FOI request (FOIR-149113558)
Requested Wed 09 October 2019
Responded Wed 13 November 2019
I am writing to you under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the following information from Hastings Borough Council:
Within the area for which your organisation is responsible, please provide:
1. The total number of complaints received by you or your trading standards body about landlords and letting agents in the last 12 months.
2. Of the complaints listed in the above request, the most common topic of complaint.
3. Of the complaints listed in point 1, how many of those led to enforcement action of any kind (for example fines, or prosecutions).
4. Please provide details of each enforcement action listed in your response to point 3.
Q1. We do not have a trading standards departments this is run by East Sussex County Council www.eastsussex.gov.uk However, our Housing Renewal team do receive complaints: 390 complaints between 1/10/18 and 31/10/19
Q2. 212 of these related to disrepair being reported about a dwelling
Q3. This question cannot be answered accurately. the reason for this is our inspection encompasses all hazards under HHSRS and not specifically the matter the person may be complaining about. Therefore we may not take action on the specific issue they have raised, but may decide to take action as a result of other deficiencies identified. therefore I cannot provide a direct correlation for this as no differentiation is made on our system for this so it cannot be reported on.
Q4. In terms of enforcement action taken between the above dates I can advise as follows:
26 Improvement Notices
4 Prohibition Orders
3 Hazard Awareness Notices
2 Emergency Prohibitions
4 S80 Notices under Environmental Protection Act
3 S59 Notices under the Building Act
6 letters relating to Management Regulation offences, there is 1 prosecution pending
2 x financial penalties were served
1 rent repayment order is being applied for
Again the context of the data needs to be understood, these are actions that have been started or are currently open in the time period specified. they do not specifically correlate to the same premises. This is due to the fact that different time spans are provided on notices for compliance and also the time it takes for investigation files to be completed and cases to go through the courts for prosecution etc. Although not asked for the requester should be aware of the full context and that many complaints are dealt with either before we arrive to inspect, are the subject of no further action (NFA) following inspection as unfounded or result in an advisory letter because the matter is not assessed highly enough to deem formal action appropriate. However I hope this provides an understanding of our activity, based on the requested information.
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