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ISSUE No. 95 Winter 2010


Campaign on clamping By the Editor


“Cowboy clampers target vulnerable motorists”. Headlines like this have appeared widely in the media over recent years. The new Coalition Government arrives and takes immediate action. All clamping on private land will be banned!


Problem solved. Or, rather, problem created for leaseholders. For private flat-dwellers who live in prime locations – whether in the centre of London, close to a station, sports venue or major attraction, or by the seaside – the threat of clamping can be the only way to prevent their block being used as a free carpark.


Without the threat of clamping, if the flat owners cannot erect barriers, bollards or electronic gates, they may find themselves unable to park at their home and powerless to do anything about the freeloaders. Rushing into action, the Government again does not seem to be listening to the views of leaseholders.


Our campaign is for strict regulation of the clamping industry. A detailed article and views of members are on pages 6 and 7 of this newsletter. Please consider writing to your MP about this matter. A sample letter is available on our website.


MORE CAMPAIGNS


Inside this issue you will find details of other FPRA campaigns: on equality legislation, on problems with insulation and disconnection of energy supplies in flats, and on the need for clarity in the duties of the “responsible person” in fire safety assessments in blocks of flats.


THE AGM


Representatives of about 30 member bodies attended our AGM on October 27 at the Victory Services Club in London. We were pleased to welcome Anthony Essien, Chief Executive of the Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE), Frances Kneller of Digital UK, and our guest speaker Nigel Wilkins, Chair of the Campaign for the Abolition of Residential Leasehold (CARL) who made some thought-


INSIDE THIS ISSUE Reports from the AGM


Ask the FPRA Clamping


FPRA campaigns Legal Jottings Special Meeting


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provoking remarks. Coverage of the speeches is on pages 2 and 3 inside this issue.


As usual, our members came up with some interesting questions and ideas. One suggestion which is going to bear fruit is the proposal by a member that FPRA no longer have its accounts fully audited, but rely on an accountant’s report. Since 2006 Company Law has permitted this change for all companies with a low turnover. FPRA could save about £1000 a year in accountancy costs by making this change.


FPRA legal adviser Nick Roberts explained the legal implications and procedures to the meeting and Robert Levene confirmed that the company officers’ insurance would not be affected. Following a debate, in which views on both sides were expressed, a show of hands revealed a large majority of those present in favour of the change.


To make this happen, FPRA first needs to change its Memorandum and Articles, and this requires a Special Resolution and an Extraordinary General Meeting. We are delighted that Shadow Minister Alison Seabeck MP has agreed to come to this meeting (subject to emergency Parliamentary business) to meet FPRA members and hear about leaseholder problems. We hope as many members as possible will come to the meeting. This is an excellent opportunity to influence future policy. Please put the date – February 16 – in your 2011 diaries.


The formal notice of the meeting is on the back page.


Xmas Holiday – The FPRA office will close at midday on Thursday, December 23 and open again on Tuesday, January 4, 2011.


NEWSLETTER


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