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Yvette Cooper: The Government take the view that proportionate regulation of the private rented sector targeted at the properties most at risk will raise standards in the sector and lead to more investment. The Government have already undertaken to review the success of the licensing regime within the next three years. This will cover the effect on the buy to let market as well as other areas within the private rented sector.
Yvette Cooper: The Housing Act 2004 requires the mandatory licensing of larger, higher-risk housing of multiple occupation (HMOs). Following consultation, the Government have decided that this will cover privately rented HMOs of three or more storeys and occupied by five or more people who form two or more households. This decision was announced in a statement made by my right hon. Friend the former Minister for Housing and Planning on 6 April 2005.
Local authorities will also have discretion to extend licensing to smaller privately rented HMOs in all, or part of their area, to address particular problems caused by the ineffective management of those HMOs. The use of this discretionary power is subject to consultation and requires confirmation or general approval by the Secretary of State.
Sarah Teather: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1)whether the timetable for publication of the final Code of Guidance on minimum standards in temporary accommodation has changed; and if he will make a statement; 
Yvette Cooper: In May 2003 the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister published a consultation paper on Improving standards of accommodation for homeless households placed in temporary accommodation." The consultation period ended on 5 August 2003. In November 2003 we announced the outcome of the consultation and our intention to revise the statutory Homelessness Code of Guidance for Local Authorities to restate existing minimum standards for temporary accommodation and set out additional standards for bed and breakfast hotels used as temporary accommodation. We plan to publish the revised Homelessness Code of Guidance in the autumn.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what recent representations his Department has received from (a) landlord and (b) tenants' organisations on houses in multiple occupation licensing fees; and what response his Department has made. 
Yvette Cooper: Representations have been received from a number of landlord and managing agent bodies following Ministers' decision not to use the powers in the Housing Act 2004 to cap fees charged for licensing. Discussions have already been held with these and other bodies to explain the background to this decision and to explore the extent to which it might be possible to fast track applications from landlords or agents who are members of local accreditation schemes or who might otherwise demonstrate their capacity to manage properties efficiently and effectively.
In addition, there will be transitional arrangements that will allow landlords of properties registered under the Housing Act 1985 to be passported into licensing without charge for a period not exceeding the unexpired portion of their current registration. We expect these arrangements to lead to more constructive relations between landlords and local authorities as well as ensuring that fees are kept to an acceptable level.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what estimate his Department made for regulatory impact assessment purposes of the amount which would be raised by houses in multiple occupation licensing fees; what his Department's latest estimate is of that figure; and how each figure was calculated. 
Yvette Cooper: The Regulatory Impact Assessment indicated that around 540,000 units would be licensable under mandatory houses in multiple occupation (HMO) licensing and the consultation paper Licensing in the Private Rented Sector: Consultation on the Implementation of HMO Licensing" had suggested that fee levels might be between £110 and £180 per unit but that the issue was still under consideration.
These estimates were compiled following consultation with local government, taking into account a range of factors including experience in registering HMO's under the Housing Act 1985, as amended by the Housing Act 1996.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what arrangements his Department has planned for ensuring houses in multiple occupation licence fees set by local authorities only recover costs; and when such arrangements will be in place. 
We expect local authorities to establish a coherent and transparent fee structure that is set up in time for the commencement of the licensing provisions, intended for October 2005, which must operate within and in accordance with the CIPFA accountancy framework.
Bob Spink: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister pursuant to the answer of 27 June 2005, Official Report, columns 130607W, on housing, what the process will be for the Examination in Public of the East of England Regional Spatial Strategy; in which areas it will operate; and how the process will be publicised. 
Yvette Cooper: The Examination in Public (EiP) provides an opportunity for discussion and testing of matters selected by the EiP panel in order to test the soundness of the Regional Spatial Strategy. The panel conducting the EiP has identified those matters which it considers need to be debated and those stakeholders that it intends to invite to take part in the debate. The list of matters and participants has been subject to public consultation and the panel are currently considering the results of that consultation. The panel will publish a revised list of matters and participants on or before the 19 July.
Bob Spink: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister pursuant to the answer of 27 June 2005, Official Report, columns 130607W, on housing, over what period the Examination in Public of the East of England Regional Spatial Strategy home building targets will take place; and when he expects the outcome of that examination to be published. 
Yvette Cooper: The Examination in Public (EiP) is currently scheduled to commence on 14 September and run until 16 December 2005. The East of England regional assembly has recently requested a deferral of the opening of the EiP until 1 November. The panel is expected to report to my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister, the First Secretary of State within three to four months, depending upon the complexity of the issues.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many (a) permanent tenancy and (b) introductory tenancy homes have been allocated to new tenants by (i)Birmingham city council and (ii) registered social landlords in Birmingham; and how many were allocated to households accepted as homeless and in (A) priority need and (B) non-priority need in each of the last 10 years. 
Yvette Cooper: Information on the number of lettings to new tenants made by Birmingham city council on a (a) secure (permanent) and (b) introductory basis and the number of these lettings made to homeless households in priority need are given in table 1. Although local authorities have a discretionary housing duty to homeless households not in priority need information on these lettings is not held centrally.
Information on the number of lettings to new tenants made by registered social landlords (RSLs) in the Birmingham city council area; on a (a) secure (permanent) and (b) introductory basis and the number of these lettings made to homeless households both in priority need and not in priority need are given in table 2.
|Total||To homeless households in priority need|
|To homeless households|
| Total|| In priority need||Not in priority need|
Yvette Cooper: Of the 84 local authorities that have had their stock options appraisal signed off by the relevant Government Office, 27or 32 per cent.have opted to retain ownership and direct management of all or some of their homes.
Yvette Cooper: A list of local authorities that have yet to have a stock options appraisal signed off by the relevant Government Office has been placed in the Libraries of the House. Four authorities have indicated to us that they will not meet the deadline of the end of July.
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