Issue - meetings

Introduction of Self Financing for the Housing Revenue Account

Meeting: 18/11/2014 - Cabinet (Item 83)

83 Introduction of Self Financing for the Housing Revenue Account pdf icon PDF 43 KB

Additional documents:


As detailed in the recommendations.


The Cabinet Member for Housing provided an update on the progress to introduce self financing for the Housing Revenue Account. 


The UK Government and Welsh Government (WG) had reached an agreement to change the financing arrangements for council housing in Wales from April 2015 at the request of Welsh local authorities.  To date, this had seen a negative subsidy system in operation which had required all 11 stock owning councils across Wales to make a total annual negative subsidy payment of £73m, c£6m in Flintshire’s case, of rental income to WG and on to the UK Treasury.  This would cease on the introduction of self financing.


The new arrangements would see the annual subsidy payment replaced with £40m of interest payments on Public Works Loan Board (PWLB) loans.


The introduction of self financing required stock retaining councils to implement a new rent policy prescribed by WG which was approved at Cabinet in September 2014 to allow for a first draft of the business plan for self financing to be submitted to WG by the end of September, with feedback expected in the coming weeks.  A summary of the response to the consultation from the then Housing Minister Carl Sergeant was detailed in the report.


Work was underway to prepare for self financing however timescales were tight and a summary level project plan was appended to the report.  Detailed actions were underway to achieve key deadlines and achievement of self financing would require delegated authority to enter into a voluntary agreement with WG.


The project group would be provided with a document detailing the key risks and appropriate mitigation measures including an assessment of legal risks ahead of making recommendations to enter into a Voluntary Agreement.


A number of Member and tenant workshops would be held over the coming weeks to discuss the significant change and to consider proposals on how Governance of the HRA should be developed.


Cabinet Members thanked the Leader for his work on this with the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) on what was a remarkable achievement and an accomplishment for Flintshire and the other 10 local authorities involved.




(a)       That the update report and planned actions over the coming months, including those for communication and engagement, to introduce self financing for council housing be noted; and


(b)       That subject to consideration of the risk assessment, delegated authority be given to the Chief Officer (Governance), Chief Officer (Community and Enterprise) and the Corporate Finance Manager, in consultation with the Leader and Cabinet Member for Housing to enter into a Voluntary Agreement in January 2015, to enable the introduction of self financing for the HRA from 1 April 2015.  (To note that before exercising any delegated authority the key risks and appropriate mitigation measures would be documented in a risk assessment.)