Rent increase with no return: Ellis

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Housing Dessie Ellis TD slammed plans to apply the new family home tax to local authority and voluntary housing which could see higher rents for struggling tenants.
Deputy Ellis continued:
“The plan to apply this unfair tax on houses in the social housing system makes no sense and is completely counterproductive.
“Social housing was cut in the budget as were supports which many tenants rely on. It has been a terrible budget for the poorest in our society and now many will face a rent increase with no return.
“Local authorities who were meant to gain from the tax will have to pay around €25 million. This makes no sense and will weaken local authorities and voluntary housing bodies and hurt their tenants.
“This is an unfair tax plan to begin with but it is an outrage that the government have not exempted social housing.
“Sinn Féin proposed a progressive wealth tax which would have avoided this problem. We will continue to fight the home tax for a genuine tax on wealth”

Receivers of rent supplement must be protected from losing homes – Ellis

Dessie Ellis TD

November 6, 2012

Sinn Fein Housing spokesperson Dessie Ellis TD has called on the government to shield those in receipt of rent supplement from any further cuts and to protect those who are at threat of losing their homes due to cuts already imposed by the Fine Gael and Labour coalition. He made his comments following the publication of a report by Focus Ireland on the Rent Supplement scheme.

Ellis continued;

“The report says that by cutting rent supplement the government were seeking to use it to lower rents generally. Not only is this ethically wrong, playing with the lives of thousands of people on the scheme but it is also a completely wrong policy which has been shown not to work and ignores the reason for higher rents.

“People who were struggling before on rent supplement, are now fearful of losing their homes thanks to government cuts to the scheme. Quite a few already have and are now struggling to find alternative accommodation based on the reduced supplement.

“The government has cut and cut again from the most vulnerable and this cannot continue.

“They must assure people that rent supplement will not be cut in this budget, they must row back on previous cuts and put in place measures which make it easier for people to find accommodation which will take rent supplement and at reasonable rates.

“This should include direct dealings by the state with landlords to secure value for money and good quality accommodation for tenants.”