Talks to be held on housing law

Housing Minister Jeff Rooker, announced on Friday that there would be an investigation into how housing law could be changed, that would sweep away unnecessary bureaucratic restrictions.

The changes to section 27 of the Housing Act 1985 would make it easier for local authorities to enter into Private Finance Initiative and other contracts.

The proposals would change the way in which councils can delegate housing management services. It would allow contractors to sub-contract some work.

Currently, local authorities can only enter management agreements with a person directly exercising the authority&#39s functions as agent. That person has only limited powers to delegate.

Removing the restriction will give authorities more options and make legislation more consistent with other Government initiatives like Best Value.

Housing Minister Jeff Rooker, says: “I&#39m keen to do all we can to assist local authorities in reaching the decent homes target by 2010. These proposals will help.

“Clearing away unnecessary restrictions will make it easier for them to go into partnership with the private sector to provide long term, good quality housing and services to council tenants.”