Housing and Strategic Planning Cabinet Member – Minutes – 17 September 2008

19 (4) PROCUREMENT OF DISABLED FACILITIES GRANT WORKS – The Service Director Neighbourhood and Environment submitted a report informing the Cabinet Member of the commencement of a procurement exercise for disabled facilities grant works.

The council had a budget of £1,148,000 to provide grants to fund adaptations to the homes of disabled people so that they could live as independently as possible. The government provided a 60 per cent subsidy towards the cost of the grants.

The demand for disabled facilities grants was at least three times the amount of funding available so there was a pressing need to make sure that the work was carried out as economically as possible.

To date, grant works had been tendered on an individual basis to achieve value for money. This approach was no longer satisfactory, it did not allow contractors to achieve savings through the economies of scale they could achieve with some guarantee of the quality of work they might achieve. A longer term relationship would allow them to invest appropriate resources and develop higher standards of workmanship.

It was proposed to set up a procurement exercise in partnership with North East Lincolnshire and Hull City Councils to see if financial savings and improvements in quality could be achieved by elemental partnering arrangements. It was also anticipated that a framework agreement be set up to provide four types of adaptations, namely:

  • Access ramps
  • Stair and through floor lifts
  • Level access showers
  • Property extensions to provide bathing or bedroom facilities.

Resolved – That the procurement exercise be supported.

20 (5) HOUSING STRATEGY ACTION PLAN UPDATE 2007/2008 – The Head of Strategic Regeneration, Housing and Development and Service Director Neighbourhood and Environment submitted a joint report updating the Cabinet Member on progress during 2007/2008 towards achieving the priorities of the North and North East Lincolnshire Joint Housing Strategy 2007-2010.

The North and North East Lincolnshire Joint Housing Strategy was adopted in April 2007 and was deemed to be ‘Fit for Purpose’ in an assessment carried out by Government Office.

The strategy outlined priorities for housing in the area for the next three years across all tenures and for all client groups. The strategy had four key inter related priorities:

  • Creating quality homes;
  • Securing affordability and choice;
  • Reaching out to everybody in housing need; and
  • Creating safe and strong communities.

Although the strategy had been written in partnership with North East Lincolnshire Council, each council had an individual action plan to guide and monitor delivery of the priorities. The action plan was updated on a quarterly basis and progress was reported to the North Lincolnshire Housing Investment Board.

A summary of the Housing Strategy Action Plan outlining progress for 2007/2008 was appended to the report. Key areas of achievement, as well as areas for improvement were also highlighted in the report.

Resolved – (a) That the content of the report be noted, and regular updates on progress in achieving the outcomes of the strategy be received, and (b) that update reports on how local housing/sub regional housing and/or integrated strategies will be progressed in the future also be received.