Issue - decisions
Approval of a new Affordable Housing Policy
The Director of Regeneration submitted a report which sought Cabinet’s approval to the submission of a funding bid to the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) under the Government’s Challenge Fund Initiative to provide 22 new housing units (which would be managed by a Registered Social Landlord) on sites in Seacombe, Bebington and Prenton. The deadline for bids was 30 October.
The costs for preliminary works, estimated to be in the order of £105,000 (excluding VAT), were to be met from the Regeneration Capital Programme 2009/10. This would be fully recoverable if the scheme was successful. The delivery of the scheme currently estimated to be in the region £2.8m would be met by 50% grant funding from the Challenge Fund with the remaining 50% secured through prudential borrowing with the rental income from the properties servicing the loan. If the bid was successful Wirral would be required to enter into a funding agreement with the HCA.
The Leader of the Council referred to the fact that the Council was in competition with other authorities for these funds and although there were risks in that money had to be invested for preliminary works without the guarantee of a successful outcome, the opportunity for £2.8m of funding was one that should not be missed.
The Head of Housing and Regeneration commented that the sites suggested met the criteria for the funding bid and were all available for immediate development.
Resolved - That, subject to the planning process, Cabinet approves the use of £105,000 from the Regeneration Housing Capital Fund to undertake the preliminary works required to support a bid submission to the Government’s Challenge Fund Initiative to deliver 22 units of affordable housing on three sites in Wirral.