12 March 2004
London Mayor Ken Livingstone is pushing ministers to give the Greater London Authority a beefed-up role in housing policy.
In a document presented to the government on March 11, he is calling for the GLA to be given powers to control the strategy for and investment in the capital's housing.
Currently, those powers are shared by a number of bodies, including the borough councils and the government's Office for London.
Dr Mark Kleinman, head of the housing and homeless department at the GLA, said the idea would centralise decision-making on housing in London. 'It makes housing very much more accountable. It would be the mayor's responsibility and he comes up every four years for election. He is also scrutinised by the Assembly.'
The proposal, which forms part of a document known as the 'Case for London', is included as part of the mayor's submission to the Treasury for the chancellor's next spending round.
The document also re-emphasises the case for the mayor to be able to use bonds to raise capital to fund major transport schemes in London.