The Local Government Association has published its response to the Housing and Regeneration Bill. The Bill, announced in the Queen's Speech received its first reading in the House of Commons on 15 November. Its aims are to deliver more social and affordable housing and to promote regeneration, to reform social housing by putting tenants at the heart of social housing and to improve social housing to ensure a modern and flexible public service.
These aims are to be achieved, in part, by the creation of a new Homes & Communities Agency which it is hoped would support the regeneration and delivery of new social and affordable housing, both social and private. It would also make better use of surplus public sector land and maximise the potential for brownfield development. The Urban Regeneration Agency and the Commission for New Towns would also be abolished.
The Local Government Association's response broadly supports the proposals but it cautions against central Government imposing its own agenda on authorities. Authorities must be free to respond to local circumstances. The response makes it clear that the Government is taking steps in the right direction and it also supports the Government's vision on low carbon homes and eco towns. However, it also counsels against measures which might lead to well performing landlords drowning in red tape.
The response can be downloaded here.