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How many affordable homes do we need? — 2 Comments

  1. I think some of what you say here needs a lot of scrutinising. The idea of the Homechoice Register was to make who gets homes fair by reference to criteria on the Register and your banding. It is not a matter for the parish councillors. When I was on Cornwall Council all I could do if someone said they were in need was to put their case to the housing team and ask for their banding to be reviewed. I would be amazed if Cllr Myers and his colleagues get to pick who wins. Some people might be really quite worried about whether the outcome would be fair. You underplay the fact that people who work here are Band C. So they come ahead of 27 households on the Register who have local connections. I do not think they should. If they worked in Falmouth Boat Construction and got a home, would they lose it if they then went to work for Rustler Yachts in Falmouth. Have you checked?
    Further, what Cornwall Council said in their email on Saltbox of 15th September is that the Housing Register would fill up again “in a year or so’. So that means we could be building up to 30 homes a year in theory to meet demand. That is not sustainable with your policy of preserving the AONB.
    So, we need to go back to Cornwall Council and try to get them to rewrite the rules to suit the Parish. Not just roll over and accept their rules

    • Hi Fiona. We’ve asked one of our housing team, Jonathan Griffin, to reply, and this is what he says:

      Thank you for this. The Homechoice register is used by the Local Planning Authority (Cornwall Council) to assess ‘need’ so it is a Cornwall Council policy and not one the Parish Council or NDP can overturn. If there are 30 names on the Homechoice Register and a developer brings forward a proposal for 30 homes then the LPA has to agree. As the blog says, Mylor Parish Council can argue against a development but it is only a consultee, not the decision-maker.

      On priorities, there are two groupings in the bullet points above. The first set is about qualification to be on the Register. ‘Works in the parish’ means that someone can be on the Register but they have no higher or lower priority than anyone else on the Register. The second grouping is about priority. If someone who ‘works in the parish’ is homeless (Band C) then they would have the same level of priority as someone who has ‘lived in the parish continuously for 5 years at some point in the past’ who is also homeless (Band C).

      Cornwall Council are not amenable to negotiation on the Homechoice Register as it is a Cornwall-wide policy. However Cornwall Homes (the developers of Tregew Meadows) have assured us that they aim to try to accommodate the Parish Council’s views on priorities for Tregew Meadow. If the developer were a Community Land Trust then Cornwall Council would be prepared to consider a different set of priorities (suggested by the Parish Council) but the Homechoice Register total would still be hanging over the Parish.

      As the blog says, neither 42 nor nil new affordable homes is the ‘right’ answer, certainly not if the community wishes to preserve the AONB status and character of the parish.

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