Deputy Ward Brings Forward Alternative Proposals for a Landlord Licensing Scheme
Following the States Assembly’s rejection of a landlord licensing scheme in September last year, Deputy Rob Ward, Reform Jersey’s environment spokesperson, has lodged an alternative proposition to introduce a scheme from March next year.
Deputy Ward is proposing that the Environment Minister re-lodges the regulations which would have allowed for the introduction of a landlord licensing scheme, but with amendments to remove the licensing fee and have a 5-year licence instead of 2-year licence.
Deputy Rob Ward said - “It is vitally important that rental homes in Jersey meet the legal minimum standards on health and safety, so that tenants are protected in their homes and can have their rights enforced, without having to risk harming their relationship with their landlord by complaining about them.
A landlord licensing scheme would ensure that all rental homes meet these standards and are periodically inspected by officers at the Environmental Health Department, who can proactively work with them to highlight where improvements are needed. It will also help them identify where people are living in homes which are unsafe and take action against the minority of bad landlords who refuse to meet their obligations under the current law.
We were disappointed when the States Assembly rejected a similar proposal last year, but we have listened to the concerns that some raised about the cost of the licensing fee being passed onto the tenant and the impact of a bi-annual licence. I have sought to remove these elements from the proposal, so it is more acceptable to States Members.
I am also pleased that this proposition is accompanied by a comprehensive Children’s Rights Impact Assessment, the first of its kind from a non-executive States Member, which shows my and Reform Jersey’s commitment to ‘Putting Children First’.”