Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Questions (93)

Richard Boyd Barrett


93. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government his views on whether it is appropriate that those on the housing assistance payment, HAP, transfer list in local authorities are not counted as still having a housing need despite the insecurity of their tenancies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4421/18]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) is a flexible and immediate housing support that is now available to all eligible households throughout the State. There are currently more than 32,000 households having their housing needs met via HAP.

Following the commencement of the provisions in the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2014, HAP is considered to be a social housing support and consequently households are not eligible to remain on the main housing waiting list. However, acknowledging that households on the waiting list who avail of HAP might have expectations that they would receive a more traditional form of social housing support, Ministerial directions have issued to ensure that, should they so choose, HAP recipients can avail of a move to other forms of social housing support through a transfer list.

Local authorities were also directed that HAP recipients who apply to go on the transfer list, should get full credit for the time they spent on the waiting list and be placed on the transfer list with no less favourable terms than if they had remained on the waiting list.

The practical operation of transfer lists is a matter for each local authority to manage, on the basis of their own scheme of letting priorities.  The setting of such schemes is a reserved function of the local authority and as such is a matter for the elected members.

Question No. 94 answered with Question No. 64.