News In Focus
Community rights measures go out to consultation
A range of proposed measures to increase the rights of Scottish communities has been put out to consultation today by the Scottish Government, along with draft legislation to implement some of them.
Under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill, communities would be able to identify and ask to take over any public sector land or buildings that they feel they could make better use of than the current owner.
The decision whether to transfer that asset will be based on which proposed use would provide the greatest benefit to the community.
The bill would also reform the community right to buy, and give communities greater say in the provision of services.
Local authorities will have a duty to provide allotments linked to and triggered by actual demand, keeping waiting lists below a specified target, and to protect permanent allotment sites from closure.
The bill also proposes:
- new duties to strengthen community planning, so that public sector agencies work more closely together to deliver better outcomes;
- new powers to help councils deal with defective and dangerous buildings;
- local relief schemes on business rates;
- increasing transparency about the management and use of common good assets.
Today's consultation takes forward proposals that were supported in a previous, exploratory consultation by ministers last year, and others which have emerged from discussions.
Click here to view the consultation. Responses are due by 24 January 2014.