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New housing minister awaited as Javid retains communities secretary post

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  • 12/06/2017
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New housing minister awaited as Javid retains communities secretary post
Sajid Javid has retained his position as secretary of state for communities and local government in prime minister Theresa May’s cabinet reshuffle.

A new housing minister has yet to be appointed following Gavin Barwell’s election defeat.

Barwell saw his 165-vote majority in Croydon Central turned into a 5,652 majority for Labour’s Sarah Jones.

However, Barwell has been appointed Downing Street chief of staff supporting the prime minister.

Previous joint chiefs of staff Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill both resigned over the weekend in an apparent acknowledgement of the failure of the election strategy.

 

Outspoken Javid

Javid has been outspoken about the housing market in his time as communities secretary.

He called it “broken” and urged house builders to improve business practices for which there were “no excuse”.

The Conservative MP for Bromsgrove also threatened to restrict the use of Help to Buy Equity Loan scheme on leasehold properties if builders did not clean up arrangements which saw ground rents soaring.

He also launched the Housing White Paper which identified four areas which needed to be addressed:

  • local authorities failing to plan for the homes they need;
  • house building that is too slow;
  • a construction industry that is too reliant on a small number of big players;
  • and improvements in the rental market.

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