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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S5W-32143

  • Asked by: Oliver Mundell, MSP for Dumfriesshire, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
  • Date lodged: 29 September 2020
  • Current status: Answered by Kevin Stewart on 14 October 2020


To ask the Scottish Government, in light of its Programme for Government advising that plans for the Transient Visitor Levy have been put on hold due to COVID-19, and that “future consideration of the levy will take account of the changed context the industry is operating in”, for what reason a similar approach was not extended to its proposals on short-term let regulation.


COVID-19 has exacerbated and heightened existing tensions around short-term lets in certain areas. At the heart of our licensing scheme is a set of mandatory standards which will help to protect the safety of guests and neighbours in short-term lets across Scotland. Therefore, it is right that we are taking action in this session to move forward with these safety standards and address what is a pressing issue for some local communities.

Subject to the approval of the Scottish Parliament, the licensing scheme and control area regulations will be in force by April 2021. However, local authorities will have until April 2022 to establish a licensing scheme in their area and open it to receive applications. We are not placing additional requirements on hosts in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. In due course, hosts will need to make an application for a licence to their local authority. However, existing hosts will be able to continue operating whilst their licence application is processed.