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LGA opens bids for programme to tackle housing crisis

A scheme to help councils to overcome housing challenges in their local areas opens for bids today.

The Housing Advisors Programme, set up by the Local Government Association (LGA), supported over 40 projects across the country, with councils launching initiatives ranging from increasing housebuilding to reducing homelessness.

Councils undertaking specific projects to tackle the effects of the housing crisis in local communities get funds from the programme for the provision of an independent expert on aspects such as housing delivery, planning for homes and reducing homelessness.

Each project will be led by the local communities they are based in, with the advisor supplied to the local authority offering expertise and advice to help councils achieve their objectives, with the best practice and lessons learned from each project shared with councils.

According to the LGA, there is an ongoing shortfall of new homes supplied in England, with the number of new homes falling short of what is required by 80,000 each year.

In addition to the programme, the LGA is calling on the government to trigger a “renaissance” in council house-building and lift the housing borrowing cap for all councils, as well as allowing them to keep 100% of Right to Buy Receipts.

Cllr Martin Tett, LGA housing spokesperson, said that the programme can make a “huge difference” to councils and their communities.

“Over the last year, more than 40 local authorities have been supported to tackle our shortage of homes at the local level, and it can make a hugely positive difference, from tackling homelessness to encouraging housebuilding,” he explained.

“However, there’s only so much councils can do on their own, which is why we continue to call on the government to lift the housing borrowing cap across the country and enable councils to keep 100 per cent of the receipts from sales of homes under Right to Buy,” he added.

Expressions of interest can be submitted from today, with the closing date on 26 June 2018.

Top image: Oktay Ortakcioglu


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