Greens welcome empty homes progress in Edinburgh

Green councillor, Steve Burgess has welcomed City Council backing for action on empty homes.

At todays (Tuesday 4 March 2008) meeting of the Health and Social Care Committee, councillors agreed to targets to reduce empty home use in the capital.  The Committee report follows a Councillor Burgess’s call for action at the City Council last October.

Councillor Burgess said:

Wherever there is a single home lying empty which could be put to better use, this is waste of resources and casts a doubt over the need to use precious greenspace or open land for new housing.

Of course, I recognise that, at any one time, there will be empty homes as people move around. That is why I called for action on properties left empty for more than six months.  I am pleased that the Council has committed to setting targets for long term empties and will seek new powers, similar to those available to councils in England, to ensure that property can be brought into use.

 Notes:

1. Councillor Burgess’s motion to City Council was passed on 25 October 2007.

 2. In England, local authorities have powers to impose Empty Dwelling Management Orders, which allow councils to take temporary management control of property which has been empty for more than six months and where other voluntary means of getting them used have failed.

ENDS