Anthony Albanese has announced a new $2 billion "social housing accelerator" as he ups the ante on the Greens, saying he is "not going to wait around" for them over the contentious $10 billion housing bill which is yet to pass Parliament.
In a speech to the Victorian Labor conference in Melbourne, a copy of which has been seen by The Canberra Times, the Prime Minister will reveal he had a phone hook up with state and territory leaders on Friday to approve the new funding to be delivered to state and territory governments within the next two weeks.
It comes after the significant compromise from the Greens earlier this month: that they would pass the stalled housing bill if the government guaranteed $2.5 billion per year in public and affordable housing funding as well as committing to negotiating a rent freeze through National Cabinet.
The social housing accelerator would be an offer of money to the states and territories to use, or commit to use, within two years on either new social housing, spot purchasing or renovations to make affordable homes liveable.
"That's what this is about: real dollars, driving real change and building more homes," the Prime Minister is to tell the crowd of Labor faithfuls.
"And our government is not going to wait around while members of the Greens political party call for more housing in the media while opposing it in their electorates and voting against it in the Parliament."
"The Greens imagine that their stubborn, inflexible refusal to compromise or negotiate serves their political interest. But - delegates - our focus is the national interest."
The government wants the Housing Australia Future Fund legislation, designed to fund the build of 30,000 affordable homes over five years, passed before the end of the June sittings.
But it is mired in drawn out negotiations.
Key crossbenchers, the Jacqui Lambie Network senators and ACT independent senator David Pocock are backing the bill and are calling on the Greens to let it pass the Senate.
"They are a party of protest. Happy to promise the world, while organising a petition against every new apartment building," Mr Albanese is expected to say on Saturday,
"The Greens have blocked more houses than they've ever built. But we are a party of government - and we know Australians deserve the respect of practical action."
The Housing Minister Julie Collins has said the government has met all eight of the concerns raised, but Greens housing spokesperson Max Chandler-Mather belittled the government's last concession.
The government had agreed to scrap an annual cap on fund disbursements and replace it with a guarantee of annual disbursements of $500 million, indexed from 2029-30, and would include provisions empowering the treasurer and finance minister to increase the size of future fund payouts.
"When Labor can find $30 billion a year for the Stage 3 tax cuts, and $12 billion in tax concessions for property investors, it beggars belief that all Labor can find for housing is $500 million in 12 months time," Mr Chandler-Mather said this week.
The Greens have also compromised in a different direction. They had demanded that the fund spend $5 billion a year on housing but recently halved that to $2.5 billion. They also want a rent freeze negotiated through National Cabinet.
In a rev up for the Labor crowd, the Prime Minister is to also turn his attention to the Liberal party, which ended the week dealing with its own problems with the dumping of Victorian senator David Van from the party room.
"At each and every turn, there are those who claim these fair and sensible reforms are somehow signs of the apocalypse. Especially our political opponents," Mr Albanese is expected to say.
"If the Victorian Liberals have become a conspiracy in search of a theory. The Federal Opposition are basically a doomsday cult.
"For them, every day is the end of days."
Mr Albanese is to say the opposition is "foaming and sweating" about closing the loopholes in labour hire, but Labor is committed to ensuring workers are not abused.
"If you have the same experience, same skills, wear the same uniform and do the same work to the same standard for the same company, if you do the same job, you deserve the same pay," he is expected to say.