§ Ms. Coffey
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the Audit Commission benchmark for empty properties; and what is the level of empty properties in Stockport.
§ Mr. Baldry
The latest discussion by the Audit Commission of options open to local authorities for the better use of their housing stock is contained in the report "Developing Local Authority Housing Strategies", which was published on 28 May. In the report, the commission refers to benchmarks for void turn-around times for local authorities of six weeks in London and three weeks elsewhere. The commission suggests that if long-term voids were held to 1 per cent. of stock nearly all authorities with void intervals within these benchmarks would achieve a void level of less than 2 per cent.
The latest available information on Stockport's empty council dwellings relates to 1 April 1991 and was provided by the council in its 1991 housing investment programme return, a copy of which is in the Library.