You should vote on the facts
PUBLISHED: 12:59 03 November 2006 | UPDATED: 22:21 28 May 2010
NOTHING could be further from the truth with regard to running scared of the figures relating to Fenland District Council s housing transfer proposal. The extensive partner selection process which lasted seven months was developed to ensure three things.
NOTHING could be further from the truth with regard to running scared of the figures relating to Fenland District Council's housing transfer proposal.
The extensive partner selection process which lasted seven months was developed to ensure three things.
- That tenants would be offered more and better services and improvements from a local landlord. This has been achieved with the proposal to create a new local landlord called Roddons Housing Association, supported by Circle Anglia which passed a severe scrutiny on its track record in delivery of promises through transfer and their quality of services to tenants.
- That staff would be protected with their terms and conditions and pensions.
- That the council would get maximum value for the homes but not to the detriment of the tenants' offer or the staff's rights.
All these have been achieved, because the process was led by tenants with councillors and staff also having a key role to play in the decision.
The finances from that process were reported through the council's scrutiny and approval process and these reports are available on the council's website. As well as this, it did receive considerable coverage in the local press.
Lots of tenants have said to me: "Why can't I buy my home for the price that the housing association would buy it for?"
The reason is that tenants who buy are free to use the homes as they wish. There is no obligation to let it at affordable rents, improve it to the standard detailed in the offer document to tenants, manage it and maintain it. The tenant would have no obligation to pay for the community improvements and provide all the new services that Roddons would provide.
All the council has done is asked some hard-working voluntary tenants to work with the council and staff to look at options for how our homes are managed. They found that about £2million of Fenland tenants' rent money gets spent in areas like London. It's up to tenants to decide if they want that to stop or not. If they do they should vote 'yes'.
If they don't wish to stop the haemorrhaging of their rent money elsewhere to mainly metropolitan areas of England they should vote 'no'.
I urge all tenants to use their vote but determine which way you vote, by voting on the facts, not the deliberate attempts to mis-inform you, by Defend Council Housing - Fenland.
CLLR KIT OWEN
Portfolio holder for housing
Fenland District Council