|Doncaster Council is stepping up action against the owners of derelict and unsightly properties that affect the appearance of neighbourhoods.Around 30 of the authority’s enforcement officers have recently received training to use powers under Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. This allows the council to take steps requiring the condition of land and buildings to be improved when it adversely affects the amenity of an area. Previously it was only housing and planning investigation officers who were trained in using these powers.Under the Act the council can order owners to undertake a range of works including planting, clearance, tidying, fencing, painting, demolition, re-building and other repairs. If owners are unwilling to restore the external appearance of a property to a reasonable condition then enforcement action may be taken. Magistrates can issue fines of up to £1,000 for non-compliance and the council can do remedial work and recharge the owners.Councillor Cynthia Ransome, Cabinet Member for Communities, said “These powers have been available to us for a number of years but this is a new approach.
“By training officers who are out and about on the streets every day we can make better use of the powers and deal more efficiently with properties that are an eyesore.
“Neglected and derelict sites are a real nuisance for the vast majority of residents who do take pride in their properties.”
|27 July 2011|