Budget 2020: Key UK housing, health & local government updates

Annie Field, Consultant Researcher at Campbell Tickell, summarises some of the key housing, local government and health updates from the Government’s Budget 2020 announcement.

Rishi Sunak has just delivered his first budget as Chancellor, after only a few weeks in the role. It includes greater spending promises than we’ve seen in the last decade of Conservative-led governments, with some specific funding for affordable housing.

Below is a summary of the key points, which may affect the organisations we work with.

As ever it will be important to review the detail to see how these promises will actually be delivered.

Housing:

  • The Affordable Homes programme has been extended with a new multi-year settlement of £12.2bn. To note: this funding can be used for ‘affordable’ rent and shared ownership, as well as social rent. Only 4% of the homes funded through the last round were social rent.
  • Interest rates for local authority investment in social housing will be cut by 1%.
  • £650m funding to support rough sleepers to move into accommodation (to put this in context, £2.5bn has been allocated to fill potholes). This will be partially funded by a new Stamp Duty surcharge for non-UK residents.
  • New Building Safety fund worth £1bn to deal with combustible cladding on high rise blocks. This goes further than previously offered and now covers all ‘unsafe combustible cladding’ for buildings of all tenures, rather than just the ACM cladding used on Grenfell Tower. This is a significant improvement.
  • £400m for local areas to build housing on brownfield land.
  • £1.1bn worth of allocations confirmed through the Housing Infrastructure Fund, which should build nearly 70,000 new homes. This fund is targeted at building homes in high demand areas and gives no specification regarding affordability.
  • New planning reforms are to be announced tomorrow.
  • The backing report also sets out some changes to how benefits are claimed, including:
    • Extending exemptions from the Shared Accommodation Rate (SAR) for Universal Credit and Housing Benefit claimants covering rough sleepers aged 16-24, care leavers up to the age of 25, and victims of domestic abuse and human trafficking
    • People will have longer to pay back Universal Credit advances (24 months) and the maximum deduction rate will be decreased  to 25% (from 30%)

Health & Local Government:

  • Over £6bn new funding to support the NHS, with some specific funding to support veterans with mental health conditions.
  • More money for devolved administrations and regions, including a new devolution deal and Mayor for West Yorkshire. Metro mayors will get London-style funding for transport in their regions.
  • £120m to repair damages from winter floods and £200m directly to local communities to build flood resilience.

Click for more detail on these areas.

To discuss this article, contact Annie Field : annie.field@campbelltickell.com

Read the full budget

Campbell Tickell is an established multi-disciplinary management and recruitment consultancy, operating across the UK and Ireland, focusing on the housing, social care, local government, sport, leisure, charity and voluntary sectors.

We are a values-based business and firmly place the positioning of our support and challenge on helping organisations to attain change that is well thought through, planned and sustainable. At CT, we want to help organisations create the landscape within which we ourselves would like to exist: fair, inclusive, diverse, engaged and transparent. We build from our values in how we approach all our work as a practice.

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