HC Deb 28 February 1956 vol 549 cc95-6W
5. Mr. Lewis

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether, in view of the further increase in the Bank Rate, he will now introduce further legislation to increase the housing subsidies paid to local authorities.

Mr. Sandys


12. Mr. Swinger

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government if he is aware that many housing authorities, when allocating tenancies, are now giving preference to non-slum tenants because of the expectation of a reduced subsidy for such tenancies in the near future; and if he will take the necessary steps to ensure that housing authorities receive the full rate of subsidy for an equivalent number of houses for general need to the number they allocate to applicants in slum properties between now and the date of the reduction of the subsidy.

Mr. Sandys

I am not aware that local authorities are showing any such preference, but the administrative arrangements which I propose to make for the payment of the slum clearance subsidy if the Housing Subsidies Bill becomes law will meet the point which the hon. Member has in mind.

I propose that entitlement to the slum clearance subsidy shall depend on two things: first, on the number of families rehoused by the local authority from unfit houses after the 3rd November, 1955, and, second, on the building by the local authority, within a reasonable period, of an equivalent number of new houses. This means that it will not be necessary for displaced families to be rehoused in the actual houses which attract the special subsidy. They may be given new homes either in existing houses or in houses now being built with subsidy under the Housing Act, 1946. Thus the local authority may carry forward their entitlement to the higher rate of subsidy for an equivalent number of houses which they may later use for housing people from their general waiting list.