I am today informing the House of changes to the contingent liability for the provision of an indemnity for the Joint Inspection Team (JIT) as set out in my statement and associated Department Minute of 11 December 2018 (Hansard reference: HCWS1169). The purpose of the JIT is to provide support to local authorities in making hazard assessments of high-rise residential buildings with unsafe aluminium composite material cladding and then to provide advice to local authorities on enforcement action where the building owners are reluctant to remediate. As set out in the Department Minute of 11 December 2018 the Local Government Association (LGA) was unable to obtain professional indemnity insurance to cover the work of the JIT and the LGA requested the Government to provide an indemnity. The LGA has subsequently requested a technical amendment to the contingent liability for the provision of the indemnity. The change is to allow the LGA to operate and manage the JIT from the Improvement and Development Agency (IDeA), which is part of the wider Local Government Group. The contingent liability will also be amended so that the indemnity provides cover against claims for death and personal injury for a period of 125 years and cover for all other types of claims for a period of 6 years after the JIT ceases to operate. The LGA has formally agreed it will not seek any further amendments to the indemnity.
I am laying a Departmental Minute approved by Her Majesty’s Treasury providing further detail of the changes to the indemnity for the JIT.
This statement has also been made in the House of Lords