London Tory council leader slams Nick Boles for meddling in council affairs

2 Sep

Not all Tory-led councils are as enthusiastic as EDDC when it comes to slavishly following Nick Boles, Planning Minister responsible for the fiasco that is the National Planning Policy Framework which has seen developers fighting over just about every bit of land in East Devon.

Full story HERE.

A London Tory council leader today slammed “interfering” ministers for planning new rules which might force local authorities to approve thousands of new homes. Richmond council leader Nick True said the rules were only the latest attempt by planning minister Nick Boles to meddle in council affairs.

The new guidelines will see councils taking account of house prices, local wages and the cost of renting for the first time when deciding how many new homes to approve. As Mr Boles prepares to issue the guidelines this week, Lord True said: “We will need to look at the details. However, there are many people that believe a period of silence from Mr Boles would be welcome. There is too much government interfering.”

Council officers will keep track of house prices and rents and then apply an “affordability test”. If they rise too high the council will have a duty to increase housing supply. It could mean more new developments, and even previously vetoed ones, being given the go-ahead.  …..

….. Mr Boles said more housing was needed to make homes affordable for ordinary people.

“Just as there is a legal obligation for authorities to provide school places and healthcare to everyone who needs it, so too they must now provide affordable homes,” he told The Sun. “House prices are out of reach for many.”

Well, it should be interesting to see how it might work here:  not everywhere has what we have:  high (and rising) house prices and low (and stagnating) wages.

And, of course, recall Seaton where Tesco has been allowed to drop all the affordable homes from its Seaton site to make it more saleable.

Profit or affordable homes?  Which is more important?

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