Selective Licensing costs used for Nottingham Carnival?

by Readers Question

13:31 PM, 15th August 2019
About 2 months ago

Selective Licensing costs used for Nottingham Carnival?

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Selective Licensing costs used for Nottingham Carnival?

Nottingham Selective Licensing are sponsoring the local Nottingham Carnival this year. I believe this is being paid for out of the money raised from Landlords via the Selective Licensing Scheme.

Now the government rules regarding Selective Licensing Schemes is very clear in that they are not allowed to make a profit from the money raised. So far it would appear that most of the money raised has been spent on paying the 70 or so staff who otherwise might have been made redundant during the austerity crisis, by employing them to process the applications.

Now they are spending the money on a music and dance carnival parade. Maybe some of their staff will be paid to attend the carnival, hand out a few leaflets regarding the good work that they are doing, and maybe have a dance and a ‘good ole time.’

Be under no mistake, these schemes are about councils raising money to fritter away without actually doing much work at all to improve housing conditions.

If they simply took the money to build an additional 90 new council homes, then I would feel less aggrieved than sponsoring a carnival. (15000 licenses at £780 each, estimated build cost £130k per home is 90 homes.)

Routley



Comments

Mick Roberts

10:34 AM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Harry Albert Lettings & Estates at 16/08/2019 - 10:15
Well done Andrew, good to see other Landlords doing their bit.

Jessie Jones

14:31 PM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

I think that the greater concern here is of the dishonesty by the council running the scheme. It was set up under the pretence that it was going to improve housing in the private sector.
They have a twitter account where they could proudly announce all their success stories.
But the most they have to brag about is the fact that they are sponsoring a music parade event. Why are they even considering such expenditure? I applied for my licence on day 1 of the scheme, over a year ago, and still haven't received my licence, despite having paid the first part of the fee. I am not chasing them up as I am not in a rush to pay the second part of the fee, but if they haven't even got time to process the applications, why on earth are they going to festivals to promote a scheme that they can't run?

Mick Roberts

14:44 PM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Jessie Jones at 16/08/2019 - 14:31
It's only made good houses worse.

Yes a lot of people are chasing up why they han't heard anything & then chasing after they've paid the £120. I keep telling 'em What's the point, if they take 5 years, so be it.

Licensing expects us to reply to everything within 14 days, yet Licensing don't even reply for months, if at all to queries. I've had some tenants write in around 2 months ago saying 'Why have we got to be inspected?' No reply.

I've asked for their Mental Health policy safeguarding for Landlords around a month ago, no reply.

Mark Alexander

15:00 PM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

Has anybody put in an FOI request to ask how many inspections they have done and how many prosecutions (other than for failing to license) they have completed or have in pipeline?

If the numbers are very low, that information could be very useful to demonstrate there was never a problem for licensing to solve in the first place, and that the whole exercise was merely a stealth tax scam to take money off landlords for purposes other than which licensing was intended.

Mick Roberts

16:03 PM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 16/08/2019 - 15:00
Inspections I know of nothing at the moment.
The word is, due to data protection, they can't even go their sister department in THE SAME BUILDING & ask which tenants are receiving HB & that must be a rented house, we then check if it's Licensed. Cause of that, the word is, cause so many houses in Nottingham SHOULD BE licensed, approx. 33,000 according to their figures, & only just over 15,000 Landlords have come forward, again the word is ha ha, that the Licensing Officers are going round knocking on houses doors that HAVEN'T got a license & that's how they trying to find out who isn't Licensed.
Meanwhile me & me tenants are thousands of pounds lighter-Yes, they've all had rent increase to pay for it-And we have nothing I repeat Zero in return for our extra funds we've paid out.

An officer (good man actually) couldn't get it, when we were telling him he cannot inspect a house if the tenant doesn't want him in-After all, it is the Council that HAS gave the tenant the rent increase to pay for Licensing when he already had new boiler, new kitchen, been there 10+ years etc., so he detests Licensing as he din't have a problem-The Licensing Officer kept saying they have power under such & such, but our valid argument is There has been no crime committed or reported here. You can't just force yourself in a house where there is no problem & no crime committed by Landlord or tenant & the tenant says I DON'T WANT YOU IN!

They have quiet right to enjoyment, Human Rights article 8 I believe. Ooh I knew being good to me tenants for 22 years was finally gonna' help me ha ha.

Some notes here if other Licensing Landlord victims would like to use them:

This is potentially breaching a tenant's right to quiet enjoyment. the covenant for quiet enjoyment.
Under Human Rights Article 8:

It is a right to enjoy your existing home peacefully. Public authorities should not enter your home without very good reason, and they should not enter without your permission. This applies whether or not you own your home.
A landlord to go in whenever he likes will be void under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 – as it will be taking away a right which a tenant normally enjoys.

Anthony Endsor

18:10 PM, 16th August 2019
About 2 months ago

This is absolutely despicable. I seriously cannot believe I have just read this. The whole basis of licensing is to improve housing for tenants. Landlords are paying, in some cases quite a high cost for a license which is not meant to benefit the landlord in any way shape or form, but is supposed to be firstly a way of holding landlords accountable in some way to keep their houses in good order, with all the rules and regulations that are contained within the licences, and also for the money to be used for extra housing. In a time of the most serious housing shortage nationwide, for a Council to behave in this manner, frittering money away which landlords have paid to them to improve housing, by doing this is just beyond words. This is absolute theft of landlords' money, gained by deception.
Many Nottingham Landlords have been opposed to licensing in any case with good reason, as the necessity of the scheme has never been proven, indeed it hasn't been proven ANYWHERE it has been introduced, and now we see what they have been up to all along. Can we now expect to find out other Councils are doing the same? I wouldn't be at all surprised. This could become a massive nationwide issue. The police need to be involved in this as this is a theft of people's money and the person(s) responsible should be arrested and jailed. Sorry, but this is seriously an absolutely disgusting crime and I hope the people responsible will get their comeuppance.

Luke P

21:42 PM, 12th September 2019
About a month ago

So Nottingham City Council’s response is in…

“Nottingham City Council has not sponsored the Nottingham Carnival this year. As in previous years, the council provided a range of support including event management services.

The Selective Licensing team did not sponsor the event. They paid £500 for an advert to raise awareness of the scheme at the event.”

I think that’s what’s called being cute with language. Paying for an advert at an event whose revenue, of which adverts are a part (possibly the sole and/or largest part), funds the very existence & continuation of the event is the exacting definition of sponsorship, is it not???

Jessie Jones

22:03 PM, 12th September 2019
About a month ago

Well done Luke for challenging them.
At least they might now be aware that people are prepared to question what they are doing with tenants / landlords money. They are indeed trying to be clever with words. There is little difference between sponsoring an event or paying for an advert at said event. A carnival which is focused predominantly on one side of our community, has no more in common with the private rental sector than the rest of the community. The conclusion I have come to is that the carnival organisers were struggling for funds so simply tapped into whatever slush funds they could find within the council.

Jessie Jones

22:32 PM, 12th September 2019
About a month ago

Thought I'd see what else they've been spending out money on, so sent this today:

Freedom of Information request - Adverts paid for by Selective Licensing

Dear Nottingham City Council,
In your reply to Andrew Smith regarding the funding of the Nottingham Carnival, you identified that the Selective Licensing dept had paid £500 for an advert 'to raise awareness' at this event.

Would you please provide a list of any other payments made in excess of £100 by the Selective Licensing dept in respect of 'adverts' or 'raising awareness' in the period 01/08/2018 to 31/07/2019. Please identify the events or publications where such adverts appeared.

Luke P

23:21 PM, 12th September 2019
About a month ago

Reply to the comment left by Jessie Jones at 12/09/2019 - 22:03Credit’s all Andrew Hill’s of Harry Albert Lettings.

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