The Scottish Government will shortly be publishing its long-awaited legislation which should give Edinburgh City Council the power to license short –term lets and introduce what would be called ‘control areas” for this purpose.
This will have a huge impact on the City as it is believed that there are presently around 6,500 active listings for whole properties in Edinburgh being used as short term lets.
A key issue for the Council is resources and whether it has the required funding to cope with the demand on the Planning and Licensing departments, considering the high volume of applications that are expected as and when the legislation comes into force next year.
Hal Osler said, "As we are all well aware the Council does not have any spare resources and needs to make major savings. The additional expense of having to process thousands of short term let applications could have a major knock-on effect for delivery of the planning and licensing department overall workloads, if these costs are not properly budgeted for.
"At the November full Council meeting, I seconded a motion brought forward by my colleague Neil Ross asking for a report to be brought forward to quantify the likely costs to process these applications and also to outline the options for funding this.
"The importance of knowing this information is that if we are aware of the likely cost of processing application we can make sure that there are sufficient resources in place and that will mean that more applications can be processed which will reduce the number of short term lets operating without a license.”