At this week’s public meeting of the Executive, the decision making body of the Council approved a 3.2% reduction in the rent increase set for council housing.
Lead Member for Housing, Liberal Democrat Councillor Penny Shelton announced: “In February of this year, the Executive agreed a rent increase averaging 5.7% after the Government said that it would be setting the level of rent increases for council tenants at a staggering 6.1% - a hike far, far higher than current inflation.
“I wrote to the Secretary of State outlining my serious concern that Council tenants in Kingston would be facing very substantial increases in rent at a time of economic crisis. We urged the Government to address its position as a matter of urgency.
“The Government bowed to pressure, and in direct response to lobbying by Kingston and other London Boroughs they agreed to reduce the increase in rents. This means that they will be reduced by 3.2% over the rent level first agreed by the Executive back in February.
Liberal Democrat Cllr Shelton added: “While I am of course delighted that we have been able to agree a lower level of rent increases paid by local residents – I still call for the Government to do more for Kingston council housing. They need to address the long term difficulties of maintaining, let alone improving, our stock at a time when we pay the highest level of negative subsidy per property in the whole of London.”