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Selective Licensing: Campaign for DCLG Select Committee Hearing


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More and more local authorities are introducing selective licensing (SL), claiming a correlation with anti social behaviour (ASB) and/or low rental demand - these are currently the only reasons that councils are allowed to use to introduce selective licensing. The Local Government Association (LGA) are simultaneously campaigning for the right for local authorities to be able to simply introduce SL at will.

Chris Wright from Twinpier has started a campaign to get the issue of councils using ASB and low demand as reasons to bring in selective licensing (when the evidence is tenuous at best) heard before a Dept of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) select committee by the Autumn of 2014.

There is evidence that several local authorities have used data to prove a link with privately rented property and ASB and low demand, when this data has been tenuous at best - if the select committee finds that this is the case, many local authorities could be forced to rescind SL orders, either wholly or partly, and refund licensing fees to landlords. They would also be forced to produce much more robust evidence (at least while this remains the standard for SL) when introducing SL.

Chris Wright needs signatures from landlords and other stakeholders in addition to accounts of how you might have been affected by this – all details in strictest confidence.

The licensing fees can be eye wateringly high - for example, Croydon Council are believed to be proposing £1000 per property - payable up front. For a small landlord (i.e. the vast majority of private landlords), this is a lot of money to find in one go.

However, even if the fee isn't an issue for you, there is much more at stake for landlords; once a local authority has selective licensing in place, they are free to impose whatever restrictions and regulations they want – so if, for example, your tenant doesn’t always deal with their rubbish, or holds a party, you could potentially be fined or criminalised.

You might say that your council is led by reasonable people, who apply SL fairly, but what happens when there’s an election and they’re replaced by an administration with more extreme policies? Remember voters are more likely to cast protest votes and elect fringe and extremist parties at local elections than at a national level.

Please visit here to lend your support – IN THE STRICTEST CONFIDENCE!

Many thanks

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Another modern day corruption in my view.

I have recently paid a one off fee of £740 to Hydburn for a 'max' 5 year registration. Paying this way saves as alternative payment methods can be up to £899.

If a LL joins late the full fee is payable even for the reduced period. The licence will run till November 2017 no matter when you apply.

The questions on the application are written by an embarrassingly low intelligence individual and most questions have no relation to the anti social issues.

This new tax by a local labour council is, in my view, just another attack on the LL and is them in some way I can't understand attempting to transfer community social issues to those that don't have the power to make a difference. After all we can't arrest, we can't even repossess without going through time delaying hoops. Any anti social T is protected by the state legislation and yet there is a belief here that we should control them.

And then we have the Welsh assembly that are waiting for Parliament approval to be able to implement a LL approval scheme. One of their criteria will be for me to inspect smoke alarms, weekly.

I don't understand why you feel the need to offer the "strictest confidence" I'm ready to shout from the roof tops.

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Totally agree Cor. Never mind an 'attack on landlords' it is a stealth tax on landlords.

Even in my Tory run main area of business I have had a conversation with an ex-policeman now senior housing officer whereby he will not rest until every LL in the borough is paying for such a licence. The revenue will be immense - but the majority of the trouble makers come from council owned or housing association properties.

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