Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Housing Strategy Approved

Following a public consultation which ended in December the Thanet District Council Cabinet Meeting on 22 January approved a new Housing Strategy for the area.
Cllr David Green, Cabinet Member for Housing and Planning Services, explained: “We have to introduce a new housing strategy in line with the Local Government Act, 2003, and a number of changes have taken place which we needed to address such as the National Housing Strategy, the Comprehensive Spending Review and the Welfare and Benefit Reforms. This strategy will apply until 2016.
"Our principal aim is to maximise the delivery of affordable housing. We also need to make better use of the existing housing stock, and this includes tackling empty properties, especially in ways which also support our regeneration and economic development initiatives. We also recognise the importance of managing the impact of the new welfare reforms and of ensuring that vulnerable people have access to good quality housing, enabling them to live independently.”
The Housing Strategy is accompanied by an Action Plan, which will be updated annually, setting out how the key priorities will be delivered.

Featuring significantly in the plan is the multi-agency work centred around bringing empty properties back into use. It also incorporates measures to improve the standards of private rented properties and for closely monitoring the impact of the Welfare and Benefit reform. Responses to the consultation were supportive of the strategy and comments received have been incorporated into the final document.
Cllr Green added: “It was pleasing that the feedback from our partners and stakeholders was positive and supportive of the strategy. We can now focus on delivering the key priorities through the various measures in the Action Plan.”

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