Decision Maker: Officer Delegated Decision
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
The record relates to the following decision made by Mr Andrew Billany, Corporate Director Housing and Community Safety, under delegated authority to serve an Empty Dwelling Management Order:
(i) the decision to serve an Empty Dwelling Management Order on 4th January 2021 to replace an existing Empty Dwelling Management Order which is due to expire on the 5th February 2021
In February 2014, East Dorset District Council served a Final Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO) which gave the Council full control of the property to manage for 7 years and expires on 5th February 2021.Unless a final EDMO is granted again (to replace an existing final EDMO made under Section 136) the dwelling is likely to become and remain unoccupied.
This decision affects the human rights of the owner of the property specifically Articles 1 and 8 ‘Right to property’ and ‘right to respect for one's private and family life, his home and his correspondence’. The loss of the use of the property has been balanced against the significant likelihood the property will remain empty, become a blight on the neighbourhood and impact on nearby occupiers of residential property.
On balance it was considered that the public benefit outweighs the detrimental impact and loss of rights of the owner by renewing the EDMO.
1. Return the property to the owner
This option has been rejected because the owner has not been in contact with the Council and his whereabouts are currently unknown.
2. Enforced Sale
The Law and Property Act 1925 enables a procedure for the Council to sell the property and use the proceeds to discharge any debts and can be used where there is a Council Tax or other debt to the Council. This option was disregarded as the Council has reclaimed its original debt incurred in bringing the property back into use via rental repayments from letting it out. Also, this course of action does not guarantee that any new owner would maintain the property in occupation.
3. Compulsory Purchase
Compulsory purchase of the property has been considered and rejected on the grounds that the impact of the action on the human rights of the owner would be very significant in particular to Article 1 of the convention. The continuation of an empty dwelling order meets the public interest of not leaving the property long term empty whilst not depriving the owner of the property.
Publication date: 06/01/2021
Date of decision: 06/01/2021