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Housing policies in tatters



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LIBERAL News Release

Federal Secretariat: P.O. Box E13. Queen Victoria Terrace. A C T. 2600 Tel.: (062)73 2564

THE HON MICHAEL HODGMAN QC MP

SHADOW MINISTER FOR HOUSING AND CONSTRUCTION

. "The Housing Policies of the Hawke Socialist Government are already in tatters - and disaster lies ahead," Opposition Frontbencher Mr Michael Hodgman QC, said in Sydney today.

Mr Hodgman, the,Shadow Minister for Housing and Construction, was Officially Opening the Timber Development Association Industry Forum 1 The Future of Forest Products in the Building Industry1.

"On Interest Rates, their firm promise of 1984 that Interest Rates would drop in 1985 now lies in ruins. The Home Owners of Australia have been cruelly deceived," Mr Hodgman said. .

"Mr Hawke's firm Election promise to keep the First Home Owners Scheme 1 as it is' now lies in ruins. We have seen cuts as high as 23.53% inflicted in the last three weeks. Nine Thousand new homes will not now be built in Australia in 1985/86. This will mean

retrenchments and loss of jobs in the Building Industry and 9,000-plus prospective First Home Purchasers have had their dreams shattered," Mr Hodgman said.

Mr Hodgman said that continuing speculation about the Hawke Socialist Government's proposed 46 cents in the dollar Capital Gains Tax had had a disastrous impact on the provision of Private Rental Accommodation.

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"Millions of dollars worth of proposed developments are in abeyance - because of the threat of a Capital Gains Tax.

Mr Hawke's own National Working Party on Private and Community Rental Housing has stated that speculation about the proposed Capital Gains Tax has caused rents throughout Australia 1 to soar above Inflation1 and at the sametime has brought about a major shortfall in the provision of Private Rental Accommodation throughout Australia," Mr Hodgman said.

Mr Hodgman said that Mr Hawke now had no honourable option but to table the Report in Parliament for all Members to see exactly what it said.

"Mr Hawke must now give a firm undertaking that any Capital Gains Tax introduced by his Government will not apply to the Housing Industry's provision of Private Rental Accommodation throughout Australia," Mr Hodgman said. ■

Mr Hodgman said that the introduction of a Consumption Tax would also have a savage impact on the Housing and Building Industries - and would certainly force prices up dramatically.

"When you add them altogether - Interest Rates, the savage cuts in the First Home Owners Scheme, the spectre of the Capital Gains Tax, and the enormous impact of a Consumption Tax - you have a recipe for disaster, and it is only a few months down the track. The forward-estimate of 146,000 new commencements

in 1985/86 simply cannot be made - and the Government knows it.

To add to the misery, I am certain that the $1 billion cuts of which Mr Hawke so proudly boasts, will certainly involve cancellation and postponement of major Commonwealth Capital Works projects scheduled for 1985/86," Mr Hodgman said.

ENDS

14 May, 1985 '