27th May 2009
The Fair Pint Campaign has congratulated BII Chief Executive, Neil Robertson, on his attempts to introduce a new low cost adjudication scheme for rent disputes but says that he risks failure unless he can secure fundamental changes to the way in which rents are calculated.
In its recent report on pub companies, the Business and Enterprise Select Committee made it clear that the current system of rent valuation was flawed and open to abuse. Without fundamental changes, the report said, the present system should be scrapped.
Fair Pint argues that a new system of adjudication won’t improve the position of tenants in rent disputes if the basis on which rents are calculated still lacks transparency and is skewed against their interests. Also any new system for determining rents will also need to consider how licensees could appeal the adjudicator’s decision.
Steve Corbett, a tied tenant and founder member of Fair Pint said:
"We welcome the fact that the BII wants to see changes, but if Mr Robertson wants to see a real change to increase fairness he must push for a reform in the way that rents are calculated.
"Without that reform the proposed adjudication system would risk becoming little more than a cheaper form of injustice for licensees as it would be open to the same abuse by pubcos as the current system.
"At present much of the guidance used by surveyors has been written by pubco employees or agent and plays fast and loose with valuation methodology and the law. The introduction of an adjudication system will only be effective if the system for setting rents is overhauled.”
1. To arrange interviews or for further information, please contact Andrew Smith or Sarah Hyder at Connect Public Affairs on 020 7222 3533 or firstname.lastname@example.org