Councils to blame for slow NAMA transfers – Tanaiste
TANAISTE Eamon Gilmore has blamed local authorities for the slow transfer of NAMA-held properties for the purpose of social housing.
The Government previously announced plans to fast-track the provision of houses from NAMA to local authorities in a bid to ease the housing crisis.
NAMA has to date identified almost 4,400 residential properties as being available and potentially suitable for social housing.
However, the scheme is moving at an extremely slow pace with concern being raised by a number of ministers in relation to its effectiveness.
The Labour leader yesterday heaped pressure on local authorities, which he said have to shoulder the blame for the slow take-up.
"The Government's policy is for NAMA to make available properties it has in its portfolio which could be put back for use by local authorities," Mr Gilmore said.
"We've been a bit disappointed, I have to say, by the take-up of this from local authorities. I think there is some reasons associated with it, I know that some local authorities have had questions about the quality about some of the properties concerned.
"But I would like to see a better take up by the local authorities of the properties being made available by NAMA," he added.
On the issue of the wider housing crisis, Mr Gilmore accepted that a "serious problem" exists. He said that a number of schemes are being pursued – including the restoration of some 1,000 boarded-up properties.
Mr Gilmore said the Government is determined to roll out proposals designed to kickstart the residential construction market.