A report from the Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing is attached.
The Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing submitted a report. The report provided details of an independent review of all housing services and functions provided by the Council and Six Town Housing, this review was undertaken, primarily due to the imminent expiry of the Council’s contract with its Arms’ Length Management Organisation (ALMO), Six Town Housing.
The review was seen as an opportunity to identify more efficient and effective means of service delivery responding to the budget and demand pressures faced, currently and in the future, by the Council and Six Town Housing and to respond to the Council’s Growth Strategy, thus helping to generate new income streams and remove the Council’s reliance on Government income in the future.
Some of the key recommendations of the review identified the need for a new working relationship between the Council and Six Town Housing and to facilitate this, new governance principles have been developed which will support a new working relationship required to support the Council’s overall goals of growth and investment in the Borough. In order to support these new ways of working, the Council is proposing to transfer 51 members of staff to Six Town Housing, under TUPE (Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations) 2006).
Cabinet agrees to;
a) the adoption of a new Housing Management Agreement (Appendix 1) and Member Agreement (Appendix 2) from 1 June 2019, and a new governance relationship;
b) the delegation of executive powers as set out in Schedule - Delegated Matters – (Appendix 5) and the reserved matters as set out in Schedule – Retained Functions / Matter (Appendix 6) and described in the Services Specification appended to the draft Housing Management Agreement (Appendix 1);
c) Should it be necessary, agree a brief extension of the existing Management Agreement pending statutory approval from the Regulator of Social Housing;
d) Agree the extension of tenure of Six Town Housing’s Board Chair for a period of no longer than twelve months;
e) Delegate signing of the Management Agreement and Member Agreement to the Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing in consultation with the Executive Director for Business Growth and Infrastructure and Interim Executive Director for Communities and Wellbeing.
Reason for the decision:
Option 1 will support the new way of working between the Council and Six Town Housing providing opportunities for efficiencies and supporting the Council’s ‘Growth Agenda’ and providing potential for the Council to maximise its opportunities to generate income through growth and so cease to be so reliant on Government funding.
To agree the extension of tenure of Six Town Housing’s Board Chair for a period of no longer than twelve months will provide consistency during the crucial embedding of the new Management Agreement, new ways of working and establishment of new governance arrangements.
Other options considered and rejected:
Option 2 – not support the adoption of the new Housing Management Agreement and Member Agreement, and associated governance arrangements.