Introduction and Background
The purpose of this consultation is to set out the current status of the Scottish Energy Performance Certificate Register ( SEPCR)  , to advise on pending action to amend the statutory fees payable on lodgement of energy performance data and to seek views on the manner in which the register is funded.
In response to Article 7 of Directive 2002/91/ EC on the Energy Performance of buildings  , the production of energy performance certificates was introduced for construction of new buildings (from 1 May 2007) and sale or rental of existing buildings and display in larger public buildings (from 4 January 2009).
Unlike the rest of the UK, between 9 January 2009 and 30 September 2012, EPCs produced for existing dwellings were lodged to a central register free of charge.
A public consultation  was undertaken in November 2011 asking for views on the introduction of a fee for the lodgement of each energy performance certificate ( EPC) to a new, expanded central electronic registry - the SEPCR. The Scottish Government response to the consultation exercise (April 2012) remains available online  .
The introduction of a fee was proposed, in line with the practice of other UK administrations, to provide an income stream to support the operation and maintenance of register functions.
"Fees would only be paid by those lodging EPCs onto the database. The introduction of a lodgement fee means that only these users will contribute towards the future development and maintenance costs. It is considered that this approach is equitable. If funding were to be provided centrally by Government, the result would be that the public purse (and in effect everyone) would bear the burden".
Responses to the consultation were supportive of the proposal and Fees of £1.15 and £5.36 (for dwellings and non-dwellings respectively) introduced on 1 October 2012 via regulation 12 of The Energy Performance of Buildings (Scotland) Amendment (No. 2) Regulations 2012  .
This formed part of broader work to implement the regulations and processes needed to transpose Directive 2010/31/ EU on the Energy Performance of Buildings  .
On introduction, the level of fee was set to match that already in place elsewhere in the UK since April 2008. Following review of lodgement fees in the rest of the UK, fees in Scotland have been lower than the rest of the UK from April 2013 to present.
The estimated operational costs of the register predicted in the 2011 consultation proved to be relatively accurate for the initial operation of the proposed register facility - covering receipt of data for domestic and non-domestic EPCs. However, with the introduction of additional facilities and functions, it became evident that lodgement income alone was not sufficient to cover operating costs. For the past three years, the shortfall between lodgement revenue and operating costs has been funded directly by the Scottish Government.
In responding to the original 2011 consultation, the Scottish Government provided a commitment that a review of the fee rate would be undertaken after a period of at least three years and would be notified via public consultation. This consultation addresses that commitment.
Respondent Information Form
A Word version of the Respondent Information Form for this consultation is published alongside this consultation document at https://consult.scotland.gov.uk/.
Impact Assess ment
An interim Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment is provided in support of this consultation and is attached as Annex A
It was determined that the following are not applicable to this consultation:
- Strategic Environmental Assessment
- Equality Impact Assessment
- Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment
- Privacy Impact Assessment
List of consultees notified by email
Building Standards Division maintains a list of individuals and organisations who have previously recorded an interest in consultations on matters relating to buildings and construction (see Annex B). Email notification of this consultation was made to all listed parties on the date of publication of this document.
Email: Steven Scott
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House