KIRKLEES Council is to receive Government support to put empty homes back into use.
The Government and the Empty Homes Agency is publishing guidelines detailing new powers local authorities have to deal with vacant accommodation.
Yorkshire currently has 92,409 empty properties, 40,996 of which have remained vacant for more than six months.
The guidelines encourage councils to take stronger action against the owners of empty properties including tracking them down and using Empty Development Management Orders (EDMOs).
EDMOs allow local authorities to take over the management – not ownership – of homes.
Housing minister Margaret Beckett yesterday said: “Empty homes blight local neighbourhoods and can potentially attract anti-social behaviour. That is why councils must do all they can to bring empty homes in their area back into use.
“With house building slowing in the current economic climate, that is more important than ever.
“The new guidance helps strengthen the role of councils by setting out the broad powers they have to deal with empty homes.”