WELL done to Hazel Ward from Badger Hill for replying to Cllr Tracey Simpson Laing’s comments to her earlier letter on student lets (Letters, April 28).
Neither this Labour-run council nor the previous Lib-Dem administration wanted to do anything to limit the spread of the suburban campus around the University of York. The politicians were too interested in pandering to the university authorities and chasing the student vote.
Hence when the Labour Cabinet were shamed into introducing the Article 4 direction to ‘restrict’ the spread of student lets by Osbaldwick parish council and the Badger Hill community group, it approved a policy with a 20 per cent acceptability threshold.
This is not so much a restriction as an invitation to the absentee landlords to take one in five properties in areas such as Osbaldwick, a situation that, with the current number of council tax exempt student lets, is costing York residents approaching £4 million in lost revenue.
In response to Hazel Ward’s final point of “Matthew Laverack for council leader”, I too hope Mr Laverack will consider standing in 2015, along with other independents.