5th Jul, 2020

Public to be asked about tough new tenancy rules for Redditch residents

Harry Leach 13th Jul, 2019

TOUGH new rules on tenancy agreements for Redditch council tenants are to go out for public consultation.

It comes as the authority tries to deal with cases where some council homes have been left uninhabitable with up to £30,000 worth of damage done to them.

The policy hasn’t been updated since 2007 resulting in a ‘massive cost’ to the public purse, the portfolio holder for housing, Councillor Craig Warhurst (Con, Astwood Bank and Feckenham) told Tuesday evening’s borough executive committee meeting.

“We have had some terrible examples of taking a property back with phenomenal amounts of damage,” he said.

“For years we have carried the cost of malicious damage and that has got to stop – we have a duty to our council taxpayers and I am very pleased with this document.”

The rules take a tough line on anti social behaviour, covering everything from fly tipping and racism to spraying graffiti and repairing vehicles in communal areas, as well as damaging a property.

Also included is being noisy when it causes a nuisance.

The rules would be enforced through Community Protection Notices, councillors heard, with the aim of working with people to solve the issue rather than just focusing on what the problem is.

However Coun Bill Hartnett (Lab, Church Hill) while welcoming the changes questioned how enforceable the new rules would be.

“I know well how difficult it is to get something through a court – I just want to make sure we are not setting ourselves up for a fall as there are lots and lots of conditions in here.”

Coun Greg Chance (Lab, Central) added more needed to be done than just imposing rules on people.

“I’m a passionate supporter of tenant engagement not just more rules and I hope we do far more than just more rules,” he said.

Despite this councillors unanimously agreed to put the revised tenant rules out for public consultation.

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