Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
The Motion was referred to the Committee by Full Council on 15 September 2021. Upon the invitation of the Chair, Councillor Stanley as the Motion’s original proposer explained some background to the Motion (including that across the country there were 98,000 homeless families, 100,000 families in temporary accommodation and 268,000 empty homes), the need to review Arun’s approach to bringing empty homes back into use and whether the Council was committing appropriate resource to the issue.
Members then took part in a full debate on the item where a number of points were raised including:
· empty homes not contributing to the local economy
· the need to look at the holiday homes discount scheme
· the need for long-term tenancies that could be provided by making empty homes available again and the positive effects to local economies
· the negative impact empty homes in poor condition have on neighbourhoods, and associations with anti-social behaviour and vandalism
· support for and the impact on homeless members of the community
The motion was then proposed and seconded.
RESOLVED – That
1. Council tax charged on Empty Homes be reviewed with a view to exploring a potential sliding scale increase over time. A similar system is currently being used in Brighton and Hove.
2. Council tax charged on Holiday Homes be reviewed with a view to encourage owners to utilise their properties on at least an annual basis.
RECOMMEND TO ENVIRONMENT AND NEIGHBOURHOOD SERVICES COMMITTEE – That
1. A review be undertaken of the incentives and services we (could) offer property owners to increase engagement with our Empty Homes Team and support tenant management issues and misconceptions.
2. A review be undertaken of how we promote our Empty Homes service and how we communicate success stories.
Publication date: 12/10/2021
Date of decision: 30/09/2021
Decided at meeting: 30/09/2021 - Residential and Wellbeing Services Committee