Delegated Decision sought over new housing strategy

Following the release of a Delegate Decision Report this afternoon, this in from the council.

Piggy Bank and House

In their own words. Ed


A major new housing policy that could end the lifetime entitlement to social housing is being proposed, alongside a plan to give extra priority to residents who make a contribution to society.

In an approach which seeks to make best use of the limited public resources available to support those in greatest need, the Isle of Wight Council will seek to introduce a more flexible approach to housing that would link it to employment for the first time.

The overhaul follows the introduction of the Localism Bill that given councils new freedoms and flexibilities in setting allocations policies that reflect local needs.

Tenancy Strategy
The new Tenancy Strategy proposes that social housing can, in future, be made available for fixed-term periods of between two and five years. This change means residents would not automatically be able to remain in social housing property that had become unsuitable for their needs, irrespective of a change of their financial or personal circumstances. For example, a large family whose children had left home would have their tenancy of their property reviewed if it was now considered to have surplus bedrooms.

To complement this, the council is planning to work with the housing associations to develop a Relocation Incentivisation Scheme, to encourage and assist existing tenants in downsizing where appropriate – thereby freeing up larger housing for those Island families in greatest need.

Preference given to needy residents
At the same time, the new strategy would also maintain the preference given to needy residents such as those who are made homeless, living in unsanitary or unsafe properties, those who require a move on medical or welfare grounds including disability and those who need to move to a particular locality to avoid hardship to themselves or family members.

In a further initiative to be developed with partners, it is proposed that residents will earn increased priority for social housing if they are in employment or taking steps towards securing employment. The prioritisation of such housing for residents with strong and long-standing connections to the Island would also be strengthened.

Helping Island families
Cllr Stuart Hutchinson, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Housing said: “We now have the opportunity to ensure that social housing stock is used much more effectively to support those in greatest need. The Localism Act allows us to introduce a series of measures to help Island families into housing that is matched to their needs, with the opportunity to review this at timely intervals.

“It is also right that we help those people who – by being in work or taking firm steps in this direction – make an active contribution to Island life, where they are able to. This is not about penalising people who cannot work; it is about rewarding those who are seeking to do so.

“We are confident that this more flexible approach will make a positive difference to the lives of many Island families and help them on the right track towards employment and future home ownership, wherever possible. Our recently announced First Time Buyer Fund complements this approach by giving more Islanders the opportunity to get onto the property ladder.

“This is the first step in our plans to introduce a comprehensive new housing strategy which will meet the changing needs of our residents over the coming years – and ensure we help provide for the next generation of Islanders.”

Cllr Hutchinson said the plans were very much in line with two key themes of the draft IW Council budget to be discussed by Full Council tomorrow (27 Feb)– Helping Island Households and Supporting the Local Economy.

The documents are embedded below for your convenience.




Image: © Tax Brackets

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Tuesday, 26th February, 2013 6:42pm

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Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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15 Comments on "Delegated Decision sought over new housing strategy"

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Hermit

Isn’t this just a re-hash of the Govt’s Welfare Reform Strategy which is targeting households that under occupy by not paying full housing benefit?

Cynic

Does the strategy include a plan to convert Camp Hill prison into a post-Victorian workhouse?

hussar

Since when did the IWC own Social Housing on the Island- it was flogged off to their friends running the housing associations years ago.

Dennis Firth

“Quote” the council is planning to work with the housing associations to develop a Relocation Incentivisation Scheme, to encourage and assist existing tenants in downsizing where appropriate. In truth, they mean to carry on picking on the disabled and the poor by forcing them from their homes. Sound familiar does it…the Final solution…Nazi Germany…..Relocation of millions of people…everyone accepted it….nobody believed it. –

Billy Builder

I would question the usage of a delegated decision for something that resembles social engineering. If there is one type of topic that demands proper debate by the full council, then I would suggest that it is this.

Black Dog
Far too many Delegated Decisions carried out by this council. Could some one please tell me exactly why do we have (PAID) Isle of Wight Councillors if they are not elected to represent their constituents through open debate? Surely the public who voted for their particular Councillor would then know if they were truly being represented at full Council. After-all the Council go to great lengths to… Read more »
wightywight

Black Dog:

Indeed….. I wonder if it also might be of interest that data is made available on which Councillor votes (or opposes/abstains) for which/any/all motions in the chamber.
It seems to me to be a central democratic measure of how our elected can be assessed and considered for re-election…..amongst other things.

WW

Cynic
Is there a list of the Delegated Decision that have been made over the last four years, together with the names of those making the decisions? It would be interesting to see just how many of those decision-makers have decided not to stand for election in May 2013. One might suspect that is so they are not around to be accountable for the effects of their decisions.
wightywight

@Cicero:

That’s here:

http://www.iwight.com/council/what_is_a_council/Delegated_Powers/Delegated_Decisions_taken/default.asp

Interesting in itself…

I’d rather like to see how each member voted for each motion however…..

WW

Cynic
@WW Thanks! A quick analysis indicates that of those responsible for the 2301 Delegated Decisions only one person (who took 67 of those decisions) is confirmed as standing in the 2013 election. This suggests that up to 8 out of 9 Cabinet Members who took delegated decisions are either not standing (7) or not confirmed (1). …………………………. Cllr Brown 68 (not standing for re-election) Cllr Giles 67… Read more »
Cynic

Oops typo! that should be 231 Delegated Decisions not 2301! :-))

Hermit

One of the harshest rulings from the Bedroom Tax is that Foster children do not count, a foster family giving a home to a foster child, and obviously a bedroom, will have this room considered spare and not used!

wightywight

@Hermit:

…and that, if true, is one of the idiotic and unnacceptable consequences of this scheme… got a cite for that btw?

WW

Hermit
This is from Community Care – Plans to shake up housing benefits will see foster carers taking a hit of almost £700 a year, according to campaigners, who have warned the move will damage plans to increase the number of foster carers. The measure, part of the Department for Work and Pension’s plans to reduce housing benefit by up to 23% for tenants living in homes considered… Read more »
wighty wight

thanks… I missed that though a regular on the site and forums…
As I said, a disgraceful nonsense. A hidden side effect of a spiteful system….
ww

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