Empty council houses in Canongate

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Dear Sir or Madam,

Could you please inform me how many council houses have been lying empty i.e. with no tenant, for more than three months in the Canongate.

Could you also inform us of the lost of rental and council tax revenue from these properties?

Yours faithfully,

Catriona Grant
Chair of the Canongate Community Forum

Freedom of Information, City of Edinburgh Council

Thank you for your email. We are dealing with your enquiry and we will get
back to you as soon as possible.
Regards,

Customer Services.

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Freedom of Information, City of Edinburgh Council

Dear Catriona Grant,

Your ref: 1184

Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 - Acknowledgement of Request

We received your request on 27/10/2008 and can confirm that this is
being dealt with in accordance with the Freedom of Information
(Scotland) Act 2002. As such the request must be dealt with within 20
working days and provided in a format of your choice.

Your request may not result in us supplying the information you asked
for as the Act imposes certain conditions and exemptions on the
information we may supply. If this is the case, we will let you know. It
is also possible that the information you request is controlled by
different legislation. Again, we will write to advise you of this.
Finally, we may have to charge for the information we give to you. If
this is the case, we will write requesting payment before we release the
information.

The City of Edinburgh Council is obliged to answer your application
within 20 working days of receipt. If you are not satisfied with the
outcome of your application, or you do not receive a response within 20
days, you can apply for an internal review. The application for a review
should be made in writing to the Director of Corporate Services,
Waverley Court, 4 East Market Street, Edinburgh, EH8 8BG.

If you require further information please contact us on Tel: 0131 200
2340. Further information on the Freedom of Information Act (Scotland)
2002 can be obtained by visiting www.edinburgh.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,

Michael O'Rourke
Freedom of information Team
0131 200 2340
[Edinburgh Council request email]

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julie logan left an annotation ()

Pity no response ywt on this. I would have thought the council could pull occupancy rates/vacencies in areas of a housing department database (like EdIndex) It's even more of a worry if council are leaving any flats vacant especially at this time of year, do you think they have a maintenance team who could check occupancy (if no database) and ensure water pipes dont burst etc if any council property appears empty over the winter?

julie logan left an annotation ()

I've seen council workers in the Canongate recently clearing out council flats so why cant they provide this info.
Maybe they need a reminder that they are now in breech of the FOI Act.

Dear Sir or Madam,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Edinburgh Council's handling of my FOI request 'Empty council houses in Canongate'.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/em...

Yours sincerely,

Catriona Grant

Freedom of Information, City of Edinburgh Council

Thank you for your email. We are dealing with your enquiry and we will get
back to you as soon as possible.
Regards,

Customer Services.

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email.

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Dear Freedom of Information,

I requested similar information a year ago however Carol Duncan from Services for Communities wrote to me to tell me that it was not in the public interest and that the council had to take into consideration that there was still tenants in the Macrae tenements that it was not proper to give out the information. I accepted this however I am aware that the final tenant was re-housed in 2008 therefor there is no reason not to give this information. The council should have replied to this FOI by 5th December 2008.

I look forward to your reply and investigation why this FOI has not been properly executed.

Yours sincerely,

Catriona Grant

Freedom of Information, City of Edinburgh Council

Thank you for your email. We are dealing with your enquiry and we will get
back to you as soon as possible.
Regards,

Customer Services.

This is an automatically generated email. Please do not reply to this
email.

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Freedom of Information, City of Edinburgh Council

Dear Ms Grant,

I write further to your email dated 26 December 2008 to the City of
Edinburgh Council requesting a review of the handling of your FOI
request ref 1184

Your request for review was received in this office on the 29 December
2008 and we will endeavour to provide you with a response to your
queries within 20 working days.

If you have further questions regarding how this review is being dealt
with, please contact me directly.

If after receiving a response from the Director of Corporate Services
you remain dissatisfied, you have six months within which you may ask
the Scottish Information Commissioner to conduct a review of our
decision. You can contact him at:

Scottish Information Commissioner
Kinburn Castle
Doubledykes Road
St Andrews
Fife
KY16 9DS

For further information on the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act
2002, please contact us on 0131 200 2340 or visit our Website at
www.edinburgh.gov.uk/foi.

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information Team
City of Edinburgh Council
0131 200 2340
[Edinburgh Council request email]

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Chris Highcock, City of Edinburgh Council

1 Attachment

Mr Grant

Request for a Review of the Handling of FOI Request 2530

I write further to your email dated 29 December to our FOI Team requesting
a review of the handling of your FOI request ref 2530

Your request for review was received in this office on the 29 December and
we will endeavour to provide you with a response to your queries within 20
working days.

If you have further questions regarding how this review is being dealt
with, please contact me directly.

If after receiving a response from the Director of Corporate Services you
remain dissatisfied, you have six months within which you may ask the
Scottish Information Commissioner to conduct a review of our decision. You
can contact him at: Scottish Information Commissioner, Kinburn Castle,
Doubledykes Road, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9DS.

For further information on the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002,
please phone us on 0131 200 2340 or visit our Website at
www.edinburgh.gov.uk/foi.

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Chris Highcock, City of Edinburgh Council

Ms Catriona Grant Date January 2009

[1][FOI #3805 email] Our Ref

Your Ref

Dear Ms Grant

REQUEST FOR REVIEW OF HANDLING OF FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST NO. 2530

INFORMATION IN RELATION TO EMPTY HOUSES IN CANONGATE

I refer to your e-mail of 29 December and the acknowledgement sent to you
on 5 January by e-mail.

I have investigated this matter and have ascertained that a response was
prepared to your initial request, in early November, but as a result of an
administrative error this was not dispatched to you at that time .

I understand from Services for Communities that the response was
dispatched to you on 7 January. On behalf of the Council I apologise for
the delay in this matter.

The information which you sought, now having been provided, I shall assume
unless I hear from you to the contrary that you are satisfied with the
response, and that the matter can be closed.

If you are not satisfied with this response you may ask the Scottish
Information Commissioner within 6 months to conduct a review of this
decision. You can contact him at Scottish Information Commissioner,
Kinburn Castle, Doubledykes Road, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9DS. Thereafter
you have the right to appeal the decision of the Scottish Information
Commissioner on a point of law to the Court of Session.

Yours sincerely

Jim Inch

Director of Corporate Services

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julie logan left an annotation ()

It is unfortunate the response they claim to have made is still not posted by CEC on this site

Catriona Grant left an annotation ()

I recieved the letter today it said the following:

"I can confirm that CEC has 8 properties in the Canongate that are empty for more than 3 months. There is no rental income loss to CEC as the Developer, Mountgrange, has agreed to cover these costs.

The total CT due (with no reductions) from the 8 properties, from the start date of the Council's liability to 31 March 09 is £10,820.16

However, this figure may reduce is a tenant becomes liable.

Also,it would not be correct to say that this is the amount of Council Tax revenue "lost" because if a tenant had been in the property during the period that the COuncil was liable, they may have been entitled to a reduction in Council tax by way of an exemption, a discount or a disabled person's reduction."

Francis Irving left an annotation ()

Blog post about this request: http://stroppyblog.blogspot.com/2009/01/...

Francis Irving left an annotation ()

Another blog post about this: http://independentrepublicofthecanongate...

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