Minister axes the Regulatory Board for Wales.
Last Thursday, 14th July, the Welsh Government’s Minster for Climate Change announced the scraping of the Regulatory Board For Wales (RBW) with immediate effect. No reason was given or any plans for alternatives at this stage. The announcement surprised people in the housing sector.
The announcement from Welsh Government reads:
“The Welsh Government remains committed to supporting the housing sector through unprecedented challenges caused by the pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis.
As part of this, the Minister for Climate Change will commission a programme of work to look at how the regulatory function for Registered Social Landlords in Wales is supported. This will include a re-evaluation of the role and function of the Regulatory Board for Wales which has been dissolved.
The Minister has written privately, and also wishes to express publicly, her deep appreciation for the commitment of the chair and all of the Board members, and their hard work in supporting the Minister and the sector.
In the interim, the regulation team will continue to work with the Regulatory Advisory Group on behalf of the Minister for insight into the challenges facing the sector.”
So what was the Regulatory Board for Wales?
The Board advised the Minister on the performance of the housing regulator, the sector and in respect of related policy implications.
The Board examined the regulatory performance and activity of the Welsh Government and registered social landlords
The board was independent, made up of tenants and people with strong interest in housing.
Board members were paid.
The board usually met 4 times a year. It also produced an annual report of its work.
TPAS Cymru had built up a good relationship with RBW and worked with them in a number of areas including:
Running an annual event for tenants to discuss subjects with the RBW and for RBW to demonstrate their work.
Fed tenant insight from Pulse and other Tenant Voice events into RBW.
Had meetings with the RBW Chair to discuss what issues tenants were facing.
Pre-pandemic, RBW members attended tenant focused sessions at our conference on regulation.
We look forward to hearing and working with Welsh Government on how scrutiny of social housing regulatory environment will be carried out going forward to ensure the voice of tenants is heard.