MD2256 Mayor’s Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund

Type of decision: 
Mayoral decision
Code: 
MD2256
Date signed: 
29 March 2018
Decision by: 
Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Executive summary

Since 2013/14, the GLA has been administering London’s share of the Department of Health and Social Care’s (DHSC’s) Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund to develop homes for older and disabled people. Up to £75m of a £315m national budget was assigned to London to 31 March 2018 and around £60m has so far been allocated to schemes in the capital. Approval is sought to continue the programme, operated in the capital as the Mayor’s Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund, to 31 March 2021, and to receive an additional £36m of capital funding and up to £300,000 revenue funding from DHSC for this purpose. This will increase the size of the capital programme in the London to up to £111m.

 

Decision

That the Mayor:

•    approves the GLA receiving an additional £36m capital grant funding and up to £300,000 revenue grant funding from the Department of Health and Social Care between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2021, to administer the Mayor’s Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund (MCSSHF)
•    delegates authority to the Executive Director of Housing and Land to approve funding allocations, in line with decision making processes for affordable homes programmes.
 

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1    In 2013/14, the GLA was allocated £40m of a £200m national fund by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to administer the Mayor’s Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund (MCSSHF) to provide homes for older and disabled Londoners to 31 March 2018 (approved by MD1073). In 2015/16, the GLA was allocated an additional £35m (of additional national funding of £115m) for this purpose, also to 31 March 2018 (approved by MD1476) – taking the total funding for London to £75m.
1.2    The GLA has now secured an additional £36m of funding and an extension to the funding period to 31 March 2021 from DHSC. This takes the total size of the capital programme in London to up to £111m. The DHSC will also make up to £100,000 a year available to 31 March 2021, to cover the GLA’s administration of the programme, such as staffing and legal costs. 
1.3    The GLA has so far allocated around £60m through the programme, to deliver 1,141 homes. By 31 March 2018, c400 homes will have completed and c570 started on site. Some allocations were made through specific bidding rounds and some through continuous bidding (MD1244, MD1292, MD1428). Given that around £60m of the £111m has been committed to allocated schemes, there will be around £51m available over the next three years for new schemes. These will come forward through continuous bidding and, potentially, specific targeted funding rounds.  As with current arrangements for the programme, providers will submit bids through the GLA’s Open Project System and bids will be assessed according to criteria set out in the prospectuses previously produced for the Mayor’s Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund . Officers will assess bids and, following peer review, make recommendations for funding allocations. The Executive Director of Housing and Land will approve funding allocations, in line with decision making processes for affordable homes programmes. 
1.4    The GLA and DHSC will enter into a new memorandum of understanding (MOU) that sets out the terms of the funding and the responsibilities of each of the parties.
 

Objectives and expected outcomes

2.1    The aim of the MCSSHF is to boost the delivery of a range of specialist provision with an element of care and support for older and disabled Londoners. This includes extra care, assisted living, dementia care, retirement housing, supported housing for disabled adults, wheelchair adapted homes and housing specifically designed for people with learning disabilities and autism. While it will mainly grant-fund affordable housing (for rent and shared ownership), the programme can also provide loans to enable the development of private housing.
2.2    Potential benefits of the types of housing delivered through this programme include:
•    peace of mind, safety and security for vulnerable older and disabled people
•    support to maintain independence
•    improved physical and mental health
•    delays and reductions in the need for primary care and social care interventions, including admission to long term care settings
•    prevention of hospital admissions
•    lower care costs
•    maintenance and development of links with the community
•    maximisation of incomes and reduced fuel poverty
•    freeing up of family housing for the wider community.
 

Equality comments

3.1    Under section 149 of the Equality Act 2010, as public authorities, the Mayor and GLA are subject to a public sector equality duty and must have ‘due regard’ to the need to (i) eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation; (ii) advance equality of opportunity between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not; and (iii) foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not. Protected characteristics under section 149 of the Equality Act are age, disability, gender re-assignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, and marriage or civil partnership status (all except the last being “relevant” protected characteristics).
3.2    The funding is specifically designed to address the housing pressures and challenges faced by older people and those living with a physical or mental disability. Older people are the fastest growing population group in London. More than one in ten Londoners is aged 65 or over, with the number projected to rise by 24 per cent over the next decade. Older person households are more likely to under-occupy housing than their younger counterparts. 54 per cent of older home owners in London and 16 per cent of older renters are under-occupying by at least two bedrooms. Disabled people account for around 14 per cent of London’s population.
3.3    The continuation of the programme will not only provide more suitable accommodation for older and disabled people in need of an affordable home but will also have an impact on the market, by enabling older home owners to downsize and free up larger properties into the market in return for a stake in or full ownership of a more appropriate home where care and support can be received.
 

Other considerations

4.    Other considerations
a)     Key risks and issues 
 

Risk description

 

Rating

Mitigating action

 

The funding could be under-subscribed.

Low risk           

The programme will continue to be promoted widely among investment partners.

The uncertainty around funding for housing support for long term supported housing may limit providers’ appetite for the programme.

Medium risk      

While there continues to be some uncertainty, the proposals in the recent Government consultation around sheltered and extra care housing are positive. The Mayor will continue to lobby to ensure that the proposed arrangements are clear and workable.

The allocation of funding from DHSC to GLA on a year by year basis does not enable sufficient flexibility to operate the programme effectively. 

Medium risk      

The MOU sets out the option to flex the overall annual pot of funding between the GLA and Homes England, should the need arise.

 

b)     Links to Mayoral strategies and priorities 

4.1    Policy 5.2 of the Draft London Housing Strategy includes the following proposals that are relevant to the MCSSHF: 
Proposal 5.2a The Mayor will work with councils, housing associations, Government and others to ensure that London’s homes and neighbourhoods support London’s diverse housing needs. This will include:
i ensuring more of London’s new and existing homes are accessible and appropriate for disabled Londoners, older Londoners, and families with children;
ii increasing opportunities for older homeowners to move to accommodation more suitable for their needs, including benchmarks for older people’s housing requirements in the draft London Plan;
Proposal 5.2b The Mayor will work with councils, housing associations, Government and others to ensure that Londoners who need it are provided with support so that they can live independently. This will include:
i investing £75 million in supported housing for older and disabled Londoners; and
ii making the case to Government that the new funding arrangements should meet the support and housing costs of supported housing in London.

4.2     Policy H14 of the Draft New London Plan states that ‘the delivery, retention and refurbishment of supported and specialised housing which meets an identified need should be supported.’. Policy H15 of the Plan sets out annual borough benchmarks for the delivery of specialist older persons housing.

c)     impact assessments and consultations

4.3    The Draft London Housing Strategy and Draft New London Plan set the strategic framework underpinning the MCSSHF. Consultation on the Draft London Housing Strategy was undertaken between September and December 2017. Consultation on the Draft New London Plan is currently underway and closes in March 2018. Both have been subject to impact assessments.

4.4    The delivery of the MCSSHF since 2013/14 has involved extensive consultation with partners.
 

Financial comments

5.1    The decision is seeking approval for GLA to accept an additional £36m capital funding and £300k revenue funding from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). The capital funding will be used to fund the development of homes for older and disabled people and the revenue funding will be applied to the cost of administering the programme.
5.2    The Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund development programme is being extended by DHSC from 2017/18 to 2020/21 and the total value of the allocation to the Fund in London has increased from £75m to £111m. Revenue funding of £100k per annum will be provided over the three-year period commencing 2018/19 to 2020/21.
 

Planned delivery approach and next steps

 

Activity

Timeline

Memorandum of understanding between GLA and DHSC signed

By end of March 2018

Continuous bidding

Ongoing

Programme ends

31 March 2021