Sunday, 16 December 2007

HALF OF NEW HOUSING SHOULD BE SOCIAL

Tonbridge and Malling Green Party has responded to a consultation on affordable housing being run by Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council (1). The Party is arguing that half of all new housing the Council permits should be social housing. The current policy is that 40% of new housing in developments of more than 15 units is either social or other categories of ‘affordable.’

Steve Dawe comments: “House prices, despite some modest reductions, remain too high. Private rents are also too high. The Council has the power to insist half of all new housing built is social housing. This would provide better security and lower cost housing for more people. We strongly support the Council buying property on the open market, or encouraging Registered Social Landlords to do so, to meet local housing demand."

“The decline in home ownership nationally in 2006 suggests we have reached a maximum proportion of home ownership in the UK. Coupled with £1.2 trillion of debt, 80% of which is mortgages, and a clear need is being demonstrated for more secure and low cost rented homes."

"The Borough Council has a good record in obtaining social housing and in keeping most new housing on brownfield sites. But its own documentation suggests it is concerned about future social housing provision in relation to local demand. It should not be its own problem – it should make half of new build social housing to help meet local needs.”


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FURTHER INFORMATION: Steve Dawe on 01732 355185, 0845 257 4236 or mobile 07747 036192. Contact address as above. Steve Dawe jointly holds the post of South East Green Party Speaker on Housing, Planning and Development.

Notes:
1. Finishing 21st December.

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