Update on the City’s S20 Dispensation

Please find below an update on progress on the City’s Application to the First Tier Tribunal for a Section 20 Dispensation, from the Sub-Committee co-ordinating the BA response. 

Update on the City’s S20 Dispensation

The BA response is being co-ordinated by a sub-group comprising: 

  • Adam Hogg, Chair BA; 
  • Sandra Jenner, Chair RCC; 
  • Brendan Barnes, BAGC member; 
  • David Graves, Lessee who is also a Solicitor 
  • Richard Tomkins, Lessee who originally identified the City’s unlawfulness. 

Background:

  • No City S20 consultation in 2017 for an important contract for Agency Workers which contributed significantly to our service charges to the tune of £2+mn – unlawful
  • City Solicitors did not answer for six months after a resident queried a charge for agency workers and asked if a contract had been entered into without consultation. 
  • City took a further year to apply for a dispensation after conceding that S20 consultation should have been undertaken – unreasonable and compounding of unlawfulness
  • City applied for a S20 dispensation with an ill-considered and perfunctory Application seemingly without considering whether any other residents/estates may be affected – unreasonable and unlawful
  • City Solicitors sought agreement from respondents to the original dispensation application to a withdrawal stating the reason is to pursue settlement. The prime reason is actually because other HRA residents need to be included if the case goes ahead.

Current position:

  • The City has been told by the FT Tribunal that it must notify all residents of its Withdrawal Application, not just those who have objected to the original Dispensation Application.
  • We shall be applying for our costs associated with the Withdrawal Application to be reimbursed by the City and also for the City’s costs not to be charged to our Service Charges 
  • The City will need to make another S20 Dispensation Application in due course. The ball is in their court. 

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