The Director for City Housing introduced a
report on the City Housing Strategy.
She offered to bring the City Housing Strategy back to the Scrutiny
Panel at the end of the consultation process.
The Service Manager for Housing Strategy and
Policy commented that, The Housing White Paper had set a target of
achieving 300,000 new homes every year by the
mid-2020s. The Homeless Reduction Act
2017 now required Councils to engage and work with households
threatened with homelessness 56 days in advance of the date they
were expected to become homeless, which was 28 days earlier than
previous. Welfare reforms continued to
provide challenges for residents, the Council and Registered
Providers. Housing and land use were a
key West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) priority with an
investment prospectus setting out up to £10 billion in
development schemes. The WMCA Strategic
Economic Plan anticipated 500,000 new jobs would be created by the
year 2030. The plan recognised the
challenge of building new homes.
Manager for Housing Strategy and Policy stated that the Black County Core Strategy set a target of around 63,000
additional homes (net) to be delivered over the period 2006-26 to
accommodate its growing population. The target for Wolverhampton
was 13,400 homes or 670 homes each year. 5,640 homes had been built
up to 2018, and land was available for another 9,000
homes. In private sector housing the
highest number of category 1 hazards were in the lower value
Members complimented Officers on the excellent presentation that
had been given on the Housing Strategy.
Member of the Panel commented that he wanted the Housing Strategy
to be more explicit about fire safety.
The aging population correlated with vulnerability. With the Council encouraging independent living,
there was more likely to be people suffering with Alzheimer’s
and Dementia living at home in the future. Areas that he thought the strategy could be more
specific on in relation to fire safety were construction materials,
hard wiring of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and sprinkler
systems. In response the Director for
City Housing stated that she was committed to driving safety within
the strategy and its wider promotion.
The Council’s first focus had been the high rising
blocks. They were now starting to
address the vulnerable blocks. The
Council would of course respond to any national changes arising
from the Hackitt and Grenfell
Member of the Panel commented that he wanted the Council to go
above and beyond the minimum standards required by current
regulations. The Government had even
said that Councils should progress in improving standards before
new regulations were in force.
Member of the Panel asked about the Council’s Allocations
Policy. They were mindful of ensuring
that new estates were a mixed community.
Member of the Panel raised a concern about the use of Brownfield
sites and potential private development. They were particularly concerned about an area on
the border of Wednesfield and South Staffordshire where there was a
threat of thousands of ... view
the full minutes text for item 5.