Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 24th January 2019
Title of Item/Report
Targeted Action Areas - Report on Progress
Record of the Decision
Consideration was given to a report on Targeted Action Areas (TAA).

Approval was granted in November 2017 to implement an area based, targeted intervention approach which would provide a visible, neighbourhood management presence to some of the boroughs more vulnerable local communities in the central Stockton and the Victoria area in Thornaby. Both were areas which experienced high concentrations of low value private rented housing, high numbers of empty properties and were hotspots for crime and anti-social behaviour.

The report updated Members on progress made to date in the implementation of targeted action area approach providing examples of positive interventions and outcomes achieved and details how partners including the police, Fire Brigade, Registered Housing Providers and council service teams had come together to work proactively with local communities to improve on the ground service delivery and address key local concerns.

Maps indicating the localities of the two Targeted Action Areas were attached to the report.

A photo montage was attached to the report which demonstrated the visual impact of the "Clean-Up" initiatives. A table within the report provided an example of the positive outcomes of ‘Clean-Ups' and the broad range of partner involved.

The TAA initiative was an evolving project and the Council was in the early stages of the projects development / implementation.

A number of the early actions had been implemented to demonstrate the commitment of the Council and its partners to address local community concerns. Moving forward detailed action plans were being developed, each action would be intelligence lead and would identify how each partner could deliver sustained improvements (working both individually and collaboratively) to both localities.

The need to embed community engagement was also a key next step. It was proposed to develop two area based community partnerships which would include members / representatives from the local community, VCSE representatives and broader stakeholders including local ward members.

Whilst only at an early stage, all partners had also recognise that building community resilience and ‘legacy' planning would be a key success measure of the TAA project.

Finally, to measure the impact and success of the TAA initiative, consideration was being given to the development of a performance framework. In order to seek ongoing support from partners it was vital that the Council was able to demonstrate the value (and potential cost savings) of delivering services at a bespoke local level.

Positive engagement with PLuSS representatives had commenced and collectively they were working with representatives from the Housing Service to explore alternative models to Selective Licensing. To give sufficient time for these alternatives to be explored and for meaningful engagement to take place the proposal to introduce Selective Licensing in North Thornaby and Central Stockton had at the time of this meeting been postponed.

RESOLVED that:-

1. The successful actions and initiatives which have been piloted to date which will inform the ongoing development of the Targeted Action Area project.

2. The ongoing collaborative meetings with the PLuSS (Private Landlords Supporting Stockton) private sector landlord group (as detailed in para 16 of this report).

3. In response to the above, the decision to progress with Selective Licensing of private rented housing in Central Stockton and North Thornaby has at this time been postponed, this will allow for a period of positive engagement with private sector landlords (via the PLuSS partnership) to explore potential alternative options.
Reasons for the Decision
The implementation of a targeted area based intervention approach is aimed at directly addressing the issues associated with poor property management by some private sector landlords. Pivotal to the proposal is the need support local communities, by focusing on stability and encouraging a more responsive community input. In essence the project provides a period of intensive support for some of the come vulnerable areas of the Borough.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None.
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
Councillor Steve Nelson declared a personal non prejudicial interest in respect of agenda item 10 - Targeted Action Areas - Report on Progress as he was a Director of Thirteen Group and he was a member of Catalyst.
Details of any Dispensations
N/A
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Midnight, 1 February 2019
Attachment

Date of Publication: 28 January 2019


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