Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

Environment Select Committee Minutes

Date:
Monday, 15th July, 2013
Time:
2.00pm
Place:
Jim Cooke Conference Suite, Stockton Library, The Square, Stockton-on-Tees.
 
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Present:
Cllr Nigel Cooke (Chairman), Cllr Derrick Brown, Cllr Mrs Maureen Rigg, Cllr David Wilburn, Cllr Bill Woodhead
Officers:
J Edmends, J Nixon (DNS); G Birtle, T Harrison (LD)
In Attendance:
None
Apologies for absence:
Cllr Jean Kirby and Cllr Mick Womphrey
Item Description Decision
Public
ENV
9/13
EVACUATION PROCEDURE
 
ENV
10/13
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
 
ENV
11/13
MINUTES FOR SIGNATURE - 4TH MARCH 2013
 
ENV
12/13
DRAFT MINUTES - 3RD JUNE 2013
AGREED that the minutes be approved.
ENV
13/13
REVIEW OF THE PERFORMANCE OF HOUSING PROVIDERS
AGREED that:

1. The draft scope and project plan of the review be approved.

2. The information presented be noted.
ENV
14/13
WORK PROGRAMME
AGREED that the information be noted.
ENV
15/13
CHAIR'S UPDATE
 
2.00 - 3.30pm

Preamble

ItemPreamble
ENV
9/13
The evacuation procedure was noted.
ENV
10/13
There were no declarations of interest.
ENV
11/13
The minutes of the meeting held on 4th March 2013 were signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
ENV
12/13
Consideration was given to the draft minutes of the meeting held on 3rd June 2013.
ENV
13/13
Consideration was given to the Scope and Project Plan for the Review of the Performance of Housing Providers.

The main issues/services that would be covered by the review included:

- The performance of Registered Providers (Erimus Housing and Tristar Homes Limited) following the 2007 SSVT & 2010 LSVT - specifically in relation to ‘promises' made to tenants in the Councils pre-ballot Offer Documents.

- The impact of the current economic climate on the ‘promises' made to tenants in the Councils SSVT and LSVT Offer Documents.

A series of ‘promises' were detailed in each of the Offer Documents (to reflect costed tenant priorities) generally covering a '5 year' period but as time passed the Offer/'promises' had less weight due to contractual changes that were agreed with tenants or because of statutory changes.

There had subsequently been occasions when due to changing circumstances the Council had agreed to re-consider an Officer Document 'promise'.
For example RP's had to take note of new national guidance on rents and fixed term tenancies, which were not in existence at the time of the transfers. If RP's wanted to apply to the Homes and Communities Agency for grants on new build properties they were required to set affordable rents. The consideration for Stockton Borough Council was how this sat with tenant's promises in the offer document.

It was noted that Welfare Reform could have a significant impact on the Registered Providers Business Plans as previous assumptions about rental income; void loss, bad debt provision etc. were subject to additional risk.

The Committee requested the further information as follows:

- Evidence that Tristar were seeking feedback from their tenants on performance and acting on this.

- Information as to what steps Tristar were taking to tackle fuel poverty including any negotiations with providers on fuel pricing.
ENV
14/13
Consideration was given to the project plan and it was noted that the next meeting would be held in September. It was proposed that a site visit would take place and would be on the same day prior to the meeting.
ENV
15/13
The Chair had nothing to report.

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