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REGENERATION FOR RENFREWSHIRE

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Renfrewshire Council has been confirmed as the third council to officially join the Executive's Community Ownership...
Renfrewshire Council has been confirmed as the third council to officially join the Executive's Community Ownership Programme.

As a result, tenants in the area will get the opportunity to transfer from the council to a not-for-profit landlord which unlocks millions of pounds of investment to improve housing standards.

A grant of up to£3m will be made available to the council to enable it to make an early start on regeneration projects.

Deputy communities minister Mary Mulligan said: 'Community ownership offers significant opportunities for the council and its tenants.

'If tenants opt to transfer to a new community-based, not-for-profit landlord, it has the potential to significantly improve housing standards and, most importantly, to ensure that rents are kept at affordable levels.

'It also gives tenants a greater say in how their homes and estates are managed in future.

'The early action regeneration funding will enable the council to work with the local community to draw up proposals for a number of areas and to make an early start on the agreed programme of works.'

Jim Harkins, leader of Renfrewshire Council, said: 'We welcome receipt of the£3m grant as the first tranche of regeneration resources which we will put to good use on behalf of our tenants.'

Renfrewshire Council decided in May 2004 that a transfer of the council's 16,000 houses to a registered social landlord was the best way of improving housing standards whilst keeping rents affordable to those in low paid employment.

Stirling Council and Inverclyde Council have already entered the Community Ownership Programme and Western Isles Council, Argyll & Bute Council and Edinburgh City Council are also developing transfer proposals.

The regeneration grant for Renfrewshire is being made from the£175m regeneration fund announced by the executive last year.

The main aim of the fund is to ensure that the massive housing investment generated by transfer is not frustrated by a failure to tackle wider regeneration.

The funding is intended to complement the transfer investment programme and works could include the demolition of poor quality housing, new build and environmental improvements. Priority in the allocation of the regeneration resources is being given to councils who are accepted on to the Community Ownership Programme.

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