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Committee Calls on Government to Scrap Cladding Loan Scheme and Establish Comprehensive Building Safety Fund

The Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has urged the Government to re-commit to the principle that leaseholders should not have to pay for the removal of unsafe cladding from their homes and calls on the Government to establish a Comprehensive Building Safety Fund that addresses the true scale of fire safety issues. Finance for the fund should be provided by Government and the building industry.

In a report published today, the Committee finds that existing arrangements for remediation of cladding that base funding support on building height and materials should be changed so that financial support is targeted where residents’ safety is most at risk. Proposals to fund cladding remediation on buildings below 18 metres through a loan scheme, requiring leaseholders to pay up to £50 a month, should also be abandoned.

The Committee calls for an enhanced Comprehensive Building Safety Fund paid for by Government and industry. This would be open to all buildings with existing fire safety issues with no barriers based on height, types of tenure or the nature of fire safety defects. Priority should be given to buildings where residents are most at risk, assessed through holistic, evidence-based processes.

Chair of the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee, Clive Betts MP said: “We call on the Government to revisit its proposals and develop a scheme that truly matches the scale of fire safety issues. It must prioritise support to where the safety risk is greatest and rebalance the financial burden so that it falls on the Government and industry, and not on leaseholders.”