Agenda and minutes

Housing Scrutiny Sub-Committee - Monday, 14th November 2016 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, City Hall

Contact: Democratic Services - 01522 873619 

Items
No. Item

23.

Confirmation of Minutes - 3 October 2016 pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 3 October 2016 be confirmed.

24.

Declarations of Interest

Please note that, in accordance with the Members' Code of Conduct, when declaring interests members must disclose the existence and nature of the interest, and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) or personal and/or pecuniary.

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were received.

25.

Lincoln Tenants' Panel (LTP) Update Report pdf icon PDF 211 KB

Minutes:

Eric Jenkinson, Chair of LTP

 

a.    presented the half-yearly report to update members on the activities and achievements of Lincoln Tenants’ Panel from April to October 2016

b.    advised that the Panel had agreed that they should focus on three key areas over the coming year:

·         Helping to improve the councils response towards anti-social behaviour

·         Reviewing void turnaround times

·         Missed appointments for repairs

c.    advised on the activities that the panel had undertaken:

·         writing the annual report to tenants 2015/16

·         Attending East Midlands Tenant Participation Forum Seminars and the Association of Retained Council Housing annual conference

·         Taking part in a number of training sessions aimed at building the skills and capabilities of the panel

·         Commenting on all HRA Executive reports

·         Monitoring performance and the HRA service delivery plan

·         Helping to promote the panel by attending the roadshow, fun day and other community events

 

d.    further added:

 

·         The working groups were on track and were currently working on Anti-Social Behaviour and promoting tenants involvement

·         A pop up grotto would be held on the Ermine West and St Giles on 12 and 15 December 2016

·         4 LTP members had visited Newark and Sherwood District Council to share procedures on voids

 

Members referred to the pop up grotto and asked if this was being held in Ermine West and St Giles because more tenant representatives were needed in these areas.

 

Chris Morton, Resident Involvement Manager responded that the Grotto was a pilot scheme and if successful would be rolled out to other areas in future years. More tenant representatives were needed in the Ermine West area.

 

Members further invited LTP representatives to attend the St Giles Neighbourhood Board meeting and confirmed that they would email the details to the Chair of LTP.

           

RESOLVED that the

 

1.    contents of the report be noted

2.    the commitment that Lincoln Tenants Panel has shown over the last six months be noted.

 

26.

Performance Monitoring Report Quarter 2 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Bob Ledger, Director of Housing and Regeneration

 

a.    presented the end of quarter report on Performance Indicators for the second quarter of the year 2016/17 (July 2016-September 2017)

b.    advised that in total there were 23 measures and of these 16 were on or exceeding targets for the year and 7 had not met the targets set

c.    referred to paragraph 4 of the report and highlighted the areas where there had been overall improvement including:

·         Average Re-Let Period – All Dwellings (Including Major Works)

·         Percentage of Rent Lost Due to Vacant Dwellings

·         Emergency Repairs

·         All Reactive Repairs

·         Average Time Taken to Complete Repairs

 

d.    further highlighted areas that had not achieved their target and explained the reasons of this:

·         Arrears as a percentage of Rent Debit

·         Percentage of Offers Accepted First Time

·         Percentage of ASB Cases Closed that were Resolved

 

Members asked the following questions and commented on the report and received relevant responses.

 

Question: Referred to Performance Indicator Arrears as a Percentage of Rent Debit and asked for more information on the reasons why arrears have increased.

Response: Arrears show trends throughout the year, quarter 2 included the summer months where priorities changed during the summer holidays but quarter 3 would generally show reduced arrears. There had been significant improvement in rent arrears over the last 2 years and the Team were still confident that the target could be met by the end of the year.

Question: What was the percentage of arrears in monetary terms?

Response: The arrears were £830K

Question:  What was the Council’s approach to addressing arrears?

Response: The Council had to be fair and take into account tenants circumstances, however, if the Council had given a tenant chances that were not taken then the Council would have to be firm in taking action.

Question: Referred to the performance indicator Percentage of Offers Accepted First Time and asked if there was more that could be done to reduce refusals on properties due to the dislike of an area.

Response: If there was a lot of refusals of properties in a particular area then officers would investigate the reasons behind this. Inevitably some areas were more popular than others.

Comment: The quality of void properties had improved over the last 2 years.

 

Bob Ledger, further advised on some proposed tweaks to the Allocations Policy in relation to level 1 applicants refusing properties that were offered to them.

 

RESOLVED that

 

1)    the current performance outcomes during the financial year 2016/17 be noted.

2)    a commitment to continue to report on a quarterly basis and to determine a programme to have more interim reviews of services specific performance be agreed.

 

27.

Tenant Involvement and Empowerment Strategy 2014-17, Update Report pdf icon PDF 137 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Chris Morton, Resident Involvement Manager

 

a.    presented a report to provide an update on the delivery of the Tenant Involvement and Empowerment Strategy 2014-2017

b.    gave the background to the strategy as detailed at paragraph 2 of the report and advised that it came into place on 1 April 2014

c.    advised that there were 31 actions within the action plan and the current progress could be broken down into:

 

·         21 actions in progress

·         10 actions completed

d.    advised that between May and November the Resident Involvement Team and Tenant Representatives have focussed on the following areas:

 

·         Delivering the Housing Roadshow

·         Developing the Mystery Shopper Programme

·         Commencing two further tenant led reviews of Council Services

·         Contributing to the Anti- Social Behaviour Review and setting up an LTP ASB group

·         Continuing to engage with leaseholders

·         Assisting in promoting the community investment scheme and advising residents groups on how to apply

·         Increasing engagement through Facebook

·         Facilitating the autumn round of sheltered housing forums.

 

The committee discussed the role of Leaseholders and asked if the number of leaseholders had increased in the City.

 

Chris Morton responded that there were currently 280 Leaseholders within the City and it was unknown whether this had risen. Leaseholders were consulted with as they still had an involvement with the Council. There was currently one Leaseholder representative on the Lincoln Tenants Panel.

 

RESOLVED that the progress made on delivering the tenant involvement and empowerment strategy be noted.

28.

'Home! Magazine Editions 2017-Article Planning

Minutes:

Chris Morton, Resident Involvement Manager circulated the Home! Article plan to the committee and asked for suggestions for articles for future editions.

 

The committee discussed the article plan and suggested an article on the refurbishment of St Giles Church.

 

Chris Morton, responded that this would be a good positive article for the magazine and he would look into it.

 

RESOLVED that the verbal update be noted.

29.

Work Programme 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 12 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Democratic Services Officer

 

a.    presented the work programme for the Housing Scrutiny Sub Committee for 2016/17 as detailed at appendix A of the report.

b.    advised that this was an opportunity for the committee to suggest other items be included within the work programme

 

The Chair suggested that a Post Implementation Review of the Modernisation of St Botolphs Court be added to the 13 March 2017 meeting.

 

RESOLVED that the work programme be agreed subject to the above amendment.