Agenda and minutes

Housing and Community Overview and Scrutiny
Wednesday, 8th November, 2017 7.30 pm

Venue: Conference Room 2 - The Forum. View directions

No. Item



To confirm the minutes from the previous meeting


The minutes of the Housing and Community OSC meeting on 6 September and 11 October 2017 were agreed by members present and signed by the chair.




Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence



Apologies received from Councillor Hearn and Adeleke



Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest


A member with a disclosable pecuniary interest or a personal 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, if the interest is a disclosable pecuniary interest, or a personal interest which is also prejudicial


(ii)           may not participate in any discussion or vote on the matter (and must withdraw to the public seating area) unless they have been granted a dispensation.


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


Disclosable pecuniary interests, personal and prejudicial interests are defined in Part 2 of the Code of Conduct For Members


[If a member is in any doubt as to whether they have an interest which should be declared they should seek the advice of the Monitoring Officer before the start of the meeting]



There was no declaration of interest.



Public Participation

An opportunity for members of the public to make statements or ask questions in accordance with the rules as to public participation


There was no public participation.



Consideration of any matter referred to the committee in relation to call-in





Q2 Budget Monitoring Financial Report pdf icon PDF 186 KB

Additional documents:


D Skinner presented the report on behalf of Caroline Souto. The report to provide details of the projected outturn for 2017/18 as at quarter 2 for the General Fund, Housing Revenue Account and the Capital Programme. Members are to note the forecast outturn position.


D Skinner was happy to take questions.


Cllr Armitage referred to page 7, 5.5 over achievement can you be more specific.


D Skinner said that he cant be specific, he will get back to Members with an answer.

He could confirm that 195 on page 9 was time taken in swingate lane.


Cllr Howard referred to page 6 of 75, 4.1 the transfer of bodies to work at the Elms, were they not fully staffed.


E Brooks said that the DBC member of staff went on a 4year secondment as he didn’t want to leave the council. It wasn’t recognised in the budget but they get the money back from DENS.


Cllr England referred to page 7 of 75 5.6, Osbornes pension is it a one off.


D Skinner said it will reoccur every year is it an issue.


Cllr W Wyatt-Lowe said, accepting the defer sit is there any way to migrate it, going forward have Cabinet members asked to reduce costs.


E Brooks said we understand there is an overspend this has thrown a spanner in the works and yes they do take measures and what with the rent reductions they will go down.


D Skinner said that the budget does look at saving, members can look at the Budget report on 5th Dec.


Cllr W Wyatt-Lowe asked if it was next year that they aim to reduce that.


D Skinner said yes as there is limited scope this year, it will smooth over in the next few years.


Cllr Adeleke referred to page 7 paragraph 3 the pressures, why have legal cases increased, and can the council shop around.


E Brooks said yes there are more cases there are more people starting legal action. A lot is around tenancy and disrepair, mould and damp due to neglect of properties these are complex cases. We do monitor this and they are also currently reviewing the service agreement.


Cllr M Griffith arrived at 19:53


Cllr Howard said 2 years ago she attended a high level training programme on mould, has this made and effect.


E Brooks said it’s the first stage of awareness, they are not seeing a reduction in case but case may increase more if they stop the training or hadn’t of done it, he confirmed that it is worth doing.


D Skinner said yes they do try and go for the best deals when the contract comes up for renewal.


Action: None

Outcome: The report was noted.



Q2 Housing pdf icon PDF 110 KB

Additional documents:


E Brooks presented the report and highlighted the following;

The red indicators for homelessness because of the volume of people coming through; however there is additional funding coming for this. This won’t be seen in the next year so targets will be re looked at. 


E Brooks stated that there was a dip in P3 TL13A which is amber, this is currently being looked at.


Cllr Imarni asked if the red indicator for homelessness was due to a staff shortage.


E Brooks said not anymore it was and the role was reviewed which then attracted people due to a higher banding.

There are currently 6 officers that deal with homelessness.


Cllr Imarni asked what the figures were for people staying in temp accommodation.


E Brooks said he was unsure on exact figures but they have to accommodate people whether it’s in our houses or with a private landlord it’s just a case of finding it.


Cllr Imarni asked if there were any concerns about people moving from London and them offering incentives, has it caused any impact.


E Brooks said not yet but it’s there and yes there is an impact but not massive. A lot of homelessness is due to refused private sector.


Cllr Griffith said they are not using B&Bs this is a last resort so this is positive.


E Brooks said what they could really do with is another ELMs.


Cllr Griffith said that Brent are buying houses in Hemel on the open market and then renting them out through a private firm, she doesn’t have any details on this.


Cllr Fethney added to that saying he knew of a few Councils doing this. Hackney was one and there will be another 2 Councils doing this by 2021. He also asked what the plans were.


E Brooks said they could be doing this and charging private rents as another income for the Councils.


Cllr England asked if we have figures on this.


E Brooks said they would need to speak to Natasha Brathwaite as she looks at this closely.

He is happy to bring it to future committees if require.


E Brooks said that they do have some money for this new legislation which will start in April.

They have freed up a role for this. When they attend seminars they see that they are ahead of the game and they do work very closely with Watford to future proof.

Cllr Imarni asked if another ELMs was on the horizon.


E Brooks said no new ELMs on the horizon. However they are building on 2 garage sites on Westerdale and Northend, this could be an income generator, they will be a flexible asset to the council and they are funded by part 1 for 1 receipts, 106 money and some borrowing.


Cllr Imarni asked if people were moving out of London and being houses here or are they people that they don’t want in the borrow.


E Brooks said he didn’t know.


J  ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.


Q2 Resident Services pdf icon PDF 93 KB

Additional documents:


J still presented the report explaining that there were changes in community safety partnership.

J Still informed members that Paul Mitson and Jeff Scott were new to the Police, vehicle crime was high.


There were 900 responses to the public space protection order consultation, the success of the tour of Britain, the verge hardening parking scheme had been completed additional parking spaces and safeguarding was still a priority in all areas.


J still was happy to take questions.


Cllr Hearn asked how youth connexions were getting on.


J Still said that the new officer is working well in partnership with youth connexions.


Cllr Adeleke asked if the new public space protection order that was coming in was everywhere.


J Still said that the public space protection order is only targeted at the Marlowe’s, it’s been put in place where there are problems.


Cllr England asked if there was an analysis on the response.


J Still said that due to detailed responses a full report will be drafted. J Still to ask Mark Brookes if it can come here in Jan.


Cllr England insisted that the report must come to Housing OSC in December (not January) as it needs to be scrutinised before it goes to Cabinet for a decision. That is the role of this Committee."

Cllr Howard asked if she can have a list of what streets don’t allow anti-social drinking.

She also asked what Rocket was.


J Still confirmed that Rocket was the new reporting system.


Action:  J.Still to provide Cllr Howard with Anti-Social drinking list, ask M Brookes if we could see the drafted consultation.

Outcome: Report was noted.







ASB Issues in Dacorum pdf icon PDF 93 KB


N Lobendhan introduced the report making Members aware of what the team do.


N Lobenhan was happy to take questions.


Cllr Howard ask for clarification on community triggers.


N Lobendhan gave an in-depth explanation.


Cllr Hearn asked if the team had got bigger or smaller.


N Lobenhan said that the team has got smaller over the years, she confirmed that she has 4 staff.


Cllr Hearn said that they are doing a great job.


Cllr Imarni asked how many more staff they think they need.


N Lobenhan said they reckon they need a victim support officer and another case officer but funding is an issue.


Cllr Hearn asked if we could speak to the portfolio Holder.


Cllr Imarni said that she thinks we should support it.


Cllr England asked when the ASB team won an award what was the make up of the team then.


J Still said that they had an ASB Manager, 3 ASB Officers and 1 Support Officer, since then the remit of what the team deals with has got bigger.


Cllr Imarni said that she will feedback a business case.


J still added to that stating that it would be a challenge in this budget.


Cllr Adeleke asked as a County do social services something similar, do you tap into this?

With the case meetings with Police do you invite elected members, and what is the solution to a typical case.


N Lobenhan they can invite elected members but it would become difficult as the issues are confidential.

They solve cases by injunctions and community protection notices.


Cllr Adeleke feels that we should make full council aware of this by holding a training session.


Cllr W Wyatt-Lowe asked what do you do for a feared neighbour, can a Cllr Trigger it so your neighbour don’t find out it was you that complained.


N Lobenhan said that a trigger is only applicable if you feel a matter is not being dealt with as it should be, it’s hard to say its anonymous as we need witnesses for the cases. It can’t be hear say as this isn’t always taken in court.


Cllr Banks asked if we could arrange members training on the trigger process.


Cllr Imani will speak to Cllr Mahmood when he returns.


Action:  None.

Outcome: Report was noted.