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Housing Grants

Volume 173: debated on Tuesday 22 May 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what assessment of the impact on the homeless was made prior to his decision to stop section 73 funding to CHAR;(2) what representations he has received about CHAR losing section 73 funding; if he will reconsider this decision; and if he will make a statement.

[holding answer 17 May 1990]: We have increased the resources available for grants to voluntary bodies under section 73 of the Housing Act 1985 from £680,000 in 1989–90 to £2 million for 1990–91. Half that total is allocated to a national homelessness advice service involving citizens advice bureaux, the Shelter Housing Aid Centre and Shelter; half to practical projects providing direct help to homeless people. Twenty-six bodies have been offered grant in respect of specific practical projects. I believe that this approach will provide more direct help to homeless people than the previous use of section 73 funds for core funding voluntary bodies. I have received a number of representations on behalf of CHAR, but I will not raise hopes of further funding this year: all the funds are earmarked.