Magazine article Public Finance

Housing Plans Not Enough, Say Campaigners

Magazine article Public Finance

Housing Plans Not Enough, Say Campaigners

Article excerpt

Government plans to encourage home building have been broadly welcomed - but there are doubts over whether the reforms are enough to meet the rising demand for housing.

Local government minister Grant Shapps outlined plans for a New Homes Bonus on August 9. He proposed that central government match a local authority's council tax income for six years for each new property built in its area.

Exactly how the scheme would work has not yet been set out in detail, but the Department for Communities and Local Government expects it to be in place 'early in the [next] Spending Review period', which begins in 2011/12.

Shapps said the measure would kick-start home building, which has slumped due to the recession. The coalition government scrapped regional building targets last month.

Caroline Davey, deputy director of policy and campaigns at the housing charity Shelter, said the initiative was 'welcome recognition of the urgent need to increase the supply of affordable new homes'. …

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