Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


‘Housing crisis is our biggest challenge …’

First published March 13

On Sunday 11 March I announced my candidacy as an Independent for the Legislative Council Seat of Hobart.

Hobart is a great place to live. Nestled between the mountain and the river, we have much to be thankful for. However, we face our fair share of challenges and to best address these we need hardworking Independent Members of Parliament with new ideas and new energy to scrutinise government and hold political parties to account.

One issue that is in drastic need of immediate action is the housing crisis forcing local families to live in tents.

I have written to Premier Will Hodgman in advance of the housing summit planned for this week, outlining how a portion of land at Macquarie Point should be dedicated towards construction of affordable housing, and setting out why this idea should be put firmly on the crisis summit table.

My proposal is for the Tasmanian Government to require that 10% of residences built at Macquarie Point be affordable housing (as defined in the State Government’s Affordable Housing Strategy).

Building affordable housing at Macquarie Point is a win-win-win.

It would help provide more Tasmanian families with an affordable place to live.

It would increase social inclusion by bringing people from different backgrounds and cultures into the heart of our city.

It would help combat traffic congestion because someone living at Macquarie Point and working in the Hobart CBD would be able to walk to work and leave their car at home.

Richard Griggs
Independent Candidate for Legislative Council Seat of Hobart
For more of my policies: www.richardgriggs.com.au
Polling day is 5 May 2018

Copy of Letter to Premier Hodgman, 11 March 2018 …


*Richard Griggs is the Independent Candidate for Legislative Council Seat of Hobart

Authorised by Nick Griggs, 295 Elizabeth Street, North Hobart

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. MjF

    March 18, 2018 at 2:24 pm

    The key being, Trev, that it can be actioned pretty quickly. Like by the end of this week you could have buildings on the move and one area possibly under lease as a site if people involved are committed to having a decent crack.
    All Hodgman has to do is arm the right people with suitable credit cards and get it happening.

    Set them up in the middle of Elwick track even as a crisis solution.

  2. fiona musgrave

    March 18, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    You can see here how small dwellings can be built easily and communities can be formed with little expense: https://www.change.org/p/auckland-council-building-tiny-homes-for-the-homeless-in-auckland

    We must ask why politicians, who are charged with the responsibility of caring for the vulnerable, are allowed to abuse them through lack of funding and a competent process.

    The lack of ethics in a first world country, especially wherein we could all have a much higher quality of life very easily, means that ethics are not being upheld.

    Every person is responsible for demanding that the most ethical leaders, those who will provide the absolute best care possible, are in the top jobs – but this does not seem to be the case.

    If every person was aware of the realities then each would refuse to continue living the way we do.

    Look at how Scandinavia has provided better welfare for its people!

  3. TGC

    March 18, 2018 at 10:23 am

    #18 … Seems a reasonable solution – and it could be financed by imposing a ‘levy’ on rates paid by all ratepayers across Tasmania. This will mean that those in and/or owning houses are helping to meet the housing needs of those not in those categories.
    Businesses could be included by imposing a levy on some aspect of their present taxes.

  4. MjF

    March 17, 2018 at 9:02 pm

    Spot on, RCH #17 …

    There are literally 100’s of late model demountable dongas sitting around in mainland yards and paddocks all looking for the next home/project/location. All they need is water, power and sewerage connected as they are set up above ground and designed to be a complete self contained community with provided kitchen and messing facilities. I lived in these construction camps for several years and found them totally functional and comfortable. Some single workers lived in them full time as they were actually their homes.

    A search of most online large auction houses will include inventory of this stock. Load one onto a flatdeck trailer and cart if anywhere in the country, lift off with a decent sized forklift and sit it up on blocks anywhere. Establish a small community, employ security and get people into safe, weatherproof and comfortable accommodation. Cheapest and quickest solution to the problem.

    The government can action this immediately, rent some paddocks in suitable locations, relax local government laws, organise a couple of gensets, a portable sewerage treatment plant and water tanks/pumps, and get on with it. All these additional services can also be bought as complete packages and just plumbed in or bolted on.

    As more traditional housing is released or built, guests can then be transitioned from dongas to houses. This also means added work for local trades and various other providers.

  5. Robin Charles Halton

    March 17, 2018 at 12:53 pm

    #15 re MP, thats why only demountables should be considered at this stage to house those in need of urgent accommodation which could continue through this decade as the sewerage plant relocation would be at an enormous cost for government as well as environmental problems associated with the unreliable nature and economics of pumping sewerage a considerable distance upstream to Self Point.

    With winter on the way The immediate solution is to provide roofs over heads.
    Accommodation does not need to be fancy, a move in line with a tad up from a former Hydro camp amenties is not the end of the world for those who are keen to live closer to the city and find work and/or study where is it practical to so.

    Leaving people home less or living in their cars or tents at the Showground should not be tolerated, the government needs to show action asap!

  6. Kevin Moylan

    March 17, 2018 at 11:13 am

    Have any of the above ever been a homeless person? I assume not. Homeless people don’t contribute to Tas Times or Four Corners. We have no public voice. Innate human survival is their only thought and behaviour. If not acutely/chronically depressed or actively suicidal. Physically ill.

    A real Christian would offer some food, shelter, security, belonging, and hope for a future. The basic human need ‘to feel safe and out of danger’ is never more profound. On guard! Afraid! 24/7

    The reason I lost my home (I spent seven years building) farm and horses, was because I spoke out as an advocate for the Tasmanian mentally ill.

    Prior to my involuntary Whistle-blowing, I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress following attempted murder(s) at Spencer Psychiatric Clinic and another attempt in Wynyard Town as a public interest Whistle-blower, preceded by ‘death threats’ and physically bashed. July 5th 1999, ie “If you don’t back off now, you’ll disappear – six-foot under.”

    Never investigated! My Victim of Crime application 4.9.2000, to The Supreme Court, replied, ‘We don’t have the resources to investigate.’ ie a Non Citizen! An Outlaw of The State .. a person not to be afforded the protection of the law. I know who my patsy/messenger of evil intent is, where he worked and Tas registration number. I still don’t know, yet, who gave the sinister orders? Why?

    I am not alone, there are many others .. and still it goes on in The Secret State. Who is the Commonwealth Tassie Watchdog? Whistle-blower protectors? And Tassie wonders, where have all our nurses gone? I have not worked/nursed since 1995.

    Nine torturous years and four derelict and tainted lawyers later (I got one struck off) I was finally granted a ‘sham-rigged’ mediation and conciliation conference after Premier Bacon was admonished by The Australian Nursing Federation, Federal Secretary, Jill Iliffe. Demanding ‘natural justice in the interests of humanity.’

    I was deliberately and systemically driven to bankruptcy and homelessness, then terrorised from Tasmania in grave fear of my shattered life. That’s my payback punishment for challenging this incestuous ruthless mob of thugs and spooks!

    Beware of The Unrecognised Socialised Sociopath(s) for they will become your downfall and despair.

    I spent 17 weeks in a tent on the banks of the Murray River waiting for my week in court to have my/our evidence heard and tested. It never happened! A $20 million class action was pending.

    Homelessness is the pits of life .. never judge us until you know the full story of what or ‘whom’ led to our financial, familial, career and social demise. Who really cares anyway? I’m OK mate!

    Caring people ask, “Were you ever suicidal” “No, never, because I knew deep down – I would be killing the wrong (sick!) person.”

    “A man can never be a man until he has a home of his own.” – Nelson Mandela

  7. mike seabrook

    March 17, 2018 at 2:10 am


    no structures permitted within 400 or so metres of sewerage treatment plants or the councils etc. on the hook for stench effects when the class action ambulance chasers get active.

    note also david walshes issues and the rosny hill issues within 400 or 500 metres of sewerage treatment plants

    who wants to pay for their removal

    guess lots of asbestos and hydrocarbons on the mac point previously reclaimed lands ( and guess also under part of evans street) – who wants to pay

  8. Mike Bolan

    March 15, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    #10 … Hi & thanks, Kim. Governments are one of the major causes of ‘inflation’ through their generous salary/benefit schemes, ramping up prices of power, water and other essentials, like taxation policies that favour industries and the wealthy and so on.

    Whenever anything that might be positive happens, the governments are out claiming credit. When it all turns to crap, and the population suffers, the governments are busy pointing elsewhere.

    We need 21st century governance. We’ve got a 19th century worldview, priorities and structures (extraction, favour overseas interests, reliance on bureaucracy … the list is long). See the BRICS One belt, one road videos on YouTube.

  9. Robin Charles Halton

    March 14, 2018 at 3:44 pm

    Richard, The government hasnt a clue what to do with Macquarie Point, maybe it is the sewerage plant on site which is stopping any investment beyond a well thought out overload car park for the city and areas for seasonal use to hold local cultural events.
    I think that a few of the old sheds are rented out, one for a bar/brewery and another for theatrical practice, not sure of the others!

    Demountable housing should be a possibility , on the shorter term, 5-10years given the unknowns affecting major investment at the site which could drag on for years to ever justify moving a perfectly modern sewerage plant elsewhere off the current site.

    The area could well progress to be a part of the housing for rental solution to serve people with local jobs or study, most definitely the government should not wasting the area for various theme park ideas as Mona had planned.

    It has been said the site is unsuitable for major structural development because of the filled in swampy river flat location with the Hobart Rivulet nearby as well as being situated behind a working port, those could be another reasons why development has stalled.

    Another site is at New Norfolk as there is plenty of space with some housing already established on the old Royal Derwent site opposite Millbrook Rise and older established housing between Hobart Road and Poulters Road to the south of the Lachlan Creek.

    Norfolk is now serviced by a new Woolworths supermarket and a damn good High School being only 35 Km from Hobart. The town is slowly getting back on its feet after the closure of the Royal Derwent site in 1999.

    Back then affordable housing should have been a part of the solution pending the sale of the site which has sold for a song to a private developer by former Minister David Llellwyn.

    The government has a lot of catching up to do, lack of and poor decisions re infrastructural planning is not an uncommon practice among our State government

  10. Simon Warriner

    March 13, 2018 at 7:08 pm

    re #11 … and conflicting one’s interests by standing as a party candidate is a demonstration of what, exactly? Neither integrity nor intelligence, as far as I can see.

    Perhaps that is where the problem lies.

    Now how do we go about fixing that?

  11. john hayward

    March 13, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    The public housing problem, and many others, could possibly be solved by making a demonstrated modicum of both integrity and intelligence prerequisites for election to the Tasmanian Parliament.

    John Hayward

  12. Kim Peart

    March 13, 2018 at 12:30 pm

    Re: #8, Mike Bolan … Do we have a growth economy that requires poverty, and therefore also homelessness, to keep the growth machine going?

    “The Non-Accelerating Inflation Rate of Unemployment is a term used by economists and politicians to refer to the level of unemployment, between 4% and 6%, considered necessary to prevent inflation taking off.”

    If yes, then this drives unpaid overtime, under-payment of wages, under-employment, unemployment, poverty and homelessness.

    If yes, this is the prime driver of the housing crisis.

    If yes, then politicians have been busy maintaining a system that requires workers to keep the growth in poverty system going, so some people can grab a larger share of the national pie, and a few make an absolute killing.

    If the people do not demand fairness for all citizens, then the Premier’s summit may find a few bandaids that solve the housing crisis, on the surface, but the forces that drive the problem will remain, along with poverty and homelessness.

    In my TT article published today ~ Fixing the Housing Crisis ~ I explore a few ways to solve this problem, which would also end homelessness and create work.

    This can be through the present system, but by including all citizens in the economy and the society.

    A simple addition of fairness.

    To achieve that will mean quite a fight against the current growth system.

    It will mean a total change in the way we allow ourselves to be governed.

    It will see more empowerment from the grass roots.

    It will mean more wealth is created, and shared fairly.

    By its nature, the growth system is driven to give more wealth to the well-off.

    That wealth is taken from the poor.

    Then the poor get humiliated, disciplined, punished and isolated by the system, via Centrelink, with systems like the Centrelink robot which is all about employing fewer workers and saving money with a faulty program that puts the onus on Centrelink recipients to prove that they are innocent.

    Then there is the way outback and Aboriginal communities are being treated now, with a massive work for the dole scam which effectively saves the government many millions of dollars by not paying people deemed naughty.

    Are we ready to fight for a Fair Go, or will we accept a packet of Hodgman brand bandaids?

  13. Tony Stone

    March 13, 2018 at 10:43 am

    Housing is not our biggest challenge, stopping human population growth is the only challenge that can solve all our problems.

    At the insane rate of population growth, nothing you do with housing will fix the problems. All it will do is make things worse, as more and more destructive humans flood the planet.

    With the idiotic policies of the political parties, backed by their corporate masters, whose only aim is profit growth at any cost. We are doomed to end up like every other place on the planet, crowded, poverty and crime ridden, plus massive pollution and environmentally destructive waste.

    A sensible government would not allow any more housing to be built in Tas and certainly no high rise apartments, accommodation or increased housing density.

    That way we would stop people settling here to escape the chaos and destructions their lifestyle have created, in the places they are fleeing from.

    We also need to stop listening to the useless PC crowd, who seem to live way off in some deluded fantasy land and never in the real world. These types are destroying our societies, with their deranged demands and stupid claims of human rights and civil liberties, taking precedence over a viable sustainable future.

  14. Mike Bolan

    March 13, 2018 at 1:32 am

    I have a problem with the ‘housing crisis’ description. Why not ‘crisis of governance, planning and public priorities’ which sheets the blame home to those who need to change their performance, ideas and priorities to meet current housing demand?

    Thousands of public servants, hundreds of policy advisors and politicians…what have they been doing all these years? Didn’t they know that population was exceeding housing capacity? Duh!

  15. TGC

    March 12, 2018 at 11:02 pm

    On some estimates Tasmania requires around 1,000 new houses to meet the needs of the currently homeless – or those looking for homes. This is in addition to new housing for young people moving out of the family home.

    1,000 new buildings multiplied by say $250.0000 — shouldn’t be too difficult to find the money.

  16. mike seabrook

    March 12, 2018 at 4:54 pm

    why no re-purposing of st georges church and adjoining grounds at battery point for housing?

    why no housing on part of anglesea barracks?

    why no housing on part of dowsings and wilkinsons points on the waterfront at glenorchy?

    why no significant action on red and green red tape and other procedural costs and delays.?

    do not waste further time and resources on macquarie point.

    question what the site is worth now.

    question what the site is worth after est. $150 million is spent on relocating the sewerage treatment plant and other administration and remediation costs.

  17. Lynne Newington

    March 12, 2018 at 4:21 pm

    Italian families, to name another, are well known for their sparse lifestyle to get a home, spaghetti their main staple and home grown salads etc .. then comes their local priest for a meal and it’s a banquet.

    And sadly in the past that I’ve known, compromising themselves in an attempt to keep their young men at home, allowing sleep overs with girlfriends [Australian] something I felt sad about.

  18. Christopher Eastman-Nagle

    March 12, 2018 at 3:26 pm

    First and foremost, the median house price in Hobart is $391,000. In Melbourne it is $640,000 and Sydney it is $850,000. Hobart is cheap by a very long margin, even allowing for lower wages there.

    Second, if the tourist industry is putting pressure on housing rental stock, stop obstructing CBD high rise hotel development that is aimed at the tourist market. Compromise.

    Fourth, stop resisting high density apartment development around transport hubs.

    Fifth, offer private home owners tax incentives/subsidies to subdivide their blocks for rental accomodation.

    Sixth, don’t copy Victoria by introducing landlord tenant legislation that is hostile to landlords.

    Seventh, promote Tasmania as the not-yet-tourist-soiled-Venice-of-the-south. It is surprising how much social housing can be built with a few tourist tax dollars coming through the door. And while about it, don’t obstruct new tourist infrastructure like 4 wheel drive wilderness treks and mountain rail cars. Put some robust environmental governance rules around them and/or environmental offsets instead.

    Eighth, beggars can’t be choosers. If it is possible to move to cheaper locations outside Hobart, go there. If that isn’t possible, share the roof with other people.

    My Greek wife lived in a single room in a shared house with her parents and sister until they were 15 and 13, with the girls sleeping top to toe in a single bed. They did that for 9 years while their parents saved for house of their own. It was a good strategy and it isn’t rocket science.

    Hope that helps

  19. Kim Peart

    March 12, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    You may have heard that Finland solved the homeless problem, by providing homes.

    This turned out to be cheaper than providing shelters and other services.

    This week, one very simple question needs to be asked.

    If Finland can solve homelessness, what is our problem?

  20. Keith Antonysen

    March 12, 2018 at 11:27 am

    A major theme from last night on the ABC was excessive migration. Migrants are not to blame, but governments of various political persuasions have been caught napping in relation to the lack of future planning of infrastructure to keep up with housing demands.
    The main ABC focus had been on Sydney and Melbourne, though it was acknowledged as being a matter of concern in other States.

    In the past, the Tasmanian Government had been involved with creating housing for those unable to obtain suitable housing.

    Negative gearing and AirB&B have not helped matters in providing accommodation for the less well off through house prices rapidly increasing.

  21. Mike

    March 12, 2018 at 9:50 am

    Ultimately, the problem is our unsustainable monetary system that creates money out of thin air as debt. This system absolutely needs growth. We’re told growth is good for us, but it’s actually slowly killing civilisation.

    Limits to growth were predicted 45 years ago, and nothing was done about it. Today we reap the results. Building more houses is like putting bandaids on a cancer patient. Eventually we’ll have to treat the disease rather than the symptoms.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To Top