ARCH is continuing to make the case for council housing, working
in collaboration with our colleagues in other housing
ARCH Chair, Cllr Paul Ellis, has already written
to the new Housing Minister to seek a meeting. ARCH Chief
Executive John Bibby is due to meet senior officials from DCLG
early in September to discuss the Department's plans for
implementation of Part 4 of the Housing Act - the Right to Buy
Levy, Sale of Higher Value Voids, Pay to Stay and Phasing out of
Following a decision by the ARCH Executive Board to continue to
develop closer working relationships with the NFA on housing policy
and the successful
first joint event on 21 July, John Bibby will be meeting NFA
Managing Director, Eamon McGoldrick, on 8 August to discuss a joint
policy and lobbying strategy:
- We know on the RTB Levy and sale of higher value stock that
much more detail has yet to emerge and that the government has yet
- Publish Regulations on pay to stay
- Publish Regulations to define higher value stock
- Publish Regulations to set out exclusions of higher value
- Set out the process for making agreements between councils and
Secretary of State on replacements of higher value stock sales
- Consult councils before issuing a determination on the RTB
- Put in place processes for councils payments of the RTB
- The Regulations on Pay to Stay and definition of higher value
stock are subject to the "Affirmative Procedure" which requires
approval by both Houses of Parliament and the requirement to
consult on Determinations on the RTB levy give opportunity for ARCH
and the NFA to influence the final shape of legislation.
Furthermore the outcome of the EU Referendum and decision to leave
the EU is forcing the new government under Theresa May to review
and potentially "re-set" government economic and social policy and
there may be opportunities to influence any new policy direction as
it affects the stock retained sector.
- The recent CIH/CIPFA Report "Investing in Council
Housing" called on councils (through the LGA, ARCH and
the NFA) to consider what commitments could be made to the
government to improve housing supply in return for commitments that
would provide more stable HRA Business Plans.
- Through our work on our joint ARCH/NFA Welfare Reform survey,
we've had a series of meetings with Welfare Reform Minister, Lord
Freud, and who has subsequently announced a review
of the impact of Universal Credit on tenant rent arrears.
All of these issues and more will be the subject of
further discussions with the NFA to see how we can continue to work
together to make the case for council housing and the tenants and
prospective tenants of those homes.
In addition, ARCH will continue to work with other
interested organisations to promote the interests of stock retained
councils. Over the coming weeks, John Bibby will be addressing the
Annual General Meeting of the Councils With ALMOs Group (CWAG) and
will be meeting with a range of organisations in the sector
campaigning for investment in social rented housing to
- What is driving government attitudes to social housing? Might
this change with the new Prime Minister or would we expect it to
stay the same?
- What is the nature of public attitudes to social housing? What
is driving positive and negative public attitudes?
- What are the ways, if any, we might be able to better build
broad political and public support for social housing? What
trade-offs do they present?
If you'd like to share your views and comments on the key
issues that we should be raising in these discussions with
Ministers, DCLG and DWP officials and with other organisations
working in the sector, please email John: email@example.com.