The Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee plans to hold a series of oral evidence sessions in the Autumn to scrutinise the policy objectives, key provisions and likely impact of the draft Bill. These reflect the 5 broad areas of reform (accountability, residents’ voice, enforcement and sanctions, product testing and regulatory system), while also reflecting the concerns the Committee raised in its report Building regulations and fire safety: consultation response and connected issues (July 2019). This will include assessing:
- How well does the Bill, as drafted, meet the Government’s own policy intentions?
- Does the draft Bill establish an appropriate scope for the new regulatory system?
- Will the Bill provide for a robust – and realistic – system of accountability for those responsible for building safety? Are the sanctions on those who do not meet their responsibilities strong enough?
- Will the Bill provide strong mechanisms to ensure residents are listened to when they have concerns about their building’s safety?
- Is the Government right to propose a new Building Safety Charge? Does the bill introduce sufficient protections to ensure that leaseholders do not face excessive charges and that their funds are properly managed?
- Does the Bill improve the product testing regime in a way that will command the full confidence of the sector?
- Is it right that the new Building Safety Regulator be established under the Health and Safety Executive, and how should it be funded?
- Does the Bill present an opportunity to address other building safety issues, such as requirements for sprinkler systems?
The Committee will take into account the response to the Building a Safer Future consultation as part of its pre-legislative scrutiny. However, the Committee is inviting written evidence specifically on aspects of the draft Bill which are considered to go beyond the scope of the consultation. Submissions should address the bullet points identified above and identify specific clauses of the bill within the submission.
The Institution of Engineering and Technology Trustees propose submitting a response to this consultation and invite comments from Members who have expertise in this area and have studied the consultation documents. In its capacity as a professional body, the IET will confine itself to only addressing those questions that are within its area(s) of competence.
For more information and a summary of the questions, please refer to the consultation webpage.
This consultation is under embargo from the Housing, Communities & Local Government Select Committee.