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Empty Housing

Volume 885: debated on Wednesday 5 February 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps his Department is taking under Schedule 13 to the Housing Act 1974 to monitor the performance of local authorities in ensuring that any house acquired by them is put to use to house people at the earliest practicable time, so that the national problem of empty habitable houses in council ownership can be effectively dealt with.

I am sure that my hon. Friend realises that Schedule 13 relates to the duties of local authorities, and it would not be appropriate for my right hon. Friend to intervene in this way. However, the Department's annual relets survey collects information about the number of council dwellings vacant and available for letting at the end of each year, and my right hon. Friend is investigating ways of ensuring that the fullest use is made of empty property of all kinds.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the numbers of empty houses requisitioned by the several local authorities in the Greater London area in the years 1973 and 1974.

No empty houses have been requisitioned. Authorities have no powers for doing so.