Annual canvass reform proposals: consultation paper

This policy statement sets out the revised model for the annual canvass which has been drawn up by the UK, Scottish and Welsh Government, and seeks views from all interested parties.

Section 7 - Exemptions for certain types of property (Route 3)

There are certain property types where the current canvass model does not work well. These property types are characterised by having multiple occupants at the same address, who may, in many circumstances, only stay at the address for a limited period. Typically, there will be no one resident who can or will take responsibility for accurately completing the household enquiry form for all other residents. Under the proposed new model these property types will most likely be red matched in the data step, sending them to Route 2. However, we know that these types of property do not respond well to traditional canvass processes, resulting in an unproductive and costly chasing cycle.

Canvass reform allows the opportunity to ensure that these property types are subject to a more suitable canvass process for their needs. It is proposed that properties of this type are exempted from both the data discernment step at the outset of the canvass and normal canvass processes. Instead, these properties will be sent down a separate Route 3 process, where the ERO can require a single officer responsible for the property (such as a landlord) to provide a list of the eligible residents at the property. Where the ERO is successful in gaining a list of eligible residents, this is not intended to enable ‘block registration’ of the individuals in these properties. The data provided will only inform the ERO who should or should not be on the register. The EROs must then issue ITRs to any eligible individuals who are not currently registered. Alternatively, where it does not prove possible for the ERO to obtain a list of eligible residents, EROs will be obliged to follow the Route 2 process and issue a household canvass form followed by the chasing cycle.

Certain property types are already defined in legislation and where a single responsible officer can be identified (such as Houses in Multiple Occupation ( HMOs), care homes, student halls of residence etc.) these will be suitable for the purpose of the Route 3 process. This route will be optional for the ERO and indeed they may choose not to utilise this. An ERO, however, will need to keep their property classifications up to date to utilise this route effectively.

We will also consider whether it is possible to place an explicit duty in legislation on responsible officers at identifiable property types to provide EROs with this information when asked to do so, consistent with data protection legislation.

We invite responses to the following questions relating specifically to the proposed process detailed in Section 7: Exemptions for certain types of property (Route 3)

Question 12

Are there property types in addition to those detailed above that you believe should be directed to Route 3?.

Please list and provide your reasoning.

Question 13

Do you believe this is the correct process to deal with these properties? YES/NO

If No, can you suggest an alternative approach?

Question 14

Do you believe that sending these properties into Route 2, the full canvass, if the ERO is unable to obtain data, is the correct safeguard for these properties? YES/NO

Please explain your reasoning.


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