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Queen's Speech boosts right to buy and tackles Town Hall Pravdas, referendum dodgers and rioters

Councils and housing association should be doing far more to evict tenants engaged in crime or anti social behaviour including rioting. Weakness in this regard is not entirely their fault but also due to court delays.

At least this provision of the Anti-social, Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill should help a bit:

"Part 5 – Recovery of Possession of dwelling-houses: Anti-Social Behaviour grounds

Anti-social behaviour can have a negative impact on neighbourhoods and communities. Social landlords have a key role in tackling anti-social behaviour. Provisions in the Bill introduce a new ground for possession to speed up the process in the most serious cases of anti-social behaviour bringing faster relief to victims and communities."

Also in the Queen's Speech:

  • Currently, tenants need to have lived in council housing for at least five years before they can take up the Right to Buy. But under changes in the Deregulation Bill announced today, this will be reduced to three years.
  • Council Tax referendum provisions introduced in the Localism Act which allow local taxpayers to veto excessive council tax rises will be extended to also apply to unelected local quangos – such as Waste Disposal Authorities, Integrated Transport Authorities, Pension Authorities and Internal Drainage Boards.
  • Formally close the Audit Commission quango.
  • Enshrine the legal status of the local authority publicity code – "stopping publicly funded Pravda-style propaganda."

Some of this will be done via the Local Audit and Accountability Bill. Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said:

“This government is reining in the quango state, saving taxpayers’ money and giving more power to local people. This Bill extends the government’s localism agenda – ensuring robust scrutiny of council spending, strengthening the role of direct democracy and protecting an independent free press.”


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