The measures in the Policy Address are not far reaching enough to address the deep rooted problems like housing or poverty alleviation. The government has ignored the consensus to resume building HOS flats, and proposes “My Home Purchase Plan” instead. It will create new time bombs and delay the problem as those in the scheme will be kicked out of their homes after five years when they cannot afford to buy in a rising property market.
Alleviating the poor and enhancing social mobility are government responsibilities. The Chief Executive must not use the Community Care Fund as an excuse to push the responsibility to the business sector.
Civic Party welcomes Government’s plan to procure hybrid buses and to include country park enclaves into the country parks but we’re disappointed that the government has still not announced its decision to update the Air Quality Objectives. We’re also worried that the Government pins all hopes on more nuclear energy, when there is as yet no detail on nuclear energy supply source and the assessment of nuclear risk.
Whilst we welcome the government’s initiative to double the number of articulation opportunities for sub-degree graduates, the increase of 500 public-funded first-year-degree places from 14,500 to 15,000 is just sufficient to keep the quota at 18% and is not enough to enhance HK’s competitiveness. We are disappointed that there is no commitment to make use of the falling number of secondary student numbers to implement voluntary small class teaching at secondary schools in order to improve the quality of education.
Civic Party welcomes the government’s injection of HKD100 million into the Supplementary Legal Aid Scheme and also the Chief Executive statement that he will not propose legislation under Basic Law Article 23 during the remainder of his term. But we wish to point out the recent incidents such as the charging of the accidental spilling of champagne outside the China Liaison Office Building can have similar effects as article 23 legislation. Civic Party will continue to monitor and scrutinize proposed legislation to ensure that they are not oppressive.