Thursday, June 20, 2024

AMCA welcomes affordable housing fund proposal

The Australian Mining Cities Alliance (AMCA), a collaboration of local governments from across Australia, has acknowledged the Federal Government’s proposed Housing Australia Future Fund.

AMCA Chair and Mount Isa City Council Deputy Mayor, Phil Barwick the Alliance was appreciative of the provisions in the Housing Australia Future Fund Bill for grants aimed at addressing acute housing needs, social housing and affordable housing.

“AMCA advocates for mining communities where housing stress is periodically extreme for low to moderate income households,” Cr Barwick said.

“With massive fluctuations in global demands for Australia’s resources, mining activity similarly peaks and falls in dramatic cycles. This places great demands on housing stock in mining communities and as a result, renting or buying falls beyond the reach of many ordinary workers forcing them to leave these communities.

“This in turn places pressure on the labour market, particularly for key workers (eg child care workers, nurses, teachers, Council workers, cleaners, retail workers etc..) who are essential to support mining activities, but do not enjoy high wages.”

He said the Alliance looked forward to debate on the Bill in Parliament and will be firmly highlighting the need for significant ongoing investment in affordable housing in mining communities across the nation.

“With the anticipated boom in critical minerals mining this will be more important than ever for the communities that underpin the resources sector and the wealth it generates for the nation,” Cr Barwick said.

He said AMCA will send a delegation to Canberra during February to meet with relevant Ministers to advocate for affordable housing and other key issues such as the need for well-planned and properly resourced transformations for mining communities whose current economies are based on fossil fuels mining and extraction.

“AMCA firmly believes that true mining communities whose economic base is predominantly derived from the mining or extraction of fossil fuels will be the most significantly affected communities of all, as a result of decarbonisation.”

“We look forward to working with Government to ensure that affordable housing is supplied to mining communities and that transformation for communities impacted by the Net Zero Economy is place-based, well planned, well managed and adequately funded,” he said.

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