Member for Geraldton Ian Blayney has slammed the State Government for their lacklustre performance in ensuring public housing in Geraldton is adequately maintained and available to people in need.
“It’s ridiculous that we have 48 vacant public housing properties in Spalding,” Mr Blayney said.
“There should not be any vacant public housing properties in Geraldton when there are over 750 people on the public housing waitlist in the Midwest and Gascoyne.
“The Government have a responsibility to ensure that all public housing is readily available for members of the community, especially considering some individuals who make use of public housing may be some of the community’s most vulnerable.
“There has been no support offered to the Geraldton community by the McGowan Government since the closure of Cameliers last year and this revelation only seeks to reinforce the Government’s disregard for Geraldton residents.
Mr Blayney said it was vitally important that houses in Spalding are not left uninhabitable or empty because such carelessness will be detrimental to the success of the Spalding Precinct Plan.
“Homes damaged by vandalism need to be repaired immediately to ensure the ‘broken window effect’ does not cause the rest of the street to become locked in a downward spiral,” he said.
“The Spalding Precinct Plan aims to revitalise and beautify the area and this will be impossible if public housing is not efficiently and effectively maintained.
“Properties that are occupied are less likely to be susceptible to long term deterioration so it is critical the Government ensure these house are filled and maintained immediately.
“Geraldton residents are hoping the development will help boost the area and it’s unfair to see these hopes dashed because the Government aren’t on the same page as the community.
As well as calling on the Government to make improvements to public housing in the area, Mr Blayney is also calling on the Government to help fund the Spalding redevelopment.
“It’s shameful that the City Council can find $450,000 towards the suburb’s redevelopment but the State Government can’t find anything for the next five years.
“The Government need to start contributing towards the Spalding Precinct Plan firstly by fixing and filling all vacant properties and secondly by contributing funds towards the redevelopment,” Mr Blayney said.