New housing plan for the Kingdom

editorial image
Share this article

THE Fife Council administration wants to tackle the Kingdom’s affordable housing shortage with the provision of 2700 new rented homes in the next five years.

The council’s executive committee has endorsed the plans which it concedes will be a “huge challenge” to deliver.

In Fife there are 14,000 people on housing waiting and transfer lists, with depute leader, Councillor David Ross, saying far too many people were not adequately housed.

The opposition SNP group on the council, though, has poured scorn on the plan, saying the authority had “no idea” how the new homes would be delivered.

Despite this, Cllr Ross said: “If we are to tackle this problem we need to double the number of affordable rented homes built in Fife each year.

“This will be a huge challenge, as Fife’s housing investment grant from the Scottish Government has been cut by around two thirds over the next three years.

“But, as a council, we won’t just accept there’s a lack of funding and do nothing.

“We need to look at new and innovative approaches, and are committed to working with housing associations, private builders and developers and any other people and organisations that can help us achieve our target.”

As a starting point, the committee has approved Fife’s Housing Investment Strategic Local Programme for the next three years to be submitted to the Scottish Government.

This will aim to provide 542 new homes through housing associations and council new builds by 2015.

However, SNP group leader, Councillor Peter Grant, told the Mail: “The party that campaigned for years against involving the private sector in service delivery is now openly and blatantly asking private businesses to bail them out.”