Agenda and minutes

Housing and Regeneration Scrutiny Panel
Monday, 17th September, 2018 6.30 pm

Venue: Civic Centre, High Road, Wood Green, N22 8LE

Contact: Dominic O'Brien, Principal Scrutiny Officer 

Items
No. Item

1.

FILMING AT MEETINGS

Please note that this meeting may be filmed or recorded by the Council for live or subsequent broadcast via the Council’s internet site or by anyone attending the meeting using any communication method. Although we ask members of the public recording, filming or reporting on the meeting not to include the public seating areas, members of the public attending the meeting should be aware that we cannot guarantee that they will not be filmed or recorded by others attending the meeting. Members of the public participating in the meeting (e.g. making deputations, asking questions, making oral protests) should be aware that they are likely to be filmed, recorded or reported on. 

 

By entering the meeting room and using the public seating area, you are consenting to being filmed and to the possible use of those images and sound recordings.

 

The chair of the meeting has the discretion to terminate or suspend filming or recording, if in his or her opinion continuation of the filming, recording or reporting would disrupt or prejudice the proceedings, infringe the rights of any individual or may lead to the breach of a legal obligation by the Council.

Minutes:

The Chair referred Members present to agenda Item 1 as shown on the agenda in respect of filming at this meeting, and Members noted the information contained therein’.

2.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence had been received from Cllr Barnes and Cllr Williams. Cllr Dennison was attending the meeting as a substitute for Cllr Barnes.

 

3.

Urgent Business

The Chair will consider the admission of any late items of urgent business (late items will be considered under the agenda item where they appear. New items will be dealt with as noted below).

Minutes:

None.

 

4.

Declarations of interest

A member with a disclosable pecuniary interest or a prejudicial interest in a matter who attends a meeting of the authority at which the matter is considered:

 

(i) must disclose the interest at the start of the meeting or when the interest becomes apparent, and

(ii) may not participate in any discussion or vote on the matter and must withdraw from the meeting room.

 

A member who discloses at a meeting a disclosable pecuniary interest which is not registered in the Register of Members’ Interests or the subject of a pending notification must notify the Monitoring Officer of the interest within 28 days of the disclosure.

 

Disclosable pecuniary interests, personal interests and prejudicial interests are defined at Paragraphs 5-7 and Appendix A of the Members’ Code of Conduct.

Minutes:

None.

 

5.

Deputations/Petitions/Presentations/Questions

To consider any requests received in accordance with Part 4, Section B, Paragraph 29 of the Council’s Constitution.

Minutes:

None.

 

6.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 130 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting. 

Minutes:

With regards to item 8 (Housing-related support for older people) the panel requested further information on:

·         the “hub and cluster” model – including a full list of hubs and what services they provide.

·         current supply and demand for sheltered housing – including the current rate of vacancies, over/underoccupation and waiting times.

 

The panel noted that there were two action points outstanding from the meeting in March:

·         that details would be provided on the expected completion date for redevelopment works at Larkspur Close.

·         that further information would be provided on the provision of kitchens in family sized housing units.

 

AGREED: That updates on all of the points above would be provided ahead of the next meeting in November 2018.

AGREED: That the minutes of the Housing & Regeneration Scrutiny Panel meeting held on 13th March 2018 be approved as an accurate record.

 

7.

Terms of Reference and Membership pdf icon PDF 479 KB

To note the terms of reference and membership for the Panel.

Minutes:

AGREED: That the terms of reference, protocol for Overview and Scrutiny and the policy areas/remits and membership for each Scrutiny Panel for 2018/19 be noted.

 

8.

Service Overview and Performance Update pdf icon PDF 893 KB

To provide an overview of the Housing and Regeneration services and of current priorities and performance levels.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The panel was provided with an overview of Housing and Regeneration in Haringey from senior officers beginning with Helen Fisher, Director of Housing, Regeneration and Planning.

This set out the structure of the department with the three main parts of the service represented at the meeting by Dan Hawthorn, Director for Housing & Growth, Emma Williamson, Assistant Director for Planning, and Peter O’Brien, Assistant Director for Area Regeneration. There is also a capital programme team that works on delivering the capital projects.

The main challenges for the borough in terms of securing sustainable development included the lack of shortage of housing supply and affordability and pressure on space for employment activity but there were also opportunities including the Upper Lea Valley Opportunity Area and the Wood Green Opportunity Area.

Dan Hawthorn spoke about housing services in Haringey which has five main sections:

  • Strategy & Commissioning (housing policy)
  • Housing Supply (driving the supply of new homes, particularly affordable housing)
  • Housing Need (tackling homelessness)
  • Private Rented Sector (enforcement team and the proposed new licensing scheme)
  • Housing Benefit Service

 

Many aspects of these functions rely on relationships with partners, including developers. In addition there is Homes for Haringey (HfH), the Arms Length Management Organisation (ALMO), which is responsible for managing and maintaining the Council’s housing stock and delivering front-line housing management services. Cabinet has previously agreed to extend the ALMO management agreement with HfH until 2026 although there is a review clause in 2021 which would allow the Council to terminate the agreement.


Current issues relating to the Housing team’s work that were outlined included:

  • That meeting the housing need of the borough’s population is increasingly challenging due to a growing population with an insufficient supply of housing, unaffordable house prices/rents and issues with poor quality housing, particularly in the private rented sector.
  • The leading reason for households presenting to the Council as homeless is due to eviction from private rented sector housing.
  • Haringey has around 3,000 households in temporary accommodation and the Council has a significant challenge in finding a sufficient supply of suitable affordable accommodation for people in this situation and some households with complex needs can find themselves in temporary accommodation for years.
  • The New London Plan is setting a very challenging target for the borough of 1,958 new homes per year of which 40% should be affordable according to the Local Plan. Additional funds had been allocated by the Mayor of London to support the building of more affordable homes by Councils and a funding prospectus had recently been published. Haringey would be making an ambitious bid for this, but so would other Boroughs. Dan Hawthorn agreed to circulate a link to the funding prospectus to panel members. (ACTION: Dan Hawthorn)
  • Strong progress had been made towards Haringey’s commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 2020 and to make Haringey zero carbon by 2050, supported by the Carbon Management team and involving work such as retrofitting residential and commercial building and by setting and enforcing more stringent planning requirements. In  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Cabinet Member Questions - Housing & Regeneration

An opportunity to question the Cabinet Member for Housing & Estate Renewal, Councillor Emine Ibrahim, and the Cabinet Member for Strategic Regeneration, Councillor Charles Adje, on developments within the parts of their portfolios that relate to the terms of reference of the Panel.

Minutes:

Cllr Emina Ibrahim, Cabinet Member for Housing and Estate Renewal reported on and responded to questions on the following issues:

  • Reducing the need to use temporary accommodation is a priority for the Council. The current use can involve paying expensive rates for poor accommodation and the use of such accommodation for periods of up to 12 weeks can be particularly damaging for children and destructive to their education. The provision of more Council housing would contribute towards this aim although it was recognised that the building of 1,000 new homes, as promised by the manifesto, was not going to end the waiting list by itself. Increasing the supply of temporary accommodation owned by the Council may help to improve matters as this could often provide better living standards than some of the privately-owned temporary accommodation available elsewhere.
  • Cllr Ibrahim confirmed that the current Housing Strategy would be reviewed. The development of a new Housing Strategy would take some time and require a period of consultation and this will take place during 2019. In the meantime, amendments to the existing Housing Strategy will be submitted to Cabinet in November. This will involve changes to Appendices C and D of the strategy which relate to the mix of housing in new developments and the definition of affordability.
  • The process of rehousing the residents of the Tangmere block of the Broadwater Farm Estate due to the structural defects that had recently been identified was proceeding quickly. Only seven households were still waiting to be matched to a suitable home. There were some complications, including that the large room sizes in Tangmere block made it difficult for residents to move their existing furniture to otherwise suitable alternative housing with smaller room sizes. Because this evacuation had happened quite rapidly it was important not to put too much pressure on residents to move too quickly while these issues were resolved. Secure tenants and resident leaseholders would receive Home Loss Payments to compensate them for the loss of their home. A decision had been taken not to hold a residents’ ballot on the Council’s preferred option to demolish the blocks as the fact that this related to a health and safety issue made it an inappropriate issue to hold a ballot on.
  • A decision had been taken at Cabinet to create a single homelessness hub which would provide a range of specialist services in order to deal with the multiple and interrelated problems typically faced by people who find themselves to be homeless.
  • Performance issues at HfH had been improved with 99% of appointments now on time.

 

Cllr Charles Adje, Cabinet Member for Strategic Regeneration, outlined the headline areas of his portfolio including regeneration in Tottenham and Wood Green and the approach to employment and skills and the approach to accommodation strategy. Particular priorities included the progress of the High Road West project, determining the future approach to Northumberland Park following the cancellation of the HDV, the future of the High Road in Wood Green  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 209 KB

To consider potential issues for inclusion within the work plan for 2018-20.

 

Minutes:

The panel noted the process for the development of the work plan, and the positive feedback from the recent “scrutiny café” consultation event.

The panel raised a number of issues that could potentially be included in the work plan:

  • the supply of affordable housing in Haringey
  • the Tottenham Area Action Plan (AAP)
  • the Wards Corner redevelopment
  • homelessness caused by eviction from private sector housing
  • Section 106 agreements and the Community Infrastructure Levy

 

The Chair proposed that the panel explore the option of appointed a non-voting co-opted member to the panel with expertise in housing issues and planning policy. (Action: Cllr Gordon/Dominic O’Brien)

 

11.

New items of urgent business

To consider any items admitted at item 3 above.

 

Minutes:

None.

 

12.

Dates of Future Meetings

Minutes:

The next meetings of the Housing & Regeneration scrutiny panel are scheduled to take place on:

  • 15th November 2018
  • 17th December 2018
  • 15th January 2019
  • 14th February 2019
  • 14th March 2019