Thursday, October 22, 2009
EDMOs and Tory councils
Caroline Spellman has been asking a lot of questions about Empty Dwelling Management Orders recently. That’s a good thing, in a few months she could well be the minister responsible for them. I’ve met her a couple of times and talked to her about them. And I have to say that I feel fairly sure that she just doesn’t like them. In fact in her conference speech she compared being served an EDMO to getting fined for leaving your rubbish bin out on the wrong day- in other words - an unnecessary interference by the state. Well, we may just have to agree to disagree on that. But what comes over to me about Caroline Spellman is that she is a thoughtful woman and a pragmatic politician. So hopefully the answer to her latest question will make her think. In total just fifteen councils have used EDMOs. Of those twelve are Conservative controlled councils and just three Labour. Philosophically EDMOs may not be a very Tory idea, but practically they seem to be useful to Tory councils. Pragmatically I hope she sees that the legislation is fine just as it is.