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Agenda and draft minutes

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Items
No. Item

79.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors M Bailey and C Bain.


Apologies were also received from the Portfolio Holder for Housing and Planning, Councillor S Smith.

80.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 127 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the previous meeting held on 7th February 2024 were approved and signed as a correct record.

 

(Moved by Councillor L Smith and seconded by Councillor S Doyle)

 

81.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of Members’ interests (personal and/or personal and prejudicial) in any matters which are to be considered at this meeting.

 

When Members are declaring a personal interest or personal and prejudicial interest in respect of which they have dispensation, they should specify the nature of such interest.  Members should leave the room if they have a personal and prejudicial interest in respect of which they do not have a dispensation. 

 

 

Minutes:

There were no Declarations of Interest.

82.

Chair's Update

Minutes:

The Chair highlighted that an update had been shared as requested by the Committee at the last meeting around the Assure Implementation. There were no questions or comments from the Committee on the briefing note.

 

83.

Responses to Reports of the Corporate Scrutiny Committee

Minutes:

There were none.

84.

Consideration of Matters referred to the Corporate Scrutiny Committee from Cabinet / Council

Minutes:

There were none.

85.

Corporate Scrutiny Annual Report pdf icon PDF 56 KB

(Report of the Chair of Corporate Scrutiny)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair introduced the report to provide the Committee with a draft of the Committee’s Annual Report for 2023/24 (Appendix 2), together with a draft of the Introductory Report (Appendix 1) which will be presented to full Council in the 2024/25 municipal year.

 

RESOLVED

that Committee:

 

 

endorsed the draft Annual Report and Introductory Report for submission to full Council, following agreement by the Chair of any final amendments and updates to reflect the March 2024 meeting.

 

 

(Moved by Councillor B Price and seconded by Councillor R Claymore)

 

 

 

86.

Leaseholder Insurance Policies

(Discussion item)

Minutes:

The Chair confirmed that the Committee had been asked to raise an item around Leaseholder Insurance Policies by Councillor Wade and that a briefing note had been circulated from Officers. The Chair asked the Committee to consider whether they felt that this was a matter that needed to be considered further by the Scrutiny Committee. The Chair noted that there had been an increase in insurance and asked Members for their thoughts.

 

It was highlighted that one of the issues was around why the Leaseholders could not obtain their own insurance and that had been addressed within the briefing note. They also highlighted that there is legislation covering how leaseholder properties are insured.

 

The Committee acknowledged that whilst the briefing note stated that the increase was not unreasonable there was no explanation/evidence for. It was ask that the Officer speak to finance and asked them to feedback to the Committee with more information around this.

 

The Committee highlighted that it was difficult to provide feedback without Officers present.

 

It was agreed that the Chair would invite Officers either to a working group meeting or a further Committee meeting to answer the Committees questions.

87.

Working Group Updates

Housing Repairs Working Group

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed Councillors Dean and Clarke to join as part of the cross scrutiny working group. Following the meeting of the working groups, where a focus has been taken on voids questions had been sent to Officers who were at the meeting to provide a response.

 

The Chair handed over the Executive Director Communities, Rob Barnes and the Assistant Director, Assets for an update who confirmed that further data would be provided in a more detailed report on the 12th April but for now could provide the following information in relation to their questions –

 

Ø  Delays and quality of work:

Officers confirmed that they were aware of some issues on standards of cleaning and quality of repairs on voids which would be talked about later. There can sometimes delays in the issuing of certificates (gas/electric) and properties cannot be let without these. There have also been some high cost voids.

Ø  Time taken / loss of rental income due to delays:

There was no data at this point, but Officer asked over what period the Committee would like the data to cover? The Committee confirmed that they would like to know how much is lost per void depending on how long it is not let for?

The Officer confirmed that he can provide data around delays due to handover but data on delays in letting once the property is ready would sit with Voids and Allocations.

Ø  Is there a standard process from keys handed back to re-let through Choice Based Lettings?

There is a key to key process involving the contractor and the voids and allocations team who meet regularly to discuss this. Work could be done to develop those relationships.

Ø  Do Equans have the voids contract?

There are two contractors, Equans, are the prime contractor for delivery of void work and Wates carry out planned maintenance. There are discussions around whether to move some of the larger void works over to Wates as they fall under a planned worked nature but there have been no action on this.

Ø  KPI's on Voids - can we separate out the more difficult ones to give us a clearer picture?

More information to be provided in the report, the Committee requested data for up to 12 months as a starting point. The following information is available on costings of voids in the current year:

     Less than £500 voids = 23

     £501 – £2500 = 98

     £2501 - £5000 = 49

     £5000 plus – 80 (25 of which are £10000+)

It was highlighted thatt he Council receives a lot of properties handed back in poor condition due to unauthorised home improvements.

Ø  Is there a priority order in which works undertaken - 1 bed / 2   bed?

Voids tend to be addressed in date order unless the voids and allocations team need a void handing over quickly due to a priority case.

Ø  Are delays due to availability of sub-contractors?

They have been some delays around staff  ...  view the full minutes text for item 87.

88.

Forward Plan

Discussion Item – link to the Forward Plan below

 

Forward plan - 1st March 2024 - 30th June 2024 :: Tamworth Borough Council

Minutes:

There were no items identified from the Forward Plan.

89.

Corporate Scrutiny Committee Work Plan pdf icon PDF 117 KB

To review and discuss the Work Plan

Minutes:

There Committee were happy with the Work Plan.