The Leader of the Council – Regeneration Cabinet Member – Minutes – 23 February 2012

1  (1) NEW HOMES BONUS INVESTMENT – The Head of Regeneration and Planning submitted a report which outlined the key details of the New Homes Bonus, and what this may mean for North Lincolnshire Council, its Local Investment Plan and options for the short and medium term use of the New Homes Bonus money.

By way of financial incentives, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) published a paper on their proposals for a New Homes Bonus. The New Homes Bonus aimed to encourage local authorities to increase housing supply by rewarding them with a payment for each additional property built.  Enhancements were offered for affordable homes, in order to further promote the delivery of this tenure, which could be difficult in some areas.

The DCLG had set aside nearly £200m to fund the scheme in 2011/12, and a further £250m per annum for each of the following three years of the spending review (2012/13 to 2014/15). The government expected the scheme to be cost neutral, with funding coming from the abolition of the Housing & Planning Delivery Grant (an estimated £900m) and from the redistribution of a portion of formula grant.

The North Lincolnshire Local Investment Plan had been prepared in collaboration between the Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA). Previously known as the ‘single conversation’, Local Investment Planning was a process which took place between the Council, the HCA and a range of partners and stakeholders in an area with the aim of producing a Local Investment Plan (LIP) which would identify the spatial and thematic investment priorities for the area.

Details of the Spatial and Thematic priorities were outlined within the report.

The Cabinet Members were advised that the long term vision was for North Lincolnshire to become the Global Gateway for the North of England, and for the area to be transformed through rapid economic growth on the South Humber Bank. It was anticipated that this economic transformation would act as a catalyst for the reduction of inequalities in the more deprived parts of North Lincolnshire.

The DCLG had published an online calculator which provided an estimate of the potential bonus that an authority could receive, based on its existing housing stock profile and the proportion of properties in each council tax band. The actual bonus payment that the Council would receive in Years 2-6 would increase to take account of the additional bonus generated by the supply delivered within each of the subsequent years.  These figures were based an estimation of 500 additional homes each year.  An analysis of this was shown in Appendix One to the report.

Resolved – (a)  That the six year financial strategy for the new homes bonus for the remaining amount managed by the Head of Regeneration and Planning be approved, and (b) that the Financial Plan as detailed in Appendix One to the report be approved.

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Where there is no report this is because it is exempt, as it contains information which is considered to be of a confidential nature, as detailed in the Local Government (Access to Information) Act.