Amend the Housing Ordinance.
Enacted by the Provisional Legislative Council.
1. Short title and commencement
(1) This Ordinance may be cited as the Housing (Amendment) Ordinance 1998.
(2) This Ordinance shall come into operation on a day to be appointed by the Secretary for Housing by notice in the Gazette.
2. Leases of land in estates
Section 16 of the Housing Ordinance (Cap. 283) is amended by adding--
"(1B) Subsection (1A) does not apply to land in respect of which the Authority has granted to a person a licence to occupy it or a permit to occupy it.
(1C) Subsection (1A) does not apply to an adjustment in the rent of a tenant where--
(a) the total household income;
(b) the total value of the household assets; or
(c) a combination of paragraphs (a) and (b),
as determined by the Authority, is--
(i) greater than a threshold established by the Authority for the purposes of an increase in the rent; or
(ii) lesser than a threshold established by the Authority for the purposes of a decrease in the rent.
(1D) For the purposes of subsection (1A)(b), the median rent to income ratio ("the ratio") shall be determined in accordance with a procedure established by the Authority and, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, the Authority may establish a procedure involving sampling to determine the incomes to be used for the purpose of calculating the ratio.
(1E) A certificate purporting to be signed by the Director of Housing stating what the median rent to income ratio (as determined in accordance with the procedure established by the Authority) is on a specified date, is conclusive proof of the fact stated therein and shall be admitted in evidence in any proceedings before a court without further proof and shall be presumed, until the contrary is proven, to have been signed by the Director of Housing.".
The purpose of this Bill is to amend section 16 of the Housing Ordinance (Cap. 283) to--
(a) provide that subsection (1A) does not apply to land occupied under a licence or permit;
(b) provide that subsection (1A) does not apply to an adjustment in the rent of a tenant where the total household income or the total value of household assets or a combination of them is above or below thresholds established by the Housing Authority;
(c) provide that the median rent to income ratio may be determined by a procedure established by the Housing Authority.