Posts tagged Clive Betts

The Government Will Ease Building of New Homes

A new report published today by MPs has identified enough public land, such as empty offices, unused storage and empty public service buildings, to build more than 100,000 homes.

The report which was prepared by the Commons Communities Select Committee has found that 230,000 households are forming each year, but in 2011 only 110,000 new homes were built, showing that demand had outstripped supply of newly built houses.

Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, welcomed the findings of the committee and agreed that the government needs to take decisive action to support the building of more new homes over the next coming years.

The Conservative Minister commented that the government is the biggest public sector owner of public land and as such, it is fair to make the best use of its assets to help the building of more homes across Britain.

Mr Shapps said: “We’re already on track to smash the Prime Minister’s ambition to release previously-used public land for housing: enough land has already been identified to support more than 102,000 homes. But we’re not stopping there – I’m determined to continue looking for more sites suitable for housebuilding.”

To help developers make the most of the sites on offer, Mr Shapps will also look to extend the use of the innovative “Build Now, Pay Later” deal to as many previously-used sites as possible, allowing them to start work on thousands of new homes without the initial expense of buying the land, the Deportment for Communities and Local Government said today.

The report also states that ministers are committed to make information about surplus public land freely available and help local people see the opportunities which exist in their area.

What is your reaction to the government’s commitment to help the building of more homes across Britain? How would you or your business benefit from these proposals? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below: 

Gas and Electrical DIY Work to Be Labelled as Illegal


Gas and electrical work is crucial for the health and safety of every household and must not be underestimated at any time – MPs have warned.

The Communities and Local Government Committee recently produced a report looking at the potential risks of doing DIY work in high risk level trades such as gas and electrics. The report also aims to raise public awareness about health and safety procedures, as well as encouraging people to work more responsively.

The report suggests that electrical equipment sold in DIY stores should be labelled with signs, warning that it is illegal for a none qualified person to carry out electrical work in the home, such as the installation of electrical sockets. It also states that all electrical checks need to meet the requirements of the Building Control Service.

The Committee estimates that too many home owners do not realise the danger of undertaking gas and electric work in their homes. It also concludes that too often people are using sub –standard engineers who do not take full liability for faulty gas or electrical work.

Clive Betts, Chair of the Communities and Local Government Committee, said that more needs to be done to alert households of the dangers of using sub-standard electricians. He also emphasised the importance of completing regular maintenance checks on electrical circuits in the home.

Mr Betts said: “The committee will be writing to all the big electrical/DIY stores to highlight this key recommendation. Such labelling is vital to reinforce the important message to the general public that they must use a registered electrician to carry out electrical work in the home. It will also reinforce a broader health and safety message that electrical work can potentially be extremely hazardous.”

What do you think about the report by the Communities and Local Government Committee to label all electrical equipment sold in DIY stores?  Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below: 

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