Local Government Finance

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:39 pm on 7th February 2018.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government 4:39 pm, 7th February 2018

As usual, the hon. Gentleman stands at the Dispatch Box and raises his voice, acting like a child again. He has nothing whatsoever to say on the substance of the issue.

Councils have a crucial role to play in helping to deliver the homes that our country desperately needs. However, we all know that we cannot achieve that without having the right infrastructure in place: the schools, GP surgeries, transport links and other essentials. The private sector can go only some way in delivering that infrastructure. It is clear that we must raise our game to match our ambitions, which is why last July we set up the housing infrastructure fund to support local authorities to provide infrastructure and build more homes. In the end, we received a staggering 430 bids, worth almost £14 billion, to deliver 1.5 million homes, demonstrating the incredible ambition that is out there to tackle the housing crisis—an ambition that we are keen to get behind and back fully. Hence our move to more than double the housing infrastructure fund in the autumn Budget, dedicating an additional £2.7 billion to it, bringing the total funding to £5 billion.

Last week I was delighted to announce the first funding allocation: £866 million for 133 successful projects, involving 110 councils, that will help unlock up to 200,000 homes. Those projects promise to deliver a strong pipeline of homes at pace and scale, and represent another important step towards meeting one of the defining challenges of our time.

I will now turn to another major challenge: social care. I am under no illusions about the pressures that councils face in addressing one of the biggest challenges we face as a country, which is why we have put billions of pounds of extra funding into the sector over the past 12 months. I can today announce a further £150 million for an adult social care support grant in 2018-19. This will be allocated according to relative needs and will help councils to build on their work and support sustainable local care. It comes on top of the additional £2 billion for adult social care over the next three years announced at the spring Budget. With the freedom to raise more money more quickly through the use of the social care precept, which I announced this time last year, we have given councils access to £9.4 billion more dedicated funding for adult social care over three years.