Friday, 4 June 2021
Affordable Housing Bill 2021: Committee Stage (Resumed)
Ivana Bacik (Labour)
I thank the Minister of State for his very constructive engagement and for accepting our amendment No. 58. We really welcome it. It is a great testament to the power of debate in the Seanad and the power of constructive engagement. We really appreciate the thoughtfulness that has gone into that and the Minister of State's very full and comprehensive response to the amendment. We believe this is important in the longer term. As I have said, we would have preferred 50 years but we are very glad the Minister of State has accepted the amendment; it goes a long way to meeting our concerns about ensuring maximum security for tenants under the new provisions. Again, I very much thank the Minister of State for this. It is very important to us in the Labour Party, and to so many of us across the House, to ensure the Bill is as good as it can be and does go a good deal of the way to meeting everyone's concerns about the current insecurity faced by so many tenants.
As I have said, and as the Minister of State acknowledged, in Dublin Bay South it is a particularly pressing issue. We have high levels of tenancy and really high levels of rent unaffordable for many. This sort of measure will be hugely important in inner-city Dublin, in the south-east inner city and so on. It will also be important across the country so I very much welcome that the Minister of State is accepting the Labour Party amendment and that the time period will be extended out to 40 years.