Hon Murray McCully, Minister of HousingHousing
Housing Minister, Murray McCully, has slammed comments about Housing New Zealand rent increases by opposition spokesperson Graham Kelly as grossly misleading and totally unbalanced.
``Mr Kelly wants to paint a selective picture of 15,450 Housing New Zealand tenants being crippled by rent rises on 1 July, some of which are over $100 per week.''
``The fact is that the July rent increases for these 15,450 Housing New Zealand tenants total only $424,421 per week ($22 million per year).''
``Yet on the same date, 1 July, the Government will start spending an additional $58 million per year, as the first stage of honouring the Coalition Agreement's housing programme to assist people with housing costs.''
``Over 290,000 New Zealand households will benefit from over $760 million in housing support during the 1997/98 year - a very substantial commitment to assisting lower income New Zealanders with their housing needs.''
``It is not surprising to me that Mr Kelly has difficulty understanding the operation of housing policy, but it is disappointing that some media outlets wish to assist him in his irresponsible scaremongering.''