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The ARCH annual report for 2015-16 is now available to view.

 

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ARCH meets LGA, NFA and CWAG to discuss Lords lobbying strategy 18/02/2016

John Bibby, ARCH CEO and ARCH Policy Adviser, Matthew Warburton, met with officials from the LGA, NFA and CWAG on 9 February to discuss a lobbying strategy for Part 4 of the Housing and Planning Bill now that the Bill has reached the Lords Committee Stage.

 

Following passage of the Housing & Planning Bill from the House of Commons to the House of Lords, ARCH and the NFA have prepared and circulated a joint ARCH/NFA Briefing Paper for Peers summarising our concerns regarding certain provisions of Part 4 of the Housing & Planning Bill as it affects stock retained councils and their tenants and lobbying for key changes to the Bill including:

 

  • Amendments to ensure at least one for one replacement of any high value housing stock that is required to be sold.
  • Amendments to make the proposed Pay to Stay Scheme discretionary rather than mandatory.
  • Amendments to withdraw proposals to phase out of existing secure lifetime tenancies pending proper public consultation or at least ensure existing tenants rights to a secure tenancy is protected if they seek a transfer. 

 

ARCH and the NFA met with the LGA and CWAG to discuss the implications of Part 4 of the Bill as it stands and the amendments being sought by ARCH and the NFA. The LGA are lobbying the government on a number of changes to the Bill and the meeting discussed a joint strategy for lobbying members of the Lords in advance of the discussion of the Bill in the Lords Committee Stage in March. 

 

The LGA's plan was always to try to influence the Housing and Planning Bill by working with officials and ministers but they say that it was also agreed that if some of their key concerns remained by the time the Bill reached the House of Lords they LGA would strengthen its public approach in opposing certain aspects. ARCH and the NFA have produced a more detailed briefing on Part 4 of the Bill which we shared with the LGA urging them to support our proposed amendments to the Bill. 

 

The scope of the Bill is extremely large and the LGA recognise there is a need to understand what the combined effect of the proposals will be on housing market areas. The LGA would like to work with councils and Government to better understand the impact and are seeking councils who would be interested in working with the LGA to understand the full impact on a housing market area.

 

ARCH would support this idea and if your council, along with your neighbouring councils in your housing market area would be interested in working with the LGA to understand the full impact on a housing market area then you should contact Eamon Lally at the LGA: eamon.lally@local.gov.uk.

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