Harvie presses Sturgeon to give local councils powers to control short-term lets
Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, used today's First Minister's Questions to press Nicola Sturgeon to give local councils powers to control the rapid growth of short-term lets which is adding to pressures on Scotland's housing stock.
Recent research for Andy Wightman's Homes First campaign showed that many landlords are operating lucrative short term letting businesses in Edinburgh alone, including one host with 80 listings.
Patrick Harvie MSP said:
"Scottish Ministers have said this issue will be addressed by their working group on the collaborative economy but as my colleague Andy Wightman has said, the removal of badly-needed housing from supply is not collaborative - it's commercial exploitation. The government has the power to create new use class orders through the planning system, which local councils could use to help control the rapid and unregulated growth of this sector.
"The First Minister's response that she understands the distinction between collaborating and exploitation is welcome, as is her statement that she is not ruling out giving councils the necessary powers. The growth of short term lets is exacerbating the housing crisis, in our city centres and in rural communities, and Greens will continue to press for solutions."