Monday, December 08, 2008
What on earth is a "Negative Subsidy"
For all the time that I've been a councillor, governments of all persuasion have dedicated (part of) themselves to trying to ensure that everyone has a decent home. In this part of the world, especially since property prices went up so sharply, many people just can't afford to buy a place. So they're reliant on lower cost homes for rent provided by housing associations and by the Council. The difference between "market" rents and council house rents has typically been made up by a subsidy from the Government.
But in this topsy turvey world this is now a "negative subsidy" - to all intents and purposes a tax on those who can least afford it.
And it's now EIGHT MILLION POUNDS! This has increased from about £6m in 2005 and in that same time, rental income is said to have increased by only £1.7m.
I'm pretty gobsmacked about this and am now starting to research it further.