Tenants face delay to register changes
COUNCIL tenants are facing a five month delay to register any changes to their income or circumstances,members heard at the Dundalk Municipal meeting.
The delay meant that tenants could find themselves in ‘serious arrears’ which they struggle to repay.
Cllr. Maria Doyle said she had been contacted by a number of people who said they had informed the local authority of changes to their income, as they had been told to do. But registering these changes was taking ‘in excess of five months.’
Cllr. Doyle said that she had been continually raising concerns about the mounting rent arrears owed to the local authority.
She added that she had written to the housing section about the matter, and received an email back confirming that it could take in excess of five months for these changes to be registered.
She argued that this was ‘unfair to tenants’ who had ‘ done as they were supposed to’ and informed the council of changes to their circumstances, which may simply having been offered a few more hours work.
‘No wonder we are having huge problems with rent arrears. Tenants are being left in a situation where they are then facing having to repay. I feel we are being short changed by Louth County Council, and we are letting tenants down. If we don’t deal with this now, we will never be able to.’
A council spokeswoman confirmed there were lengthy delays, but added that staff were facing a significant workload to reassess rents as tenants had not been declaring change of circumstances ‘sometimes over years’.
Director of Services, Frank Pentony, asked that specific cases raised by Cllr. Doyle be looked at as he ‘would be very surprised if all cases too five months.’