LEVEL PLAYING FIELD
PASC has been heavily involved with lobbying the Government to try to establish a ‘Level Playing Field” across the accommodation sector.
This simply means that anyone offering their accommodation for payment must meet the same levels of insurance, regulation and taxation that Professional Self-Caterers do.
PASC was called to give both oral and written evidence to the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) on the Sharing Economy. The final report was published on Wednesday the 18th July 2019 and is a victory for both common sense and a level playing field for all accommodation businesses having to comply to the same legislation. We would like to give our thanks to the Chair of the APPG, Gordon Marsden, MP, and to Kurt Janson, from the Tourism Alliance, who provided Secretariat Services.
The Key findings are as follows:
Having considered the evidence both from the sharing economy and from the rest of the tourism industry, the APPG for Tourism recommends that the Culture Secretary launch a consultation on using his powers under the Development of Tourism Act 1969 to establish a low-cost statutory registration scheme for tourism accommodation businesses. Such a scheme could be devolved to councils and would help resolve the main issues identified by this Inquiry, specifically:
Help ensure that all businesses complied with regulations
Provide enforcement officers with a database of tourism accommodation properties so that they could target their resources to those properties they deem to be the highest risk
Provide councils with greater ability to manage tourism in their area
Provide HMRC with a means by which to ensure that all businesses pay the appropriate level of taxation.
In addition that the Government provide Local Authorities with powers to set rules regarding the use of residential properties for Tourism Accommodation so that local solutions can be developed that balance the benefits generated by sharing economy accommodation with needs of local residents. These powers include:
The ability to set the maximum number of days per annum that a property can be used for tourism accommodation
The ability to require the owner of the property to be present if a property is used for tourism accommodation
The full report can be seen here