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South Lakes MP accuses Government of twiddling their thumbs while excessive second home ownership turns local communities into ghost towns

February 11, 2020 2:30 PM
Originally published by Tim Farron

Local MP Tim Farron says the Government have abandoned communities in the South Lakes after they failed to act on a tax loophole which sees some second homeowners get away with paying no council tax whatsoever by pretending to be a small business.

A Government consultation on closing the loophole ended over a year ago, but during a meeting with housing minister Esther McVey last week, the minister told Tim that they were still looking through responses to the consultation.

After the meeting, Tim said: "It's been over a year now since this consultation ended and ministers are still twiddling their thumbs while excessive second home ownership turns so many of our local communities into ghost towns.

"At the moment, the loophole is being exploited so that people in council houses in Grasmere are subsidising wealthy second home owners from London.

"Councils are losing millions every year through this loophole that could be spent on keeping our communities vibrant. The Government need to take their head out of the sand and end the loophole."