16/01/2017 House of Commons


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Order, order. I have to notify the House in accordance with the Royal


assent act 1967, Her Majesty has signified her royal assent to the


following acts. Small charitable donations and childcare payments act


2017, savings, government contributions act 2017. Questions to


the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.


Number one, please. Sajid Javid. Good -- happy New Year. Councils


have long campaigned for 100% business rates retention. Last week


we introduced a local government Finance Bill which will establish


the framework for the reformed system. We will continue to work


closely with local governments during the passage of the


legislation to shape the detail of the reforms.


I thank the Secretary of State for that answer. I welcome the decision


for Cornwall to be a pilot area for the retention of business rates.


However business rates and Cornwall are low, particularly compared to


urban areas. , counsel will not lose out as a result of any of these


changes? I am pleased Cornwall will be one of


the areas to pilot sum of the elements of the 100% business


retention rates. It will help us develop the system, one that works


for all Local Authorities including rural authorities. We have always


been clear that in setting up the system we will ensure there is


redistribution between councils, so areas do not lose out just because


they currently correct address in local business rates.


Buckinghamshire is the entrepreneurial heart of England.


What assurance can he give that the people of Whickham, that the needs


base review and the new business rates system will result in


rebalanced service funding to better reflect economic growth in


entrepreneurial areas like ours? I have visited the area a number of


times with my honourable friend. He is right entrepreneurial. Under the


new business rates retention system there will be redistribution of


resources with baseline set through the fair funding review so


authorities are treated fairly. When the select committee looked at


this issue they were supportive in principle of the Government's


proposals, but wanted a lot of details answered. One of the major


details that need resolution is that in the future the demand for adult


social care is likely to grow rather more quickly than the growth in


business rates. Does the Secretary of State realise as well as having


100% retention of business rates, Local Authorities need additional


funding for adult social care and will he agree a review to look at


that? Mr Speaker, first of all I'm sure


the chair of the select committee welcomes the recent announcement


last month of additional resources for adult social care. What he


points to quite rightly is the need for longer term reform, and that is


something the Government is taking very seriously.


The Government's plans to did evolve an allowance as part of business


rates retention has caused distress to the orderly who rely on it to


maintain independence and remain in their own homes. Can the Secretary


of State reassure them here today that this reform will not strip them


in any way of this vital allowance? Mr Speaker, what the honourable lady


highlights is when the 100% retention reform does take place at


warming collectively councils will have an additional ?12.5 billion a


year. Of course, more responsibilities do need to be


pushed down to councils with that and the honourable lady is asking


what might make up those responsibilities. We have not made a


decision but will do so in due course.


In a two tier area of local government it's the district that


decides where to allocate land for very important commercial


development. With the Secretary of State ensure the district are


appropriately rewarded for taking what are often difficult decisions?


My honourable friend makes a very good point about districts on the


role they have in promoting business and development. I'm sure he'll


welcome, with the Bill we introduced to Parliament last week, the council


is now outside of London can also promote business development


districts. The Government's Autumn Statement


showed an increase of ?2.4 billion income to the Treasury from business


rates 2017-18. It is still an allocated. Will he protect local


people from massive council tax increases by investing this money


into social care and ending the precept, as suggested by Unison, the


largest trade union supporting care workers, in October last year?


The honourable lady will be fully aware that in 2010 this country had


a huge Budget deficit thanks to the last government. All areas of


government had to make a contribution to that, including


local government. I'm sure when it comes down on social care she will


be pleased with the changes announced last month. Allow Local


Authorities any discretion with regards to business rates levied on


hospitals like Southampton Hospital, which following a revaluation faces


a rather large increase in business rates?


I could tell my honourable friend it does allow some discretion to


councils, but I don't think the hospitals it will apply. It will


apply to businesses and only in one direction, but it is something,


since my honourable friend has made the point, I will take a further


look at. Mr Speaker, further to the question


my honourable friend asked, when the Government is committed to writing


and Local Authorities keep 100% of business rate income, it promised


alongside commensurate further cuts to their funding from Whitehall.


Given the LGA estimate councils are already underfunded for their legal


responsibilities, including social care, to the tune of almost ?6


billion, when can the Secretary of State tell the House what further


cuts in funding the people of England can expect their local


services to suffer? Mr Speaker, the honourable member


will be aware, should be aware, since we've publicly announce the


numbers, that 97% of councils have accepted the four year budget deal,


where they have come forward with efficiency offerings and in return


the Government has guaranteed funding. That doesn't mask the


fact... It is challenging for so many councils dealing with their


settlement, but many councils are able to deal with that and the


honourable gentleman should look at that carefully.


Number two, Mr Speaker. Our actions through the spending


review in 2015 and the provisional local finance that have brought the


total dedicated funding for adult social care to 7.6 billion over the


four years 2016-2020. How much I local council spends an adult social


care is a matter for local councils, who knows these areas best.


The local government Association say the money is raised for the social


care precept is not enough to address the ?2.6 billion gap facing


adult social care by 2020. Instead of exacerbating the existing


postcode lottery, will the Secretary of State not commit to additional


ring fenced resources into social care to tackle this crisis?


Mr Speaker, in their last spending review the Government allocated an


additional three and a half billion pounds a year by 2020 to adult


social care. A few weeks ago I announced additional help of ?900


million over the next two years. Local councils do have to play a


role in this. I know it in Sunderland the average council tax


Bill is down in real terms since 20 tenths and if they choose to


allocate more in Sunderland, they can do that. -- since 2010. For my


constituents the fundamental problem into many cases is we still separate


health care funding and social care provision. It makes no sense to my


constituents and increasingly little to me. Can I urge the Secretary of


State to speed up interrogation of health and social provision, so we


can deal with patients needs first and not budgetary arguments?


Mr Speaker my honourable friend makes a very important point. That


is when it comes to adult social care, it's not all about money. Of


course money and resources have a huge role to play, but it's about


how those services are delivered. We have seen for many councils where


they are able to approach that integration in a better way, that


they have seen significant efficiencies. I think we can all


learn from that. Can I appeal to the Secretary of State to face the House


so we can benefit from his mellifluous tones.


Around ?40 million will have been taken out of the adult social care


budget in Hull by 2020. You can see the effect of that Justice began,


when you see what's happening in our local NHS hospitals. Will the


Minister think again and make sure that the problem is that Local


Authorities like Hull are facing are addressed by central government ring


fenced money? Mr Speaker, I'm sure the honourable


lady would welcome the announcement that was made a few weeks ago, which


is trying to recognise just those pressures she identifies. That is an


additional funding, on top of the 3.5 by 2020, an additional 900


million over the next two years. What she rightly highlights as this


is a situation that we need to keep looking at and see what more can be


done. Further to what the honourable


member for Hartford said, I couldn't agree more... I guess most members


have had in their constituency surgery somebody who desperately


needs help. The local government agree they need help, social care,


the health service agrees they need help, but the health service and


local government blame each other and it becomes a complete mess.


Would it not be a good idea, on a cross-party basis, to look at a new


model for social care? My honourable friend is right to


point that out, many situations like that, I see them on my own


constituency but also he highlights the need for lovers to talk about


this issue and see what we can do working together. According to


Stoke-on-Trent's commissioning group there is an average of 26 days delay


between somebody leaving the hospital and getting social care in


place. That's despite the ?6 million subsidy from the CCG, is that


Stoke-on-Trent City Council's fault or the government's lack of funding?


The normal member will welcome the


recent announcement that we made for additional funding on top of the


funding settlement that was allowed announced on the spending review in


2015 but the government does also recognise that there needs to be a


long-term sustainable solution and that's a reform he would welcome.


Having spent a day with carers just before Christmas seeing their


amazing work, they like me feel frustrated that they are constantly


under financial pressure. With the minister look at what can be done


about increasing funding for social care in addition to what we've


already done and making sure that subject to a cast-iron ring fenced


to make sure the money goes where it's needed most. I can assure my


honourable friend that we continue to look at the resources applied to


adult social care in local councils and central government to make sure


that they are adequate. Also we will continue to push the case for reform


to also make sure all councils realise there's more that can be


done besides just more funding. What steps is the Secretary of State


taking to ensure that local authorities are able to move


patients in need of social care from hospitals to a more appropriate


facility in a timely manner and prevent bed blocking? The honourable


lady will know that there is a role in doing just that both from my


department in working with local authorities and the Department of


Health. Both the farmers are working very closely together on integration


plans with local councils and that is why part of the funding, one and


a half billion pounds by 2020 to improve better care and designed to


do just that, money that goes towards trying to promote such


integration. The House of Commons library figures show that in the


period from November 20 13th to November 2016, instances of bed


blocking where social care was solely responsible increased by 89%.


In the 12 months to November 2016 alone, bed blocking has increased by


39%. Does the Minister recognise that the preset package brought


forward by the government in December is insufficient to solve


the crisis in our social care system and is putting further pressure on


our already stretched NHS. What the Minister recognises is that the


additional funding announced in December will make a big difference.


There's ?240 million additional coming in from the New Homes Bonus


repurposed Singh, an additional ?600 million, it is new money and an


initial ?600 million that is coming in from the changes. When it comes


to using that money and we also want to see a delayed reduction in


transfers of care, she'll be aware of big difference is between local


councils and delayed transfers of care and councils could learn from


others. I will answer this question together


with question number 15. 97% of councils have accepted our historic


offer of four year funding certainty and local government Finance Bill


will ensure councils keep 100% of locally collected taxes by the end


of this Parliament. The Secretary of State will be particularly aware


that Worcestershire is a very attractive place to live, work and


visit and a particularly attractive place to retire which is why we have


a disproportionately large elderly population. How was the Department


factoring in the additional needs of the more elderly population? I thank


my honourable friend for the question and I wholeheartedly agree


with his opinion of our great county. It's a great place for


everyone to visit, live and to holiday Inn. I recognised the


demographic pressures are affecting different areas in different ways,


that's why we are under undertaking a fair funding review to introduce a


more transparent and Federer needs assessment formula, something my


friend will welcomed. The Secretary of State has received a proposal


from Buckinghamshire County Council to create the new unitary authority.


He's also a meeting with the District Council who are submitting


a proposal to him for two unitary authorities. Can the Secretary of


State confronted us that he will give both those proposals are equal


and full consideration including consulting local residents as


happened in Dorset and can he assure me that unitary status will not lead


to any reduction in funding for Buckinghamshire residents. I can


give my right honourable friend the assurance she seeks. Of course I


will give careful consideration to all proposals received from local


authorities such as those in Buckinghamshire including any


financial implications, we need to ensure that any reform is right for


local people and can deliver better services and strong local


leadership. I should declare that I'm an elected member in the London


Borough of Redbridge and local authorities like men face a double


whammy of pressures through an ageing population but also a high


birth rate which has real funding pressures on the authority. Does the


Secretary of State accept that even by diverting resources from other


services and by charging the maximum social care preset available, local


authorities like mine will still face a shortfall in funding for


vital services for older people and what's he going to do about it? The


measures be announced in December will help his local authority. They


will help every local authority in the land to deliver more adult


social care services but as I've said, as well as more money, we need


reform and some councils do need to learn from others. The 2015 account


committee outlined the reduction in reduction in the support of local


authorities, what does the Secretary of State may have to say to my


Bristol South constituents concerned about the ?64 million cuts announced


by Brit stole City Council last week will affect them -- Bristol City


Council. I would say that don't forget where a Labour government


gets you, the deepest deficit of any developed country, the biggest


recession in almost 100 years, the largest banking bailout, all of that


has meant that this government has had to make some difficult decisions


and every part of local government has had to contribute. Does my right


honourable friend had amused me that the long-term financial stability of


local government is not only a function of funding from government


that good management with the local authorities. What does my right


honourable friend think we can do to attract people with business


experience to run good local government? My honourable friend


makes a very good point. It's also about leadership and that means


having many businesses in your area and promoting them and you need


someone with a good track record, someone who has that experience that


local people will benefit from, I can think of some of them in the


West Midlands. Andy Street. He knows full well that leaving patients in


hospital when they are medically fit to be discharged like the 130


currently at Aintree Hospital is a very expensive way of looking after


people. Why isn't he shouting from the rooftops for the 4.6 billion


that was cut from social care to be reinvested so councils can address


this problem now and then the long term? Helping with adult social care


is about resources, that's why I know the honourable gentleman will


welcomed the announcement of a few weeks ago, an additional ?900


million over the next two years but also I'm sure he'll agree to back


reform as well and he would have noticed himself the big difference


in delayed transfers of care between one authority on the other. The


government has listen to calls from local government and representations


made by honourable and right honourable members across the House.


New changes outlined in the provisional local government finance


settlement in December provide access to an additional ?900 million


over the next two years. The social care preset would raise about 2.5


million but Sutton is losing 8 million in revenue support grant is.


The one-off social care grant will give Sutton ?750,000 pot sat is


losing 1.5 million from the New Homes Bonus changes which are paying


for the one-off grant resulting in a loss of ?800,000. Does the Minister


agree that as long as the government are robbing Peter to pay Paul we


will see cancer operations cancelled and patients left in distress


because of bed blocking? As a result of the spending review, the


announcement of the 5p extra into adult social care by 2020, three 5p


per year and the announcement I made a few weeks ago of ?900 million over


the next two years, all councils including Sutton will have more


resources to deal with adult social care challenges. The Secretary of


State will agree with me that the progress in Torbay was very welcome.


We also agree that that it was concerning to see that very strict


financial rules from NHS England are prompting a renegotiation in terms


of a risk agreement even though no extra money was spent. Would he want


with the council, the trust and colleagues to see if we can resolve


this one? I'm happy to work with my honourable friend and see what can


be done and listen to the issue in Torbay he's raised. Torbay is a good


example of how integration can want and how it can really help local


people. The government is committed to tackling homelessness, we have


launched a ?50 million homelessness prevention package and up in the


most ambitious legislative reforms. I'm delighted to Chelmsford will be


one of the first areas announced by the Prime Minister last month. With


the Minister agree with me that rough sleeping in the 20th century


is totally unacceptable. Can the Minister tell me more about what is


being done, not only an England as a whole but also in Chelmsford to end


this stain on our society? I think the whole house will agree


with my right honourable friend that it's totally unacceptable and we


should do all we can to end rough sleeping. Our ?20 million rough


sleeping grant will fund 54 projects working to provide rapid response


support for rough sleepers across England, it will help prevent people


from spending a night on the streets in the first place. I'm delighted to


tell my right honourable friend that Chelmsford will receive almost


?900,000 funding for presenting homelessness in partnership with


neighbouring local authorities. The inspirational lady's football player


Fara Williams Will Thomas at 17 but went on to captain and play 137


times for England and is now at Arsenal. She is supporting the


centrepoint appeal for funds to setup the first national freephone


helpline for 16-25 adults who are homeless and risk of life on the


streets as she was. With the Minister agree this is a tremendous


initiative, long overdue and should be government funded? I think the


honourable lady quite rightly brings to our attention a prime example of


the fact that just because somebody is homeless, somebody is rough


sleeping, they don't have the ability to actually reach their full


potential and that is what we need to encourage. I would say to the


honourable lady that the government currently pays for a service called


straight link where people can ring in or use an app where they can


report people who are sleeping rough which is then brought to the


attention of the local housing needs department. With the Minister


congratulates Kettering Borough Council and its inspirational


housing director John Conway for the measures they've taken during the


recent cold weather to get all rough sleepers of the streets and


Kettering and give them the appropriate housing advice they


need? I thank my honourable friend for Kettering to bring that very


important and heartening example, some of our local authorities are


doing excellent work to prevent homelessness and rough sleeping on


the type of initiative that my honourable friend is talking about


is the type of initiative that should be followed by other local


authorities. On Wednesday Glasgow City Council will consider a report


that shows the devastating impact that universal credit rollers are


having on homeless services. So far this resulted in 73 homeless


individuals racking up debts to the Council of ?144,000. An average of


1971 per person which is completely under sustainable board for the


individuals and for the Council. Can the Minister tell me what impact


these roll-outs are having I concede to the Honourable lady


that we have increased the special housing payments to ?17 million


across this Parliament to mitigate some of the short-term challenges we


are facing from the real fear changes being made. I would also say


that the local housing rates, 30% of that is going to be repaid, with


regard to the challenges of affordability. That is completely


inadequate. The homelessness services in Glasgow have seen cups


of over ?6 million in the past five years. Does the Minister not accept


that to help rough sleepers and those who are homeless, there has to


be a coordinated approach across all government departments? That is a


good point. I can assure her that we are working extremely hard on this.


We are working across governmental working group that they cheer, I can


also see with regard to accommodation, the temporary


accommodation management fee is being devolved to local authorities.


In her case, being devolved to the Scottish Government. Should the


government not be apologising for sweeping to be doubling since 2010.


Under the last Labour government, Street homelessness was cut by three


quarters. Will he commit to an extra 4000 homes to end rough sleeping


forever. During the period of the Labour government, at 2003,


homelessness was actually at its peak. This government is absolutely


committed to making sure that we eradicate rough sleeping and we are


working extremely hard. A ?20 million fund has been put to local


authorities. A ?10 million social impact fund to get the most


entrenched sleepers of the street. We have taken significant action.


Figures from the estate agent sure that investment in the retail factor


was down 7% from the previous year. The local authority does what it can


but it is limited in its authority. Will the Minister agree to meet with


me and other college to discuss the transfer meat of measures that are


required. I discussed the issue of regeneration with the cheer of the


business partnership just before Christmas. We are looking at how we


can share best practice. This is very much an issue which affects all


of the country. Many small towns are being stripped of the banks. Will


the Minister try and encourage more competition in the retail banking


sector so we can see a return to more banks with a times? This is an


important point. -- this is something I am interested in talking


about with them. It has a big impact on many constituencies. We recognise


the pleasures faced by the social care system. On top of the funding


we announced two years ago, ?3.25 billion a year, we are providing an


additional main hundred million pounds over the next two years for


social care. The ROM has already had to meet ?55 million worth of cuts.


There is another 40 million in the pay claim. What we are facing some


villages where private contractors cannot afford to inflate any social


care whatsoever. Can I suggest that the Minister that the goods back to


the Treasury and asks for a no another relevance. The honourable


lady will know that the city will benefit from main hundred million


pounds that the government is giving local authorities access to over the


next two years. They will significantly benefit from


improvements to the key fund. ?825 million the following year and ?1.5


billion in the term of this Parliament. Given that so much of


the funding goes towards care homes. Many of these care homes are failing


inspections, with the Minister think there are cheerful reform should be


included in the social care bill. Should local authorities have to


build nuclear homes just as they have to build new schools? Thank you


for these constructive suggestions. We are always willing to listen to


them. -- new care. . Funding per head of population in Westminster


and Chelsea is almost double that received by Edinburgh. Could the


Minister confirm that not only were delicate ring fencing these payments


but also properly reflecting the assessed needs of the people within


our community. I met with the chief finance officer of Enfield last week


along with my honourable friend. That was as part of the local


government finance settlement consultation. The local authorities


across the country are getting the benefit of this main hundred million


pounds level of access to over the next two years. The neighbourhood


planning Bill. Ensuring that communities have the ability to


control what is built in the area, not speculative developers. It has


been encouraging to see these plans being put forward in recent years.


Will the Minister ensure that the plans carry the fuel weight over


that period of time? The government expectation is that plans will be


reviewed every five years. I can reassure her on that point. We need


to involve local and national businesses more in this procedure.


So much of the street sees money sucked out of the local communities


and very little investment group back. What will they do to stop


this. There is a proposal to have neighbourhood plan simply for


business. But there is a way that issue of ensuring that we make sure


that its value when planning up permission is applying for. Can we


paid tribute to the hundreds of people who devote lots of time in


Sussex to put forward neighbourhood plans. It is further in that it is


essential that we ensure the integrity of these plans. He has


been a huge advocate of neighbourhood planning in Sussex. I


hope some of the concerns will be addressed. The pressure local


authority budgets encourages the building of a cost, high cost


housing, to increase council tax income. But that is missing the


point. What will be done to encourage local authorities to make


sure housing needs are met? The framework is very clear on that.


They are not looking at the total number of posters required, but also


catering for the demographic in the area. I welcome the increased


neighbourhood Housing starts. That has more than doubled but we need a


resurgence for the small and medium-sized house-builder. Will the


involve all parts of the business when these plans come to fruition?


My honourable friend is absolutely great. We need to involve all sizes


of the industry, rather than just relying on a few of the bigger


companies. There will be a ?2 billion accelerated construction


plan. There will also be support for 17 Garden towns and villages. As my


honourable friend knows, we published findings into the quality


of new-build houses. Is my honourable friend willing to meet


with the all-party group to see what could be included in the forthcoming


white paper? I attended a meeting with regard to the Private sector,


which he is also the chairman. He is quite great to see that we need to


face the fundamental challenge of building the house we need, but not


losing sight of the quality we need, not just the quantity. Our


Westminster Council rate to expect other local authorities to take on


the responsibility of housing as well as social care? I would hope


everybody would expect that as much as possible local authorities should


help meet the housing needs. Some local authorities have placed people


in wealthier areas shows you feel your overall has 30-40 years to


build more houses. We will put that rate. Very few residents are we are


and do not see the Dean development. Should be more of an explanation as


to how the housing is spent? There is a way that issue. Communities


have to see the benefit of the housing. There's also the lady and


the idea that communities know the benefits of what they are getting.


There has been an increase of 20%, with regard to 1% in the south. Over


Christmas, hard-working local people had to take CDs unimpeded leave,


effectively a pay cut. Openly set there and tell me that the cuts


being imposed on Dudley are anyway fear? I would point out that over


the course of this Parliament, the government is doubling the capital


budget. The government concluded the business rates review. The NIC 6.7


billion pounds cut in rates business. As a result, 600,000 small


businesses will benefit. This is of little benefit to people


who are struggling on the high Street. There is no doubt there are


many challenges facing the retailers in our high Street. But of the ?6.7


billion. He may want some of the businesses on his street to check


the recent evaluation of the rates business.


Question number 12, Mr Speaker. 01 should ever have to sleep rough. Our


?20 million grant should help those new the streets. ?10 million for


social bonds covering 48 areas will build on the success of the world's


first social impact bond which we funded in London. This has helped


over 400 in trench rough sleepers get back on their feet and into


accommodation. I appreciate that response yet called a council tell


me the number of non-statutory rust ethers in our district has never


been higher and while local territories are doing everything


they can to tackle homelessness, the council is supporting people budget


has been slashed. Because the Minister agree that unless we


support councils to do this job properly, we have no hope of


reducing these numbers? As the Honourable Lady will know, this


Government is backing me homelessness reduction Bill


currently going through the House. That will put a number of


obligations through local authorities to help people earlier


so they do not become homeless and stop the announcement in terms of


funding for that bill will be made very, very shortly and we are also,


as the honourable lady has heard, providing ?50 million to help that


work at this point so that we do not waste time waiting for the


legislation to come into effect. Mr Speaker, in Derby city, we are


currently looking at alternative ways to give in to homeless people


such as vouchers, an app or three website. Can I ask the Minister to


consider looking at those tenets of giving methods and see if it is


possible to take forward? I think my honourable friend makes a very good


point and it is generally for members of the public to consider


the way in which they might want to give to people that are homeless. As


I have said, a number of times today, the Government is absolutely


focused on helping rough sleepers. The social impact bond, ?10 million


being put to that, will help some of the most entrenched rough sleepers


of the street and I'm sure that all we all want to see. Number 30, Mr


Speaker. Pubs are at the heart of community life and that is why we


have made provision for the community value to be placed on the


register by Republicans at the Valley of the pub and that takes


away the development right automatically. The cooperative pub


mole is saving bible locals across the country but the impact of


community valuable treatment value which enables this in the first


place can often be far too clunky and lengthy. Would not better


approach be to remove permitted development right and protect by


default? There are 1750 pubs, in excess of that listed as assets of


community value. The mundane nomination goes in, the right are


already removed and of course, local authorities are free if they wish to


apply for an article for designation and remove those rights across a


whole area. As he now knows, the Minister, the Honourable Jazmine for


Croydon, was misled by the British Pub Association about the fact that


permissible rights would not have any effect on improvements to pubs.


Can the department is now confirmed that it would simply change the user


class order? As I have made clear, we think that this is an area where


we have two balance competing interests. It is something I am keen


to continue looking at as I continue in this role but we want to support


community pubs and that is why I can also announce today that we are


providing ?50,000 of funding to pub is the hub which will help more pubs


to transform and to be valued by their communities and IP particular


tribute to the member from Weaver Vale who lobbied me quite hard on


this. Number 16, Mr Speaker. Speaker, we are in the process of


bringing in civil purposes, a doosras of Rod Laver Lloyds,


mandatory registering of MMO 's. Manchester is doing some innovative


work on cracking down on rogue landlords but there are issues


currently with the geographical scope of the licensing scheme. But


the minister meet with me and Manchester authorities and the


residential landlords Association see how we can raise standards


together? We have in the past provided ?100,000 of funding to


Manchester for this work. I would be delighted to meet with the


honourable gentleman. This is a critical area. We need to drive out


rogue landlords of the decent landlords are not facing unfair


competition. The City Council is about to commence a selective


licensing scheme to crack down on rapacious slum landlords and protect


vulnerable tenants under the Housing act 2004. They ask the Minister


whether he will keep in review the bureaucratic burden that falls on


local authorities because the whole process from start to finish is not


timely and takes far too long. I would be very happy to give an


undertaking to do that and to meet with my honourable friend if he


wishes to discuss this in more detail. Question 18. Mr Speaker, as


announced by my right honourable friend the chance that the Autumn


Statement, we will shortly publish a strategy to include ?392 million for


our local growth funds for the Midlands engine local enterprise


partnership. I was delighted to see that he met the first ever Midlands


engine trade mission last year. Can updaters with progress on that? Mr


Speaker, first of all I will say that my friend has done a lot to


champion businesses and economic growth in the Midlands. That first


mission, the trade mission to North America went well. It went so well


we went ahead with a second mission to China for the Midlands region and


my honourable friend will be pleased to know that we are working with the


Department for International trade in other departments across


Government and we will surely be publishing a millions energy


strategy reaffirming our commitment to the Midlands. Number one, Mr


Speaker. We are starting 2017 as we mean to go on. The housing White


Paper is nearing completion. The local Government Finance Bill was


published last week and as we have heard it creates the framework for


business rates retention. It also features what my briefing refers to


as discretionary relief on public toilets. I'm sorry to say is not


quite what the name suggests. I will try not to follow that joke anyway.


Can I thank the Minister for the northern powerhouse for his help for


comments in support of the Sheffield city region in the last few days.


Could I ask the Secretary of State asked whether the Government will


confirm they want the city region deal to go ahead as agreed? They do


not support this vague concept of a mayor for Yorkshire which will not


deliver better looks services and improve economic growth and is


arguably at the out with legal framework from the devolution act?


It's very different that share of the select committee to thank the


northern powerhouse Minister. Very good of him. I can tell the


honourable gentleman that we remain strongly committed to the devolution


deal for Sheffield city region. We will continue to work with local


readers who have now proposed a mayoral election for May 20 18. We


will also continue to discuss with local partners devolution deals


elsewhere in Yorkshire including in Leeds. Can I welcome the Secretary


of State's commitment to commit the Reed create a housing market that


works for everyone. In my area in Leicestershire, new housing starts


have now hit 273% higher than the year ending September 20 ten. Can I


give the Secretary of State a challenge as he set out his new


Housing White Paper? Can we do even better? I hope we can rise to the


challenge. Every local authority was building at the rate at his local


authority is building then we would be building 370,000 homes a year in


this country. That is a sign, I think, that it is possible to build


the homes this country needs it just requires political will. My question


is for the Secretary of State. Where is your Housing White Paper? We were


promised it in the autumn. We were then promised it alongside the


Autumn Statement. Then before the end of the year, then first thing in


the New Year and we were told, Mr Speaker, that it was in the


Government's grip for publication to date. It has been delayed more times


then a trip on Southern rail. LAUGHTER


So I say, what is the problem? Mr Speaker, the right honourable


gentleman does not have to work the Reed wait long. When he does see it,


he will see does a lot more than what happened under the last Labour


Government which when he was the Housing Minister, understand


house-building felt was those levels as the 1920s. He has shown us


exactly what the problem is which that the huge gap between the


Government's rhetoric on housing and their records. Under Labour, we saw


2 million new homes, 1 million more homeowners and the largest


investment programme in social housing for a generation. For seven


years under Tory ministers, we have seen failure on all fronts. Higher


homelessness, fewer holders and less affordable housing. Even the Housing


minister has said its affordable housing is an acceptably low and


feeble. Does the Secretary of State agree and what is he going to do in


his White Paper to deal with this crisis? Mr Speaker, under Labour, we


saw Housing affordability measured by medium prices to the average


house price double going up from 3.5 times 27 times. Was the number of


first-time buyers fall by 55%. We saw the number of units available


for social rent declined by 421,000th. That is Labour's record


on housing. Question and answers please. Citizens will do. Giazzon


and South Bucks District Council are providing a new local plan and have


consulted on the problems of meeting development needs using the green


belt. Does the Secretary of State agree with me that green belt land


is vital to preserving the character of places like Amersham and the 80


NBA and should not be developed other than in truly exceptional


circumstances? I agree with my right honourable friend. The purpose of


the green belt is very clear. It should preserve the setting and


special character of historic towns for example like those in her


constituency. Where councils do look at green belt, they should always


make sure that the NPP F rules are met and stop Brownfield should


always be prioritised. The recent publication of the voluntary right


to buy pilot schemes were Housing association tenants show that very


few completions were achieved in return for the enormous time and


effort expended. New affordable housing is a key element in


Cambridgeshire's devolution deal. For the minister promised no


distraction for the opportunity this gives us to build a supply of homes


in our area? Right to buy provides replacement affordable housing. The


honourable judgment should be supporting it because it allows


people to own their own home when they could not do so otherwise and


provides new housing. Earlier this year the Secretary of State


announced next ?7 billion fund to expand the Government's affordable


housing programme. I welcome to this and it will help constituents. But


there is also a concern that the need for new homes will outweigh the


need to protect our greenfield land so can the Minister Shami and my


constituents that it remains... I can get heard the assurance. Ie


Congratulate her on championing Brownfield and the new registers


that we are introducing will help make sure that a register doing the


building is focused on Brownfield. Available housing provision is the


key to reducing homelessness and stop his Government should look to


the Welsh Labour Government legislative pledges of 5.6 million


in 2015 and 3 million in the following years to help fund


affordable homes to rent as well as to buy. The honourable lady will


have heard the Austin statement the Chancellor of the Exchequer adding


?1.4 billion to the affordable housing budget. We are doubling the


housing capital budget over this Government and that is a rhetoric


that is proof of our commitment to delivering the housing that is


needed. Together with the starter homeland fund the new locally led


garden Village will deliver new homes and support first-time buyers.


Will my right arm for frantically in how the Government is working with


local authorities to deliver the new garden villages and will he agree to


visit to see how the local community will benefit from this new scheme?


It was a pleasure to announce 40 new garden villages that between will


provide 48,000 new homes and it will be a pleasure to come and visit the


honourable lady's constituency and see the progress made.


Stoke-on-Trent's City Council is proposing to cut children's centres.


Does he think that is acceptable? Mr Speaker, every council has a certain


statutory service in needs to provide including children's


services. We want to make sure every council is properly funded and


Stoke-on-Trent council and many others have accepted before you


submit and that is good news. Labour City Council in Lincoln are


determined to build homes on the swap and flood plane in the heart of


our city even though a private developer divided the area was


unsuitable. What advice would he give council to act as a director 's


Manor? I got my honourable friend will understand as I cannot comment


specifically on any individual planning case but we have however


very strict, clear rules that say councils must consider a strict


tests under the National planning policy framework that protect people


and property from flooding. Where these tests are not met, that


development should not go ahead. A year ago, local authorities were hit


with a ?200 million cut in public health support. The select committee


described these as a false economy is adding to future health costs.


What impact does the Minister believe these cuts are going to have


on health inequalities and would he meet with me in representatives from


Hounslow to raise their concerns about the impact on children and


others in the community? I would see 25% of government


expenditure is being spent through local government, there are always


situations when that is not always the case. The health budget is being


hugely increased. I am sure local government is more than able to meet


the challenge. Councils have not been in touch with neighbouring


councils who may be more affected by the redevelopment proposals with


regard to new garden villages. Can he please contact them as a matter


of urgency? I thank him for bringing up the situation with regarding that


challenge. There were 40,000 social rented homes who were building but


that has now been hugely reduced. Why is that? The Moto social rented


homes declined under Labour. We have invested billions in social rented


homes. That included the huge increase in the Autumn Statement.


The council received ?14,000 to help with the sleepless programme. Any


join me in congratulating me on the work we have done to prevent people


sleeping rough during the winter. That is exactly what we wanted to


achieve, by putting local charities working in tandem with charitable


organisations. Today is Martin Luuther King Day.


Can we please celebrate the 50 years since the honourable gentleman


visited Newcastle and was given the freedom of the city. The appointed


to great work. Can we emphasise the need to jump champion the values


exemplified by Doctor King. Would he agree that freedom city 2017


provides is not opportunity, and 81, first to do that. Mr Speaker, I


wholeheartedly. She is quite rate to talk about the importance of Martin


Luuther King honour at this stage is a celebration of his life and work.


We should all do well to remember that we have still able to live


together and we could all learn from that, whether you are here or in the


United States. Why did the free paper not envisage a greater role


for the public sector? I can reassure my honourable friend that


the government wants to see everyone getting involved. The more people


getting involved the better. Councils across the country are


highlighting the enormous gap between the increased costs of


social care and the budgets, because of the implementation of the minimum


wage. Will the Secretary of State approach accept that his approach to


social care funding is simply not credible and will he go on a


different approach to make sure people across the country get the


care they need. We have taken the issue very seriously. There was an


announcement a few weeks ago that the added ?2 billion over the next


two years. But we do accept there is still a lot to do. Elaine Dorset


councils submitted proposals to establish one authority. Could this


be brought forward in sufficient time so that it could be set up at


the beginning of April. We have only just received the proposals. We want


to make sure we take the right amount of time to consider them


carefully. I welcome the fact that this is being named as one of the


trailblazers for homelessness. But there are places which are far more


attractive for developers and landlords. It is sometimes more in


the interest to provide emergency accommodation, rather than decent


family homes. I except to point with regard to temporary accommodation.


We hope that through the devolution of accommodation management, it will


make it more attractive for people to be able to maintain temporary


accommodation. The new garden village will bring thousands more


homes into Northamptonshire. Can my constituents be reassured that the


infrastructure needed to support these homes will be instigated. That


is all part of the concept. If we are going to accept more housing, we


simply have to get the infrastructure rate. That is why the


new funding for the infrastructure fund was so welcome. Can I ask the


Health Secretary how many local authority leaders he has met to


discuss social health care. The answer was not encouraging. Will he


meet them to discuss the deal crisis in social care. I concede to the


honourable gentleman I have met a number of local authority leaders in


the past few weeks. I met them as part of the local government finance


settlement. We will continue to do that. It is important that we


understand the challenges the house. I like to receive the honourable




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