110511 TARA Roundtable Minutes

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110511 TARA Roundtable Minutes Powered By Docstoc
					                           TARA Roundtable Minutes

               The Octagon, Wednesday 11 March 2011, 6.30pm

         Chair: James Russell (STAR) Minutes: Rosemary Turner (STAR)

Attendance: Ann Hodges, Alice Dent (Denaby Court); David Fowlie (Thorpes);
   David Rust, Alan McPhee (Endike Lane Bungalows); Elsie Allman, Irene
   Garnham, Joseph Wilkinson (Gatwick House); Tony Scholes (Lindsey Place and
   Arcon Drive); Penny Rodmell, Rita Butler (Preston Rd Community Association).
Guests: Carl Newsam (Hull City Council Tenant Participation Officer)
Apologies: Lou Duffy Howard, Neighbourhood Network; Val Moore (BERG)

      1. Introductions and apologies                                         Action

1.01 Introductions were made and apologies noted.

      2. Minutes of previous meeting

2.01 David Rust (DR) proposed that the minutes of the meeting held on
     Saturday 19 March 2011 were a true and accurate record, seconded
     by Alan McPhee (AMcP). All agreed.

      3. Matters arising

3.01 Re: 6.03 Denaby Court age restriction

      Ann Hodges (AH) asked what progress had been made on looking
      into this matter. Carl Newsam (CN) assured AH that Sherilee
      Jepmond of the Tenant Participation Team had raised the issue with
      HCC officers as agreed at the last meeting and would report back as
      soon as a response has been received. Steve Wyatt (SW) expressed
      concern that there had to be the right form of question asked to
      make sure the correct information was obtained.

      AH also mentioned that Denaby Court flats are being advertised on
      the Homesearch website as suitable for parental access. As a result
      young children are staying in the flats for over four days a week on
      many occasions. What is the acceptable time for parental access?
      When do they become residents? Some of the tenants in Denaby
      Court, who have parental access, are housed in floors 10 and 11
      well above the designated 3rd floor limit for young children.

      Penny Rodmell (PR) queried how long the legal department would
     take to respond, as in her experience they are exceedingly slow.
     Elsie Allman (EA) said that they had also had a long struggle to
     obtain an age restriction on their block of flats. SW said he
     understood that Padstow House’s restriction was in place but due
     for review.

     JR emphasised that the question of age restrictions was a difficult
     legal area and that it was important that HCC did not rush to an
     answer but made sure the information given was correct. CN stated
     that HCC will be undertaking a consultation exercise to look at the
     impact of age restriction policies across the city with a view to
     making it consistent across all blocks, and encouraged all who were ALL
     concerned to join the Tenant Participation Team’s high rise block
     benchmarking group to ensure their opinion would be taken into

     4. Network Neighbourhood

4.01 In the absence of Lou Duffy-Howard, JR gave a brief explanation of
     what the Neighbourhood Network was, based on information made
     available to us, which can be read as Appendix 1 to these minutes.

4.02 A discussion followed in which a number of points, questions and
     concerns about the Neighbourhood Network were raised. These
     were collated by STAR and sent to Lou Duffy-Howard after the
     meeting for her to respond to. These points, and the responses, can
     be read as Appendix 2 to these minutes.

     5. TARA updates

5.01 Lindsey Place and Arcon Drive TARA
     Tony Scholes (TS) was pleased to announce that they have a brand
     new committee and their first meeting will be held on 27 May 2011.

5.02 Padstow House TARA
     Cleaners are now expected to clean landings but have been given
     no additional resources to do so. The Association has agreed with
     HCC that the cleaners should only clean a few landings each week
     on a rota basis rather than attempt to clean all the landings every

     When compensation is made for the disruption caused by the
     Decent Homes, often two cheques are sent. The Association has
     suggested that in future all payments are combined into a single
     payment to increase efficiency and take-up.

5.03 Gatwick House TARA
     Thanks to the help of the ASB Team and all the services involved,
     their high rise block has been quiet, the perpetrators have not
     caused problems over the last two months.

     Held a BBQ on the Bank Holiday weekend in May. It was a
     successful event with no disturbances, bad language etc.

5.04 Preston Road Community Association
     Penny Rodmell (PR) mentioned the Preston Road Street Champions,
     a group of local volunteers who monitor and report problems on
     areas such as environmental and crime issues. It is successful
     incorporated into the Community Safety Action Partnership and so is
     taken seriously by a wide range of agencies such as the police and

5.05 Endike Bungalows TARA
     DR confirmed that Active at 60 grant is being used by the group to
     fund day trips to Mablethorpe, Whitby and the North York Moors, as
     well as a barbecue.

     DR reported that Places for People have lost huge amounts of
     funding for their sheltered homes scheme, which has impacted on
     the lifeline service they are able to offer. Residents want to have
     the option to use the Hull City Council service but Places for People
     have refused this. The Association have enquired with the
     Community Legal Advice Centre who has indicated that residents
     should have the freedom to choose their service provider, and the
     Association are considering what further action to take on this.

5.06 Denaby Court TARA
     Pleased to announce that the new car park for their block is nearly
     complete enabling a much better system for access for both family
     and visitors.

     Both AH and Alice Dent (AD) meet monthly with the HCC Estate
     Manager the Thursday before their Friday meeting, which gives
     them the opportunity to obtain up to date information on any of the
     issues that we have brought to their attention previously. This is
     working well thanks to support from officers, and the Association is
     increasingly influential with senior HCC officers as well; they are
     hoping to arrange a meeting with Angela Dearing to discuss issues
      around age restrictions and other problems. They have been told
      that the subject is due to be reviewed, as advised by CN earlier in
      the meeting. They also have a meeting coming up with the
      antisocial behaviour team leader, although they emphasised that
      they hope this is not going to be just about ‘how to fill in diary
      sheets’ They will update the Roundtable further on this at the next AH
      meeting. They also receive good support from their councillors.     AD

      AH said she was proud to say that they have arranged a ‘meet and
      greet’ policy with HCC officers, so new tenants are given a leaflet
      about the Association and given the opportunity to be introduced to
      AH and AD when they move in. It is in its first stages and is being
      monitored at present.

      Finally, AH reported that they have not heard more from Karl
      Turner on the subject of smoke alarms that he was going to pursue
      on their behalf. JR said STAR would bring this to his attention.  STAR

5.07 The Thorpes TARA
     Dave Fowlie (DF) reported that one of the committee had recently
     lost their wife, which resulted in any constructive actions being
     curtailed for a while. However, they continued to be active by doing
     Patch Walks regularly, working closely with the local councillors.

      The Resource Centre was still run by volunteers and organising
      children events etc. Guttering was falling down on some of the shop
      buildings which HCC have said won’t be fixed until early June.

      Many of the high rise blocks are scheduled to be demolished, and it
      is understood that one may remain and offered as Sheltered
      Housing. Decanting of the tenants is a slow process but should be
      done with decorum and efficiency and to take into account the
      security of those that are left. Gothorpe flats were not included in
      the Decent Homes programme so they must be knocked down. In
      addition, a new NHS facility is being constructed in the area.

      6. STAR Update

6.01 JR reminded the group that STAR was looking for volunteers to be
     involved in the Tenant Inspection project. Tenant Inspectors
     investigate an area of the Council’s Housing Service, and this year’s
     subject is Income Management, including rent collection and debt
     advice. Please spread the word amongst your members and ask any
     interested parties to contact STAR directly.
      Last year’s inspection on Value for Money has been getting excellent
      feedback from HCC officers, and the Council are putting together an
      action plan in response to the report that was submitted. JR will
      report back to the Roundtable once this action plan has been

6.02 Effective Minute Taking training is being organised on 23 May and
     24 June. The course is usually £40 per person but TARA reps will
     have their place paid for by STAR. Please call STAR to book a place
     or make further enquiries. Other dates and venues may be available
     depending on demand.

6.03 JR brought the meeting’s attention to the new home contents
     insurance cover for Council tenants from JLT and promoted by
     National Housing Federation and HCC. Brochures are available from
     STAR or from HCC.

      7. HCC Tenant Participation Team update

7.01 Carl Newsam spoke about the benchmarking group for high-rise
     blocks, which involves residents visiting other blocks to report on
     how standards differ across the city in an effort to create more
     consistency. Members of the TP Team are now qualified to drive a
     minibus and so can provide volunteers with transport. Enquiries
     direct to TP Team or via STAR. AH queried the speed of the
     process, and PR said she would be interested to see what results it
     has had. CN said that the initial programme had been a pilot and
     was now being rolled out across the city. There had been some
     difficulties in scheduling meetings to suit everyone but hopefully
     these have now been resolved, so things should be moving soon.

7.02 HCC Funding for TARAs is currently still available.

7.03 Tenant Inspectors Focus Group is now ongoing and looking for
     volunteers. JR clarified that this differed from STAR’s Tenant
     Inspection in that the HCC project is ongoing and open-ended,
     while the STAR programme was a one-off in-depth investigation.

7.04 Library Plus workshop has been postponed. Calvert Lane CSC may
     be closing, not sure as yet the final decisions. Will know more after
     19 May 2011. PR agreed that with a new party in power in the
     Council a lot of issues are subject to change.

       8. Future meetings

8.01 JR said that the September Roundtable will be a repeat of the
     successful ‘Question Time’ with the city’s three MPs invited. JR
     asked for suggestions for a speaker for the July meeting. PR
     proposed an officer from the HCC Legal team, and AH proposed a
     senior manger from HCC Housing such as Angela Dearing. JR
     pointed out that the Roundtable was not meant to duplicate what
     could be done elsewhere, and HCC officers can be invited to Tenant
     Forum and SIGs / Performance Panels. However, STAR will STAR
     approach the suggested people, but would welcome additional ideas ALL
     for non-HCC officers to be invited to the July meeting.

8.02          The next meeting will be held on
               Wednesday 13th July, 6.30pm,
              at the Octagon on Walker Street.
                 A light buffet will be served.
       All are welcome. If you wish to attend, please call STAR to book a
       place to ensure that correct arrangements are made for seating and
       catering. New telephone number: 01482 620740.


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