Results 1–20 of 6073 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:James Brokenshire

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I beg to move, That the Bill be now read a Second time. This Bill takes forward essential measures to promote fairness in the private lettings market by banning unfair fees charged to tenants, as promised in the Government’s manifesto. It is a Bill that we should all welcome. The Bill will make the market more transparent, yes, but it also has the potential to save...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: The hon. Lady has intervened early, and that is a point that I will come on to. I would say that that is a maximum level, but I will deal with the specific issue in my remarks. I am pleased that the Tenant Fees Bill was introduced to Parliament soon after my appointment. It is the latest step in our work to create a housing market that is fit for the future. I have been greatly encouraged by...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: If the hon. Lady looks at the impact assessment, she will see that it has been calculated as a straight transfer through. I know that there will be a lot to discuss in Committee. It covers that pass through—the costs do not represent increased expenditure by letting agents and landlords, but the value of time spent reading guidance and reconsidering business models is also reflected in...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for highlighting that point. He will know that clauses 18 to 20 contain amendments to the Consumer Rights Act 2015, so changes have been put in place in a number of different ways. The Bill protects tenants from paying unreasonably high deposits. Coming on to the point made by the hon. Member for Brighton, Pavilion (Caroline Lucas), we are capping deposits...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: The issue was considered by the Select Committee, and we have considered it carefully. We believe that six weeks’ rent as an upper limit strikes the right balance between providing tenants with greater affordability while ensuring that landlords have adequate financial security for their assets.

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: My hon. Friend makes an important point. Let me be clear: the Bill is not an attack on good agents and landlords. We value the important services that they provide, but it will ensure a fair playing field for reputable agents by making it harder for rogues to operate. Letting agents and landlords who represent good value for money will continue to thrive, while those who rely on charging...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: The Bill seeks to address the application of unfair fees by, in essence, banning all of them unless they are then reapplied back by the terms of the Bill itself. This is an important step to provide reassurance and to deal with the rogue practices that the hon. Gentleman highlights. In that context it is important to stress some of the other steps that have already been taken in relation to...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: We intend to provide guidance on those issues. I do not accept that that would automatically be the situation. It is why we have taken the steps that we have in considering what the right action should be in setting a number of these issues. It is important to recognise that the Bill proposes a number of enforcement measures that offer a strong deterrent to irresponsible agents and landlords,...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: My hon. Friend highlights the issues that go to the heart of the Bill—that is why I hope that it will command broad support across the House. The Bill places a duty on trading standards authorities to enforce the measures it contains. It also makes provision to enable tenants and other relevant people to recover unlawfully charged fees. It prevents landlords from recovering their...

Gaza: Un Human Rights Council Vote: Tenant Fees Bill (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I understand. In many ways, that lies at the heart of the Bill—the way in which, effectively, there can be charges in two different directions. That underlines why these measures are important and why, to take my hon. Friend’s point, they are intended to promote fairness. The Government will always stand on the side of people who are being ripped off and exploited and support...

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: We are remembering those who lost their lives in the tragedy at Grenfell Tower today as the public inquiry opens. I know this will be an incredibly difficult time for all those affected. The whole House will join me, I am sure, in sending them our thoughts and prayers. I am determined to ensure that no community suffers again as they have done. To that end, in the days since the fire, my...

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: May I underline what I said in my opening comments about the importance of remembering and reflecting on the very moving testimony that has already been provided in the public inquiry? It is right that all those affected are able to share their memories of those who lost their lives and, indeed, that there should be no time limit on that process. We all need to reflect extremely carefully on...

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: My right hon. Friend is right to highlight that Barratt has done the right thing by saying that it will not be passing costs on to leaseholders. It is outrageous that many have acted in the way in which they have by not participating. I am this week hosting the first roundtable to consider the next steps. As I said, I am not ruling anything out.

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: Obviously, we have taken steps to identify at-risk buildings. As I pointed out, we set out a further direction last week aimed at local housing authorities in England. We want to support them in their work through that statutory declaration. There are some local authorities that still have more work to do, which is why we have committed a sum in the order of £1.3 million to support local...

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I am grateful to my hon. Friend for her question, because it touches on some of the issues in the Hackitt review about a culture change—a culture shift—across the whole sector in terms of the standards that should be applied. That is why I am determined that we will pursue this rigorously and follow through on the recommendations that Dame Judith Hackitt has given.

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I welcome the action of the Select Committee in this regard. We are obviously working at pace to move forward with the consultation, which is intended to be forward-looking. I hear the hon. Gentleman’s point about building regulations that could only speak to the existing timescale. There is also an issue, which comes through very clearly in Dame Judith Hackitt’s report, about the...

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: My right hon. Friend touches on broader issues of appliances. There is also an issue in relation to electrical safety. Some colleagues may be familiar with some of the building regulations standards in that respect. The Government are continuing to work with the British Standards Institution on a revised standard that is due to be published in July.

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I am grateful to the right hon. Gentleman for highlighting the really essential issue of private sector leaseholds, where I have made the points that I have. That is why I will be hosting a roundtable this week, with a further roundtable to follow, to inform next steps. I hear what he has said, and all I can say to him at this stage is that I have not ruled anything out.

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: Like my hon. Friend, I would like the funds to be available quickly. That is why we will be writing out to relevant agencies later this week with further details. This about prioritising the funding becoming available to relevant housing associations and local government, and we will take action this week.

Tower Block Cladding (21 May 2018)

James Brokenshire: I understand and hear very clearly the call that has been made. There are certain statutory obligations to consult under the Building Act 1984. That is why I have said that I am minded to make this change, subject to the consultation. My officials are working at pace in relation to getting that consultation out, because I hear the very clear message that the right hon. Gentleman is giving...


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