Venue: City Hall, College Green, Bristol, BS1 5TR
Contact: Corrina Haskins Democratic Services
Welcome, Introductions and Apologies for Absence
SS welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Election of Chair
SS reported that Alex Marsh (Bristol University) had attended the previous meeting with a view to taking on the role of Chair of the Housing Management Board in response to the Board’s request for an independent Chair. She confirmed that AM had agreed to put his name forward as Chair and AM withdrew from the meeting while the Board considered his nomination.
It was proposed by PD, seconded by CJ and;
RESOLVED – that Alex Marsh be elected Chair of the Housing Management Board.
Up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item.
Any member of the public or Councillor may participate in Public Forum. The detailed arrangements for so doing are set out in the Public Information Sheet at the back of this agenda. Public Forum items should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and please note that the following deadlines will apply in relation to this meeting:-
Questions - Written questions must be received 3 clear working days prior to the meeting. For this meeting, this means that your question(s) must be received in this office at the latest by 5 pm on Wednesday 22nd May 2019
Petitions and Statements - Petitions and statements must be received on the working day prior to the meeting. For this meeting this means that your submission must be received in this office at the latest by 12.00 noon onMonday 27 May 2019.
Please note, your time allocated to speak may have to be strictly limited if there are a lot of submissions. This may be as short as one minute
There was no public forum.
RESOLVED - that the Minutes of the Housing Management Board of 19 February 2019 be confirmed as a correct record.
This item was resolved under item 2 above.
Report back from Bristol Homes Board
Pete Daw to report back as the Housing Management Board Representative on the Bristol Homes Board.
PD reported back as the representative of the Housing Management Board (HMB) on the Bristol Homes Board (BHB) meeting of 21 March:
· There were 3 main topics of discussion, 2 of which had also been discussed at the HMB:
1) Shelter’s Commission on a Vision for Social Housing: similar issues were raised at both the HMB and BHB;
2) Moving Forward Together: Bristol City Council’s Housing Service looking at what it does, how is does it and who it does it for;
3) Bristol Local Plan Presentation. The consultation period had ended on 24 May and the next stage in the process was the Examination in Public which would give further opportunity for comments. The Plan was available to view on the Bristol City Council website (https://www.bristol.gov.uk/planning-and-building-regulations/local-plan-review) and was ambitious in its proposals to deliver affordable/non-affordable housing in an attempt to meet the housing gap.
LC gave a presentation on the Moving Forward Together project as follows:
· Overall Aim: Delivering modern housing services focused on what matters most to Bristol’s residents (who are tenants of Bristol City Council);
· THREE PHASES:
1. Discover: A major engagement programme with residents and employees:
· What are the main priorities for residents?
· What should the service feel like?
· What resources are available?
This would include appointing a consultant to advise on the best way to engage with tenants and leaseholders.
2. Co-design: Identify a vision for the future with priorities that will help us to:
· Build experiences around residents’ needs
· Guide dynamic and bold refocus of services
· Create opportunities to introduce new technology and ways of working
The Housing Scrutiny Panel would also be helping with this project.
3. Implement: Ensure services are aligned with residents’ priorities:
· Who delivers our housing services
· How they are delivered
· How we measure success
LC confirmed that Moving Forward Together would be publicised at Local Area Housing Forum Meetings and in Housing News which would be delivered to all tenants; and on the Bristol City Council Website: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/housing/tenant-participation-resources-for-tenants
The following comments and suggestions were raised by Board Members:
· It was important to engage with Councillors as part of this process and so they could feedback on casework;
· There was a need to manage the expectations of tenants and direct resources to the improvements that would make the most difference;
· There was a concern that Tenant Forum Meetings were not always well attended;
· It was a challenge for the service to engage with tenants well as tenants engaging with the Council and this would require human contact as many tenants felt isolated from the service;
· Residents/communal rooms could be used as a venue for engagement by Housing Officers;
· Informal events could be used to engage tenants and food be provided;
· The remit could be widened to include those on the housing list as well as tenants and leaseholders;
· Private sector tenants could also be included as there was a duty of regulation/care towards these tenants. Where private tenants were housed near Council tenants there was an impact on Council tenants;
· Tenants needed to be reassured that their feedback would be anonymised;
· There was a number of local events taking place during the summer that could be used to engage tenants;
· The project could work with the Charity “Feeding Bristol”
SS thanked the Board for their comments and suggestions, which would be considered as part of the work to shape Moving Forward Together, and undertook to report back to a future meeting.
Estates Security Project - Presentation
SS gave a presentation on the Estates Security Project as follows:
· Purpose: to increase safety for Bristol City Council residents living in high and low rise blocks of flats in relation to concerns raised;
· Membership: to be chaired by Councillor Jama and to include Council officers, tenants, leaseholders and police;
· Initial work: to understand what the issues are; what Bristol City Council currently does; what others are doing; what are the options and associated costs to make improvements;
· The project was at a very early stage and no terms of reference had been agreed.
SS invited the comments of the Board and welcomed any further input by Board Members in the project.
The following comments were raised:
· Security could be improved by better display of notices advising tenants in sheltered housing not to answer the door to unknown persons and the display of “no cold callers” notices;
· Did the definition of safety just include personal safety or was it a wider definition including fire risks? SS responded that the intention was to improve personal safety, but this may touch on other areas of safety;
· There was evidence to prove that safety and the perception of safety could best be improved by street lighting. It was difficult to report broken street lights as different Council departments had responsibility for different lights and so it would be easier if there was one point of contact to report these issues;
· There was a current inconsistency on how quickly reported issues such as broken lights were dealt with;
· Areas where street lights were broken or were not covered by CCTV attracted anti-social behaviour such as drug dealing;
· Drug addiction was another concern for tenants who were uncertain how to address problems in their area;
· A lot of safety issues were due to poor design of housing estates and so planning was another issue that needed to be considered.
SS thanked Board Members for their comments which she undertook to feedback to officers involved in the project. She confirmed that the issue would be reported back to a future meeting.
Date of Future Meetings
Proposed dates for future meetings are:
Thursday 8 August 2019
Thursday 21 November 2019
The Board Members noted the following proposed dates for future meeting which fed into meetings of the Local Area Tenant Forums and were asked to contact SS within the next 2 weeks if there was a problem with either of the proposed dates:
Thursday 8 August 2019
Thursday 21 November 2019
Any Other Business
1. Shelter Campaign for a Consumer Regulator
SS reported that she had received an email from Penny Walster from Shelter asking for the support of the Board for a Shelter Campaign asking for a new independent Consumer Regulator to protect residents and to enforce common standards?across social and private renting. She undertook to send the link to Board members.
2. Future Agenda Items/Work Outside Meetings
There was a discussion about the process for including items on the agenda for future Board Meetings and whether there should be standing items.
The following items were requested:
The use of Resident/Community Rooms;
Former Tenant Arrears – to include anonymised data on the highest former tenant rent arrears;
Income management as a landlord service.
SS undertook to discuss planning for future meetings with the new Chair, AM and also to discuss how the Board could work outside of meetings.