A Powys councillor has called for "action not consultation" on the issue of second homes and holiday lets in the county.

Plaid Cymru councillor Elwyn Vaughan has called for a cap on the percentage of holiday homes amongst other measures, after the Welsh Government opened a consultation on the issue this week.

The Welsh Government says its consultation on council tax and non-domestic rates is part of a plan to address the impact of second home ownership in some of Wales’ communities.

Powys is one of seven regions that account for fewer than one-third of Welsh local authorities, but two-thirds of all second homes in Wales (66%), with 5% of the county's housing stock registered as a second home.

Overall, 2,005 additional second homes in Wales have been registered since the first recording in 2017-18, an increase of 9%.

"The whole housing situation is a matter of great concern within our communities," said Councillor Vaughan.

"The cost of housing and the increasing number of holiday homes are creating huge strains and it’s imperative that firm clear action is taken. That is what is needed rather than another consultation.

"The emphasis should be on limiting the percentage of holiday homes within specific communities to say 5%, as well as ensuring need for planning permission to convert a residential home into a holiday home.

"We need action not more talking and all of these suggestions can be easily implemented now if we had the political will."

Cllr Vaughan also suggests closing any tax avoidance loopholes, as well as increasing the stamp duty on holiday homes, and says the area could learn lessons from other parts of the UK that have faced high levels of second home ownership, such as Cornwall, Jersey and Lake District.

The Welsh Government consultation will seek views on the maximum level at which local authorities can set council tax premiums on second homes and long-term empty properties and the criteria for a property to be defined as non domestic, self-catering accommodation.

They say they want to ensure all homeowners and businesses make a fair contribution to the communities in which they own or let property.

Finance and Local Government Minister Rebecca Evans said:

"We want to hear from people living in communities affected by these issues as well as owners of second homes and holiday lets, trade representatives of the self-catering and tourism industry, and local authorities.

"We anticipate receiving a wide range of responses which will all inform our future policies on potential changes to local taxes so that we have a fairer system for everyone."

Climate Change Minister Julie James added: "We cherish our reputation in Wales as a welcoming, bilingual society in which tourism and current second home owners have a contribution to make.

"However we also recognise the impact that higher numbers of second homes and self-catered holiday lets can have on local housing and rental markets and on the sustainability of local communities. In some areas they may compromise the sustainability of Welsh as a community language."

Jeremy Miles, Minister for Education and the Welsh Language said: "Ensuring that local people can live in the communities in which they grew up and maintaining the health and vitality of Welsh as a thriving community language, are top priorities for the Welsh Government.”