Penang state assemblyman proposes RM200m floor price for properties within heritage zone

GEORGE TOWN: Eyebrows were raised when Teh Lai Heng (DAP – Komtar) (pix) proposed a RM200 million floor price for properties within the George Town Heritage Zone as a measure to deter speculation by real estate players.

"I am saying RM200 million so they cannot buy," he said in his supplementary question after Penang Housing, Town and Country Planning Committee chairman Jageep Singh answered his written question on restricting or forbidding foreign companies or foreigners to purchase property within the zone.

"Property owners have the right to sell their properties," he said.

Muhamad Farid Saad (BN – Pulau Betong) then asked how the state can use the Penang Heritage Enactment 2011 to control rents within the zone.

Jagdeep said the Enactment did not possess provisions to control rents and the state is studying the feasibility of introducing a Rent Coordination Enactment to ensure fair rental rates in the zone.

In his reply to Yeoh Soon Hin (DAP – Paya Terubong), Jagdeep said 11,487 low-cost (LC) units and 9,400 low-medium cost (LMC) units have been built in Penang since 2008 compared to 4,355 LC units and 769 LMC units from 2001 to 2007 under the then BN state regime.

On floods, Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow saying the state was taking a three pronged approach to address the issue, namely

>> to initiate operations to clean and clear major drains including upgrading drains and pump house at residential areas and setting up a task force to monitor and respond to floods.

>> impose flood mitigation measures on development where developers are required to upgrade drainage systems around the area where the projects take place and

>> to continuously carry out flood mitigation projects to minimise the impact of flooding in reply to Muhamad Farid and A. Tanasekharan (DAP – Bagan Dalam).

"The state has spent RM132.61million since 2008 on flood mitigation projects," he said adding the monies were from contributions imposed on developers at a rate of RM50,000 per acre of a project.