I am today launching a consultation seeking views on the mechanism for allocating the Housing and Planning Delivery Grant (HPDG).
This grant will provide more support for communities and local councils who are doing their bit to promote more housing and will help local authorities to respond to the local housing needs of their community. The grant totals £510 million over the three years, 2008-09 to 2010-11.
The proposed grant will offer extra funding for councils that identify at least five years worth of good sites ready for housing and a further 10 years worth for future development. All local planning authorities will be eligible for the planning element of the grant.
It will also provide extra help for those communities and councils that are doing most to support more homes. In areas where the number of homes is growing by more than 0.75 per cent. a year, councils will be able to get extra funding per home from the Housing and Planning Delivery Grant in addition to infrastructure funding and developer contributions. However in order to be eligible for funding councils will need to be able to demonstrate they are taking action to bring empty homes back into use as well as supporting more new homes. We are also proposing that qualification for the grant should depend on a local planning authority having an effective empty homes strategy in place.
This money is about extra support for those councils who are already doing their bit, ensuring that more housing is delivered to meet the needs of this and future generations. The first payments will be made next year.
Today's announcement marks further delivery against the measures set out in our Housing Green Paper, “Homes for the future: more affordable, more sustainable”. It also delivers against Recommendation 18 of Kate Barker's “Review of Housing Supply”, which called for a housing growth incentive for local authorities.
The detailed proposals are contained in a consultation paper will be published later today on the website of the Department for Communities and Local Government www.communities.gov.uk/publications/housing/deliverygrantallocation. Copies of the consultation will be available in the Libraries of both Houses.