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Wokingham Borough Council fails to spend allocated money on housing maintenance

June 21, 2010 12:00 PM

Wokingham Liberal Democrats were surprised to learn that £451,000 allocated in the last financial year by Wokingham Borough Council for housing maintenance has not been spent. Instead, £400,000 of the £451,000 has been carried forward to this financial year.

Cllr Phil Challis (Liberal Democrat Councillor for Loddon Ward) said, 'I am shocked that money allocated by the Conservative Council to be spent on housing maintenance has not been spent at the earliest opportunity. It should have been spent in the financial year it was allocated. This has had a hugely detrimental effect on the quality of the housing stock in Wokingham Borough.

'I will be asking a question at this week's Executive to try to clarify the situation for local residents, who have once again been let down by the Conservative-run Council.'

The question that Cllr Phil Challis will be asking at the Executive on Thursday 24th June is as follows:

'I note from the Revenue Outturn 2009-10 presented to the Executive on 27 May 2010 that £451,000 allocated to housing maintenance in the last financial year was not spent, and that £400,000 has been carried forward to this year.

'I also note that there has been poor publicity regarding the quality of Wokingham Borough Council houses in the week of 7th-11th June 2010 on BBC South Today, BBC Radio Berks and in the press in general.

'Whilst fully acknowledging that the current Housing Finance System, where half the rent collected by Wokingham Borough Council is sent to the government, has an ongoing and major impact on the Council's ability to manage its housing stock, would the Executive member for Social Care agree with me that the failure of the Executive to ensure that allocated money was actually spent on maintenance at the earliest opportunity has had a dramatic short term impact on the quality of our housing stock and that it was this failure to complete planned work last year that has led directly to the poor publicity?'