Agenda and minutes

Communities & Housing Scrutiny Committee - Monday, 3rd July, 2017 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 2 - Town Hall

Contact: Damian Eaton  (0161 474 3207)

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors and officers to declare any interests which they have in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors and officers were invited to delcare any interests which they had in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

 

No declarations were made.

2.

Call-in

To consider call-in items (if any).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There were no call-in items to consider.

3.

Portfolio Performance and Resources - Annual Report 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 89 KB

To consider a report of the Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration.

 

The Annual Portfolio Performance and Resource Report for the Communities and Housing Portfolio is presented for consideration by the Committee. This provides a summary of progress in delivering the portfolio priorities, reform programme and other key projects since the final update report, with a focus on the fourth quarter of the year (January to March). It includes out-turn performance and financial data (where this is available) for the Portfolio, along with an update on the portfolio savings programme.

 

Scrutiny Committee is recommended to:-

 

·        Consider the Annual Portfolio Performance and Resource Report;  

·        Review the progress against delivering key projects, priority outcomes, targets and budgets for 2016/17;

·        Highlight key areas of and responsibility for taking forward corrective action to address any performance or resource issues;

·        Highlight any significant issues or changes to be fed back to the Cabinet alongside the Corporate Performance and Resource Report;

·        Identify how areas of strong performance and good practice can be shared in other services.

 

Officer contact: Alan Lawson on 0161 474 5397 or email: alan.lawson@stockport.gov.uk / Kora Yohannan on 0161 474 4032 or email: kora.yohannan@stockport.gov.uk

 

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) detailing the Annual Portfolio Performance and Resource Report for the Communities and Housing Portfolio providing a summary of progress in delivering the portfolio priorities, reform programme and other key projects since the final update report, with a focus on the fourth quarter of the year (January to March 2017). The report also included out-turn performance and financial data for the Portfolio, along with an update on the portfolio savings programme.

 

The Cabinet Member for Communities & Housing (Councillor Sheila Bailey) also attended the meeting to respond to councillors’ questions.

 

The following comments were made/ issues raised:-

 

·         The Viaduct Housing Partnership had now been set up and launched with the aim of providing as many affordable homes as possible.  It was stated that three council-owned sites were under investigation for development with two being progressed to the planning stage in the near future.

·         It was noted that there was an aspiration to introduce a mandatory registration scheme for private landlords, however there was currently no mechanism by which the Council could currently enforce such a requirement. 

·         With regard to the supply and subsequent development of brownfield sites, it was stated that such sites were often difficult to develop because of the need for expensive remediation works prior to development.

·         Further information was requested in relation to the ongoing discussions between the Council, United Utilities and the Environment Agency over the recent incidents of flooding in the Borough. 

·         In response to a question around the number of empty properties in the Borough and the Council’s work to bring them back into use, it was stated that there were often complex factors behind a property being left empty for a prolonged period of time.  It was further stated that a certain number of empty properties were necessary for a healthy housing market.

·         The Council had hostel accommodation available for those people who are made homeless, however the priority for the Council was to avoid people being made homeless in the first place.

·         While the number of referrals for the Mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant had increased, the Council currently had enough resource to meet current and forecast levels of expenditure. 

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

4.

Portfolio Performance and Resources - Draft Portfolio Agreement 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 96 KB

To consider a report of the Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration.

 

Policy priorities for 2017/18 were set out within the Council Plan, which was adopted at the Budget Council Meeting in February. This incorporates the shared outcomes from the Borough Plan alongside specific priorities of the Cabinet.

 

These priorities are articulated within the Portfolio Agreements, which form the basis for regular in-year reporting. Portfolio and Corporate Performance and Resource Reports (PPRRs and CPRRs) will assess progress against key objectives, priorities, outcomes and budgets, enabling Scrutiny Committees to hold the Cabinet to account and for the Cabinet to identify current and future risks to delivery.

 

The Agreement has previously been circulated to members of the Scrutiny Committee in draft form, prior to its approval by the Cabinet on 13 June 2017.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is recommended to comment on and note the Agreement.

 

Officer contact: Alan Lawson on 0161 474 5397 or email: alan.lawson@stockport.gov.uk / Kora Yohannan on 0161 474 4032 or email: kora.yohannan@stockport.gov.uk

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) detailing the 2017/18 Agreements for the Communities & Housing Portfolio, which set out the policy priorities for the year ahead and incorporated the existing Council and Borough Plan priority outcomes alongside specific priorities of the Cabinet.  The Agreement would also form the basis for regular in-year reporting.

 

It was noted that the Cabinet had given approval to the Agreement at its meeting on 13 June, and that members of the Scrutiny Committee had the opportunity to submit their comments on the draft Agreement prior to this date.

 

The Cabinet Member for Communities & Housing (Councillor Sheila Bailey) also attended the meeting to respond to councillors’ questions.

 

The following comments were made/ issues raised:-

 

·         The proposal to launch a campaign in Autumn 2017 to tackle fly-tipping was welcomed.

·         It was suggested that the campaign should include information relating to the need for residents to ensure that if they use a private contractor to dispose of waste that they have the necessary waste transfer licence.  It was stated that there had been instances whereby waste collectors had fly-tipped collected waste leaving the resident open to subsequent prosecution.

·         In relation to the ‘Town Centre Living’ key project for 2017/18, it was commented that there needed to be a defined boundary for the town centre.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

5.

Stockport Homes Delivery Plan – Outcomes for 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 53 KB

To consider a report of the Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration.

 

The report contains the first annual report to Stockport Council’s Communities & Housing  Scrutiny Committee about Stockport Homes’ performance against its Delivery Plan.

 

This approach to informing the Council about outcomes was introduced alongside the 2015-42 Management Agreement. It is designed to give Members confidence that the ALMO is making good use of the freedoms and flexibilities the Management Agreement confers.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is recommended to comment on and note the report.

 

Officer contact: Andy Kippax on 0161 474 4319 or email: andy.kippax@stockport.gov.uk

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Representatives of the Corporate Director for Place Management & Regeneration the Chief Executive of Stockport Homes submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) providing the first annual report to the Scrutiny Committee in relation to Stockport Homes’ performance against its Delivery Plan.

 

The following comments were made/ issues raised:-

 

·         Further information on the number of participants who secured employment as a result of the Motiv8 initiative, which aimed to support excluded groups with complex needs into the labour market.

·         The work of Stockport Homes to engage with tenants who had drug, alcohol, low level mental health or anger management issues to sustain their tenancies was welcomed.

·         It was important that key new employers in the Borough were encouraged to recruit new employees from within the locality. 

·         Officers were proactive in investigating fraudulent Right to Buy applications to prevent such sales from being completed.

·         Many tenants were dissuaded from taking employment at key employment sites in the wider conurbation, such as at Airport City by virtue of the poor transport links.  In response it was stated that Stockport Homes was working with local transport providers to try and assemble funding to provide early morning bus links.

·         Further information was requested on the usage of the ten community centres managed by Stockport Homes’ on the Council’s behalf including the baselines that the increase in usage had been calculated from and which centres had not seen as strong a growth in their usage.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

6.

Scrutiny Review Topic Selection 2017/2018 pdf icon PDF 779 KB

To consider a report of the Democratic Services Manager.

 

The report outlines a suggested process for the selection of Scrutiny Review topics for 2017/2018.

 

The Scrutiny Co-ordination Committee is invited to consider and comment on the report prior to it being circulated to the July cycle of Scrutiny Committees.

 

Officer Contact: Craig Ainsworth on Tel: 474 3204 or email: craig.ainsworth@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A representative of the Democratic Services Manager submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) inviting the Scrutiny Committee to consider the process for the identification of suitable Scrutiny Review topics and to suggest topics for inclusions within the Scrutiny Work Programme.

 

Members suggested that the Scrutiny Committee could make a useful contribution to the development of a strategy for ‘Town Centre Living’ which would include consideration of what constituted the ‘town centre’; what type and form of residential accommodation was appropriate; the implications for current residents; and the necessary infrastructure to support new residential development.

 

RESOLVED – That the Council Meeting be recommended to include ‘Town Centre Living’ within the 2017/18 Scrutiny Work Programme.

7.

Agenda Planning pdf icon PDF 58 KB

To consider a report of the Democratic Services Manager.                                                         

 

The report sets out planned agenda items for the Scrutiny Committee’s next meeting and Forward Plan items that fall within the remit of the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is invited to consider the information in the report and put forward any agenda items for future meetings of the Committee.

          

Officer contact: Damian Eaton on 0161 474 3207 or email: damian.eaton@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A representative of the Democratic Services Manager submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) setting out the planned agenda items for the Scrutiny Committee’s next meeting and any relevant Forward Plan items.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted