Mayor Palmer welcomed today the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority Housing & Infrastructure Committee’s approval to complete the Government’s Housing Programme.
MHCLG recently confirmed that they would fund all housing projects, subject to confirmation of additionality and value for money, that would start on site by March 2022, allaying concerns that the programme might be finished early. The Housing Committee’s decision today means that the Combined Authority will be able to focus on its own housing priorities in the future.
Mayor Palmer said:
“While I am glad that the Housing Committee has approved the steps necessary to complete the MHCLG Housing Programme, I have always been concerned that a programme that focusses on giving grants to housing associations did not fit with our local housing needs.
“We have always had good employment levels in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, and the problem we have faced is not people unable to get into social housing; it is whether they are able to afford to get out of expensive rental accommodation and buy a home of their own without having to move out of their communities and away from where they work.
People are not concerned with funding pots, government deadlines or cheap political point scoring; they want homes they can afford in places they want to live. I must be honest that I do not believe anything any level of Government has done so far has provided a solution at the scale we need to get a grip on this problem.
Despite the deadlines and restrictions set by Government, we have been able to prove innovative solutions like Revolving Funds, Community Land Trusts and £100K Homes work; we now need to find a way to use these innovative solutions at a scale that they can make a real difference to people’s lives.”