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Rent arrears revealed

Almost a quarter of a million pounds in rent is owed to housing authorities across the Island, according to official figures.

The statistics, revealed in the House of Keys, show the rent arrears for the second quarter of the financial year stand at more than £244,000.

The amount is the total debt owed to 16 Manx local authorities.

The highest debts can be seen in the larger boroughs of Douglas, (£91,430) and Onchan (£46,321), with the lowest in Braddan (£1,062) and Castletown (£1,719).

MHK David Quirk who asked the question says he’s shocked at the findings and clearly people need help with their debts.

However, Social Care Minister Chris Robertshaw believes the timing of the report means the figures do not show the whole picture.

'We are far from complacent, wherever we find unreasonable rent arrears we do take action, but this action has to go through a process - it's not quickly done,' he said.

The Department of Social Care announced on Monday that weekly rent for public sector homes will go up next April.

For the first time, it will be calculated according to the quality and size of the home.

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