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29 October 2018

CHC responds to UK Government Budget 2018

Today’s UK Government Budget has seen Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond reveal his spending plans for 2019/20, including a number of major announcements on housing and welfare spending. Major announcements include:

  • £1bn of investment over five years to help support the migration of Universal Credit claimants
  • The removal of the housing revenue borrowing cap for Local Authorities in England and Wales
  • £550m in additional consequential funding for Welsh Government
  • £120m of funding for the North Wales Growth Deal

The Budget documents confirm that the £1bn investment in Universal Credit will implement a two week run-on for claimants of Employment Support Allowance, Jobseeker’s Allowance and Income Support, as well as a reduction in third party deductions from 40% to 30%. There is also an additional £1.7bn to increase work allowances in Universal Credit by £1,000 from April 2019. However, the Budget documents confirmed that there would be no change in the rollout date for managed migration.

Responding to today’s announcement, Stuart Ropke, Chief Executive at Community Housing Cymru said:

“We welcome further investment to support Universal Credit claimants. This is recognition that a major reform such as Universal Credit cannot be delivered successfully whilst cutting funding. However, we are disappointed that the UK Government has not announced a delay to the start of managed migration, which will go ahead as planned in July. We fear this will continue to cause unnecessary hardship by pushing people further into debt.

“The new capital funding made available for Wales as a result of today’s budget presents an opportunity for Welsh Government to maintain consistent investment in building new affordable homes over the coming years. Doing so ensures we can reach our target of delivering 20,000 affordable homes in this Assembly term. This will also help us achieve the ambitions outlined in housing association’s ‘Housing Horizons’ vision - to create a Wales where good housing is a basic right for all.”

Read a full briefing of the UK Government Budget here.