Falkirk Council’s Labour / Tory coalition have been accused of swapping the potential for 500 new council houses in exchange for an election gimmick of a one year rent freeze.
In a three year budget the ruling rainbow coalition set a 0% increase for council house rents for 2012-13, election year, then a 3.7% increase for the next two years.
However, SNP Housing spokesperson for Housing, Cllr Cecil Meiklejohn was able to demonstrate that a 3% increase in rents would produce an annual income of £1.5m. If this was used as a source of revenue to be borrowed against this then £15m of capital would be attracted.
This figure would be doubled once the rental stream was taken into consideration thus giving the option of 500 new houses.
Said Cllr Meiklejohn,
“The Administration had the choice, 500 new houses or a pre-election gimmick of a one year council house rent freeze and chose a one off freeze.
This demonstrates that Labour are incapable of acting in a mature and responsible manner.
It also demonstrates that Labour are still not committed to building new council housing, proving their support for Tory polices.”