The ASSC and other tourism industry bodies have failed to receive a response from either the First Minister or the Cabinet Secretary for Housing to the attached letters they have received seeking urgent reconsideration of the proposed Short-Term Let Licensing legislation, despite it going to a vote in Parliament this afternoon. This lack of courtesy embodies the antipathy the Scottish Government clearly feels towards the ASSC, the wider tourism industry and small businesses that this legislation will detrimentally impact.
Meanwhile, letters received by ASSC members from their MSPs clearly illustrate that this continues to be driven by concern for lack of housing, despite the Cabinet Secretary for Housing’s assurances that licensing is about “basic health and safety” and that overprovision powers have been removed. They have not, and we have legal opinion to evidence this.
It was made abundantly clear at the Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee that the intention is to “mange down” the number of short-term lets. In addition, the Committee voted the legislation through, apparently, to safeguard against “potential criminality” associated with the sector: sex trafficking, drug dealing and puppy farming. despite there being no evidence for such sensationalist claims.