Thursday, 31 July 2014

F451's posts

  • Posted in: Bedroom Tax Lost the Vote said it would be Cruel

    F451's post | 15/12/2011 4:20 pm

    Why this came to mind I dont know - it just seems to fit with Pickles' veto of the Lords:
    Bad Lord Pickles looked out
    On the Feast of Stephen
    When the snow lay round about,
    Deep and crisp and even;
    Brightly shone the moon that night,
    Tho' the frost was cruel,
    When a poor man came in sight,
    Gath'ring winter fuel.

    “Come here Shapps”, stand by me
    If you know, who is that,
    What does he earn,
    And where does he live?
    Sir, he lives on Council Estate
    Round the back of Wapping
    He earns the minimum wage
    And can’t afford real shopping.

    Bring me whips and bring me chains
    Bring me Lords amendments
    Let him watch me destroy his hope
    Go to him this minute
    Shapps and Pickles both went out
    Laughing at the weather
    Treading puppies underfoot
    Like they knew no other

    Sir, said Shapps, its dark out here
    And I can hear some people
    I’m worried Sir lest the ask me
    What I’m here for.
    Follow me well said Pickles
    Do just what I tell you
    Have no fear of common men
    They don’t bleed as we do.

    So Shapps carried on that way
    Wrecking all and sunder
    Many were burned
    And more consumed
    Just so few could prosper
    Wealth or rank possessing,
    Ye who now will smite the poor,
    And share there wealth as a blessing.

  • Posted in: Announcing - nothing

    F451's post | 09/12/2011 4:08 pm

    The other point about this flurry of callers is that people are still game for the something for nothing culture introduced by Thatcher and perpertuated by Blair.

    How odd it is that supporters of the right to buy are supporting the gifting of large sums of taxpayer money to people who are not the elite, and the sharing of their debt across the remaining reduced community of tenants, but for that to be paid for, in part through housing benefit funded by the taxpayer.

    Why do these taxpayers want to see their hard earned taxes poured into individual pockets this way, and then have to pay higher taxes to repay the debt for years afterwards?

  • Posted in: Announcing - nothing

    F451's post | 09/12/2011 2:42 pm

    Ok nonny - as you say then it must be.

    There are no little munchkins working for the government guiding the media on what to emphasise in a story. There was only ever Andy Coulson, and now he is otherwise a little busy, there is nobody else inside the government or the party briefing the press.

    Equally the CLG never issued a press guidance or public FAQ saying the details of when and how RTB will work would be part of the Housing Strategy - and of course the PM never presented the item in language that suggested these were changes already made.

    Of course not nonny - never happened and never does.

  • Posted in: Announcing - nothing

    F451's post | 09/12/2011 1:04 pm

    Media Manipulation and Spin not something the government should take responsibility for then Nonnie?

  • Posted in: Shapps Speaks - but then what?

    F451's post | 08/12/2011 2:19 pm

    The Telegraph - 22 November 2010

    Ministers to extend 'right-to-buy' policy

    A new era of “right-to-buy” will be heralded by ministers today as part of a fundamental shake-up of Government housing policy.

    Grant Shapps, the Housing Minister said last night: “You will acquire the right to buy at a discount from housing associations. The present system is too muddled."

    Still nothing from the Minister, even though his favoured housing association is asking him to clarify this point also - bearing in mind it is normally impossible to shut this Minister up his 13 months of silence does seem a little odd. Odder still is that the opposition and media seem happy to leave the Minister unchallenged over the right-to-buy issue.

    Why the silence on all sides?

  • Posted in: Announcing - nothing

    F451's post | 08/12/2011 2:14 pm

    Colleagues are reporting that enquiries about how to access the new government right to buy scheme are still coming in every day, and resulting in disappointment after disappointment.

    Is there anyway to communicate to the Housing Minister that he needs to announce the truth about his non-announcement so that housing staff are not wasting even more time clearing up over his lack of clarity and detail - or at least announce a date when he will announce what it is his announcement was about.

  • Posted in: Should separate Communal areas have separate electricity meters?

    F451's post | 02/12/2011 12:49 pm

    Apologies for an earlier factual error in my earlier posts, stating the standing charge as nearly £130, when is is closer to £80 (I was looking at the wrong column in the communal power sheet I referenced).

    You need to add the electricity used to this £80 (the quarterly charge I have noted is £22.76, but there may be provider variance), allowing for VAT also, you are close to £90, and then divide by 2 to get your comparison. That would mean you would be paying around £45 where as currently you are paying £73 including the heating.

    However, if you consider just the heating saving, and do not have the second meter (assuming the other corridor uses the same electricity as yours for lighting and cleaning) then the total cost will be the standing charge plus two lots of the power you calculated (lets say £20 to be generous) and VAT (negligable, lets say it is within the rounded £20). So that would be a total bill of £100 between five of you. At £20 you would be saving far more by keeping the single meter.

    Doubling the meter cost on such a low electricity use will not do you a favour.

  • Posted in: Should separate Communal areas have separate electricity meters?

    F451's post | 02/12/2011 11:53 am

    That the meter is already in your bit will not prevent the cost being shared across the 5 of you.

    It sounds like the heater issue is already being looked into. If it is removed you may want the landlord to check that ventilation to the areas is adequate to continue the air circulation through the area, and that damp precautions are in place.

    Arguing what should have been, in this instance, is not going to help bring a resolution for you more than already seems in train. However, do keep in mind the additional standing charge of the two meter solution. Currently about a third of you shared bill is standing charge - splitting the meter would mean that you would be paying nearly £130 shared between the two of you instead of between five. If the main electrical use of the heater is removed then you will be paying £130 plus usage for a light bulb and plug socket!

    Assuming that the heater is taken away. Would you accept the removal of the carpet so the corridor only needs to be washed not vacuumed (so the plug socket can be removed) and for the light bulb to be added to your own flat electricity with a notional (@ £15) per annum service charge credit as compensation? This would allow for the meter to be removed, and so save you the largest single item, the standing charge, as well. You can not force the landlord to do this, but they may consider it if asked.

  • Posted in: Should separate Communal areas have separate electricity meters?

    F451's post | 02/12/2011 11:04 am

    You can ask for the meters to be separated, but do remember that you will then double the standing charge as there will be two meters instead of one. You will also have to fund the cost of the installation.

    As the electrical usage is so low the saving you may make from the separated meter will be offset by the cost of the extra standing charge (you would individually be paying in the region of £65 for that alone). If you are paying 1/5 of £366 currently then already you will be losing once power is charged for.

    What may be better is to ask for the removal of the heaters if they are not needed. If they are needed, for instance to ensure the fabric of the property does not get undermined with damp, then you should start to use yours too. But perhaps they can be adjust to simply ensure a frost free temperature is maintained in the hallways.

    It may on the face of it seem unfair, especially as you are in the 'smaller' communal area and are sharing with  a separate lareger one. However, a leaseholder valuation tribunal would be concerned with the reasonability of the charging arrangement. That said, you may have recourse to the LVT as a final option if any of you are leaseholders.

  • Posted in: How can you have Charitable Status and also be called Private

    F451's post | 01/12/2011 9:25 am

    That's a novel way of looking at things Sancho - whenever I've seen the RSL budget report the bottom line is either balanced or in surplus (with the occassional use of reserves to achieve balance).

    Yes there is cross subsidy - that is why Group Structures became the norm and the specialists were squeezed by the financial arrangements.

    If what you described was true no RSL would have had green lights at all.

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