17 Dec 2017

Wgtn City Council defends social housing clampdown

7:34 pm on 17 December 2017

Tenants are being given ample warning if their income is too high to qualify for social housing, a Wellington City Councillor says.

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Photo: 123rf.com

At least one tenant is angry, after the council told tenants to provide three months of bank statements, or face eviction.

But Lambton Ward councillor Brian Dawson said the council was not just throwing out tenants whose financial circumstances had improved.

"If someone gives us their information and it turns out that their income is over the threshold - we don't just say 'right, you're out in three months'.

"We say 'right, in 12 months' time we'll review this again and if you are still over the threshold, then we will give you 90 days notice."

Mr Dawson said there were very strict rules around what happened to the information.

"Very few people see that information, including myself...The only information we actually want is the income levels.

"So we're very happy for people to redact their bank statements, we don't care what they're spending their money on, we just want to know are you earning more than the threshold for city housing?"

Mr Dawson said the council was well within its rights to request the information.

The housing was there for those who genuinely needed it and there was currently a waiting list of about 300 to 400 people, he said.

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