Housing an election priority for Bellingen Labor Team

Bellingen Shire Council election candidate Luke Barbagallo has revealed his Labor team’s plan to fix the Shire’s housing crisis. Photo: Bellingen Shire Labor.


BELLINGEN Shire Council election candidate Luke Barbagallo and his Labor team have released a plan to address the Shire’s current housing crisis.

According to the Labor team, housing is one of the hottest issues in the Shire and the community is demanding action on it.

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The Labor team has announced its commitment to accelerated and effective implementation of the Bellingen Shire Local Housing Strategy.

Under the team’s plans, incentives will be offered to homeowners and landlords to create affordable housing for renters in the Shire, and the team will work to ensure all development in the Shire provides affordable options for low and middle-income prospective homeowners.

The team also plans for Bellingen Shire Council to play a role in obtaining public housing.

Key initiatives in the Labor team’s plan include:
● Accelerating the implementation of the Council’s existing ‘Local Housing Strategy’
● Providing incentives for the appropriate rezoning of land and converting properties
● Incentivising landlords to offer secondary dwellings and homes at affordable rents
● Supporting and seed-funding a community land trust
● Funding the Housing Matters Action Group to help drive progress and policy in Bellingen Shire and beyond
● Pursuing the State and Federal Government’s for a fair share of public housing investment.

Mr Barbagallo said there was already action being taken on housing in the community and this work needed to be further progressed within the Council chambers and by the Council executive.

“What’s needed now is action to make the Local Housing Strategy a reality,” Mr Barbagallo said.

“We need more types of housing of all types – for all budgets and for families, singles, the young, the old and the disadvantaged.

“The current council has adopted the Local Housing Strategy, and it’s time for fresh energy and commitment to its implementation.”

Mr Barbagallo said the State and Federal governments had failed the Bellingen region on housing policy.

“However, an innovative and progressive partnership between the community and the council can address these failings,” he stated.

“The housing crisis can be addressed with collaborative and consultative policies that prioritise immediate action.”

Mr Barbagallo said it was important to ensure whatever is done fits with the Shire’s natural environment, lifestyle and heritage.

“Our community fabric, culture and arts scene, our schools, our hospitals and our small businesses all rely on a diverse and affordable housing mix to prosper,” he said.

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