Erewash borough councillors are expected to give their backing to new penalty charges that could be issued to private landlords who fail to meet regulations surrounding smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.
Under new rules that came into force nationally in October last year, private sector landlords must ensure a working smoke alarm is fitted on each storey of their premises where there is a room used as living accommodation. In addition, landlords must fit carbon monoxide alarms in relevant rooms.
The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 also require local authorities to prepare and publish a ‘statement of principles’ to outline the procedures to be followed before issuing any penalty charges.
Councillors at a meeting of Council Executive this Thursday (7 April) are set to recommend that the next Full Council meeting formally adopts and publishes Erewash Borough Council’s ‘statement’ and penalty charge rates.
The new procedure would see the council serve a notice on any landlord not meeting the duties to highlight the actions required to comply. If a landlord fails to meet these requirements within a specified time, councils have discretionary powers to impose a civil penalty on landlords.
If adopted, the council’s Statement of Principles sets out the charges that would be issued. For a first offence the penalty charge would be £1,000, reduced to £500 if paid within 14 days. For the second and third offences the charge would be £3,000 and £5,000 with no reduction for early payment.
Councillor Carol Hart, Erewash Borough Council’s Lead Member for Community Engagement, says:
“This is all about protecting the interests of the public. The safety of tenants in private rented accommodation within our borough is of paramount importance to the council. The power to issue a financial penalty to any landlord failing in their duties is clearly a part of that work to maintain high standards of safety within the private sector.”
The Council Executive meeting is at Ilkeston Town Hall on Thursday 7 April at 10.30am.