Latest Stories

Westminister.png

Milton Keynes' Labour Councillors have challenged the two Conservative MPs to reverse a major cut after the Government took £2.31m from support for homeless households in the borough.

Milton Keynes is one of the worst areas in the UK for homeless families per head of the population, with over 740 families and 1300 children in temporary accommodation. (at 08.09.17)

Just when you think matters could not get worse, it turns out, that from April 2018, the Government is cutting homelessness funding it previously paid towards the cost of temporary accommodation.

Prior to April 2017 the Government paid Milton Keynes Council £60 per week, per unit of temporary accommodation. The Government has now changed the rules and from April 2018 they have replaced the weekly funding with a fixed grant. This grant is £2.31 million less over the next two years. The gap of nearly £1m in next year’s budget and a further £1m the year after was announced at the meeting of the Labour Cabinet on Tuesday.

Yet only this week the city’s two Conservative MPs have hailed the new Flexible Home Support Grant, despite it REDUCING the funding MK Council gets for housing homeless families.

At Cabinet on Tuesday evening the Labour administration agreed with a recommendation from the Budget Scrutiny Committee to write to the MPs and challenge them to reverse the funding cut.

Cllr_Pete_Marland.jpg

Cllr Peter Marland, Leader of MK Council said: “I had to inform the Cabinet that the new Flexible Housing Support Grant, introduced by this Government and supported by our local Conservative MPs, will result in MK Council receiving over £2m less over the next two years.

Cllr_Long.jpg

Cllr Nigel Long, Cabinet Member for Housing continued;

The latest change to homelessness funding will cost the Council £2.31 million. Our two Tory MPs have hailed the changes as a positive thing for the City and homelessness, so it gives the impression they are more interested in repeating what they’ve been told by their national press office that the reality of their votes in Parliament. Don’t they know what they are voting for?

Councillor Long added:

I will be writing to our two MPs and ask them to follow up of their public statements and ensure that this cut is reserved and the funding is returned to MK Council and our homeless families. If it is not, it will mean more cuts to our wider budget.

Council Leader Pete Marland concluded, “Of course we want to work together with our MPs to solve this issue, but they need to recognise the causes of homelessness, and that their actions have consequences. At the heart of tackling homelessness must be the building of new genuinely affordable housing, something they have failed to allow us to do.

The ball is now in their court, will they be good to their word on tackling homelessness in MK and get this cut reversed permanently?

Government cuts £2.31m from support for homeless households.

Milton Keynes' Labour Councillors have challenged the two Conservative MPs to reverse a major cut after the Government took £2.31m from support for homeless households in the borough.

Councillors_visit_urban_farm.jpg

A local community urban farm project in Wolverton has been given a boost after two local Councillors donated £1000 of their ward budgets to get a fundraising campaign over the line.

The Urb Farm in Wolverton has been crowd sourcing funding for a new tipi tent so more local children and young people could learn about nature and food production. But with time running out the target looked out of reach.

Florie Bryant, Team Leader at the project, then contacted the Labour local ward councillors Pete Marland and Rob Middleton, who were able to donate £1000 of their ward budget to get the appeal over the line. The tipi will now be used to provide shelter and a base to allow even more children and the community to benefit from getting to know about growing food and learn about the outdoors.

The Urb Farm is based in Wolverton and as well as teaching local children about nature also provides alternative education for young people, with one young learner recently graduating to a placement with the Park Trust.

Cllr_Pete_Marland_(1).JPG

Cllr Marland

Cllr Pete Marland said:

The Urb Farm is a wonderful community project that really benefits children by teaching them about the outdoors and growing food. I’m really pleased we were able to get their fundraising appeal over the line to buy something that will mean even more children can benefit.

Florie Bryant said:

People have been very generous in donating to get us to this point, and the donation of the ward funds means we’re able to buy the tipi. We have an open day on Saturday 16th September between 1pm and 4pm, so hopefully people can come and see what we do for the community.

Cllr_Rob_Middleton_(1).JPG

Cllr Middleton

Cllr Rob Middleton concluded:

The best part of being a councillor is helping community projects like this. It’s great so many local children will be able to benefit, and young people will be helped to get the skills they need.

Local Wolverton councillors give Urb Farm a boost

A local community urban farm project in Wolverton has been given a boost after two local Councillors donated £1000 of their ward budgets to get a fundraising campaign over the...

Gladstone_at_SET_session_2.jpg

Bletchley councillor Gladstone McKenzie shows he still has the skills and ability to score great goals. Working with Milton Keynes Dons Sport and Education Trust (MK Dons SET).  community training for young people at Rickley Park, West Bletchley, Gladstone showed how to control the ball and to score.

Cllr Elaine Wales, who also represents Bletchley said: “I have known Gladstone for many years and he remains a great example of a community focused councillor. He values  young people. He remains passionate about developing the skills and aspirations of tomorrow's footballers.”

Gladstone_at_SET_session_1.jpg

Gladstone McKenzie showing young people at a MK Dons Sport and Education Trust (MK Dons SET) at a Rickley Park  Community event how to hit the ball   

Bletchley West Labour Councillors: Gladstone McKenzie and Elaine Wales:

Cllr_Gladstone_MacKenzie_(1).JPG  Clle_Elaine_Wales_(1).JPG

 

Gladstone McKenzie: Passionate about tomorrow’s footballers

Bletchley councillor Gladstone McKenzie shows he still has the skills and ability to score great goals. Working with Milton Keynes Dons Sport and Education Trust (MK Dons SET).  community training...

More Stories >

Liquid syntax error: Error in tag 'subpage' - No such page slug cookies