Posts Tagged ‘Duncan Hames’
This week Wiltshire Council tried to close the Housing Benefit claims of a number of boaters who live on non-residential moorings. The Council officers in question were unaware of case law from 2006 that confirms that Housing Benefit is payable even when the claimant’s occupation of their home is unlawful or does not have planning permission for residential use.
The draft Order to transfer British Waterways to the Canal and River Trust has been published and is currently being scrutinised by two Parliamentary Committees. It will also be debated in both the House of Commons and House of Lords. Despite many boaters lobbying and submitting evidence when the Public Bodies Bill (now an Act of Parliament) was being drafted, the issue of British Waterways was not discussed at all in the House of Commons committee on the Bill. The subject of the transfer order is BW alone, so it is vital that we take the opportunity to raise all the issues about the risks of homelessness to boat dwellers (both with and without permanent moorings) that arise from the transfer of BW to charity status. The deadline for submissions to the Committees is this Monday 19th March so write to them now!
We can bring you the full text of Waterways Minister Richard Benyon’s written statement of apology to the House of Commons for pre-empting the results of DEFRA’s second consultation on the new waterways charity, which includes the issue of whether the Canal and River Trust will be subject to FOI. Mr Benyon wrote: