Welsh Government detailed budget reflects strong support for the work of housing professionals
CIH Cymru director Matt Dicks comments on the Welsh Government’s detailed budget.
The Welsh Government has released the detailed version of its budget allocation for 2019/20. In the initial announcement earlier this month the Welsh Government indicated its decision in relation to each major area of government expenditure. The headlines arising from this reflected additional investment in NHS services, whilst local authorities saw their eighth successive year of cuts.
In relation to housing the detail plans outline:
• An increase in Social Housing Grant capital funding to £138m in 2019-20, an increase of £35m on previously-published plans.
• A single Housing Support Grant – £126.7m – encompassing Supporting People, Homelessness Prevention and Rent Smart Wales Enforcement will be established.
• Continued annual funding of £108m to support local authorities and stock transfer organisation in achieving and maintaining the Welsh Housing Quality Standard
• Investment in the Integrated Care Fund (ICF) in 2019-20 will increase to £85m, as a result in the increase in capital from the Housing budget for the fund, which rises to £35m in 2019-20
• A £45m allocation to the Innovative Housing Programme in 2019/20
Commenting on the announcement, CIH Cymru director Matt Dicks said:
“This budget reflects Welsh Government’s strong commitment to supporting housing professionals to deliver on the housing aspiration and ambitions of communities across Wales.
We must remain fully grounded however in the realities facing many of those communities, where poverty, the ongoing impact of welfare reform, in particular the roll-out of Universal Credit, and access to affordable and suitable housing continue to have a very real impact.
If this and future budgets are to have a positive effect on these communities it is vital that the ongoing review into affordable housing supply in Wales carries through the momentum of the positive work currently taking place. In our view in relation to the financial planning this must include providing greater certainty to housing providers over long-term funding.”
The full detailed budget can be accessed here.