On Wednesday evening residents heard that the JMB had enjoyed another successful year in terms its performance, innovation and sound financial management. However attendees also heard from Southwark’s Cabinet Minister for Housing, Richard Livingstone, and the Executive Manager, Andy Bates, that government proposals/changes pose significant risks to the JMB’s successful model of local management.
Proposals to sell high value council homes when they become vacant resulting in most, if not all, JMB properties being sold when they become empty was seen as the biggest challenge. These sales could mean the loss of about 40 properties a year. These “forced sales” are required to fund discounts for housing association tenants who will be offered the right to buy and pay for a new build programme.
The government will also be cutting the JMB’s rental income by 1% for the next 4 years. Adding this to the anticipated effects of welfare reform measures the JMB expects that its income will be 22% lower in four years time. This measure will have a significant impact on the planned major works programme and service delivery.
The JMB will be writing to the local MP, Neil Coyle, setting out its concerns in relation to forced sales and the future of our community and asking for his support in lobbying the government to address JMB concerns. If you are passing the office please ask to sign our letter.