Thank you Lord Mayor. Mr Ferguson, Councillors. You have my statement so you know I’m calling for you to reject the proposals of the working party to end the ban on evictions caused by the \bedroom tax and to stand up for \Bristolians by calling on the government to axe the tax.
The working party says that the ban is unsustainable and may be illegal – after 5 months I’d have expected you to know by now whether or not it is illegal but it makes no sense to say it is unsustainable – the sums don’t add up.
52 weeks of £13 per week arrears makes £650 arrears per year bedroom tax on one room.
But the cabinet says that it costs £1,119 to evict someone, £3,000 to re-furbish the property for a new tenant and £5,300 to re-house the newly homeless person. And you would have to re-house them because the \housing code of guidance says that someone can’t be intentionally homeless if they are in arrears solely because of a benefit change beyond their control – which this clearly is.
So that’s £9,419. It would take 14 years to make it financially worthwhile! That’s not cost effective or sustainable.
3000 council tenants in arrears because of bedroom tax – you are contemplating spending £10,000 to evict each one. Money we should be spending on building and retrofitting new homes!
Don’t do it. Please, councillors, support the labour motion in front of you to protect those tenants who are in arrears solely because of the bedroom tax. Please, Mr Ferguson, tell Stephen Williams and Charlotte Leslie what you think of their mean, financially idiotic law and tell the government to axe the tax.