On 9th June Redbridge Councillors approved proposals for a Selective Licensing scheme of privately rented properties. However, new rules require the Council to present the scheme to the Secretary of State for DCLG, the Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, for approval. Mr Clark could prevent the scheme from going live. It will be interesting to see the result, as this is the first case these new rules will deal with.
New stipulations, which came into force on 1st April, will prevent Local Authorities from being able to create ‘blanket’ Selective Licensing schemes on privately rented properties. These new regulations require the Secretary of State to approve any new scheme that covers more than 20% of the geographical area, or 20% of all privately rented houses.
These restrictions only apply to Selective Licensing schemes, which is why other licensing proposals may go ahead without Mr Clark signing off, for example Camden with Additional Licensing earlier this week.
Other Selective Licensing schemes, such as the City-wide Liverpool scheme, which were approved before the 1st of April, can continue without having to first go to Mr Clark.
The RLA awaiting the outcome with interest; as the first instance of Councils seeking approval from the Secretary of State, this could prove to set the tone for future decisions.
- Government revisit Selective Licensing rules
- Just one Councillor to take Camden HMO licensing decision
- Liverpool Landlords Citywide Licensing Scheme coming – 1st April 2015