HC Deb 23 May 1988 vol 134 cc68-9W
Sir George Young

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what are his proposals for the role of local authorities in enabling housing associations to provide dwellings in their areas.

Mr. Waldegrave

Under the provisions of the Housing Bill, the Housing Corporation will become the sole channel for the payment of Exchequer grants to housing associations. Last September, in its policy paper "Finance for Housing Associations: The Government's Proposals" the Government said that they considered there were advantages in precluding the payment of housing association grant towards housing association schemes funded by local authorities. In the light of representations made to them, however, the Government have concluded that it would be wrong to deny Exchequer support to schemes promoted in this way. Collaborative working between associations and local authorities is of considerable importance and some authorities have funded associations under long standing arrangements. The Government have therefore decided that the Housing Corporation should be authorised to pay housing association grant on schemes supported by local authority loans. We intend that the entire costs of such schemes should count against local authority housing investment programmes, and my officials will be consulting the local authority associations, the Housing Corporation and the National Federation of Housing Associations on the detailed arrangements.