Minutes of Decent Homes Committee Meeting Held on 30 September by bnmbgtrtr52


									                          Minutes of Decent Homes Committee Meeting

                                    Held on 30th September 2009
                                 John Moorey Room, Riverview House

                                            Open Agenda
                 Committee Members: Guy Vincent, (Chair), Sharon Palazzo, Dorothy Walker

                 HFH Officers: Paul Hopkinson, Paul Bennett, Jaci Barnes, Roger Thompson,
                 Beverly Coleman (minutes)
                 BTS: – Matthew Martin

                 HAFFTRA: Kevin Veness

    Item                                    Description                              responsible
                 Apologies were received from: Paul Alexander, Hilda Cobos, Val
                 Barker, Janet Gaston
      2          Declaration of Interests


      3          Minutes of last meeting held on 22nd July 2009

                 The minutes were reviewed; all agreed that they were accurate.

      4          Matters Arising

                 Committee member Paul Alexander raised concerns relating to
                 Annual Gas Safety Checks via email to Paul Hopkinson and Peter
                 Benz on Tuesday 29th September 2009. It was agreed that he would
                 be invited to a Gas Safety meeting in the future, at which he can
                 gain more knowledge on the processes in place.

                 Paul Hopkinson gave an update on Lifts, Communal Areas and Fire
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                 Safety as requested by DHC Chair – Guy Vincent at the July


                 There are three schemes with modest programmes for lift
                 refurbishment. HFH are working towards a longer term strategy.
                 BTS has been asked to produce a schedule for all lift
                 refurbishments which is to be completed by March 2010 and will be          PH
                 presented to the council.

                 HFH have a lift management contract in place which covers
                 breakdowns, repairs and maintenance.

                 Committee member Sharon Palazzo asked officers for information
                 on the number of complaints there are in relation to lifts?

                 Kevin Veness of HAFFTRA suggested that a larger discussion on
                 lifts is needed as each property is different and therefore have
                 different programmes; it would be beneficial if officers could produce
                 a report on how lifts are monitored and how the programme works.

                 ACTION: Officers are to submit a report on Lifts as part of the            ALL
                 next set of committee papers along with a 15 minute                      OFFICERS

                 PH mentioned London Fire Brigade had written to all local
                 authorities explaining that they are withdrawing from attending lift
                 issues unless there is a Health & Safety issue.

                 Officers will be meeting to discuss what this means to the
                 organisation and how to communicate to residents.

                 Committee members expressed concern and asked if HFH can
                 complain about the lack of notice?

                 ACTION: PH is to send an update to the whole board                         PH
                 containing information on lift trappings.

                 Communal Areas

                 PH informed the committee that a system has been put in place at
                 the estate inspections where on a quarterly basis repairs are picked
                 up including repairs to communal areas. The designated contractor
                 records the repairs and the CSC (formerly the ROC) raise orders for
                 the repairs. Works are completed and at the next scheduled estate
                 inspection checks are made to see if work has been completed.

                 A report on outstanding repairs is also produced weekly by the
                 repairs managers.

                 There are also Estate Action Days where the contractors attend with
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                                                Agenda Item 3
                 repairs operatives and will do repairs on the spot, providing an
                 immediately response to repairs which has proved to be successful.

                 KV mentioned that this often leads to further issues as the CSC are
                 unable to process the repairs/calls effectively and asked Jaci
                 Barnes on a review of how the CSC works.

                 JB is to meet with HAFFTRA to further discuss and informed the
                 committee that an officer has been tasked to oversee the functions
                 of the CSC including communications and better IT systems.
                 Additional training is also to be given. By December there should be
                 a clearer more concrete view of the operations the CSC carry out.

                 PH added that there are many processes to go through to get things
                 working well, however, things are improving. There is also a large
                 number of temps and there is a high turnover.

                 Committee Chair Guy Vincent asked how we measure the
                 responses from residents?

                 PH stated that there are a range of KPIs relating to the CSC, a
                 further report will be submitted in two weeks time. Additionally the
                 SIP in place goes through to March 2010.

                 ACTION: JB is to circulate the SIP to the committee.                    JB

                 ACTION: SP asked for an update on the HR processes.                    PH/JB

                 ACTION: PH is to circulate the ROC SLA                                  PH

                 ACTION: GV suggested a paper discussing whether there have             PH/JB
                 been any improvements.

                 Fire Safety

                 PH assured the committee that HFH do not have properties of a
                 similar design to Lakanal House, Camberwell.

                 Since March 2009 we have had a dedicated Fire Risk Manager in
                 place. A review of all assessments is currently being carried out by
                 Sarah Stevenson-Jones – Interim Fire Risk Manager and Vincent
                 Dean – Fire Risk Assessor. HFH are confident with the progress so
                 far and quarterly liaison meetings are held between HFH and LFB
                 as well as the implementation of a Fire Prevention Group.

      5          Directors Report

                 Paul Hopkinson updated the Committee on the OFT report that
                 focussed on Construction firms fined for illegal bid-rigging.

                 The OFT has imposed fines totaling £129.5 million on 103
                 construction firms in England which it has found had colluded with
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                                                Agenda Item 3
                 competitors on building contracts.

                 The decision follows an OFT Statement of Objections in April 2008
                 after one of its largest Competition Act investigations.

                 The OFT has concluded that the firms engaged in illegal anti-
                 competitive bid-rigging activities on 199 tenders from 2000 to 2006,
                 mostly in the form of 'cover pricing'.

                 Fines for contractors employed by H&F Homes are listed below:-

                     •   Balfour Beatty (Decent Homes)                  £ 5,197,604
                     •   Connaught Partnership (Decent Homes)           £ 5,568,868
                     •   Kier Group (Repairs)                           £17,894,438

                 Peter Benz and PH have discussed this matter with senior council
                 colleagues and have agreed that the councils Procurement section
                 will present a report on the matter to the next meeting of the
                 Competition Board on the 20th October and that both Peter Benz
                 and PH will attend the meeting.

                 ACTION: PH is to circulate the report to all.                            PH

                 Repairs Reorganisation Update

                 Senior Management Restructuring

                 Consultation on the senior management reorganisation has been
                 completed. Vacancies have been advertised to internal and external
                 candidates. Second interviews to the permanent posts are taking
                 place w/c 28th September with the hope of having new managers in
                 post by the end of November 2009.

                 Posts that have recently been filled are as follows:

                 Permanent appointments:
                 •            Head of Repairs, Jaci Barnes

                 Interim appointments:
                 •              Commercial & Contracts Manager, Bill Oatham
                 •              Voids Manager, Munim Farid until end September
                 •              Gas Manager, Sid Harvey
                 •              Repairs and Performance Manager, Ray Hussain

                 Delivery Team Restructuring

                 PH explained that the reorganisation report for the restructure of the
                 delivery team (Technical Officers and Admin staff) was published on
                 10th August 2009; this report marked the beginning of the
                 consultation procedure with staff and recognised trade unions. The
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                 consultation was completed on 21st September 2009 and it is
                 planned for the full restructure to be completed by the end of
                 October 2009.

                 The reorganisation will reduce the number of permanent Technical
                 Officers from 12 to 8; during the consultation process affected staff
                 have been asked if they would like to apply for voluntary
                 redundancy. To date three TO’s have volunteered, which means
                 that nine TO’s will be in competition for eight roles.

                 During the recruitment process staff are being offered workshops to
                 assist them in the restructuring and transformation process, the
                 workshops available include:

                 •            Interviewing skills
                 •            Assessing your own skills and weaknesses
                 •            Preparing for transformation

      6          Edward Woods Regeneration Project Update

                 MM explained that the committee were to take into account two

                         to approve the letter of intent to underwrite the commitment
                         of up to £175,480 + VAT for preparatory work to minimise the
                         loss of time and maximise the potential grant draw down this
                         to approve the requirements and timescales for warranties
                         for the wind turbines.

                 In relation to the issue of challenges to the tender, MM informed the
                 committee that seven weeks into the period no challenges have
                 been received and the risk of a challenge from Europe is very low.
                 Officers are requesting an issue of instruction to Breyer so that they
                 can start work up to the value of £175k. This is to be underwritten
                 by the council.


                 At the last DHC meeting in July the committee gave permission to
                 approve the scheme on three conditions:

                 1.      For members to approve the acceptance of the most
                         economically advantageous tender submitted by Breyer
                         Group Plc for the works in the sum of £13,423,000. The
                         engrossment and commitment of the contract will be subject
                         to a standstill period of three months from the issue of the
                         Contract Award Notice.

                      2. For members to note and approve the overall budget plan for
                         the project, which comprises the aforementioned tender sum
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                         of £13,423,000 together with additional sums of £268,000 for
                         additional works to the lifts and £480,000 for an enhanced
                         specification to the newly-constructed penthouse flats, plus
                         professional fees of £1,612,766, sales costs of £454,000 and
                         other costs of £25,739, giving a total project cost of

                     3. Satisfactory warranties being received from the wind turbine
                        manufacturers and specialist engineers and the design team,
                        confirming that acceptable noise and/or vibration levels will
                        not be exceeded in the new and existing residential

                 GV asked if the length of the warranty was known?

                 MM mentioned that the organisation is still seeking the warranties
                 that committee requested adding that an acoustic engineer has
                 been appointed and discussions with a second party are taking
                 place to monitor the noise for six months. An initial study by the
                 acoustic engineer is due to be submitted within the next two weeks.

                 ACTION: MM is to keep the committee updated with                        MM
                 information on the warranties.

                 ACTION: GV asked for a further meeting to take place prior to
                 the Board meeting on 13th October to discuss the wind                   BC
                 turbine/warranty concerns.

                 ACTION: GV requested that MM/CH consider the consequences              MM/CH
                 that may affect the grants available for this project.

      7          Repairs Performance Summary

                 GV requested that this item be for information only

                 JB is to meet with Kier to discuss Performance Management.

      8          Decent Homes Key Performance Indicators

                 GV requested that this item be for information only

      9          Decent Homes Completions

                 GV requested that this item be for information only

                 ACTION: SP asked for the final accounts to be added to the DH           VC

     10          Gas Servicing

                 Jaci Barnes – Head of Repairs & Maintenance was introduced to
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                                               Agenda Item 3
                 the committee.

                 JB mentioned that the Interim Gas Manager is monitoring the EPAs
                 process and working on how the organisation can make post
                 inspections more timely.

                 Gas Servicing is now 99.4%.

                 Officers from the Gas Servicing team are currently out door
                 knocking trying to gain access properties.

                 The team are also looking at whether void properties should be
                 included in the programme. Additionally the Customer Services
                 Centre are looking into ways in which to flag properties without a
                 gas supply.

                 SP queried what special arrangements are made for people who
                 need special care.

                 JB is looking into how HFH flag up vulnerable people and the
                 communications that go out to residents.

                 KV mentioned that DH contractors have information on vulnerable
                 residents and the repairs and DH should join up to share this

                 Action: GV requested seeing the programme on vulnerability           JB
                 and how DH and repairs can join up.

                 It was suggested that a report should be submitted to committee at
                 the next DHC meeting or a Gas meeting should be set up so that
                 committee members can attend to enable them to ask questions
                 and gain information.

                 ACTION: PH/GV to agree timing for this meeting.                      PH

                 GV asked if all of Deliottes recommendations in the Draft Internal
                 Audit Report 2008/09 had been implemented?

                 PH believes that they have and will circulate an update to the       PH
                 committee that will also go to FARC.

     11          Site Related Issues

                 PH gave a brief update on the Site Related Issues including:

                     -   Officers are looking into fire safety in communal areas at
                         Charecroft. PH mentioned that the scope of works in this
                         area may extend.
                     -   Scopes of works are also increasing on the replacement
                         boilers at Charecroft and the costs are as yet unknown.

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     12          Good News Stories                                                        PH

                 PH ended with a good news story on Apprenticeships within the
                 organisation. All contractors are to sign up to a dedicated event at
                 which they will do presentations on apprenticeships covering
                 benefits, the opportunities they offer and availability. All should be
                 committed by mid-November 2009.

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                                                 Agenda Item 3

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