collins: Why is he proposing to count houses from 1 July 2018, when by that date he will have been the Minister for a whole 248 days?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: Because that’s when the $2 billion Budget appropriation for KiwiBuild kicks in.

Hon Judith Collins: When he became the Minister of Housing and he said he would begin the KiwiBuild programme within his first 100 days, does he now mean that 100 days equals 248 days?

Hon PHIL TWYFORD: I said that because that’s exactly what I have done and exactly what this Government is doing.

Phil Twyford will likely be the first minister to fall over. His mouth has written cheques his government can’t cash.

There is no way they will be able to build 1000 houses by the end of the year. If they do claim that then they will already have been consented under the previous government. He is so far behind that he is now a risk.



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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

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