Harrogate Borough Council have approved a raft of measures aimed at tackling and preventing homelessness in the town.
Cabinet approved a proposal to commit £218,050 of its 2018/19 Flexible Homelessness Support Grant to six staffing positions with a focus on preventing homelessness before it occurs.
Cabinet member for housing and safer communities, Coun Mike Chambers, welcomed the news and praised the preventative measures the budget allowed the council to take.
“It allows us to work with the people most vulnerable in our society…it allows us to house people earlier rather than after they’ve already (lost) homes.”
Among the approved measures is the extension of a senior housing options officer position at a cost of £39,410, as well as two additional housing officer positions being extended for another 12 months, at a cost of £32,435 each.
The grant will also fund an additional private rented sector officer contract for 12 months, costing £29,320.
Aiding the private rented sector officer will be a support assistant funded for £23,490.
An additional support officer (position funded for £25,960) will be tasked with ensuring all homeless households (regardless of the duty owed) are registered in a timely fashion on the Housing Waiting List, to maximise the opportunity to secure an offer of social housing, thereby increasing homelessness prevention.
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Also approved was £25,000 to assist households to arrest rent arrears with short term loans, and £10,000 to promote outreach services.
It leaves £4,988 of the £223,038 grant uncommitted.
Lachlan Leeming, Local Democracy Reporter