‘Church fears rezoning plan’

 

Sir, – Kenneth Harper muses about property speculation being a core religious value (Letters, April 30th).

His letter was prompted by the opposition of the Dominican Sisters to rezoning proposals which, if implemented, would affect the value of their land holding (“Church fears rezoning plan will affect land values”, News, April 29th).

Surely the issue here is why any private landowner, religious or lay, should benefit from the enormous increase in the value of land holdings occasioned by two public acts – the zoning of land for residential or commercial development and the grant of planning permission. I cannot understand why our young people should have to take out 30-year mortgages to pay for this windfall gain.

I would like the Minister for Housing to explain why we do not take steps to deal with this contributor to unaffordable housing.

I accept that it is not the only factor but it is one that to the layman looks well capable of resolution.

If that needs a referendum on constitutional change, so be it.

We have been dragged to the ballot box for less compelling reasons over the past few years. –Yours, etc,

PAT O’BRIEN,

Rathmines,

Dublin 6.