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CIH WALES CONFERENCE: NO HOUSING HEADLINE AND NO MONEY EITHER FOR WALES

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Welsh councils will be invited to submit bids for PFI pathfinder projects in the next few weeks. ...
Welsh councils will be invited to submit bids for PFI pathfinder projects in the next few weeks.

It is likely that these will follow the same pattern as in England which will be revealed in the next couple of weeks, Welsh Office housing department director Adam Peat told delegates at the CIH Welsh conference in Llandudno last week.

CIH director of policy John Perry said:

'We're delighted that councils in Wales will get the same opportunity to explore these private finance options. Councils looking for more investment to deal with disrepair in their housing stock may find PFI an attractive alternative to stock transfer. These pilots could help to pave the way for a new approach for dealing with the backlog of three quarters of a million pounds in Welsh council housing.'

Mr Perry called for the assembly to decide on a strategy for council housing to help local councils, in turn, shape their decisions on the financial options available on the future of their housing stock.

NO HOUSING HEADLINE AND NO MONEY EITHER FOR WALES

Comparisons between the profile of housing in Wales and other areas in the UK were drawn at the conference. Louise Barnden, director of the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) in Wales made reference to recent Scottish 'headlines' on housing and extra money being made available for housing in England. Addressing 200 delegates drawn from housing professions across Wales, Ms Barnden questioned whether the new politicians in Wales will have housing firmly on their assembly agenda and said:

'Have you noticed that the Labour and SNP spokespeople in Scotland have been talking about 'education, health and housing services' in recent speeches and radio interviews? In his recent Budget speech, the chancellor referred to the extra resource being put into housing in England and he stressed that these must go hand in hand with better management of social housing.'

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