Hawke's Bay leaders say they are optimistic the Labour Party's Cabinet reshuffle will yield results in the housing sector.

On Thursday Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the housing portfolio would be split among three ministers, with Megan Woods leading the team, Phil Twyford focusing on urban development and Kris Faafoi on public housing and homelessness.

Napier City Councillor Maxine Boag said she is optimistic about the changes.

"I think they (the government), along with the rest of the population have realised that their current settings that they had, were not actually producing enough housing."


"I see it as a very positive move."

"I think it's gone up a rung in terms of proving that this is a major priority for them."

She said a top priority, in terms of Napier, was seeing more state houses, due to the number of people living in motels.

"If this means that more energy and more resourcing goes into that priority, then I am prepared to wait and see."

Acting Mayor Faye White agreed it was a positive change.

"Adding the resource to something that is a problem is always good."

"I think it is now in the forefront of Central Government and it is certainly in the forefront of the things we are doing across the region."

Hastings Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said she backed the decision to appoint three ministers to the housing portfolio.


"It reflects the level of understanding she and the government has for this important issue."

She said Hastings District Council was taking a collective approach to housing and had created a Housing Governance group made up of council, central government, iwi leaders and the private sector.

"We are looking forward to working alongside the new housing ministers to address this growing crisis."

Whatever It Takes Trust general manager Caroline Lampp , said she did not think it would make a great deal of difference from their perspective.

She said there would still be only one minister responsible for social and transitional housing, which is what WIT provided, and so did not imagine there would be much change.

According the Ministry of Social Development Housing Register, as of March 31, there were 629 people in Hawke's Bay waiting for social housing.

This includes 278 in Hastings and 312 in Napier.

In Napier there are 85 people on the waiting list for council housing, and in Hastings just over 100 seniors are on the waiting list for council housing.