Nicky Gavron, Labour’s London Assembly housing and planning spokesperson, has called on Mayor Boris Johnson to come clean over claiming credit for 16,000 affordable homes that will never be delivered. Nicky has today written to Richard Blakeway, the Mayor’s housing adviser, to explain why he has apparently double counted around 16,000 affordable homes.
Blakeway said this week that “around 54,000 completions” are expected over the “next four years” (2011-15), apparently including 16,000 affordable homes that will already have been counted towards the Mayor’s target of 50,000 homes by 2012.
Nicky wrote: “I am extremely concerned at the way the mayor’s office has apparently
double counted this information. At best it is a lazy, yet very important, error. At worst you have blatantly misled Londoners on your housing delivery.”
She went on to say that the misuse of statistics “undermines the challenges we face, and this apparent sleight of hand does nothing to reassure Londoners we are delivering what the city needs.”
Nicky commented: “The mayor needs to be beating targets, not cheating them. He’s already broken his election pledge to deliver 50,000 homes by 2011. It now looks like he’s trying to claim credit twice for thousands of extra homes.”
Richard Blakeway wrote in the Guardian on Thursday 1 September, “the mayor is on course to deliver 50,000 affordable homes by April 2012 …. The pipeline of affordable
housing for the next four years is also strong, with around 54,000 completions expected”.
In April, Alan Benson, head of housing at the Greater London Authority, told the London
Assembly’s housing and planning committee: “About 28,000 homes … are in the pipeline to be delivered. We will deliver about 16,000 of them by 2012. The rest will be delivered in the following year, 2012/13. There is a substantial pipeline of homes in development currently, on site, which will deliver over the next couple of years, which the Government is committed to funding and which are an entirely social rent/intermediate mix as we know it.”