Brick Tease, Council Grant Axed

Brick Tease, Council Grant Axed

Stimulus Needed For Gold Coast Says ADC

Arnold Development Consultants (ADC) were disappointed by Gold Coast City Council’s recent decision not to proceed with the $5000-$8000 grant for new home buyers and builders. This grant would have been a great injection into the Gold Coast Construction and Development sector as well as having a flow on effect for the Gold Coast economy as a whole.

At times like this, when the construction industry has been struggling for 2 years, and the flow on effects of this struggle are being felt across the community, this grant scheme is exactly what the Gold coast needs to stimulate the economy.

It is a great disappointment that the scheme hasn’t proceeded and a wasted opportunity for the whole of the Gold Coast. The scheme, had it proceeded,  would have created employment and jobs for many Gold Coasters and sustained construction businesses that are currently struggling to make ends meet.

The flow on effects from this to the Gold Coast economy would have been beneficial and therefore ADC urges the council to reconsider this proposal at it’s earliest convenience.

Michael Arnold—Director, Arnold Development Consultants

Homebuyers left hanging as council dumps grants plan

BRICK TEASE

MATTHEW KILLORAN

HOMEBUYERS excited by the prospect of an extra $8000 towards their deposit have been left feeling let down after a decision by the Gold Coast City Council yesterday to scrap the plan.

Councillor Peter Young proposed that an unallocated developer subsidy fund of $2.4 million be used to stimulate building in the city by giving homebuyers up to $8000, depending on their circumstances.

He calculated the scheme could have helped up to 500 people buy or build homes. The plan was voted down by one vote, with Cr Young saying he believed the reason was politics, not economics.    He said he believed supporters of mayoral contender and former councillor  David Power carried the vote.

Cr Young is widely believed to also be considering a run at the mayoralty.   Mr Power denied being involved in the vote, while on councillor who voted against Cr Young’s plan, Ted Shepherd, said the proposal itself was politically motivated. Many councillors said they opposed the plan because of the costs the city was facing in splitting from regional water retailer, Allconnex.

Source: Gold Coast Buleltin
Pg 1, Tuesday, 02-08-11

How They Voted:

Against: Jan Grew, Bob La Castra, Margarett Grummitt, Chris Robbins, Greg Betts, Donna Gates, Ted Shepherd, Dawn Chrichlow

For: John Wayne, Peter Young, Eddy Sarroff, Susie Douglas, Daphne McDonald, Ron Clarke, Grant Pforr

COUNCIL
MATTHEW KILLORAN
killoranm@goldcoast.com.au

A DECISION by the Gold Coast City Council to dump a grant for home buyers was motivated by politics, not economics, says the man who proposed the idea, Councillor Peter Young.

Cr Young, who is believed to be considering a run for the city’s top job, said he believed supporters of mayoral contender and former councilor David Power carried the vote yesterday, dumping the $2.4 million proposal by eight votes to seven.

However Mr Power, a former deputy mayor, denied influencing the councilors and Cr Ted Shepherd, who voted against the grant, hit back at Cr Young, saying the proposal itself was politically motivated.

A development industry representative also raised concerns the decision came down to politics, not the city’s prosperity.

The proposed home buyers’ grant would have given people buying or building a new home in the city $5000 or $8000 if they were a first-home buyer.

Cr Young said the funds for the grant for up to 500 people would have come from an unused developer subsidy so there would be “zero budget impact”.

While the Sustainable City Future Committee unanimously voted in favour of the grant last week, it faced strong opposition yesterday, with many councilors pointing to the hight cost of splitting from water business Allconnex.

Mayoral candidates Susie Douglas and Eddy Sarroff, rumoured to announce their mayoral bids within weeks, voted for the grant.

Cr Young said some, but not all councilors who voted against the motion did so because of connections to “one of the declared mayoral candidates”.

“I’m confident there are politics at play rather than sound decision-making,” he said.
Mr Power said he had not talked to any councilors about the grant.

“(The council) is being played by political ambition, not by political representation,” he said.

Cr Shepherd, who voted against the grant, said he had not discussed it with any mayoral candidates.

He said it was Cr Young who was motivated by his as-yet undeclared mayoral run.

“If there’s any political motivation it’s his. He should declare his candidacy,” he said.

Cr Shepherd said he voted against the motion because he had concerns that if the grant was set up poorly it could leave families or investors “high and dry”.

Urban Development Institute of Australia Gold Coast boss Steve Harrison said he was bewildered by the council passing up the chance to stimulate the economy.

Source: Gold Coast Bulletin
Page 2, 2-8-11