Shepway District Council’s B&B costs have now broken the £1 million pound barrier for the first time ever. We predicted this would happen in Oct 2017. The total now stands at £1,058,657 and we have February’s and March’s figures to come, the total figure may possibly be heading to one and quarter million mark.
The spend on B&B costs is a whopping 84% increase on spending for B&B costs when compared to the whole financial year 16/17. Cllr Alan Ewart-James is the Cabinet member responsible for B&B costs.
This has happened, in part, because not enough affordable housing has been built or is being built.
According to a answer given by Cllr Ewart James (pictured) in a question raised by Cllr Mary Lawes, the Council waiting list was a over 3000 people. Now with 350 -470 affordable homes available it is obvious not enough is being built or has been built. Folkestone Town Council have objected to the former Wyevale Garden Centren in Jointon Road, Folkestone, precisely because no affordable homes is to be included on the 42 homes proposed. Now developers reduce affordable housing via their Financial Viability Apprasial’s; which go like this:
Now to prevent this, we need to remove the eight Cllrs who voted irrationally on the planning committee and replace them with Cllrs who have sufficient training and fortitude to scrutinize the background documents. If this doesn’t happen and we do not get Cllrs who can behave rationally on the Committee, affordable housing will remain an significant issue for years to come.
Welfare reform, the rise of domestic violence and other issues make up the varied reasons why B&B costs may have grown. However, this does not excuse our Council for failing to build or supply enough affordable housing, social housing or affordable rents. So as it stands it’s clear the local Conservative Party, the ruling party, led by Cllr David Drury Monk (pictured) in Shepway do not have a grip on the costs. Will Cllr Ewart James resign?
The Shepwayvox Team