Monthly Archives: January 2013
Hon. Bill English, Deputy Prime Minister of New Zealand writes in the Introduction that Land has been made artificially scarce by regulation that locks up land for development. This regulation has made land supply unresponsive to demand. When demand shocks occur, as they did in the mid-2000s in New Zealand and around the world, much of that shock translates to higher prices rather than more houses. This summarizes how urban containment policies ("smart growth" or "urban consolidation") raises house prices, reduces discretionary incomes and impedes the quality of life (while increasing poverty). The 9th Annual Survey chronicles the imperative for restoring housing affordability.
9th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey
HOUSING AFFORDABILITY: KEY TO ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL SUSTAINABILITY
337 Markets: Australia . Canada . China (Hong Kong) . Ireland . New Zealand . United Kingdom . United States
While it would be inappropriate to risk taxpayer funds to support leisure travel in the best of times, it would go beyond the pale to provide funding while Congress and the President continue to (unsuccessfully) argue over what taxes to raise and what programs to cut. If the project were financially viable, it would be financed by the commercial financial sector. They have passed on the gamble. So should the federal government.
Wendell Cox is a visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation. In a 2000 report, he predicted the eventual bankruptcy of the Las Vegas Monorail, which project promoters claimed would be able to repay $600 million of bonded debt. That report used similar analysis, and its accurate prediction of both bankruptcy and realistic ridership was predicated on overly optimistic revenue and ridership statistics, which were the basis of bond issues.