Deputy Prime Minister written question – answered on 11th February 2004.

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Photo of Mr Tom Cox Mr Tom Cox Labour, Tooting

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the purpose is of merging housing associations within the Greater London area.

Photo of Keith Hill Keith Hill Minister of State (Housing and Planning), Office of the Deputy Prime Minister

This is a matter for the Housing Corporation but in general terms there are four sets of circumstances in which housing associations merge.

The first, and by far the most common, is where two or more associations conclude, of their own volition, that they can provide better or more services by coming together.

The second is where an association which is in breach of the Corporation's Regulatory Code concludes that the best or only way of resolving its problems is by joining another association with the necessary skills and resources.

The third is where, after a Statutory Inquiry has found mismanagement or misconduct in the affairs of the association, the Corporation's Board has the power to direct, with the consent of the Secretary of State, the association to transfer its land and property to another association of the Corporation's choosing.

In the event of an insolvency, the Corporation has the power to make proposals as to the future ownership and management of the land held by an RSL, which is designed to secure its continued proper management by another RSL. Any such proposals would have to be agreed by all the secured creditors.

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