The Government takes from Northampton council house rent payers an average of £725 per tenant per year.
This figure, was first revealed by Lib Dem Council Leader Tony Woods at a Council meeting on 13th May, and totals a staggering £9 million taken by the exchequer from Northampton Borough Council rents in one year. This will prevent the council making repairs to council houses to bring them all up to a decent standard.
"This so-called 'negative subsidy' must be paid from the council's Housing Revenue Account" said Tony Woods. "It represents a direct loss of income to the council that could, otherwise, be used to significantly invest in improving existing social housing in Northampton and to provide additional social housing to meet the high level of demand. It represents a charge- a 'tenant tax' of over £725 per council home per year."
Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate for Northampton North, Andrew Simpson has called for a radical overhaul of local government finances so that people can understand clearly what the Council gets and where the money is going.
"It is outrageous that on the one hand the Government is pressing the Council to meet the decent home's standard by 2010 whilst on the other hand the Government is taking money away which is needed to meet that standard. Northampton tenants need to know why this is happening and where the money is going. This is yet another example of Gordon Brown hitting those most in need with a punitive tax". said Andrew.
He continued "Local Councils need to have the power to manage their social housing without Government interference and restrictions this includes being able to build new high quality homes for rent".
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