consulting on regulations for a simplified Right to Manage
and a new Right to Transfer, which would require councils to
co-operate with a tenants group which wanted to transfer their
homes from the local authority to another provider.
The deadline for comments is 23 May, and ARCH
will be submitting a response. ARCH members are encouraged both to
respond directly to CLG and to suggest how ARCH should
The two proposals in the consultation paper raise rather different
issues. The Right to Manage has been in place since 1993, and there
is plenty of experience on which to base proposals for
simplification. The consultation paper proposes to:
- remove the requirement for councils to notify the Secretary of
State of the results of any tenants ballot and send in a copy of
any management agreement
- remove the requirement on the prospective TMO to prepare
a feasibility study as well as a detailed "offer" to affected
- work with the sector to produce streamlined guidance.
On the face of it these seem sensible suggestions and I am
minded to recommend that ARCH support them.
The Right to Manage was designed as a process to enable tenants to
take over management from a recalcitrant council. It seems likely
that much of the complexity of the process stems from this and a
much simpler, streamlined process would be possible where the
council support the proposal to delegate management.
Currently, such voluntary agreements are apparently only
available for small contracts falling under EU procurement
thresholds. ARCH may wish to argue for the extension of this
voluntary approach to larger contracts, as part of a wider shift in
emphasis from prescriptive to enabling legislation.
The Right to Transfer is intended to enable tenants to transfer
their homes, where they so wish, from a local authority to another
social landlord. There is no evidence of which I am aware of
pent-up demand from tenants for such transfers, and experience from
the 1990s, when similar legislation was last implemented, suggests
that any take-up will be minimal. I would suggest that ARCH remain
sceptical about the value of this policy.
Please post your comments below, or email