Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN
A short time ago you challenged us to put forward solutions to the housing emergency. Here are two that the Greens took to the last election. Will you direct your Housing minister to regulate the short-stay accommodation market to free up homes for families? Will you explore adopting the ACT model where rental increases were capped at CPI to keep rent affordable and to stop landlords from gouging?
Madam Speaker, I thank the member for her question. It is not true for anyone to suggest that the sharing accommodation regime in Tasmania is unregulated but it is one which we consider to be balanced appropriately to support those who come to our state as tourists and need accommodation. It was not that long ago that the tourism sector was saying they needed more accommodation available for the rapid growth in tourism, and that is supported by a balanced approach.
Ms O'Connor - So no regulation whatsoever.
Mr HODGMAN - No, it is not accurate to say it is unregulated. It is a balanced approach to dealing with an issue with respect to properties that are owned by people of Tasmania who, in my view, should be able to utilise them as they see fit.
We have the socialist regime of the Labor-Greens coalition that wants to tax Tasmanians if they do not use their properties in a way they would want them to. We have a situation now where the members opposite want us to intervene in people's private affairs and say, 'This is what you have to do with your property and if you don't, we'll punish you through a new tax, or we will cap the amount you might be able to receive as a return on your investment you have made to deal with an issue that can and should be dealt with by government'. That is to provide more investment into affordable houses, which we are doing, to provide more support for people needing crisis accommodation, as we are doing, to look at new ways to work with the non-government sector to partnership in the growth in affordable and public housing, which we are now doing and which is all part of a strategic plan to deal with the challenges Tasmania faces in 2018.
They are so different from 2014, but this Government is better able to deal with them because we have the budget that you left in a mess back into surplus. We have the economy that you left in recession back into one of the strongest performing in the country, and that is nothing that could have ever been claimed by a Labor-Greens government. This Government is totally and utterly committed to ensuring more Tasmanians feel the benefit of a strong economy and a balanced budget and that is through investing more than ever happened under Labor and the Greens into affordable housing.