Landlords in receipt of HAP payments (Housing Assistant Payment) from Mayo County council, for local authority tenants who persist with anti social behaviour, should have the payment stopped.

That’s the view of Castlebar Independent councillor Michael Kilcoyne. He raised the matter at this week’s monthly meeting of Castlebar Municipal District, and called for action by Mayo County Council management to deal with the problem.

He claims the only way a private landlord that refuses to control his tenants’ anti social behaviour in an estate will take any action, is to cut off the HAP payment.

The problem of anti social behaviour -like persistent noise, intimidation and disrespect for adjoining neighbours in some Castlebar estates was raised at the July meeting of the Municipal District.

Cllr Kilcoyne has since been contacted by a resident in a private housing estate in Castlebar, who is at her wits end, trying to cope with rowdy tenants, housed in a privately owned house, where the landlord is refusing to respond to ongoing complaints about his tenants.

The woman described up to 14 adults living in the house next door, where fires are lit in the back yard day and night, constant loud music, ongoing intimidation - yet despite her complaints to Mayo County Council, the gardai, the Environmental Control office  - there’s been no response.

Cllr Kilcoyne said while the local authority has no direct authority in such cases over tenants,  it is paying the private landlord rent for these tenants under HAP, and called for that payment to be stopped in any case where the landlord is not accepting any responsibility for what his tenants are doing in an estate.

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