§ Lord Tugendhat
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What arrangements they have made to fund the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service after the present grant ceases in December.
My department has today written to the Chief Executive of the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service with an offer of government support for the next three years.
During the passage of the Housing Bill earlier this year, there was general agreement on all sides of the House that the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service have provided an extremely valuable service over the last three years in guiding both landlords and tenants through the complexities of the leasehold enfranchisement procedures.
The offer of further grant is conditional on the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service expanding their role beyond providing free initial advice to both landlords and tenants on leasehold enfranchisement procedures, including the amendments to that legislation set out in the Housing Act 1996. In addition, the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service will provide advice on the new measures in the Act aimed at resolving leasehold management disputes.26WA
We envisage that in this respect their most important task will be to help landlords and tenants make use of the new procedures allowing leasehold valuation tribunals to resolve such disputes.
The Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service are being offered a grant of £259,900 for the period from 1st January 1997 to 31st March 1998. In addition, the Leasehold Enfranchisement Advisory Service have received offers of support form private sector organisations worth £32,250 over the same period. Subject to a satisfactory review of performance and continuing private sector support, we expect that further Government grant will be offered for the two subsequent financial years.