13 July 2006 - MINUTES

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13 July 2006 - MINUTES Powered By Docstoc
					                                     MINUTES
            LOCAL GOVERNMENT SOCIAL HOUSING FORUM
                       HELD ON THE 13 JULY 2006
        AT THE EKURHULENI METROPOLITAN OFFICES, BENONI
________________________________________________________________________

List of Attendees:

Frans Postma                        Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality
Aubrey Mokgosi                      Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality
Pamela Sekhonyana                   Johannesburg Metro
Samantha Naidu                      Johannesburg Metro
Adam Masonganye                     Mogale City Local Municipality
Yunus Sacoor                        eThekwini Municipality
Paul Babu Dayal                     eThekwini Municipality
Gerrit Bothma                       City of Tshwane
Matsepo Xaluva                      Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality
Schalk Potgieter                    Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Municipality
Ronald Maguga                       SALGA
Oupa Mareletse                      NHFC
Odette Crofton                      Social Housing Foundation
Danny Vengedasamy                   Social Housing Foundation
Eugene Perumal                      (Ingenuity; by invitation)
Lauren Royston                      (Development Works; by invitation)


Apologies:
Malcolm McCarthy                    City of Cape Town
Dawn McCarthy                       Nelson Mandela Metropolitan
Willem Theron                       City of Tshwane
Vusi Radebe                         Mogale City Local Municipality
Dr. Moremi                          SALGA

Chairman:
Aubrey Mokgosi                      Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality

1. Welcome and introductions
The chair asked all members and invited guests to introduce themselves and the
organisations which they are representing.

2. Additions to the agenda.
The chair asked members if there were any items that should be included on the agenda
for later discussion.
Dawn McCarthy requested that the land availability issue be included on the agenda as
the availability of land for social housing was not particularly good and could not be
made available at market value.

The chair said that she would also like to give an update on the Social Housing Policy.
Unfortunately, due to time constraints this item was not discussed. However, the
chairperson mentioned that she would provide members with a written update.

3. Corrections to the minutes
Page 2 item 7 on agenda should read; Ronald Maguga mentioned that for all technical
issues raised and/or discussed at the forum a report will be written by himself and taken
to the technical team at SALGA. For issues of a more political nature these will be raised
at a higher level with the municipal working group and escalated to the executive
committee.

4. Approval of the Minutes
The minutes were accepted and approved with the one correction mentioned above.

5. Matters Arising
The chair went through the matters arising and asked members to comment. The first
item was an:
5.1    Update from SALGA
Ronald Maguga reported that SALGA was planning to host a National Conference where
experts on Social Housing will be invited to present as well as participate in the
discussions.
The themes for the conference will be around “The National Social Housing Policy” and
“Capacity of Municipalities to set-up and implement the National Social Housing Policy”
another potential theme could be around performance agreements. Ronald mentioned that
he was hoping to get assistance from the forum on ideas for the conference as well as
whom to invite and how to approach the discussions at the conference.

Odette questioned when this conference will be taking place and reminded Ronald that
there will be a number of conferences taking place and that he should be aware of these
in his planning so as not to clash with these others.

Ronald responded that he was looking from assistance from SHF and that he has already
set-up a meeting with Timothy Tau from SHF to plan around, invitees, venues, logistics
etc.

Odette further requested that the themes for the conference should be both rental and
social housing as many local authorities do not fall within the restructuring zones.

The chairman requested that the forum members should advise SALGA if they were
aware of any conferences taking place and inform Ronald so that he plans appropriately.
Ronald further mentioned that SALGA was also planning to hold a LOGO SOUTH
Workshop within the next two months. SALGA is planning to invite 13 municipalities in
South Africa and thirteen from the Netherlands. The municipalities that will be invited
will be the ones that have a framework agreement with the Netherlands.
Some of the topics for discussion at this workshop will be:
               The need to develop standard performance agreements
               Conversion of Section 21 companies
               Setting-up of municipal entities
               Municipalities engaging with the Toolkit
               Interpretation of the act; MPFMA and PFMA

Odette Crofton asked Ronald to flag these two acts as there were imminent amendments
coming and that SALGA members should be aware of these when discussion arose at the
workshop.

Ronald gave an update on a number of planned Social Housing Policy Provincial
Workshops which were as follows:
              18 July 2006: Kimberley (Sol Plaatjie) Municipality in Northern Cape
              31 July 2006: Bloemfontein (Mangaung) Municipality in Free State
              8 September 2006: North West
              25 July 2006: Mogale City
              28 July 2006: Eastern Cape

There will also be a number of individual workshops planned which will focus on
individual municipalities.
Odette Crofton and Arie Diephout from SHF will be consulted for additional information
on the (new) social housing policy and restructuring zones.

The chairman asked Ronald to report on inviting other municipalities to the forums. He
mentioned that SALGA was to disseminate the minutes of the forum meetings to smaller
municipalities.

Ronald mentioned that he was not aware that he had to report-back at this meeting a nd
said that he would report-back at the next meeting on the dissemination of minutes and
the response from the smaller municipalities.

Yunus Sacoor stated that he had quite serious meeting with stakeholders last month on the
issue of social housing and delivery. He said that it was important to establish what is
demand for social housing. He further mentioned that municipalities are stepping aside in
their roles in assisting SHIs. He said that SALGA needs to step forward and support
municipalities and entities to assist SHIs to deliver at scale.

Ronald responded that SALGA has picked up that since the MFMA came into place
everything else has come to a halt as no one wants to sign anything. He said that SALGA
has identified this problem and will definitely bring these municipalities on board.
Odette suggested to SALGA that the municipal entities that have these systems in place
should use the forum to explain and share their experiences and successes with other
forum members. SALGA should also look at other successful models such as the banks
etc.

Yunus mentioned that perhaps the SALGA conference should be used to address these
issues.

Ronald responded that he will put together a draft programme and circulate it to members
for their comment.

Gerrit Bothma said that he had a discussion with Land Bank and that they were looking at
municipal entities to assist the financial institutions and that they were also looking at the
municipal entities to assist with the Financial Services Charter.

5.2    Update on Public Housing Stock Information
Odette mentioned that at the last local government forum meeting there was a
presentation on Public Housing Stock. This presentation will be formatted and printed
and will be made available to SALGA. SALGA will have to forward this publication to
the municipalities. This publication will also be in electronic format and will be placed on
the SHF website. This publication will also appear in next months issue of Housing
Southern Africa.

Odette further mentioned that the document on CRUs (Community Residential Units) is
currently being finalized with the DoH and the first phase has already been approved by
STRATMAN. She said that this topic will be discussed in more detail at the next forum
meeting.

Yunus stated that eThekwini has already developed a model for CRUs and will forward
this to SHF as it will assist them with the CRU document. He further stated that problem
with CRUs is the collection of rentals and that a company in Johannesburg has developed
a coupon system which assists in collecting rentals. He said this was in a pilot phase and
will be able to obtain more outcomes from the model within the next month or two.

The chairman mentioned that Ekurhuleni also piloted a similar model and the recovery
was excellent. It was initially 4% and had risen to above 90%.

Yunus said that with CRUs it was impossible to continue sending letters stating that they
are in debt. He said that the success was to get the community and local government
involved in debt recovery and tenant eviction as this was effective tenant management.
He further mentioned that this model will also be pioneered.

Odette mentioned that she was currently working on a financial model and the guidelines
for the CRUs. She will model the different elements one received from Yunus Sacoor and
will report-back at the next meeting.
5.3    Update on Urban Development / Restructuring Zones
Odette mentioned that issue was initially brought-up by the Nelson Mandela Municipality
and gave an update on where it was which was as follows:
Urban Development:
       The social housing policy has been approved
       The guidelines will be approved this month
       The pilot programme will kick into place
       The R110 million for the pilot programme has been decreased to R72 million as it
       is being used for the N2 project
       SPSH will be managing the process of the pilot programme
       NHFC will manage the job summit
       The social housing bill and regulators bill has been completed
       Bill will be passed parliament and cabinet to approve

Restructuring Zones:
       Thirteen municipalities have been declared as restructuring zones
       SPSH and SHF is working with SALGA to assist municipalities to obtain
       provincial zone approval
       Members were requested to send their documentation for provincial zone
       approval to SHF, SPSH and or Julie Bhayat at NDoH
       It was critical for municipalities to have the restructuring zones in their IDPs
       Municipalities to talk to institutions in their areas to establish where their projects
       are so that they can identify of they fall within the restructuring zones

Adam Masonganye wanted clarity on the restructuring zones and Odette explained and
said that this was taken from the social housing policy.

Yunus mentioned that most of the SHIs in KZN are battling to understand if they are
within the restructuring zones.
Odette responded that eThekwini was the first province to be declared as a restructuring
zone. Mangaung was the second and the third was Nelson Mandela Metropolitan. She
further said that it was not the SHI that declares the zone and that it needs to be supported
by the province.

Samantha Naidu wanted to know how the guidelines will be supporting the City of
Johannesburg in identifying restructuring zones.
Odette responded that the guidelines will assist in identifying zones, getting it supported
by the province and outline the zone management. This is what do you do once the zones
have been formalized. To speed-up the process we are looking at provincial zones only.

Eugene Perumal stated that certain funding was allocated for social housing only and
wanted to know if municipalities made separate presentations to the panel or the
province.

Schalk Potgieter reported that the sustainable community planning guideline document
has been completed and will be in its testing phase over the next four months. He said
that members were welcome to take the guideline document and use it as a pilot. He
further said that he would welcome any comment members may have on the document.
Odette requested the document in PDF format and said that we will place it on the SHF
website. SALGA was also requested to circulate it to all the municipalities.

5.4    Densification Policy
Ms. Alida Koetzee (Director; Policy & Planning) from the Ekurhuleni Metro gave a
presentation and said that Ekuruhuleni created high density subsidy housing with the aim
to support sustainable human settlements. The idea was to bring people closer to nodes
with various types of transport.
She said that this programme was first discussed with other departments to establish if
they will open-up their rail links within the nodes. Another reason why this was done was
to make the city work and give people access to mobility.

6. Tenure Options
Odette mentioned that at the last meeting a number of questions were raised around
tenure, land, identification and preparation. She had thus invited Ms. Lauren Royston
from Development Works to do a presentation on Land Tenure.

6.1. The first part of the presentation was titled Setting the Scene: Tenure Concepts.
(See presentation)
The presentation focused on four basic concepts which were:
                Tenure form
                Land management
                Tenure security
                Tenure arrangements

The second part of the presentation was titled Tenure Options. (See presentation)
This section of the presentation covered the following:
               Cross-cutting issues
               The social housing options
               Issues for municipalities

6.2. Mr. Eugene Perumal from Ingenuity was also invited by the forum to do a
presentation on Land Tenure. Mr. Perumals presentation was titled Alternative Housing
Tenure Forms (See presentation).
This section of the presentation covered the following:
               Retaining stock
               Demolition
               Packaging for transfer
               Sectional title
               Recommendations to members
               Challenges
7. Tenure Options Discussions
Samantha enquired as to what were real rights and personal rights and what the role of
the municipalities was especially when they are not involved in the relationship between
landlord and tenant.

The response from Lauren was that you have to allow for some recourse from an outside
body and that not a lot can be done.

Odette added that a lot of tenants were not organized into tenant bodies and that this may
be a solution to balance the landlord/tenant relationship.

Gerrit further added that owners and occupants in social housing should be a lot more
involved.

Lauren again responded that it was important to establish between group ownership and
occupancy. She said this was in the way that group ownership is set-up and decision-
making should be controlled by owners and that decision-making means authority more
than just participation.

Ronald responded to Samantha’s earlier question and said that the role of tribunal boards
is to protect the rights between tenants and landlords and those municipalities has to
provide officers to inform tenants of their rights.

The chair mentioned that this information has come at the right time and will be used to
inform his council.

Schalk mentioned that land management was a serious issue and should be discussed at
the next forum.

Odette said that obtaining land, packaging land and managing the land was important and
more importantly was how you get the implementation going. She further said that
Partners for Housing was looking at the land management process and the issues of
packaging the land. She requested that the next forum be held in Tshwane as they had
gone through a land management process and that they could add great value.

The chairman stated that the forum now have the information (which was presented) on
land tenure options and that members should take the information and start implementing
it.

Gerrit enquired from Eugene if had any suggestions as to how to do this.

Eugene responded that it was important to look at each metro that is starting a municipal
entity where all stock is placed within the entity. Secondly, look at all the options
available and see which one is best suited to pursue.
Lauren commented that it was critical for municipalities to adopt a holistic approach in
looking at all the options and consider all the partners outside the municipalities. She
cited an example of the City of Johannesburg not evicting people but segmenting the
market and looking at various options on housing the poor.

Gerrit asked how municipalities would finance through municipal entity renovations on
work that will be done.

Eugene responded that there was provision in the budget for maintenance and that in
future municipalities needed to look at loan finance to upgrade. They should not place a
burden on the municipal entity to succeed. Municipalities could raise loans and bridge
finance much better than anyone else. Stock should be upgraded first before it is passed
on and thereafter municipalities can look at privatizing. There will be a period that
government will be the landlord, thereafter it should be put back into the market. He cited
an example of the people in Eldorado Park who stated that they will not pay rental
because they are unemployed. The idea would be that these people be employed in the
programme.

Odette mentioned that SALGA has worked on the land sale moratorium and Ronald was
to establish this and advise members at the next forum meeting.

Samantha mentioned that there were rumours that provinces were not intending to
support social housing. She wanted to know what the implications were for
municipalities who had programmes in place for this.

The chairman mentioned that he had been informed that GPF will be the new institution
that will be managing all the subsidies.

Odette said that the SHF has not been informed about this and will be talking to the
provinces to establish why they are loosing interest.

Eugene mentioned that the GPF was set-up primarily as a once-off project to get capital
injection into the market and are currently not in a position to carry on doing this.

8. Conclusions
The chairman closed the discussions with the following remarks. He said that there was a
lot of information provided through the presentations and discussions and there were
many options that have been made available. He requested members to look at the
options that best suit the environment of the municipalities and advise municipalities
which options they can use.

9. General
Odette advised members that she had received a set of performance agreements from the
DPLG and that if members required it could be mailed to them. Members should interest
and these will be e-mailed in due course.
The Chairman mentioned that it was important to reflect on the achievements and
milestones of the forum (since its inception). He said that there was a lot of work that was
done and achieved and that municipalities needed to know about. These achievements.
He suggested that these be packaged and presented at the SALGA conference in October.

10. Closure
There being no further business the meeting adjourned at approximately 14h20

11. Date of next meeting
    Members of the forum will be notified of the date for the next meeting.

				
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