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Safe Housing Provision Defeated in Commons
The government have defeated a proposed amendment to the Housing and Planning Bill aimed at ensuring all properties are ‘safe’ for tenants to live in. The motion, brought to the House of Commons by shadow housing minister Teresa Pearce, was rejected by 312 votes to 219. Local government minister Marcus Jones, who voted against the proposal, believes there are already powers in place to deal with the problem.
“Of course we believe that all homes should be of a decent standard and all tenants should have a safe place to live regardless of tenure, but local authorities already have strong and effective powers to deal with poor quality and safe accommodation and we expect them to use them,” he said.
Labour however, claim that recent reports of homes which are ‘unfit for human habitation’ being let prove the current system isn’t working. The vote was the first in the commons to use the English votes for English laws scheme, with speaker John Bercow suspending Tuesday’s sitting for five minutes before finalising which provisions applied to which countries. The Housing and Planning Bill which is now set to proceed to the House of Lords will also see the ‘right to buy’ extended to social housing, with discounts to tenants of £102,700 in London and £77,000 in the rest of the country available.
Earlier this week, the Prime Minister announced a £140 million programme to redevelop Britain’s ‘sink’ estates which will include demolition and rebuilding of 100 of the worst areas.
You can follow the progress of the Housing and Planning Bill HERE