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Housing NZ transfer won't go ahead

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 22/11/2016

The government has backed away from a proposal to transfer ownership of Housing New Zealand properties in Horowhenua to a community provider after consultation with iwi identified complexities.

Central government and the Horowhenua District Council had been exploring a joint transfer of properties and tenancies to a third party.

But Bill English, the minister responsible for Housing New Zealand, says the plan will not go ahead "at this time".

The proposal included 249 HNZ properties and 115 council pensioner units in Foxton, Levin and Shannon.

Mr English said the decision was dependent on factors including market sounding and consultation with iwi.

Two iwi involved have not yet settled Treaty of Waitangi claims with the Crown, creating complexities.

"Given the small scale of the transfer, and those complexities, we have decided not to package the HNZ properties with HDC," Mr English said.

HDC is expected to continue with its transfer next year.

"I'd encourage those community housing providers that have shown an interest in the HNZ portfolio to consider participating in the Council's transfer," Mr English said.

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