Clear-up bonus scheme labelled ‘ludicrous’

Council tenants who clear up after themselves when they move house could be rewarded with a 100 bonus.

Perth and Kinross Council has unveiled a new pamphlet which outlines the steps residents need to take to claim the money, including scrapping old washing machines and removing abandoned bicycles and other junk from their gardens.

Departing residents will also have to cut their grass, pull out weeds and pay off outstanding utility bills if they want to be eligible for the hand out.

Critics have labelled the incentive as “ludicrous”, claiming that tenants were being awarded taxpayers’ cash to do what they should be doing in the first place.

The reward could actually save the local authority money, however. A recent study showed that the average cost of clearing council-owned properties once they became vacant was 174.

The new Moving Out leaflet, which has been made available at all housing offices, explains that tenants should give 28 days’ notice before they leave.

They are asked to make sure the property is clean and cleared of their belongings and that all rent, council tax and power bills are settled.

Taxpayers’ Alliance director John O’Connell condemned the scheme. “Council tenants should leave their properties clean and tidy as a matter of course,” he said.

“The idea a council should give payments for looking after council property is ludicrous.”