Min. For Housing Meets Developers In Dimly Lit Car Park At 2am With Case Filled With €1bn In Unmarked Bills
FLASHING the headlights on his ministerial car Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien gave the signal to the nation’s developers that the deal was on.
“The cranes fly high in the Dublin sky,” O’Brien said, before placing the case filled with €1bn of unmarked bills on the ground and kicking it in the developers’ direction.
Flanked by department heavies and carrying enough money to fund generous dividends at construction companies, O’Brien spoke the agreed code word to verify these are the same developers who relentlessly lobby his department to loosen regulations and bankroll more subsidies.
“Don’t try anything stupid,” O’Brien urged of potentially trigger happy developers, but didn’t think of taking his own advice when suggesting a development fee waiver scheme worth €300mn to developers would solve the housing crisis.
Knowing how handing over €1bn in savings and subsidies to developers will look to the general public, O’Brien arranged for ‘the goods’ to be picked up in a dimly lit, rarely used car-park, at 2am.
“Oh wow, I think I own this place,” said the developer, of the car park he pleaded with Dublin city council to change the land use for, claiming he would build fast-track affordable housing on only to sit on the site for 8 years and watch the value balloon.
“And after giving you the money, the deal is you’ll get building more housing and pass on the savings you make from this €1bn I’ve given you onto home buyers, right?” O’Brien asked, only to greeting by laughter.
“Ha, yeah, if that’s what you want to tell yourself. If it helps you sleep at night, sure” offered the developer, before running his money many in Caymans.