At the full meeting of South Gloucestershire Council held on 14th October a cross party motion challenging the Government’s proposed planning changes was agreed which included the insertion of a Labour amendment which stated “the proposals in their current state do not do enough to deliver affordable housing to those most in need”
At a Planning Meeting on the following day this cross-party agreement was seemingly ignored when the Committee agreed to cut the number of affordable houses at an important housing development near to Thornbury.
Councillor Michael Bell said:
“Today, and for the second time in recent months, the Conservative Councillors on the Development Management Committee proposed a motion to ignore the 35% affordable housing quota expected by South Gloucestershire Council. An application to demolish the Alveston House Hotel and erect 22 homes, including 8 affordable homes, was reduced to 2 affordable homes, as a result of the supporting vote by the Conservative Councillors.
This is absolute hypocrisy given that the previous night they had all voted at Full Council in support of a motion that contained a statement which was strongly against any relaxation of the affordable home’s threshold. Despite Labour councillors speaking strongly in support of maintaining affordable housing in the plan for the former Alveston House Hotel, the motion to reduce affordable housing was passed by the Conservatives who have the majority on the committee.”
Cllr. Bell continued:
“Many of the key workers we were applauding in previous months, such as NHS workers, retail staff, drivers etc are on basic wages and are discriminated against if affordable home quotas are reduced. Sadly it seems the lessons of the first wave of Covid, and particularly the importance of supporting our low paid workers to keep our society going, has been forgotten by Conservative councillors. Under Conservative rule there will be reduced numbers of affordable homes for our Covid heroes.”