Leeds Housing Partnership Executive Agenda by chenmeixiu


									                                  Leeds Housing Partnership Executive Agenda
                        2.00pm, Monday 12th November 2007, Westminster Buildings Leeds,
                                                    Unit P

1.    2.00pm   Apologies

2.    2.00pm   Minutes from meeting of 10th September 2007*

3.    2.05pm   Matters Arising
               a)     Nominations – letter to poor performers
               b)     Commuted Sums – update
               c)     LAA Indicators update
               d)     Housing Green Paper response*
               e)     Fair Access and the Housing Green Paper*
               f)     District Partnerships review

4.    2.20pm   Outstanding actions from Theme 3 report
               a)     Housing Options *
               b)     Learning Disability Housing Strategy
               c)     Older Persons Housing Strategy Action Plan
               d)     Housing Strategy for Disabled Persons Action Plan

5.    2.40pm   Theme 1 report – Decent Places*

6.    3:00pm   Review of Leeds Housing Partnership Executive*

7.    3.30pm   Affordable Housing
               a)     Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership Board 10/11/2007 report back*
               b)     Delivery Team arrangements*
               c)     Housing Mix
               d)     Phase 1 sites/Housing Corporation ADP Bidding 2008/2011*
               e)     Phase 2 and 3 sites, housing assessments and future bidding processes*

8.    3.55pm   AOB

*     Paper attached

Next meeting: Monday 14th January 2008, Westminster Buildings, Unit P, 2pm-4pm.
Leeds Housing Partnership Executive

Minutes of the meeting held
Monday 10th September 2007, 2pm at Westminster Buildings


Steve Williamson (SW), re‟new (Chair)
Paul Belbin (PB), Foundation Housing
Dave Smith (DS), Leeds Tenants Federation
Ali Akbor (AA), Unity Housing Association
Andy Beattie (AB), LCC Environment and Neighbourhoods
Jenny Brierley (JB), Connect Housing;
Neil Diamond (ND), Aire Valley Homes
Bridget Emery (BE), LCC Environment and Neighbourhoods

In Attendance
Huw Jones (HJ), re‟new
Rob McCartney (RM), LCC Environment and Neighbourhoods
Mike Camponi (MC), LCC Environment and Neighbourhoods
Janey Barraclough (JBa), re‟new

1.     Apologies – had been received from Lisa Jones (LJ), Housing Corporation, Steve
Kettlewell (SK), Residential Landlords Association, Ernie Gray (EG), LCC Environment and
Neighbourhoods, Quintin Bradley (QB) Leeds Tenants Federation, Paul Langford (PL) LCC
Environment and Neighbourhoods, Tony Bretherick (TB), Government Office for Yorkshire and
Humberside, Eugine Jaruga (EJ), Keepmoat Partnerships, Neil Evans (NE) LCC Environment
and Neighbourhoods, Richard Burnham (RB), Home Group.

2.    Minutes of the Meeting held on 10th July 2007
Accepted as an accurate record.

3.    Matters Arising
      a)    Commuted Sums: Steve Williamson to meet with Phil Crabtree to discuss how to
            spend the commuted sums budget which is currently estimated at £12m. Steve to
            update the Executive at the next meeting.

      b)    Nominations: Mike Camponi gave a verbal update report on the RSL Nominations
            performance for 2007/08. These figures were accurate as of 4 September 07. Mike
            Camponi also reported that a new officer has been recruited within his team, to
            focus on developing closer relationships with RSL‟s. Bridget Emery asked if the
            figures could be shown in relation to homelessness and other key factors.
     Action: Mike to break down the data further and report the next quarter
     figures at a future meeting.

     Steve Williamson to write to RSL’s with poor nominations data on behalf of
     the Leeds Housing Partnership to encourage RSL’s to perform as part of a

c)   LAA Indicators: Rob McCartney presented the following information to the group:

     CLG are currently finalising the suite of 200 performance indicators that will be
     published in October at the same time as the Comprehensive Spending Review.

     Negotiations will commence with the GOYH in November to identify the maximum
     of 35 performance indicators (excluding the education and pre-school performance
     measures) that will be included within the Local Area Agreement.

     There is strong emphasis in the Council currently on the development of the Leeds
     Strategic Plan 2008-2011 that will incorporate the new LAA. It is proposed that the
     Strategic Plan will be submitted to full Council in February 2008 with a view to it
     starting in April 2008. In response to the 2007 CPA it is envisaged that a draft
     Strategic Plan will be ready for December 2007.

     It is envisaged that the negotiation period with the GOYH will have been completed
     by February 2008 with a view to the LAA going live in June 2008 – albeit that the
     Strategic Plan will start from April.

     Feedback from Sue Wynne (Environment and Neighbourhoods LAA Lead Officer)
     is that significant progress has been made in relation to assessing potential
     indicators/targets for the LAA.

     The two housing LPSA2 targets (reducing homelessness linked to domestic
     violence and parental eviction) look relatively healthy. It is considered almost
     certain that performance will exceed the 60% threshold against the stretch target
     and probable for the domestic violence target that the stretch target will be fully
     met. The threshold of 60% needs to be met in order for the city to receive 60% of
     the reward grant against that target.

d)   District Housing Partnerships: Huw Jones provided the group with an overview of
     current situation of the District Housing Partnerships. He confirmed that all three
     District Housing Partnerships have now met and that 4 main roles and powers have
     been proposed for each Partnership. The current task for the District Housing
     Partnerships is to focus on the potential fall out of Housing Market Renewal

     The District Housing Partnerships are being serviced by the ALMO‟s, supported by
     re‟new with delivery provided by the Affordable Housing Delivery team from
     Housing Services, Leeds City Council. Minutes of the District Housing Partnership
     meetings will be uploaded onto the Leeds Housing Partnership Website.
           District Partnership update: Steve Williamson, Stephen Boyle (Leeds City Council)
           and Kathy Kudelnitzky (Leeds Initiative) are to discuss the amalgamation of the
           current six District Partnerships to three, in alignment with the District Housing
           Partnerships. [Action: Steve Williamson to report progress at the next

     e)    Disseminating the findings from housing market and other research: Huw Jones
           has previously presented the findings from the Housing Market assessment and
           other research to the Executive. This information has also been presented to the
           Council‟s Corporate Management team and the Strategic Affordable Housing
           Partnership Board. Huw Jones has a copy of this presentation if members would
           like to use it internally.

4.   Outstanding Actions from Theme 2 Report:
     BRE Annual sampling of private sector housing condition: Consultants are due to
     undertake an annual update. The last update was in 2005.

     ALMO Business plans – non decent housing after 2010: All Leeds City Council properties
     are not going to meet the decency deadline of 2010. This issue is to be discussed further
     with John Statham, Housing Services, Leeds City Council and reported back at the next

5.   Theme 3 Report – tackling inequalities in Access to Housing:

     Access to Home Ownership: HJ referred to work under discussion to develop a Housing
     Options approach which incorporates actions to ease access to home ownership, along
     with development of the current Homelessness Advice and prevention service into a
     Housing Options Service. BE and HJ to bring a paper to the the next Executive meeting.

     Older Persons Housing Needs: The draft Older Persons Strategy Action Plan shall be
     complete by 14 September 07. The action Plan shall include adaptations, telecare etc,
     and will factor in the issues raised within the recent Green Paper. Rob McCartney is to
     circulate the Draft Action Plan to all Executive Members on completion.

     Physical Disabilities (Disability Housing Strategy): The Draft strategy has been produced.
     Rob McCartney reported that there is a lack of focus on „Spend to Save‟ options through
     services like Adaptations, Telecare, etc.

     Learning Disabilities: It was reported that the Independent Living Project has shifted from
     Hostel Based Accommodation to dispersed new build accommodation. Officers from
     Bridget Emery‟s team are to be included in the procurement process. Jenny Brierley
     reported that a representative from the Adult Social Services department attended the
     most recent Fair Access Strategic Working Group meeting. Concern exists over the
     failure to approve the housing strategy for people with learning disabilities.
     BME Housing Needs: Neera Tyagi (BME Implementation Manger, LCC) and Rob
     McCartney shall be contacting key stakeholders with the view to taking the strategy to the
     next Board meeting. Tracking progress against some targets is being limited by the
     current Orchard data not containing information on every applicant‟s ethnicity.
     Leeds Homes Register Team, Leeds City Council to send out a letter asking applicants if
     they wish to remain on the housing register. The executive agreed that a letter could be
     sent out in conjunction with this, asking people to select their ethnicity.

     It was agreed by the group that the implications in the Housing Green Paper need to be
     factored into the BME Strategy, including addressing issues of overcrowding and ensuring
     that a focus on housing numbers does not „squeeze out‟ development of housing options
     to meet BME community needs..

     Gypsies and Travellers: There was no information to report

     Supporting People: Bridget Emery informed the Executive that the Supporting People
     agenda needs to move forwards in terms of new commissioning.

     Homelessness: There was no further information to report.

6.   Research and Intelligence: Huw Jones presented a summary of findings from Housing
     Market Assessment Report, Demand for Council Housing research and City centre
     housing research and of the Housing Green Paper and the implications for housing
     provision. A copy of Huw‟s presentation has been uploaded onto the Leeds Housing
     Partnership Website and is available to download.

7.   Leeds Strategic Housing Plan, Housing Outcomes and Priorities: Huw Jones and
     Bridget Emery presented a report detailing the strategic directions within Leeds City
     Council. It noted that the LHP Executive has been identified as an „outcome group‟ key in
     the delivery of strategic housing outcomes. It was noted that it is proposed that Neil Evans
     is seeking a role within the Executive to drive delivery against housing outcomes and that
     membership of the Executive is needed to bolster private sector input and to involve LCC
     Development and Adult Services Departments. This report can be downloaded from the
     Leeds Housing Partnership Website.

8.   Housing Green Paper Response: A response to the Housing Green Paper is required by
     15 October. Paul Langford to respond on behalf of Leeds City Council. [Action: It was
     agreed that a draft copy of this response would be circulated to all members of the
     Executive for comment]. [Action: Huw Jones, Rob McCartney and Bridget Emery to
     detail what needs to be done in Leeds].

     It was agreed that this would reinforce key elements that will be affected regionally
     with a focus on city issues.

9.   Affordable Housing:
     Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership: The Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership
     met recently. Councillor Andrew Carter was very positive about the proposed plans and
     felt that commitment needs to be channelled towards achieving an effective end product,
     rather than just numbers.
      Delivery Team arrangements: These are still being finalised. To be discussed at the next

      Phase 1 sites/Housing Corporation ADP Bidding 2008/2011: Some concerns were
      expressed over the bidding round, the Housing Corporation‟s assumptions about use of
      HA reserves and on the issue of bidders being obliged to accept some housing developed
      being managed by ALMOs.

      Phase 2 and 3 sites, housing assessments and future bidding processes: It was noted
      that more systematic and robust housing market assessment and options appraisal should
      be undertaken on phase 2 and 3 sites.

      Role of District Housing Partnerships and Affordable Housing: This had been outlined
      earlier with DHPs ascribed the role of identifying development priorities and advising The
      Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership Board on housing type, tenure and mix and on
      viability of developments. The next meeting of the Strategic Affordable Housing
      Partnership shall take place in October.

10.   Responsible Letting: Andy Beattie, LCC Environments and Neighbourhoods updated the
      Executive on the current Responsible Renting situation. Andy has been asked to
      comment on the Law Commission report (which was circulated prior to the meeting) by 12
      October 2007. There is a need for significant improvement in the management of Private
      Sector properties and the report recognises that the standards of Private Sector properties
      for rent are not as high as they should be. All members were asked to send any
      comments to Andy or Bridget Emery by the beginning of October.

11.   Any other Business
      There was none

12.   Date and Time of Next Meeting: Monday 12th November 2007 at Westminster
      Buildings, Unit P 2:00 – 4:00pm.
                                                                                 Item 3d
                         Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12 November 2007

                            Leeds Housing Partnership: Response to the Housing Green Paper

Leeds Housing Partnership is a network of around 50 organisations involved in housing provision and
regeneration in Leeds. Its membership includes various parts of Leeds City Council, the three Leeds
Arms Length Management Organisations (ALMOs), and Leeds Tenants Federation, housing associations,
developers, non-statutory private landlords associations, estate agents and other agencies involved in
private sector housing.

Leeds Housing Partnership broadly welcomes the proposals set out within the Housing Green Paper. We
support the Government‟s commitment to securing significant increases in housing supply and in the
provision of affordable housing. We welcome the increased investment in affordable housing pledged by
the Government. We welcome the emphasis placed on securing sustainable housing and the
commitment to improving the infrastructure that serves new housing and we welcome the consideration of
skills and capacity issues and of the need for strategic leadership by local authorities and the importance
of partnership working to deliver housing growth. However we would propose that:
   The emphasis on achieving housing numbers must not act against achieving an appropriate housing
    mix which meets local needs and application of the social housing grant regime should not rule out
    higher cost but needed larger housing development (p 2)
   More support should be given to housing market restructuring to create additional opportunities for
    housing growth (p 3)
   The Government recognises the challenges in delivering the growth envisaged for Leeds if over
    supply of small apartments is to be avoided and without intrusive development in the green belt.         (p
    2 - 4)
   Consideration be given to a new classification of poor quality and under–utilised greenfield land, or
    land previously developed that has re-vegetated, which can then be brought forward for development
    earlier (p 3)
   Limitations be considered on buy-to-let investors buying new homes built on public sector land (p 4)
   Recognition be given that local authorities have to reconcile achieving maximum receipts on their
    assets with use of land assets to support housing development and guidance should be given by the
    Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) on determining priority for use p4)
   Local Housing Companies should be required to facilitate housing market restructuring and bringing
    empty homes back into use as well as new building to increase the supply of new homes (p 4)
   Government consider what additional options could be put in place to encourage bringing empty
    housing into use, such as increasing (on an annual basis) the rate of council tax levied on empty
    properties or restricting „buy to let‟ opportunities by including covenants on the use of new housing.
    Government investigates what action could be taken to limit the „buy-to-leave‟ phenomenon. (p 5)
   Targets for carbon and water saving currently identified should be reviewed and made more stringent.
    (p 6 – 7)
   Government provides Leeds City Council with a more detailed statement on the opportunities
    (including financial) that will be available to ALMOs following the completion of the decency
    programme. More guidance is needed on Housing Revenue Account reform (p 8)
   Encouragement should be given to providing sub-market rented housing to meet the needs of low
    income and key workers as well as to developing shared equity models (p 8)
   More thought be given to the provision of apprenticeships and the supporting role that employers must
    have. Government should promote effective joint working between Learning And Skills Council and
    Job Centre Plus. (p 9)

Leeds Housing Partnership broadly welcomes the proposals set out within the Housing Green Paper.
The Green Paper represents a commitment from central Government to address the affordability issues
that are increasingly evident in cities such as Leeds and the need to achieve an increased level of
housing supply at an appropriate mix. The Green Paper also acknowledges the necessity for housing
provision that can support economic growth and help achieve key social and environmental outcomes.
We are concerned, however, the Green Paper may not fully acknowledge the challenges facing areas in
the north in achieving housing growth, while also remodelling and regenerating areas with obsolete and
very poor quality older private housing, and poor quality and poorly laid out social housing estates, and
reflect that recognition in the allocation of public funding. We are concerned that tackling housing market
fragility has as much to do with speculative investment as actual improvement, while it has made the
costs of acquisition for remodelling purposes far higher.
We are also concerned that the Green Paper does not give enough emphasis to ensuring that existing
housing is utilised to enable enhanced access to housing of choice and requirement. The paper very
much concentrates on capital spending on new house building and contains insufficient reference to the
supporting revenue investment that is needed to help meet personal housing needs and requirements of
many vulnerable households which are essential in building communities.


Housing Supply
The Leeds Housing Partnership supports the need for housing growth and acknowledges the
Government‟s intention to deliver three million new homes by 2020, and that a substantially increased
supply of new homes will be expected in Leeds up to 2026.

We welcome the proposed increase in investment of approximately £3 billion and the significant increase
in supply of affordable housing that this will bring. However, we have some concerns as to the delivery of
this increased level of new house building:

a) Leeds Housing Partnership are concerned that a focus on delivering a specific number of new homes
   could conflict with the need to deliver homes that address local housing need, requirement and
   aspiration. In recent years, housing numbers have been surpassed in Leeds but have centred on the
   development of one and two bedroom apartments and studio flats, often purchased as investment
   opportunities rather than as residential dwellings.

    Housing market research has highlighted a significant unmet need for larger homes to address the
    needs of families, Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) households who are experiencing overcrowding
    and older/disabled people who are living in unsuitable housing.

    We would be concerned if a focus on delivering a set number of new homes acted as a deterrent to
    addressing these housing needs through the delivery of larger homes and we believe that an over
    emphasis on delivering numerically based house building targets could result in the continuation of
    current trends with the delivery of a surfeit of smaller high density type units.
b) The achievement of housing growth also brings challenges in terms of land release and sequencing.
   Policy currently is to release greenfield land only if brownfield land is insufficient to meet expected

   However, brownfield sites tend to be smaller and tend to have high development costs leading to
   developers seeking to protect their returns by building apartments rather than a mix of houses and
   flats. We recognise that there is understandable reluctance to develop in the green belt or on outlying
   green field sites and this is reflected in the Green Paper.

   It may be helpful for the Green Paper to make clearer the difference between Green Belt and outlying
   greenfield sites and urban green field land, which may be of lower quality, with little managed use and
   potentially available for development. Some land sites previously developed as housing that „re-
   vegetate‟ can be classified as greenfield land, potentially holding back its development. It would also
   be helpful for Government to consider a further classification of land somewhere between „green‟ and
   ‟brown‟ that can enable previously developed land left fallow to be brought forward for development

Housing Market Renewal
Leeds Housing Partnership would be concerned if the increased investment on delivering new housing
was funding that was being diverted from other programmes such as those relating to homelessness,
supported housing or market renewal. There has been recently a significant reduction in Housing Market
Renewal funding to West Yorkshire and consequently to Leeds

Leeds has a specific issue with the 15,000 small back-to-back terraced homes which cannot meet decent
homes standards and contain many inherent hazards. Prices of back-to-backs have increased rapidly
over the last five years due, in part, to speculative investment leaving them unaffordable to first time
buyers and unattractive to anyone except speculative investment landlords and less reputable landlords
letting at the very bottom of the market in Leeds. Also the continuing application of VAT on refurbishment
of homes has made the renovation of back to backs expensive as well. These back to backs are
concentrated in inner urban areas and are acting as barriers to achieving a residential offer attractive to
incoming households.

The Leeds Housing Partnership strongly believes that housing market renewal and restructuring is an
essential part of achieving housing growth overall. Any failure to restructure older private housing areas or
poor quality council estates will reduce the scope for achieving popular outer suburban and outlying
village areas. These inner urban areas have strong links to city centre and Aire Valley economic
development and good transport links but need investment to help create the conditions where demand
for new housing can be established or enhanced.

New Growth Points and Eco Towns
The Leeds Housing Partnership welcomes extension of new growth points to the north. We support the
Leeds City Region in exploring whether to make an expression of interest and see opportunities for such
an approach, if undertaken in conjunction with market restructuring, to improve substantially the
residential offer and support economic growth. The Leeds Housing Partnership also supports, in
principle, the proposals to establish eco-towns and recognises that the Leeds City Region Housing and
Sustainable Communities plan will be seriously considering potential locations.

Continuing Planning Reform
Leeds Housing Partnership welcomes the introduction of a new Housing and Planning Delivery Grant to
provide extra resources to councils who are delivering high levels of housing and who have identified at
least 5 years worth of sites ready for development and look forward to more detail as to what this will
support. Without both additional resources and a collaborative approach to dealing with planning
applications it will be extremely difficult to achieve government targets.
Public Sector Land Release
We support the continuation of the target for 60% of new housing to be on brownfield land but raise some
caution given that currently in Leeds almost 90% of new housing has been on brownfield land but
mainly/the form of city centre apartments; currently it is estimated that 35% of apartments in the city
centre are not occupied on a full time basis. While we support the policy of both central Government and
the City Council to continue to focus development on brownfield land, we would like to se a sensible
debate on options for development of greenfield land (especially poorer quality urban greenfield land) for
new homes.

We welcome the emphasis placed on encouraging release of local authority land to support housing
development, and development for affordable housing in particular. However, we also recognise that
Leeds City Council is under pressure to realise full receipts from their assets to support capital
programmes and find land for other local priorities. Recognition of this by Government would be helpful
along with clearer guidance to local authorities on priority expectations.

The Leeds Housing Partnership welcomes the proposals to make better use of surplus Government and
publicly owned sites as this is a significant issue. We would welcome limitations placed on purchase of
new homes on such sites by buy-to-let investors.

We are concerned that in relation to development of local authority and other public sector land that an
appropriate housing mix is achieved. We are concerned that current approaches to Social Housing Grant
levels do not result in cheaper smaller housing units and that good space standards should apply. We
are also concerned that housing developed fits within the wider local housing market and is therefore
based on sound housing market analysis and some attempt at identifying likely future demand.

Local Housing Companies
We welcome the announcement of pilot Local Housing Companies and are pleased that Leeds has a form
of arrangement already in place which will produce housing growth. We would like the Government to
clarify what variety of organisational forms other than the Joint Venture Companies outlined in the Green
Paper, it will permit.

Achieving growth will require a mixture of approaches including remodelling of obsolete housing such as
some back-to-back terraced housing and poor quality, and obsolete social housing; therefore, we believe
Local Housing Companies should also have a brief to encourage and facilitate the conversion of housing.

Recycling Property and Land
The Leeds Housing Partnership, through the Empty Property Forum, give `in principal‟ support to the
Government‟s commitment to promoting the efficient use of land and property through the non domestic
empty property rate relief proposals. We believe that by modernising the empty commercial property rate
relief this could provide a positive incentive to bring vacant shops, offices, factories and warehouses back
into use and that it may also induce some owners of empty commercial property to consider the
possibilities of converting these units into domestic housing thereby contributing to the Leeds‟ affordable
housing agenda.

Empty Homes
The Leeds Housing Partnership is disappointed that the Green Paper offers little additional support to
ensure that better use is made of existing housing especially empty properties. The implication is that the
existing options (such as Empty Dwelling Management Orders and levying full Council Tax on empty
properties) should be sufficient to bring empty properties back into use. This has not proved to be the
case in Leeds.
So far, no social landlord (or other housing provider) has been willing to take on the management of
properties in Leeds that could be subject to Empty Dwelling Management Orders as it has proved difficult
to make feasible as the up front costs of renovation, building and contents insurance and securing the
property falls upon the Local Housing Authority or its agent. In addition the vast majority of empty
properties would seem to be invariably exempt from the Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO)
legislation - especially within the private rented sector where the properties are ether genuinely on the
market for sale or letting, being renovated / developed or are classified as `second homes‟ on the council
tax records (where the owner is paying the appropriate council tax).

In addition there is the issue of city centre apartments in Leeds bought off plan as investment properties
and left empty. However, it is difficult to define the extent of those deliberately left empty and those
genuinely awaiting a purchaser or tenant. We would welcome further investigation of this issue by DCLG,
and any subsequent action.

Leeds City Council also levies 100% Council Tax charge on empty properties but this measure does not
appear to have affected the „buy to not let‟ trend that is evident within the city. Given that this trend also
appears to be prevalent in other cities such as Newcastle and Manchester then it would be useful for
central Government to consider what additional options could be put in place to encourage bringing empty
housing into use, such as increasing (on an annual basis) the rate of council tax levied on empty
properties or restricting „buy to let‟ opportunities by including covenants on the use of new housing.

Land banking
The provisions relating to tackling land banking are welcomed, especially the point that developers will be
given a maximum of 3 years to commence work on a particular site. Our developer members doubt that
developers are currently land banking in Leeds where those permissions comprise a good mix of units
and that the reduction in the maximum time from 5 to 3 years will help resolve any backlog there may be
over the next few years. However Leeds City Council have outlined their concerns that this may be
frustrated if Planning Inspectors were to overturn on appeal decisions taken by a planning authority to
reject a planning application relating to a developer which has outstanding sites within that local area
where work has not yet commenced.


Lifetime Homes
Leeds Housing Partnership recognises that a key priority for the city will be addressing the housing needs
of older people especially those who incur some form of physical or sensory impairment. We would
therefore support the recommendation made within the Disabled Persons (Independent Living) Bill to
make the Lifetime Homes Standard a mandatory requirement within the development of new housing.

Green Space
We support the emphasis on green spaces as an essential part of housing growth. We believe that there
should be more emphasis on play-space as an integral part of housing developments. We would like to
see new types of mixed family / small household housing with managed communal play-space located
especially in inner urban areas as part of the „growth offer‟. This would link to Government policy relating
to the importance of independent physical play for children.

Greener homes
The Leeds Housing Partnership supports the Government‟s intention to increase protection of the
environment by cutting carbon emissions and to strive to have all homes new zero carbon rated from

However we believe that the carbon savings of 5% from 2010 and a further 19% from 2013, against 2002
Building Regulations may not allow local authorities to meet their Local Area Agreement targets to reduce
carbon per capita, nor their climate Change Strategy carbon reduction objectives as the percentage
carbon saving targets quoted are far too low. Planning allowances of three years from point of approval to
final build may facilitate wholesale submissions by developers to planning bodies in an attempt to secure
that period‟s target carbon saving approval, and in turn, construct to the lower standard in the proceeding
three year period.
This could cause down stream planning blockages of immense proportions due to the volume of
construction identified in this report and in turn will provide a mechanism for developers to work to lower
carbon and water saving values, plus any other value or building improvement target identified in the
report. We would therefore propose that:
a) the 25% Carbon saving threshold be omitted, and instead a 44% carbon saving target from 2010 is
   established ,based upon a starting point of the 2002 Building Regulations or Sustainable Homes
   Code 4
b) a 100% carbon saving target is set from 2013 or Sustainable Homes Code 5.
c) a zero carbon homes target is set from 2016 or Sustainable Homes Code 6
d) planning allowances for a three year construction time from full approval, relative to energy
   conservation and water management be disallowed and that all developers must comply with current
   standard from the trigger date, not the retrospective standard.
e) all affordable new housing is constructed to equal or better than Sustainable Homes Code 5 relevant
   to energy efficiency and water savings from 2010 to prevent the down stream effect of fuel poverty
   occurring in this sector and to off-set future Council Tax revision to low income householders based
   upon the energy or eco-performance of the dwelling.
f) a potable water saving target from 2010 is established at Sustainable Homes Code 4, plus top water
   recycling deployed.
g) a potable water saving target from 2013 is established at Sustainable Homes Code 5, plus top water
   recycling deployed.
h) the potable water saving target set in 2013, from 2016 is improved beyond Sustainable Homes Code
   5 ,plus top water and grey water recycling deployed
i) all conversions or whole dwelling improvements affecting more than 25% of any external surface area
   on hard to treat, rural or solid walled or off the gas main dwellings within a development area are up-
   graded to better than the current Building Regulations Part L1B and to comply with energy and water
   efficiencies of: Sustainable Homes Code 4 from 2010 and Sustainable Homes Code 5 from 2013

We welcome any action by Government to better link up government policy and action to improve
infrastructure to support housing growth including schools provision, transport, health care provision,
water supply, waste disposal, cultural and sports provision. However, we are concerned that:
a) The current approach to „surplus‟ school places means that population changes in areas of housing
   growth could mean unnecessary closures of schools, and that in inner urban areas flexibility is needed
   to that opportunities to improve achievement through smaller class sizes of more 1-1 teacher/pupil
   time could be realized to complement housing growth and remodelling to create inner urban areas as
   attractive alternatives to very high demand areas;
b) Proposals in relation to transport fail to cover bus transport, motor-cycling, cycling and walking as
   means. Too many housing developments in the past have been car dominated;
c) Housing growth needs to take account of pressure on existing National Health Services including
    General Practitioners and on provision of dentists, chemists etc.
Planning gain supplement
We note the replacement of the Planning Gain Supplement proposal with one for a Planning Land
Charge. We agree that this may find a reasonable course between the interests of developers and
feasibility of developments and avoiding indefensible gain from land uplift while enabling an additional
source of funding for infrastructure. Our developer members have welcomed this move and believe that it
could offer a huge benefit to Leeds if we can think strategically about how best to deliver housing on
larger sites that are above thresholds and link social infrastructure into the delivery of market and
affordable housing.
ALMOs and Local Authorities bidding for Social Housing Grant
The Leeds Housing Partnership recognises the opportunity granted to ALMOs and Local Authorities to bid
for Social Housing Grant to fund the development of new social housing and the potential opportunity to
retain all the rental income and capital receipts that are generating through the development of new social
housing. We would support the Council in seeking clarification on
a) whether such receipts would be ring-fenced to housing related activity and therefore could be used to
   fund the development of new housing, to carry out decency work or adaptations; or
b) whether alternatively, such receipts could be used for wider corporate priorities, or
c) whether, if new build development is made outside of the HRA, whether we will be able to borrow
   additional finance against forecast rental income that is included within the HRA.
We recognise and support the discipline being placed on such bids being competitive with bids from
Registered Social Landlords, Development Partnerships and private developers (where applicable)

Future of ALMOs
The Leeds Housing Partnership is concerned that the Housing Green Paper is unclear about the post
2010 options that will be in place for housing authorities, like Leeds, that have outsourced management
of their housing stock to ALMOs. Greater clarification needs to be given, as a matter of urgency, on what
the granting of additional „freedoms and flexibilities‟ for high performing ALMOs are likely to mean in the

We believe that the success of the Leeds ALMOs has raised the expectations of tenants in relation to the
landlord service that they receive, partly due to the increase in available funding over recent years. It is
unlikely that tenant expectations will automatically adjust to a post decency environment where funding for
ALMOs is not so readily available. We will be encouraging Leeds City Council to plan now for after 2010
and will need to give appropriate consideration to all the options that are available to them to ensure that
services to tenants are maintained or improved.

We propose that the Government needs to provide Leeds City Council with a more detailed statement on
the opportunities (including financial) that will be available to ALMOs following the completion of the
decency programme as soon as possible. so that future planning and management can be as effective as

ALMOS and Housing Revenue Account
We recognise that Leeds City Council has welcomed the proposals to reform the current HRA
arrangements and the Leeds Housing Partnership also supports this with the proviso that further
clarification is issued on whether Leeds City Council, given the current negative subsidy situation, would
incur a financial penalty to „buy‟ the authority out of the current HRA arrangements, and whether „opting
out‟ of the current subsidy arrangements would preclude, or limit, access to future governmental funding
for council housing.
Sub-market rented housing
We are disappointed that more support is not given to the provision of sub market rented housing. Many
working households on below average incomes can increasingly neither afford to buy nor rent privately,
and would not have priority need for social rented housing. There is a large gap between social and
market rents and support should be given to housing associations or other agencies to provide mid-
market rented housing. If local housing markets are to operate effectively it is essential that there is a
continuum in the provision of housing of a range of costs.

Helping 1st time buyers
The Leeds Housing Partnership welcomes the proposals in the Green Paper for assisting first time buyers
but is concerned that this emphasis does not detract from finding housing options for those needing
rented housing, either subsidised or sub-market.
We welcome the drive for more homes under shared ownership and shared equity and would support
Government encouragement to the private sector to play a greater role in offering shared equity
mortgages or shared ownership homes. We are particularly interested in the proposed new 17.5%
government equity loan product and await further details.

We support the promotion of social housing and shared ownership homes in villages and rural areas, but
have concerns that shared equity/shared ownership may still be unaffordable in some village areas, even
at 17.5% levels. We wonder whether there may need to be a mixture of financial measures and shared
equity to enable new households to live in such areas.

We recognise the intention of Government to offer social housing tenants more opportunity to buy a stake
in their home through Social Homebuy but are concerned that as with the Right to Buy (RTB), Social
Homebuy takes the property out of the lettings pool and thus any expansion must be linked to real and
significant increases in the social housing stock to replace stock lost through RTB and Homebuy,.

We would support any moves to make mortgage provision assist home ownership, including more
affordable longer-term fixed rate mortgages.


The Leeds Housing Partnership welcomes the acknowledgement of Government in the Green Paper of
the need to address skills levels in the construction industry and its capacity to deliver housing growth and
we welcome the Government plans outlined here to address sustainability in construction, including
addressing skills gaps. However, we are not sure that it really addresses how the role outlined for
employers in supporting skills development will be influenced by the Government. In Leeds construction
and employment training agencies such as Leeds re‟Build have experienced reluctance on the part of
even larger construction companies to invest in their staff appropriately, and serious attention needs to be
given as to how Government will work with employers to change their culture and respond to this.
There appears to be a strong belief among construction companies generally that the Government, or in
some cases the individuals themselves, should pay for training. While we welcome increased role of
Construction Industry Training Board Construction Skills outlined in the Green Paper, this organisation is
not particularly favoured by many employers suggesting that more thought be given to the provision of
apprenticeships and the supporting role that employers must have.

We believe that procurement by local authorities could have a huge influence in the use of local labour
and the skills development of the local labour force. We are concerned though that this is not given
sufficient emphasis to have the impact that it either should, or could, have on tying local labour and skills
development to large scale contracts and increasing economic activity in deprived communities. Leeds
has a partnership agency, Construction Leeds, which is working to achieve this.

While we welcome the possible learning route identified in the Green Paper we feel that many of these
tend to support the „higher fliers‟ rather than the general skills levels of those living in deprived
neighbourhoods. We welcome the Skills Pledge referred to, which is in line with the Construction Charter
recently introduced in Leeds.

We welcome the reference to partnership working but are concerned that it only tends to refer to the
larger players and does not recognise that those furthest from the labour market are least likely to be
targeted through these larger partners. There is little mention of the supporting role that the community
sector does, and can continue to have, in supporting the ideal social impact of this programme - skills
development and employment for those who would/could not work without support. This support extends
to the construction employers and could be given more emphasis.
We welcome the reference to aligning funding streams to accommodate the strategies for skills and
workforce development, but would emphasise the need for Government to promote effective joint working
between Learning and Skills Council and Job Centre Plus which is not always the case.

Local Authority strategic housing role
We very much agree that the strategic housing role is at the heart of achieving ambitions for housing
supply. Unfortunately insufficient strategic resources are left in local authorities post Local Stock Voluntary
Transfer/ALMO to effectively deliver the strategic housing role and that any HRA reform should address
this. We would suggest the Government explore encouraging partnership approaches in developing
hosuing strategy whereby agencies act as brokers between the public, private and third sectors to
develop strategies which can be implemented. Leeds has followed this approach for several years with

Partnerships with home builders
We firmly believe that the housing growth agenda can only be achieved through effective partnership
working. We welcome the encouragement of closer working with homebuilders to rise to the challenge
faced by the new targets for housing delivery; however there will be challenges in overcoming the hostility
many developers have to affordable housing requirements through Section (S)106 agreements. We will
have to seek an approach that achieves increased supply of affordable housing while recognising the
impacts of affordable housing requirements and other S106 requirements on the feasibility and
deliverability of housing developments. We will continue to promote close partnerships between the City
Council and housing associations and will seek to foster new partnerships between developers, housing
associations and ALMOs to help achieve housing growth and an improved residential offer across Leeds
to meet needs, requirements and aspirations.

Steve Wiliamson, Chair, Leeds Housing Partnership,
15 October 2007
                                                                                  Item 4b
                          Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12 November 2007

                                                     Report to the Fair Access Working Group
                     Fair Access Implications of Housing Green Paper/Affordable Housing Plan

1. Purpose of the Report

1.1.   To prompt a discussion relating to the Fair Access implications of the Housing
       Green Paper and the development of the Leeds Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership.

1.2    To consider the opportunities for the Fair Access Working Group to influence the delivery of
       new housing development in the city.

2.     Housing Green Paper

2.1.   The Housing Green Paper ‘Homes for the future: more affordable, more sustainable’
       represents the government’s commitment to tackle the shortage of affordable housing in the
       country. The vision of the Housing Green Paper is to give everyone access to a decent home
       at a price they can afford, in a place where they wish to live and work. The Green Paper
       acknowledges the link between good quality, affordable housing and improved social,
       environmental and economic outcomes. It also recognises that decent housing needs to be
       linked to appropriate infrastructure such as schools, healthcare and transport links.

3.     Local Context

3.1.   There is no doubt that access to affordable housing is one of the key issues relating to the
       functioning of the Leeds housing markets. The 2006 Housing Market Assessment identified
       that on average a first time buyer would require a single gross annual income of £37,000 to
       purchase an entry level property in the city. The report also calculated that annually 1889
       affordable new homes were required in the city over the next ten years. In November 2006
       the Leeds City Council Executive Board approved an Affordable Housing Strategy that set out
       the Council’s and partner’s proposals to deliver more affordable housing in the city.

3.2.   In March 2007 the Executive Board also approved the formation of the Strategic Affordable
       Housing Partnership. The Partnership will comprise of representatives from Leeds City
       Council, the Housing Corporation, English Partnerships, Government Office for Yorkshire and
       the Humber and Yorkshire Forward. The Partnership has set a target of delivering 1100
       affordable housing units per annum. It is envisaged that the target will be met through a
       variety of means including the release of Council owned land for new housing development,
       the use of capital receipts generated from the disposal of this land to fund other housing
       development and affordable housing secured through planning gain. The release of Council
       owned land will lever in additional investment through the Housing Corporation, housing
       associations and private firms.

4.     Key Issues

4.1.   Leeds City Council broadly welcomes the proposals set out within the Housing Green Paper.
       The Council also recognises that the setting of a stretch target to deliver three million new
       homes per annum could be a positive step in that it clearly defines the scale of the issue.
       However, from a Fair Access perspective there is a potential tension between setting a stretch
       numerical target of developing new homes and addressing housing need.
4.2.   The Home Builders Federation have made it clear that they believe that the annual target of
       delivering 240,000 new homes will not be met if there is any move to impose minimum space
       standards or to deliver a higher proportion of lower density housing. The proportion of new
       homes in Leeds that are flats has increased from 14% between 1997 and 2000 to 72%
       between 2003 and 2007. It is clear that the continuation of current practice to deliver a high
       proportion of high density housing will not necessarily meet the needs of groups such as
       families, BME households who are experiencing overcrowding, the disabled and the elderly.

4.3.   Local housing and planning authorities may well be encouraged to approve planning
       applications that relate to the development of high density apartment based schemes if that
       means that the authority will be better placed to meet numerical targets relating to the
       development of new homes. This issue will be exacerbated if government link access to
       funding through the proposed Housing and Planning Delivery Grant or for new Growth Points
       to the delivery of a requisite number of new homes.

4.4.   There is an increasing awareness that new housing development in Leeds has been fuelled
       by investor demand rather than necessarily as a response to housing need. This is evident in
       the ‘buy to leave’ trend where investors are purchasing homogenous one-two bedroom
       properties with a view to selling on without the property having been resided in. Action to
       address this trend has been largely unsuccessful: Leeds City Council has not issued an
       Empty Dwelling Management Order to date (only four have been made nationally) and the
       levying of 100% Council Tax liability does not appear to have cajoled owners to let the

4.5.   It is clear that other practices may well need to be adopted such as levying a
       sequentially higher Council tax charge depending on how long the property has been empty
       for, or imposing, at the planning assessment stage, restrictions on the proportion of the new
       development that can be purchased as a ‘buy to let’ investment. There is a key role for the
       planning authority to reject applications that do not appear to be contributing to meet identified
       housing need. However, it needs to be recognised that the Green Paper sets out the
       government’s intention to enable planning inspectors to overturn the decisions of Councils
       who continually reject applications. This mechanism may well be used to approve planning
       applications on high density schemes in order to meet the numerical targets.

4.6.   The government have made a commitment to make £8 billion available in the forthcoming
       Comprehensive Spending Review in order to deliver the targets set out in the Green Paper –
       this represents a £3 billion increase on previously identified funding. It is unlikely that this is
       new funding and will probably need to be diverted from other programmes. From a Fair
       Access perspective it would be a concern if the funding is diverted from programmes such as
       Supporting People, homeless capital investment and market renewal. The Green Paper
       represents the shift in governmental focus from refurbishment towards growth. However, it is
       clear that there are still areas in cities such as Leeds that are characterised by low demand
       and would benefit from the continuation or expansion of renewal programmes. Vulnerable
       people often live in such areas and therefore will be adversely affected by the scaling back of
       the market renewal programme.

4.7.   From a Fair Access perspective the delivery of lower density larger properties is a key priority
       in terms of new housing development. The 2006 Social Housing Market Assessment
       highlighted that that over 90% of Right to Buy sales related to houses and 50% of those were
       three bedroom dwellings. Since 2003 only 35% of the properties that were made available to
       let through the Leeds Homes Register were houses.
       38% of the properties that were made available to let were three bedroom but only 2% had
       four bedrooms or more. The Council will need to focus on producing data highlighting the
       number of applicants who are applying for a three or four bedroom property through the Leeds
       Homes Register. It has been acknowledged that this data has not been available previously
       to support applications for Social Building Grant to develop larger units.

4.8.   It is understood that overcrowding disproportionately affects BME communities. A key priority
       for the BME Housing Strategy and Implementation Manager will be to establish a robust
       picture of the scale of overcrowding affecting BME communities in the city. This is
       problematic given the poor quality of ethnicity data that is held on the Council’s Orchard
       system and the point that not all households in housing need, especially those who live in
       private housing, will make an application for social housing. It is envisaged that the Private
       Sector Stock Condition Survey, which has been commissioned by Leeds City Council, will
       provide firmer evidence on the scale of overcrowding. The BME Strategy Action Plan also
       includes a commitment to improve the recording of ethnicity data on the Orchard system. It
       will be important for the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership to use this data to inform
       decision making on the type of new homes that are to be delivered. From a Fair Access
       perspective it is essential that a proportion of these new homes are delivered to tackle
       overcrowding amongst BME communities. This will require the development of a higher
       proportion of larger properties.

4.9.   BME households are disproportionately concentrated in areas of the city, such as Beeston
       and Harehills, which have a high proportion of back to back dwellings. It has been identified
       that such properties can not easily be brought up to the decency standard. Such properties
       are also more problematic to adapt to meet the needs of disabled people. National research
       has indicated that the incidence of physical impairment is disproportionately high amongst
       children of a South Asian origin. Given that such children are more likely to living in
       accommodation that does not meet the decency standard and can not be adapted to meet
       their needs then they are disadvantaged on a number of levels. It will be important for the
       Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership to factor these needs into the decision making
       relating to new housing development.

4.10. In common with other housing authorities Leeds City Council has been set a target to reduce
      by 50% the number of families in temporary accommodation by the end of March 2010. This
      is an extremely demanding target given that this equates to having no more than 260 families
      in temporary accommodation by the end of 2009/2010 and there are currently 420 who are
      accommodated by the authority as homeless households. The reduction in the number of
      social housing units to let has clearly had an impact on temporary accommodation placements
      as families now have to wait longer in temporary accommodation before they are rehoused.
      However, it is also clear that new house building development has made little contribution to
      tackling homelessness in the city given the focus of developing one-two bedroom apartments
      - irrespective of the letting practices of the property owners. It is unlikely that the target can be
      met through an increased focus on homeless prevention options or by significantly increasing
      the proportion of lettings made by social landlords.

       It is essential that applicant’s rights relating to making a homeless application are not
       compromised by the drive to meet the governmental target. The Strategic Affordable Housing
       Partnership will need to consider how it can contribute to meeting the temporary
       accommodation target through the delivery of more family size housing.
4.11. The Older People’s Housing Strategy identified that 20% of the Leeds population at the point
      of the 2001 Census were aged 60 years or over. The proportion of the population that are of
      pensionable age is likely to significantly increase by 2020. The overarching policy objective
      relating to older people is to promote independence and to enable people to remain living in
      their own home if that is their choice. Housing policy needs to contribute to this wider agenda.
      It is recognised that as people get older they are more likely to experience some form of
      physical or sensory impairment that will impact upon their housing needs. It is important that
      the new housing developments not only meet the accessibility needs of current older/disabled
      people but also for people who may experience some form of physical or sensory impairment
      later in life.

4.12. From a Fair Access perspective it is important that as higher proportion of new housing
      development as possible meets the Lifetimes Homes standard. The cost of making each unit
      comply with the standard is around £500 per dwelling and whilst this is an additional cost it is
      significantly lower than the cost of extensive adaptation work or the cost of residential care,
      hospitalisation or day care services. It will be important for both the housing and the planning
      authority to recognise the wider health and social care benefits that can be generated from
      good housing design. It is also essential that accessibility is not limited to the interior or
      curtilage of a property; older and disabled people need to live in accessible homes in
      accessible surrounding environments. There is considerable debate on the issue of older
      people, with a one bedroom need, occupying family sized accommodation and what steps can
      be taken to incentivise people to secure more ‘suitably’ sized accommodation. The Strategic
      Affordable Housing Partnership can contribute to this agenda by developing housing that
      perhaps better meets the needs of such people so that they can make a genuine choice as to
      whether to leave their existing home.

4.13. Given the affordability issues evident in Leeds, social housing will often be the tenure of
      realistic choice for many vulnerable people. The Housing Green Paper makes little reference
      to the long-term options and opportunities for social landlords such as the Leeds ALMOs.
      Greater clarification needs to be given on what the granting of additional ‘freedoms and
      flexibilities’ for high performing ALMOs are likely to mean in the future. It is recognised that
      the government has set this out in relation to enabling high performing ALMOs to bid for
      Social Housing Grant to finance the development of new housing. However, clearer
      information needs to be given on what freedoms and flexibilities are likely to be granted to
      high performing ALMOs to manage and maintain existing stock.

4.14. There is no doubt that one of the key successes of the Leeds ALMOs has been to increase
      council tenant expectation of their landlord. This of course can be partly attributed to
      improvements in housing management practice but it can not ignored that it also due to the
      large scale investment that has been available in recent years. It is unlikely that tenant
      expectations will automatically adjust to a post-decency environment where funding for
      ALMOs is not so readily available. Leeds City Council, in common with other authorities that
      have established ALMOs to manage their stock, will need to give appropriate consideration to
      all the options that are available to them to ensure that services to tenants are maintained or
      improved post 2010. This process will need to commence shortly in order to give the Council,
      ALMOs and tenants sufficient time to consider all the options prior to 2010.

       An example of the issue relating to funding availability relates to adaptation work carried out
       by the Leeds ALMOs. This is relatively available at present due to high Right to Buy receipts
       and major repair and maintenance work being funded through decency funding. However, as
       the Right to Buy receipts fall and if no supplementary funding is available to carry out major
       repair work then programmes such as adaptations may be more difficult to finance.
4.15. Ensuring that new housing development is complemented by the requisite infrastructure
      provision – this will include ensuring that adequate housing support services are in place. The
      needs of vulnerable people are often overlooked in plans relating to housing growth. Charities
      such as Shelter have been critical of the lack of focus on the needs of vulnerable people in
      Growth Areas such as the Thames Gateway. The Supporting People Partnership must have
      a key role in influencing the decision making of the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership
      so that vulnerable people who are affected by the plans are suitably assisted.

4.15. The Leeds Unitary Development Plan specifies that housing development should be
      concentrated within the main urban areas of the city and that there should be a preference for
      development of previously developed sites. Leeds is minded to reject planning applications
      that relate to green field sites. Research carried out by DTZ (on behalf of the Home Builders
      Federation) indicated that there is no demand for family sized housing in the city centre and
      that the market for smaller apartments is becoming saturated. Consequently, developers and
      planners need to focus on alternative markets albeit that there will be no need to release
      green field sites. However, the feedback from developers is that such land release is
      inevitable if higher density housing is to be delivered.

4.17. The issue of releasing green field sites is a contentious one for Leeds. The prioritisation of
      development on brown field sites has clearly contributed to the regeneration of the city centre
      and surrounding areas. However it is also arguable that this policy has limited the
      development of specific types of housing, exacerbated the disparity in supply and demand
      and fuelled price rises. It is likely that development will continue to be concentrated on brown
      field sites. Innovative design and development (such as the work of Wayne Hemmingway) will
      be a critical factor especially around how we can develop family based accommodation on
      brown field sites.

5.     Strategic Direction

5.1.   The reorganisation of the LCC Housing Services division is an opportunity to re-examine the
       strategic housing priorities for the city. It is essential that greater emphasis is placed upon the
       need for strategic housing practitioners to ‘make the case’ for vulnerable people. The
       combination of housing strategy with the administration of the Supporting People programme
       will support this drive but it is also imperative that the Fair Access Strategic Working Group
       plays a significant lobbying role to ensure that the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership
       are aware of, and are addressing the needs of vulnerable people through new housing

5.2.   The Head of Housing Strategy and Commissioning will attend the Strategic Affordable
       Housing Partnership Board with a clear focus of highlighting the housing needs of vulnerable
       people. The work of the Housing Strategy and Commissioning Group (including officers
       involved in the development of the Homelessness, Older People’s, Disabled People’s and
       BME strategy) will have a clear focus on establishing the need to develop specific new
       housing for vulnerable people.

       The work of the wider Supporting People Partnership (including the Core Strategy Group
       which will also consider this report) will also focus strongly on developing new housing to
       address the housing needs of people who receive housing support services.
6.     Conclusion

6.1.   This report highlights some of the key issues relating to the development of new housing and
       addressing the needs of the most vulnerable in society. Perhaps the key issue is that there is
       a potential conflict between an approach that focuses on the delivery of a maximum number of
       new housing units and addressing the housing needs of groups such as the elderly, the
       disabled, BME communities, and families. It is important that groups such as the Fair Access
       Working Group are influencing the decision making of the Strategic Affordable Housing

7.     Recommendation

7.1.   To note the contents of the report.
                                                                               Item 4
                     Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive : 12 November 2007

                                                                            Housing Solutions

1.0   Introduction

1.1   The Strategic Housing Market Assessment, the research into demand for social housing
      and other key pieces of research undertaken over the last 18 months have in combination
      identified the need for the development and implementation of a coordinated range of
      advice on housing options and potential solutions to meet housing needs, requirements
      and aspirations.

1.2   As housing costs increase and the supply of affordable housing is constrained then
      increasing numbers of households are experiencing difficulties in securing access to
      housing. While the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership will strive to increase
      substantially the supply of social rented housing and of intermediate sub market rented
      and shared equity housing, more needs to be done to help households housing that
      already exists as well as the new housing that is to be built.

1.3   Government Policy in relation to housing advice to those in housing need has been
      changing to encourage the development of services that are framed around the principle
      that housing need can be addressed by offering a person a range of housing options.
      While encouragement is also being given to ensure that needs of low paid and key
      workers unable to access housing but who may not be in priority housing need are also

1.4   Leeds City Council in their Strategic Plan are committed to creating „thriving places‟ and
      improved health and well being‟ for vulnerable adults and children and the development of
      a housing solutions approach would help deliver those strategic themes and a number of
      the strategic housing outcomes identified in the plan.

2.0   The Way Forward

2.1   Developing an approach to improving access and pathways to housing requires both a
      change in culture in terms of the way that housing advice services are viewed and
      delivered but also a recognition that this cannot be achieved by one agency alone and
      requires a partnership response.

2.2   The paper attached at Appendix A outlines the approach that Leeds City Council
      Environment and Neighbourhoods are working on to change the way that the existing
      Homelessness Prevention and Advice service is orientated to develop and provide a
      Housing Solutions Service, ensuring that homelessness prevention work is effectively
      undertaken while also seeking to provide advice on and „signposting‟ to the range of
      solutions that could be found to meet the needs, requirements and aspirations.
2.3   Project work is now also required to identify how the range of housing service and housing
      and related advice providers that can join with Leeds City Council in forming a coordinated
      cross sector, partnership-based housing solutions service across the city.

      Appendix B shows the range of advice and pathways that can be used to offer housing
      solutions. Partners could include

          Housing associations                                  Citizens Advice Burueax
          Building Societies and Banks                          Law Centres
          Non-statutory housing and support providers           Housing Aid Centres
          Private landlords                                     Credit Union

3.0   Recommendations

3.1   It is recommended that members

      a) note the report and offer support for the approach

      b) seek a further paper on development of a cross sector housing solutions approach

      Huw Jones, Strategy and Intelligence Director, re’new
                                                                                       Appendix A:

                                                          Leeds City Council: Developing an
                                                 Housing Options Approach to Housing Needs

1. Purpose of the Report

   1.1. To outline to the Leeds Housing Partnership Executive Board the strategic approach that
        is being adopted and that can be further developed to deliver holistic housing options
        services for households who are in housing need.

2. Background

   2.1. The Communities and Local Government (CLG) developed National Homelessness
        Strategy, Sustainable Communities: Settled Homes; Changing Lives, sets out the
        government‟s agenda for how traditional housing advice and homeless services should
        be reconfigured to better respond to housing need.

   2.2. The government advocate that resources should be focused on prevention based
        services that are framed around the principle that housing need can be addressed by
        offering a person a range of housing options. Consequently, the focus on housing
        options seeks to shift away from the approach that housing need will primarily be
        addressed through the homeless assessment process, temporary accommodation
        placement and ultimately a social housing letting.

   2.3. The focus on holistic housing option services is complemented by the performance
        management framework established by government and the Audit Commission. All
        housing authorities are required to report to the CLG on a quarterly basis the number of
        households accepted as being statutorily homeless and the number of those who are
        placed in temporary accommodation. The government has set a target for housing
        authorities to reduce by 50% the number of households placed in temporary
        accommodation and the shift towards offering people a range of housing options will
        invariably be integral to meeting this target. Preventing people from losing their existing
        accommodation is also a key element of a housing options service and authorities are
        required to report the number of homeless prevention outcomes achieved.

   2.4. The development of housing options services reflect the government‟s wider strategic
        housing approach around offering all people the opportunity to live in a affordable, decent
        housing in sustainable communities where they want to live and work. At a local level the
        development of housing options services reflects the Leeds Strategic Plan theme of
        delivering „Thriving Places‟ and the strategic outcome that by 2011 the people of Leeds
        enjoy „Improved quality of life through mixed neighbourhoods offering good housing
        options and better access to services and activities‟. There are also clear links to the
        „Health and Wellbeing‟ theme with the accompanying relating to improving outcomes for
        vulnerable adults and children.
   2.5. Understanding wider housing market trends will be a critical element of the development
        of housing options services in Leeds. The reduction in the number of social housing
        properties that are available to let has meant that a significant proportion of people will
        not be able to address their housing needs through the social housing route.

      The use of the private rented sector will therefore become an increasingly important part
      of the drive towards giving people a wider range of housing options. However, it will also
      be important for housing options services to have an understanding of the need to
      promote sustainable use of the private rented sector and avoid establishing or
      exacerbating concentrations of vulnerable people in specific neighbourhoods with poor
      standards of housing management from landlords and low levels of commitment from
      tenants to the housing they occupy.

   2.6. The identified issues relating to affordability and access to home ownership means that
        there may well be an enhanced role for housing option services to assist people to secure
        affordable housing within this sector. Thought needs to be given to how low cost/shared
        ownership schemes can be marketed and accessed through housing options services. It
        is currently an opportune point to start considering how this approach can be developed
        given the increased focus on delivering additional affordable housing through the
        Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership and programmes such as EASEL.

   2.7. The publication of the recent Housing Green Paper has sharpened thinking relating to the
        delivery of affordable housing in the city, especially around the need to develop homes to
        meet identified unmet housing need rather than simply delivery of a stretch target on units
        completed. The development of housing options services can potentially inform and
        promote the need for new housing for groups who may use the service such as the
        homeless, BME communities, older and disabled people.

   2.8. It is likely that officers employed to deliver a housing options service would require a
        broader knowledge and skills base than that required to carry out the homeless
        assessment function.

3. Housing Options Service – Leeds City Council

   3.1. It is important to stress that the development of housing options services should be on a
        city wide, cross sector basis. However, the re-organisation of services provided by Leeds
        City Council at the current HAP (Homelessness Advice and Prevention) service will be a
        key element of this wider programme.

   3.2. Leeds City Council want to deliver a step change to the way housing options services are
        currently delivered with a greater emphasis placed on enabling people who use the
        service to retain their current homes and to identify for them appropriate housing

   3.3. One of the key issues that has faced the service at HAP has been managing the number
        of people who present in person requesting a service. Clearly an immediate housing
        advice service needs to be readily available to people who have an emergency need.
        However, it is believed that a significant proportion of customers could be better assisted
       if they were offered a planned appointment, invariably at their own home, to discuss their
       housing options.

      Furthermore it is believed that if such a planned housing options service could be
      provided then there is a greater likelihood that issues could be dealt with at an earlier
      point and therefore reduces the need for a customer to present at crisis point. It also
      needs to be stressed that the service needs to be available to all people who have a
      housing need at whatever level. This should range from a person who wishes to obtain
      advice on buying a home through to a person who is sleeping rough.

   3.4. Data collection has indicated that 40% of all queries relate to the issuing of notice by
        private landlords and therefore significant emphasis will be placed on equipping staff with
        the relevant expertise to carry out tenancy relations work. It has been recognised that
        there need to be strong links with the LCC Environmental Health section which carries
        out the enforcement role and also manages the Leeds Accreditation Scheme. Landlord
        and tenant law is a complex area and high quality and pro-active tenancy relations work
        will often involve negotiation with landlords and tenants. This emphasises the importance
        of staff having a broad range of knowledge and skills to carry out effective housing
        options work.

   3.5. The reduction in the availability of social housing units to let has placed a greater
        emphasis on using the private rented sector as a source of longer term housing. LCC is
        seeking to assist around 80 households a month to secure an assured short-hold
        tenancy. It has been recognised that an opportunity has arisen through developments in
        student housing provision that has left landlords with empty properties that may be used
        for alternative uses such as housing families.

   3.6. An effective housing options service needs to be aware of trends and opportunities that
        may arise within the privately rented sector. Housing options service also need to
        recognise the importance of promoting sustainable communities and clearly there has
        been significant concern relating to the concentration of vulnerable people in poor quality,
        poorly managed privately rented housing in certain areas of the city. Greater emphasis
        will be placed on developing strategies around appropriate use of the private rented

   3.7. The council will seek to develop existing options designed to promote the capacity of
        people to maintain their existing homes such as mediation services for young people
        experiencing difficulties with their parents and the Sanctuary Scheme that offers a
        solution to people at risk of losing their accommodation due to domestic violence or other
        hate crime.

4. Delivering Housing Options and Legal Position

   4.1. There is no doubt that the shift in focus towards housing options represents a significant
        opportunity to improve service delivery for people who are in housing need. However, it
        needs to be recognised that the council has legal duties towards people who are
        homeless and threatened with homelessness that should not be affected by an initial
        focus on helping a person remain in their existing home.
  4.2. The drive towards delivering housing options has been central government led. However
       it is worth noting that guidance from government is subject to scrutiny by the courts and
       recently in some instances has been deemed to be unlawful. For example a recent test
       case has determined that local authorities must not defer taking a homeless application
       whilst mediation work is on-going.

  4.3. The shift towards delivering housing options services needs to be complemented by
       accessible arrangements relating to complaints and statutory review. Officers need to be
       aware of changes in case law and interpretation of policy and practice. It is also
       envisaged that the development of a city wide cross sector Homelessness Forum, which
       sits within the Leeds Housing Partnership structure, will play a critical role in developing
       housing options services that both meets the housing needs of customers but also
       ensures that their legal rights are observed.

5. Conclusion

  5.1. The shift in focus towards housing options clearly responds to government policy in
       relation to tackling homelessness and reflects a number of local strategic themes,
       outcomes and priorities. A comprehensive housing options service will endeavour to
       assist a person to retain their existing homes, wherever possible. The service will also
       seek to assist a person to secure alternative housing and therefore such services will be
       of significant importance in terms of accessing affordable housing. The re-organisation of
       services at HAP is a key element of the drive towards delivering comprehensive housing
       options service but this aim will require such a focus to be made on a cross sector basis.
       It will be important to ensure that the delivery of a housing option service does not impact
       upon a person‟s statutory housing rights.

6. Recommendation

  6.1. To note the contents of the report.
Appendix B: Housing Solutions and Pathways

Housing Access
 Advice on availability of different housing tenures, sizes, types
 Advice on locations, costs, amenities
 Securing access to home ownership
 Advice on access to shared equity/shared ownership housing
 Advice on access to sub market rented housing options
 Access to „subsidised‟ rented housing (priority need requirements, waiting times etc)
 Advice on access to market rented housing
 Advice on housing options for older people;
 Advice on housing options for people with physical, sensory or learning disabilities
 Advice on housing options for BME communities
 Advice on housing options for vulnerable people
 Advising on potential use of different mortgage products and securing access
 Advice on Homebuy schemes
 Pathways to Home Ownership

Housing Advice and enabling
 Homelessness Prevention
 Emergency homelessness services
 Housing support
 Debt Counselling
 Financial inclusion
 Furniture provision services
 Housing tenancy support
 Floating support
 ASB/Signpost services

Housing Quality
 Advice on Energy efficiency/affordable warmth
 Advice on Carbon neutral homes
 Housing improvement and renovation
 Advice on adaptations and equipment
 Signposting to accredited and /or licensed Private rented housing
                                                                                                                             Item 5
                                                                         Housing Strategy Action Plan review: Theme 1 Decent Places

Action to be     Output Measures by                           Current progress                           Traffic   Action required
reviewed         2010                                                                                    Light
Housing Market   The number of homes         SRHP/HMR -Holbeck and Beeston Hill
Renewal          at risk of market decline
                 will have reduced by        The Beverley‟s - Acquisition of 97 obsolete properties      Amber     Agreement among stakeholders on
                 9,000 across Leeds          now well advanced. LFHA and Unity HA have agreed to                   redevelopment plan and seek planning
                                             swap 2 properties to consolidate LFHA ownership.                      consent to permit CPO
                 1,110 low demand/           Adjacent site purchased by developer CITU. LCC and
                 obsolete properties in      LFHA discussing legal agreement for future site disposal;
                 market renewal areas        LCC also examining redevelopment proposals to seek
                 will have been replaced     planning consent - both these actions prepare way for
                 with 700 new homes for      CPO action.
                 low cost home
                 ownership, rent or          Garnets – BHHRP Board has considered scenarios              Amber     Incorporated into Regeneration Plan for
                 market sale                 prepared by Civic Architect‟s team and agreed                         Beeston Hill & West Hunslet, currently out to
                                             redevelopment approach. Priority 4 in outline                         consultation
                                             programme for 2008-11 - will commence subject to

                                             Recreations - acquisition of private properties under way   Amber     Workshop arranged by LCC City
                                             in three phases. Incorporated into Regeneration Plan for              Development to propose and agree
                                             Holbeck - shortly to be accepted by LCC.                              redevelopment approach following proposed

Housing Market                               Harehills
Renewal                                      Little Comptons - Currently 3 acquisitions out of 11        Amber     Completion of Little Comptons clearance and
                                             obsolete properties have been completed with a further 2              plan for use of site. Note any potential activity
                                             properties where a formal offer has been accepted and                 around use of CPO.
                                             the legal processes are being undertaken leading to
                                             completion. There are 22 properties that are owned by                 Links to the wider EASEL initiative.
                                             the authority, managed by Leeds East Homes who will
                                             be undertaking the necessary action to rehouse the
                                             existing tenants.

                                             Shepherds Lane
                                             SRHP Funding switched to Beeston Hill. Further              Red       Monitor development progress Overall plan
                                             development work is required to achieve funding to the                needed for housing market renewal
                                             2008/10 SRHP programme.Heritage Lottery funding                       programme to inform future bids.
                                             received for refurbishing housing in Chapeltown
Action to be      Output Measures by                       Current progress                          Traffic   Action required
reviewed          2010                                                                               Light
Housing Market                           East End Park /Cross Green
Renewal                                  This scheme involves the acquisition of 5 obsolete          Amber     Overall plan needed for Cross Green/East
                                         properties. Currently no acquisitions have been taken                 End Park to inform future bidding
                                         place, however 3 of the properties have had a formal
                                         offer has been accepted. There are 16 properties that are             Monitor progress of decanting across the
                                         owned by the authority and which are managed by Leeds                 private and public tenures. Note any potential
                                         South East Homes who will be undertaking the                          activity around use of CPO.
                                         necessary action to rehouse the existing tenants.

                                         Phase 2 scheme (St Hilda‟s) was given Executive Board       Green     Monitor progress of decanting across the
                                         approval in September 2006. There are 52 properties in                private and public tenures. Note any potential
                                         total of which 31 managed by Leeds South East Homes                   activity around use of CPO
                                         and 1 council owned property on leasehold with a further
                                         20 properties to acquire from private owners.                         May be issues arising from need to re-profile
                                                                                                               the West Yorkshire SRHP programme
                                                                                                               following loss of HMR funding
Housing Market    Achievement of Phase   Phase 1 sites - Planning permission achieved for all        Amber     Monitor progress on Phase 1 sites against the
Renewal (EASEL)   1 targets              sites which will provide 750 new units in Gipton and                  timetable for construction.
                                         seacroft. Anticipated site possession is Dec 07

                                         Establishment of the Joint Venture Company -                Amber     Note progress on establishment of the JVC
                                         Discussions are still ongoing between representatives of
                                         the Council and their partner, Bellways in relation to
                                         establishing the company. On target to establish a
                                         company early new Year 08

                                         Phase 2 sites - Analysis is taking place to establish an    Amber     Housing partners to support the
                                         understanding of the extent of replacement housing,                   Neighbourhood planning process.
                                         including social housing, needed to support the next
                                         phase of delivery. The next key action in terms of land
                                         use planning will be to commence neighbourhood
                                         planning which will develop the next level of detail for
                                         housing infrastructure and re provision in local areas.

Housing Market                           Project under judicial review – expected outcome by end     Amber     Decanting arrangements need firming up
Renewal (Little                          of the year. DCLG support to move to the next stage still             along with plans for replacement housing
London PFI)                              awaited
Action to be       Output Measures                     Current progress                             Traffic   Action required
reviewed           by 2010                                                                          Light
Housing Market                       Decision still awaited from the DCLG with regard to the        Amber     Work has commenced on acquisition of B2B
Renewal (Holbeck                     Round 5 bid submission. Not expected until early 2008.                   properties in the Recreations/Runswicks with
and Beeston PFI)                     OBC to be submitted by November 2007; joint                              SRHP and HMRF. Further phases will
                                     procurement with Little London                                           continue subject to funding in 2008-11. Loss
                                                                                                              of HMRF will be a challenge. Redevelopment
                                                                                                              proposals being worked on with LCC
Housing Market                       Ongoing work to develop a land framework for the area          Amber     Need for clear plan for West Leeds Gateway
Renewal (West                        that will encourage and attract private sector involvement               linked to Leeds-Bradford Corridor
Leeds Gateway)
                                     A bid has been submitted for £28 million over 5 years by       Amber     Detailed submission to the Housing
                                     Bradford Community Housing Trust through the Firebird                    Corporation – National Affordable Housing
                                     Joint Venture Company to the Housing Corporation                         Programme by the 2nd November 2007
                                     under the Northern Affordable Housing Challenge in
                                     relation to the Leeds-Bradford Corridor (The delivery
                                     agent). If successful the bid will deliver 964 units (300 in
                                     Leeds) of affordable accommodation over the five year
                                     period on three sites (2 within Bradford and 1 within
                                     Leeds). ). Current Progress – The bid proposal was
                                     agreed by the Housing Corporation – Project Board in
                                     June 2007 to progress to being developed as a formal
                                     bid under the National Affordable Housing Programme. In
                                     addition to the traditional development approach a
                                     worklessness theme is being developed across the two
                                     local authorities which also hopefully be supported by an
                                     Innovation and Good Practice Grant( IGP) that is being
                                     submitted to the Housing Corporation that meets one of
                                     the key themes of worklessness that is a key theme of
                                     the IGP programme

                                     Heritage Lottery allocation made to refurbish older            Green     Need to ascertain details of allocation,
                                     housing in Armley                                                        location and qualifying works

                                     Feasibility Study on Leeds-Bradford Corridor project           Green     Progressing Leeds-Bradford Corridor Project.
                                     Completed and working groups established to develop
                                     detailed housing strategy
Action to be           Output Measures by                           Current progress                             Traffic   Action required
reviewed               2010                                                                                      Light
Strategy for Back-     Strategic approach to       LCC is funding re‟new to coordinate research on B2Bs          Green     Collate research results into background
to-backs               tackling issues of demand   and Strategy Development.                                               report and commence drafting of Back to
                       and condition relating to                                                                           Back Housing Strategy
                       back-to-backs in Leeds      Steering Group with broad representation is overseeing
                                                   project: mapping location of B2Bs (with WYHP),
                                                   historical and policy context, housing market, technical
                                                   options, case studies.

To ensure increased    Development of an           Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership established          Green     Plan to be implemented through the
provision of           “Affordable Housing         following Executive Board approval in March                             Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership.
affordable housing     Strategy by autumn 2005
                                                   2007.Inauural meeting took place on the 22 August
                                                   2007. The establishment of the Partnership was in
Establishing more      Revised Supplementary       advance of the Housing Green Paper 2007 that
effective working      Planning document           proposed the establishment of Local Housing
arrangements with      /Housing Needs Annexe       Companies with Leeds being one of the 14 pilot
                       with revised targets for    authorities.
                       housing market zones by
Ensure that existing   September 2006              Leeds Strategic Housing Market Assessment                     Green     Continuing housing market assessment and
and future commuted                                completed. Headline figure is that the level of                         monitoring taking place and findings from
sums received from     At least 600 new            affordable housing required to meet need and demand                     SHMA and other housing market research in
developers used to     affordable homes for rent   across all housing tenures has increased from of 420                    process of being disseminated to partners
provide appropriate    or low cost home            in 2003 to 1889 per year,
affordable housing     ownership will have been
                       provided through the        An action plan is being developed to produce the
                       Councils planning powers    desired outcomes for members, stakeholders and
                       and 650 through use of      officers
                       SRHP funds                       - Between April 2006 to date 22 units have been
                                                            completed with a further 166 units on site
                                                        - Currently 62 homes are under construction
                                                            with a further 31 to go on site later in the year.

                                                   Commuted Sums:        36 units agreed but not yet             Amber     Action needed to determine uses for
                                                   completed                                                               remaining commuted sums

                                                   Timetable for the formal consultation on the                  Amber     The SPD is timetabled to be adopted by
                                                   Supplementary Planning Document on Affordable                           December 2008. To review if any material
                                                   Housing which will replace the existing Supplementary                   changes following the assessment can be
                                                   Planning Guidance has been developed.                                   implemented in advance of the formal
                                                                                                                           consultation process
Action to be          Output Measures by                            Current progress                           Traffic   Action required
reviewed              2010                                                                                     Light
Review of policy on   Land identified for           77 acres of HRA land identified for development of         Green     Continuous review of available land together
land release and      affordable housing            affordable housing that will be overseen by the                      with review of potential future sites that
asset management      provision                     Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership.                            become available through clearance or
to support                                                                                                               demolition through the ALMO Decency
development           [No. of hectares of land to                                                                        Programmes.
                      be brought forward to be
                      determined]                   Phase 1 Sites (6) of the 77 acres identified and process   Green     Outcome of the National Affordable Housing
                                                    undertaken to select partners who could obtain funding               Programme allocations by February 2008.
                                                    under the National Affordable Housing Programme
                                                    2008/11. Four partner development organisations
                                                    (Affinity Sutton, Arena, Firebird and Sanctuary) have
                                                    been supported by the Affordable Housing Strategic
                                                    Partnership to submit bids.

                                                    The Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership will be       Green     Monitoring of site assembly , development
                                                    considering a detailed report at the December meeting                and procurement by the Affordable Housing
                                                    on progress on the remaining sites in relation to the                Strategic Partnership.
                                                    development of the sites, timetable and suggested
                                                    approach to procurement,

Implementing the      The percentage of homes       City wide Void Rates – September 2006 = 6.37%.             Red       Review voids targets.
Leeds Empty           that are empty across the     Increasing numbers of empty investment properties will               Review what techniques that can be used to
Property Strategy     city will have reduced to     have an impact on CPA performance.                                   tackle high void rate in city centre and LS6
                      3% and from 4.7% to 2%                                                                             private rented sector.
Monitoring the        within target areas           Target Areas
patterns of void                                    Holbeck and Beeston 2.43%                                  Amber
properties by                                       Harehills 1.96%                                            Green
tenure and location                                 Chapeltown 2.33%                                           Amber
                                                    Cross Green 7.94%                                          Red       Identify measures to reduce void rates in
Bring more back                                     East End Park 6.85%                                        Red       Cross Green/East End Park
into use to meet
housing needs                                       Over 20% of properties within the city centre remain       Red       Review following audit of City Centre housing
                                                    vacant and 35% are not occupied for 100% of the time.                to take place in February 2007. Lobby DCLG
                                                    Driven by the high level of institutional investment                 on treatment of empty properties in the city
                                                    purchases and property clubs.                                        centre

                                                    Level of vacancies in Leeds 6 has increased                Red       Keep close watching brief on market changes
                                                    significantly to over 25% within Headingley ward and to              within LS6 and seek mechanisms for bringing
                                                    a lesser extent in the Hyde Park and Woodhouse ward.                 empty homes back into use.
Action to be    Output Measures by                            Current progress                          Traffic   Action required
reviewed        2010                                                                                    Light
Environmental   Air quality standards will   All air quality standards are being met within Leeds.      Green     Ascertain if a review of National Air Quality
quality         have been met                Pollution levels in Leeds continue to remain low when                standards is to take place and if so what
                throughout the city and      compared to other major cities & nationally.                         effects this would have within the city.
                there will have been a
                systematic improvement       Currently 2 active Air Quality Management Orders                     Review progress on AQMO‟S
                of environmental             (AQMO).
                                             1. The first is in relation to PM10 (particulates) in      Amber/
                                             Garden Village, Micklefield. Principally caused by         Green
                                             domestic solid fuel heating. A number of properties
                                             have since been converted to gas/electric and the
                                             pollution levels are now acceptable, such that his order
                                             could be lifted.

                                             2. The second AQMO is to reduce levels of NO2 below        Amber
                                             40ug/l in several discrete areas. The largest being 30-
                                             40 homes at Ebor Gardens on the 'Woodpecker'
                                             Junction of the A64 and a smaller number of properties
                                             at Ladybeck Close again adjacent to the A64. All are
                                             expected to comply with the requisite air quality
                                             standards by 2010.

Anti-social     All ALMOs and RSLs           Leeds City Council has a signed service level              Amber     Review progress with RSLs to update service
behaviour       signed up to cross sector    agreement in place with all ALMOs and RSLs. These                    level agreements to incorporate the wider
                ASB agreements               agreements are due for renewal during 2006/7.                        „respect‟ agenda and the „Respect Housing
                                             At Sept 2006 71 ABCs (of which 60 were for young
                Increasing ABCs entered      people) had been entered into compared to 194 for the      Amber     The ASBU will continue to work with Housing
                into                         full year 05/06 (of which 137 were for young people) -               organisations to increase their use of ABCs
                                             below target against last years figure                               and other prevention/diversion options. ASBU
                                                                                                                  believe that there are no specific issues which
                                                                                                                  may create difficulties in achieving the output

                                                                                                                  Use of this target needs review as it does not
                                                                                                                  demonstrate what action has been taken to
                                                                                                                  assist people off the ABC‟s.
Action to be         Output Measures by                           Current progress                          Traffic   Action required
reviewed             2010                                                                                   Light
Anti-social          Reducing Burglary rates     The total number of recorded domestic burglaries in        Red       Review of proposed action to tackle the
behaviour                                        Leeds between April 06 and September 06 was 4086                     increasing levels of burglary which include
(continued)                                      (12.7 per 1000 households) compared with 3656 (11.4                      A burglary problem profile has bee
                                                 per 1000 households) during the same period in 05/06.                    commissioned for the end of November 06
                                                 Analysis shows this to be a burglary increase 11.8%                      inform and priorities activity for th
                                                 when compared to the previous year, equivalent to 430                    forthcoming year.
                                                 more victims.                                                            Combating the high level of sneak-
                                                                                                                          burglaries remains a priority and a „lock yo
                                                 Between April and September a total of 942 properties      Green?        doors‟ campaign will be promoted over th
                                                 have been target hardened and a total of 11 alleygates                   next few months.
                                                 have been installed.                                                     Neighbourhood Policing Teams will b
                                                                                                                          prioritising time and resources into tacklin
                                                                                                                          burglary in the Pudsey/Weetwood divisio
                                                                                                                          over the next quarter.
                                                                                                                          Continued focus on high risk group
                                                                                                                          especially students will be maintained
                                                                                                                      Pilot schemes such as the anti-climb paint on
                                                                                                                      drain pipes and use of smartwater will be
                                                                                                                      evaluated and considered for wider application.
Diversification of   Fewer students living in    1 Draft Student Housing Strategy produced and              Green     Shared Housing Action Plan under review
Student housing      inner NW Leeds              Shared Housing Action Plan agreed by all parties.

Agreeing a balance   New purpose built
of student and       housing on the fringes of   Student population in „Leeds 6 has reduced partly due      Amber     Managing expectations of community activists
residential          Leeds City Centre but       to numbers not rising and partly due to moves into
population           close to the university     purpose built housing. De-studentification now
                     campuses                    becoming main issue to address.
A strategic
approach to new      Gradual movement of         Increased student population in postcode areas             Amber     Monitor occupancy of purpose built housing.
purpose built        students to adjacent        containing purpose built blocks.10% of city centre                   Need to research intentions of private landlords
student              private rented shared       dwellers are students but little significant movement to             towards divestment
accommodation        housing markets from        other areas with private rented housing
                     purpose built student
Promoting private    accommodation               Issue of increasing number of empty properties in          Red       Need to research and identify mechanisms for
rented housing in                                Leeds 6 (3000 bedspaces/800 properties)                              bringing empty homes back into use for rent or
other locations                                                                                                       discounted sale. Work to develop Headingley
than LS6                                                                                                              Development Trust as a Community Land Trust
                                                                                                                      to „recycle‟ unlet/unwanted properties
                                                                                   Item 6
                                                 Report to LHP Executive 12 November 2007

                                Review of the LHP Executive and Strategic Working Groups

1.0   Introduction and Background
1.1   The Leeds Housing Partnership (LHP) was established in 1994 to develop and
      implement the Leeds Housing Partnership and link together housing and regeneration
      strategy from a partnership perspective.

1.2   The Government has made plain its expectation that the delivery of Local Area
      Agreements will be based on sound and effective partnership working. Addressing the
      housing and regeneration issues present in Leeds, and continuing to work towards
      achieving the aims of both „going up a league and „narrowing the gap between affluent
      and disadvantaged communities‟ cannot be achieved by one organisation alone and will
      require the coordinated contributions of a wide range of agencies.

1.3   A paper presented to the last meeting of the LHP Executive identified the linkage of the
      development of Leeds Strategic Plan 2008-11, to the Leeds Local Area Agreement and
      the „one Council approach‟ being adopted by Leeds City Council and the development of
      outcome responsibilities and the „outwards facing‟ responsibilities for Chief Officers in
      ensuring the delivery of those outcomes The Leeds Strategic Plan, is a „work in progress‟
      but has identified strategic housing outcomes to be delivered through the Leeds Local
      Area Agreement, namely

         Increased number of homes across tenures meeting the decency standard
         Increase in the number of affordable homes
         Increased levels of reoccupation of long-term empty homes
         Expansion of accreditation in the private rented sector
         Supporting vulnerable groups to live independently
         Reduction in the number of homeless households
         Redressing the mix of housing tenure as appropriate within neighbourhoods
         Increased opportunities to access housing options across all tenures
         Ensuring use of housing land and assets supports wider regeneration programmes
         Creation of pathways for neighbourhoods to influence decisions at neighbourhood
         Supporting integration and cohesion at a neighbourhood level

1.4   The LHP currently consists the LHP Forum, its Executive, six Strategic Working Groups
      and three District Housing Partnerships. The role and functions of the revised District
      Housing Partnership were agreed at the last meeting of the LHP Executive.

1.5   This paper aims to ensure that the LHP Executive is „fit for purpose‟ to respond to the high
      priority being given to housing by central government and to deliver the strategic
      outcomes identified through the Local Area Agreement and the Leeds Strategic Plan. It
      will aim to do this by reviewing the Terms of Reference and membership of the LHP
      Executive; reviewing the number of Strategic Working Groups and their functions and
      identifying a work programme for the coming 18 months.
2.0   LHP Executive.
2.1   The LHP Executive acts as the Executive body of the Leeds Housing Partnership a
      network of around 50 organisations involved in developing and delivering housing and
      related provision and services. Its membership is drawn from across housing tenures and
      is organised on a mix of representation of the various sectors while also covering the
      major areas of intervention and activity. It is chaired by the Chair of the Leeds Housing

2.2   Terms of Reference
2.2.1 The current Terms of Reference for the LHP Executive are identified in Appendix A. The
      publication of the Housing Green Paper, the movement towards strategic direction and
      investment allocation to a city regional level and the changing strategic direction within
      Leeds City Council requires a review of those Terms of Reference and it is proposed that
      the following be adopted
      1. To ensure housing partnership action to deliver the strategic housing outcomes
         identified in the Leeds Strategic Plan and the Leeds Local Area Agreement
      2. To establish partnership processes for the delivery of the Leeds Housing Strategy and
         its sub-strategies and the housing contributions to the Vision for Leeds and the Leeds
         Strategic Plan incorporating the Leeds Local Area Agreement and to implement those
      3. To ensure an effective and appropriate partnership working to achieve increased
         housing supply the better use of housing across tenures and support the work of the
         Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership in delivering increased provision of affordable
      4. To ensure that housing strategy and investment in Leeds contribute to housing and
         influences strategy and investment at a regional and sub-regional level
      5. To develop effective links with other sectors and agencies to contribute to the delivery
         of cross-cutting programmes and outcomes
      6. To ensure that housing partners work together to ensure increased provision of
         affordable housing and enable enhanced and fair access to housing for the diverse
         population of Leeds
      7. To ensure that housing market change is monitored on a continuous basis and that
         those changes are understood by housing partners and interventions developed
      8. To ensure the development of housing and tenancy management and support services
         to enable and maintain independent living
      9. To ensure the effective operation of relevant strategic working groups and the three
         District Housing Partnerships

2.3   Chair
2.3.1 It is proposed that the Chair of the Leeds Housing Partnership Forum (currently Steve
      Williamson, Chief Executive of re‟new) continue as chair.
2.4   Membership
2.4.1 The existing membership of the LHP Executive was the result of a review undertaken in
      2005. We need to review membership again in order to ensure
      a) effective representation across housing tenures: currently there is representation for
         Council services, Governmental agencies the Leeds ALMOs, Housing Associations,
         private housing developers and landlords, ‟third sector‟ housing organisations and
         tenants and residents
      b) appropriate representation of Leeds City Council services within the „One Council‟
         approach: currently Housing Services, Environmental Services and Housing Strategy
         and Commissioning are represented
      c) appropriate coverage of key intervention areas: currently housing development,
         housing management; housing improvement, environmental health, private sector
         housing, Supporting People, housing strategy, tenant involvement are covered by the
         existing membership.

2.4.2 It is proposed that some change is made to the membership of the LHP Executive to
      strengthen coverage across intervention areas, representation of key Council services and
      private sector involvement. The intention would be to have an Executive of 18 members
      including 2 observers and 3 permanent support officers attending (others would be called
      on as-needed basis)
      a)     Leeds City Council: It is proposed that the Director of Environment and
             Neighbourhoods, who currently holds accountability for the delivery of strategic
             housing outcomes, be invited to be a member of the LHP Executive. This would
             be to ensure and enable the delivery of the strategic housing outcomes identified in
             the Leeds Strategic Plan through
             -      ensuring delivery of interventions/actions flagged to Environment and
             -      facilitating delivery of actions in the domain of other council services
             -      Influencing partner agencies to encourage effective delivery and challenge
                    sub-standard performance or participation
             It is proposed that the Chief Housing Services Officer and the Deputy Chief
             Environmental Health Officer continue to be members and that the Chief Planning
             Officer, Chief Regeneration Officer and Chief Adult Services Officer be invited to
             attend in order to ensure ownership of housing issues in key council services and
             leadership of delivery of actions in their domains.
      b)     Leeds PCT: It is proposed that the Planning and Strategy Director of the Leeds
             PCT be invited to join the LHP Executive to provide input and linkage with regard to
             housing and health issues
      c)     Housing Associations: it is proposed that there continues to be three housing
             associations as currently. It is proposed that current representatives remain „in
             post‟ under the next review in 2009.
      d)      ALMOs: It is proposed that there be one representative of the Leeds ALMOs as
             currently. It is proposed that current representatives remain „in post‟ under the next
             review in 2009.
      e)     Private sector: It is proposed there be three private sector. The Leeds Landlords
             Forum will be asked to nominate a landlords representative and the Leeds Property
             Forum will be asked to nominate two representatives.
      f)     ‘Third Sector’ : It is proposed that there continues to be one „third sector‟
             representative organized through Leeds Accommodation Forum
      g)     Tenants and Residents: it is proposed that Leeds Tenants Federation continue to
             nominate one representative.
      h)     The Government Office for Yorkshire and Humber and the Housing
             Corporation/Homes and Communities Agency will be invited to send one
             representative each as observers.

      It is proposed that the Head of Housing Strategy and Commissioning for Leeds City
      Council Environment and Neighbourhoods, the Strategy and Intelligence Director from
      re‟new and the Advisor to the Leeds Tenants Federation attend as permanent support
      officers along with a minute taker (also from re‟new). The full proposed list is attached in
      Appendix B

2.5   Relationships with other bodies
2.5.1 The LHP Executive is linked to the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership Board
      through the Chief Housing Services Officer of Leeds City Council and the Chair of the LHP
      sitting on the Board. The LHP Executive will work to coordinate and prioritise local housing
      development priorities identified by District housing Partnerships. gain full participation of
      housing partners to achieve the objectives of the Affordable Housing Delivery Plan

2.5.2 The Leeds Housing Partnership is a contributory partnership to the Leeds Initiative and
      the LHP Executive ensure the delivery of the housing contribution to the Vision for Leeds,
      the Leeds Strategic Plan and the Leeds Regeneration Plan. The Chair of the Leeds
      Housing Partnership currently chairs the Narrowing the Gap Executive

3.0   Strategic Working Groups
3.1   There are currently 8 strategic working groups reporting to the LHP Executive via the LHP
      Coordination Group (the officers coordination group for the LHP Executive). The majority
      of these report to a range of bodies and would have to be in existence with or without the
      LHP. The work programmes of each of these and details of chairing and support
      arrangements are shown in Appendix C.
3.1.1 Fair Access Strategic Working Group: This group ensures that issues of fair access to
      housing are built into the strategic housing process, investment programmes and housing
      provisions. It is proposed that this group continues to operate as currently.
3.1.2 Supporting People Core Strategy Group: This group advises the Supporting People (SP)
      Commissioning Body and liaises with the SP Providers Forum. It is required under
      national SP procedures. It is proposed that this group continues to operate as currently.
3.1.3 Older People and Disability Housing Strategy Group: This group is responsible for
      overseeing development and implementation of housing strategy and provision for older
      people and people with disabilities. It is proposed that this group continues to operate but
      its role and membership be reviewed.
3.1.4 BME Housing Strategy Group: This group is responsible for overseeing development and
      implementation of housing strategy and provision for BME communities, and also for
      asylum seekers and economic migrants. It is proposed that this group continues to
      operate but its membership be reviewed.
3.1.5 Private Rented Sector Strategic Working Group: This group is chaired by the Executive
      Member for Housing and is responsible for implementing the Private Rented Housing
      Strategy, and key initiatives such as HMO licensing, Private landlord Accreditation, Local
      Housing Allowance in private rented housing. The Shared Housing Group is a sub group
      of the Private Rented Sector SWG and oversees strategy and housing provision for
      students and responses to housing and neighbourhood issues in inner North West Leeds.
      It is proposed that both these groups continue to operate as currently.
3.1.6 Empty Property Forum: This group is developing, implementing and monitoring the Leeds
      Empty Property Strategy. It is proposed that this group continues to operate as currently.
3.1.7 Housing and Planning Strategic Working Group: This group provides a mechanism for
      involving housing partners in the development of planning policy and housing and
      planning links. The group was the advisory group to the Leeds Strategic Housing Market
      Assessment and will be the key consultation body for the review of the Supplementary
      Planning Document on Affordable Housing. It is proposed that this group continues to
      operate with a strengthened private sector and housing association membership but with
      a clear link in its Terms of Reference to the District Housing Partnerships and the
      Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership Board in relation to affordable housing.
3.1.8 Homelessness Forum: in order to ensure a coordinated partnership response to
      homelessness prevention and the provision of emergency housing and rehousing
      opportunities for homeless people, it is proposed that a Homelessness Forum be
      established chaired by Paul Belbin of foundation Housing.

4.0   LHP Executive Work Programme
4.1   It is proposed that the work programme for the LHP Executive over the coming 18 months
      will comprise the following key projects:
      a)     Review of the Leeds Housing Strategy to take account of the Housing Green Paper
             and revised sub-strategies
      b)     Development of a partnership response to housing growth
      c)     Influencing the development of strategy and governance processes for the Leeds
             City Region and other sub regional activity.
      d)     Supporting the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership Board in securing a
             substantial increase in supply of affordable housing
      e)     Ensuring an effective housing input to the Leeds Local Development Plan and Area
             Action Plans and the new SPD on affordable housing
      f)     Overseeing implementation of the Leeds Housing Strategy sub-strategies
      g)     Advising on the implementation of largescale housing and regeneration projects
      h)     Encouraging the development of tenancy management and support services to
             better help people to live independently
      i)     Ensuring understanding of the implications of housing market assessment and
             analysis undertaken and that these are translated into actions
5.0     Recommendations
5.1     It is requested that LHP Executive members
        a) Agree the revised Terms of Reference for the Executive
        b) Agree the proposals for revised membership
        c) Agree the proposals relating to the Strategic Working Groups
        d) Approve the LHP Executive work programme
        e) Set out a timescale for further review

Huw Jones,
Strategy and Intelligence Director, re’new
Appendix A Terms of Reference for the Leeds Housing Partnership

The Terms of Reference for the Leeds Housing Partnership Forum are:
1     To own and endorse a programme of prioritised action identified by the Leeds Housing
      Partnership Executive to deliver the Leeds Housing Strategy; the housing contribution the
      Leeds Strategic Plan and Local Area Agreement and support and assist the work of the
      Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership
2     To enable greater understanding of key issues of housing and regeneration policy and
      enable all involved to understand and recognise the links between housing partners and
      between action on housing and regeneration issues
3     To establish appropriate contributions from housing partners to the housing and
      regeneration agendas
4     To provide a means of engaging partners on a number of levels relating to their capacity
      and interests
5     To share good practice and experience and enable partnership working to deliver on the

Terms of Reference and Membership of the Leeds Housing Partnership Executive

1. To establish, in communication with partners, processes for the delivery of the
   housing strategy and housing contributions to the Vision for Leeds and the Leeds Strategic
   Plan and implement those processes

2. To ensure that housing strategy and investment in Leeds contribute to housing strategy and
   investment at a regional and sub-regional level

3. To lead groupings of partner organisations in identifying means of progressing actions under
   the housing and regeneration strategy through 8 Strategic Working Groups

4. To coordinate and guide the activities of five District Housing Partnerships in identifying
   means of progressing actions under the housing and regeneration strategy at a local level
   and their contribution to the five District Regeneration Plans
Appendix B Membership of the LHP Executive

Name                         Organisation                                  Sector

Merran McRae                 Leeds ALMOs                                   ALMO
Dave Smith                   Leeds Tenants Federation                      Community
Ali Akbor                    Unity Housing Association                     Housing Association
Jenny Brierley               Connect Housing                               Housing Association
Richard Burnham              Home Housing Group                            Housing Association
Andy Beattie                 LCC Environmental Services                    Local Authority
Stephen Boyle                LCC Regeneration                              Local Authority
Phil Crabtree                LCC Planning                                  Local Authority
Neil Evans                   Director of Environment and Neighbourhoods    Local Authority
Sandie Keene                 LCC Adult Services                            Local Authority
Paul Langford                LCC Housing Services                          Local Authority
Carole Cochrane              Leeds Primary Care Trust                      NHS
Eugien Jaruga *              Keepmoat                                      Private sector
Chris Town                   Leeds Landlords Forum                         Private sector
Tba **                       Private Developer/Estate Agent                Private sector
Paul Belbin                  Foundation Housing                            Third Sector
Steve Williamson, (Chair)    re‟new                                        Third sector
Tony Bretherick              GOYH (Observer)                               Governmental
Lisa Jones                   Housing Corporation                           Governmental
Support Officers
Janey Barraclough            re‟new (minute taker)
Quintin Bradley              Leeds Tenants Federation
Bridget Emery                LCC Housing Strategy and Commissioning
Huw Jones (Deputy Chair)     re‟new

*        EJ has to confirm his continuing membership

**       Leeds Property Forum will be asked to nominate two representatives, preferably one
         developer and one estate agent
Appendix C         Strategic Working Groups and District Housing Partnerships

LHP Strategic Working groups review

Group          Current Role and issues                                                                             Chair       Support
LHP               Hub for Strategic Working groups, District Partnerships, LHP Executive and Forum                Huw         Lisa Huntley
Coordination      Formulate Leeds Housing Investment Programme in conjunction with DHPs and SWGs                  Jones       (Admin/Support)
Group             Monitor performance against Housing Strategy Action Plan outcome/output targets
                  Coordinate housing market assessment, research and intelligence gathering activity                          Rob McCartney
                  Ensure reporting mechanisms between                                                                         (Advisor)
                        a. LHP and the Strategic Affordable Housing Partnership
                        b. LHP Executive and Forum
                        c. LHP Executive and NTG Executive
                        d. LHP Executive and District Housing Partnerships
                        e. Strategic Working groups and LHP Executive
                        f. SWGs and DHPs
                  Maintain LHP website and ensure effective communication between all parts of the partnership
Fair Access       „Fair access proof‟ strategy and policy development to ensure that principles of fair access    Jenny       Aiden/Damien
                   spread through all parts of the housing agenda                                                  Brierley/   (Admin)
                  Identify linkages between SRHP funds, other special pots (PPFI) and mainstream capital and      Sharon
                   revenue funding in relation to services and housing developments for vulnerable people          Allen       Rob McCartney
                  Monitor progress in implementation of the Housing Strategy Action plan and the Action Plans                 (Support)
                   relating to sub-strategies relating to
                   a) Older persons housing                                                                                    Bridget Emery, Huw
                   b) Housing and support for vulnerable people (inc Supporting People)                                        Jones (Advisors)
                   c) Homelessness Strategy
                   d) BME housing strategy
                   e) Housing strategy for people with disabilities
                   f) Gypsies and Travellers
                   g) Asylum seekers, refugees and economic migrants
Supporting        Assist in implementation of Supporting people strategy                                          Bridget     Supporting People
People            Ensure Supporting People and Homelessness strategies support wider housing and                  Emery       Team (Admin)
                   regeneration strategy and District Regeneration Plans/Housing Strategies
                  Oversee implementation and review of Homelessness Strategy                                                  Rob McCartney
                  Monitor trends in homelessness applications and acceptances and identify service implications               (Support)
                  Ensure links with Yorkshire & Humberside/ WY Supporting People/ Homelessness Groups
                  Develop forward programme of investment through                                                             Huw Jones (Advisor)
                        - Capital (through SRHP and other sources)
                        - Revenue (through Supporting People and Local Authority mainstream funding)

Group            Current Role and issues                                                                               Chair       Support
Older and           Develop and implement a housing and care strategy for older people                                Mick        Barry Bridle (Admin)
Disabled            Identify sheltered housing that is obsolete or in low demand                                      Ward
Persons             Identify need for „staying put‟ support to enable older people to live independently                          Rob McCartney
Housing             Identify fuel poverty issues for older people                                                                 (Support)
Strategy            Develop a prioritised programme of investment: Capital (through SRHP, DoH and other
                     sources) and Revenue (through Supporting People, NHS, and LCC mainstream funding)                             Huw Jones (Advisor)
                    Develop and implement a housing and care strategy for people with disabilities
                    Review and improve collection of data on adapted properties and disabled facilities grants
                    Promote provision of lifetime homes to enable all homes to accommodate people with
                    Utilise existing consultation arrangements to ensure Involvement of people with disabilities in
                     strategy formulation
                    Improving procedures for administering Disabled Facilities Grants

BME Housing         Develop and implement a BME housing strategy and an implementation plan                           Ali Akbor   Neera Tyagi (Admin
Strategy            Identify need for further research                                                                            and
                    Monitor the allocation of social housing to BME households and restrictions in access to                      Support)
                     housing affecting BME communities
                    Monitor the housing needs of new BME communities                                                              Huw Jones, Rob
                    Develop a prioritised programme of investment                                                                 McCartney (Advisors)

Housing and         Provide partner input to housing and planning liaison                                             Eugien      re‟new (Amdin)
Planning            Advising on use of commuted sums.                                                                 Jaruga
                    Ensuring partner input to review of affordable housing policy                                                 Huw Jones
                    Developing ideas regarding the development of housing in the „Leeds Rim‟                                      (Support/Advisor)
                    Advising on the development of City centre housing
                    Ensuring partner input to ensure maximisation of affordable housing under S106 agreements                     Megan Godsell
                    Steering and informing Housing Market Assessment work                                                         (Support/Advisor)

Private Rented      Development and implementation of a private rented housing strategy                               Cllr Les    Glenys Meredith
Sector Housing      Promote membership of Leeds Landlords Accreditation Scheme                                        Carter      (Admin)
Strategy Group      Monitor and promote HMO licensing
                    Monitor issues relating to housing benefit                                                                    Andy
                    Promote better standards of housing management by private landlords                                           Beattie,(Support
                    Monitor the buy-to-let market
                                                                                                                                   Huw Jones (Advisor)

Group             Current Role and issues                                                                        Chair        Support
Shared               Development and implementation of a strategy for housing students                          Cllr         NW Area
Housing Group        Monitoring progress of the Shared Housing Action Plan                                      Martin       Management
                     Monitoring of student living patterns                                                      Hamilton     (Admin/Support)
                     Encouragement of diversification of student residence
                     Improving management of student housing                                                                 Huw Jones (Advisor)
                     Monitoring progress of neighbourhood and area management services to areas with high
                      student population
                     Encourage development of a housing strategy for Leeds 6
                     Encourage partnerships between housing providers
Empty Property       Formulation and implementation of Empty Homes Strategy                                     Andy         Glenys Meredith
Forum                Monitoring progress in meeting outcome targets set in empty homes strategy                 Beattie      (Admin)
                     Monitoring the incidence of empty homes across sectors                                                  Jon Hough (Support)
                     Identifying good practice in reduction of empty homes
                     Monitoring government policy relating to empty homes                                                    Huw Jones (Advisor)

District Housing Partnerships
Group          Current Role and issues                                                                           Chair        Support
East North East      Propose housing mix and tenure for affordable housing sites to the Strategic Affordable    Steve        Corinne Auty (Admin)
                      Housing Partnership                                                                        Hunt
                     Advise on development opportunities on available land                                                   Huw Jones (Support
                     Ensure local delivery of the Leeds Housing Strategy Action Plan and Investment Programme                and Advisor)
                     Identify local service provision improvement priorities
                     Identify local delivery mechanisms for housing development, remodelling, improvement
West North           Propose housing mix and tenure for affordable housing sites to the Strategic Affordable    Cllr Barry   Claire Keightley
West                  Housing Partnership                                                                        Anderson     (Admin)
                     Advise on development opportunities on available land
                     Ensure local delivery of the Leeds Housing Strategy Action Plan and Investment Programme                Janey Barraclough
                     Identify local service provision improvement priorities                                                 (Support)
                     Identify local delivery mechanisms for housing development, remodelling, improvement
                                                                                                                              Huw Jones (Advisor)
South and            Propose housing mix and tenure for affordable housing sites to the Strategic Affordable    Bob          Vicki Jagger (Admin)
Outer East            Housing Partnership                                                                        Howley
                     Advise on development opportunities on available land                                                   Lisa Huntley
                     Ensure local delivery of the Leeds Housing Strategy Action Plan and Investment Programme                (Support)
                     Identify local service provision improvement priorities
                     Identify local delivery mechanisms for housing development, remodelling, improvement                    Huw Jones (Advisor)

                                                                                      Item 7a
                                        Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12 November 2007

                                     Leeds Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership Board

The Leeds Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership Board (LAHSPB) has now met twice (22 August
2007 and 10 October 2007). Steve Williamson is a member of the board in his capacity as chair of
the Leeds Housing Partnership (LHP). The purpose of this report is to advise members of the main
issues arising at these meetings and seek views on any issues which they would like to be explored

First meeting of the Partnership Board
The first meeting of LAHSPB was held on 22 August 2007 and attended by representatives of:
   o English Partnerships
   o Government Office for Yorkshire and the Humber
   o The Housing Corporation
   o Leeds City Council (LCC)
   o Leeds Housing Partnership

Councillor Andrew Carter chaired the meeting and in his introductory remarks highlighted:
   o The importance of taking a long term approach to the critical issue of providing more
       affordable housing in Leeds;
   o In view of the importance of the issue, he intended to invite representatives of the other two
       political parties with the largest number of Council members on to the Board;
   o The importance of producing homes of a standard and type which were sustainable;
   o The need to focus on early delivery – he hoped building work could start this financial year;
   o The need to avoid being sidetracked by politically sensitive issues.

Collaborative agreement
A draft Collaborative Agreement setting out the scope and powers of the Partnership Board was
considered. It was agreed that partners should provide any comments on the agreement so that it
could be finalised at the next meeting.

Housing market assessment
Huw Jones (re‟new‟s Strategy and Intelligence Director) gave a presentation entitled „The New
Housing Market in Leeds‟; similar presentations have been provided to a number of groups including
the Council‟s Corporate Management Team and the Leeds Housing Partnership Forum and this
Executive. The presentation highlighted the significant shortfall of affordable housing in the city and
the need to develop additional supplies of appropriate affordable housing which met a variety of local

In discussion it was:
    o Agreed that the increased production of housing from planning gain was critical and
        suggested that the Council should explore using density rather than number of units as their

   o   Suggested that finding ways of expediting changes in the relevant supplementary planning
       documentation to take account of the Housing Market Assessment was crucial;

   o   Noted that there would be central government pressure to produce the greatest number of
       units at the lowest cost which would make it more difficult to produce larger family
       accommodation which was what was most needed;

   o   Agreed that it was important to use the evidence within the Housing Market Assessment and
       knowledge of local need to ensure that the Partnership Board produced additional homes of a
       size which matched local needs.
Phase 1 sites
A paper setting out progress with bids for the phase 1 sites was considered. In assessing bids it was
noted that:
   o It was important to take account of a wide range of factors and not just financial issues;
   o It was important to consider potential additional benefits such as local employment and
       training opportunities when homes were built;
   o A recommendation for the preferred bidder(s) would be made for consideration by the Board
       at its next meeting.

Issues arising form the first meeting
Since then the Chair of the Leeds Housing Partnership has taken the following action:

   o   Proposed amendments to the Collaborative Agreement seeking to clarify the scope of its
       work; it is understood that the majority of these have been agreed. It has been confirmed that
       the Chief Executive is a member of the Board as a representative of the Leeds Housing

   o   While understanding the need for confidentiality in terms of a number of aspects of the
       Board‟s work including details of bids for the phase 1 sites he has questioned the need for the
       terms of the Collaborative Agreement itself to be confidential; it has been agreed that this no
       longer needs to be the case and the proposed vision, strategic objectives and role of the
       LAHSPB are attached as Appendix 1 to this report.

   o   Submitted proposals for the assessment of bids for phase 1 sites (and subsequent phases)
       seeking to ensure a wide range of factors is taken into account. These proposals are
       attached as appendix 2 to this report; the approach taken to this with phase 1 sites is set out
       below in the report on the second meeting.

   o   Held an exploratory meeting with relevant staff in the Environment and Neighbourhoods
       Department considering how the delivery of additional affordable housing through planning
       gain might be achieved; the best way of doing this is under consideration and links to the
       proposals in the report „Review of the Leeds Housing Partnership Executive‟ to be considered
       at this meeting.

   o   Questioned the rationale for the change in requirements in the bidding process in respect of
       the management of the homes resulting from the phase 1 sites; originally prospective bidders
       were asked to consider management by the Leeds Arms Length Management Organisations
       (ALMOs) – this has now been made a requirement. The explanation given for this is set out
       below in the report on the second meeting

Second meeting of the Partnership Board
The second meeting of the LAHSPB took place on 10 October 2007.

Housing and planning issues
A report considering issues around the requirement for additional housing and planning was deferred
to the December 2007 meeting to allow more time to consider how to achieve the required increase
in overall housing supply whilst ensuring that housing quality, place making and the principles of
maintaining sustainable communities are realised and not compromised.

Phase 1 sites

This meeting considered proposals on selecting development partners for the phase 1 sites and
agreed the recommendations, made by LCC‟s Chief Housing Services Officer and the Housing
Corporation‟s Head of Housing Investment that four Housing Associations could submit bids to the
Corporation for the six identified LCC owned sites. It is anticipated that the sites could yield up to 185
units on the sites.

The organisations that will be supported to submit bids are:
    Affinity Sutton
    Arena
    Firebird
    Sanctuary

In discussion the following issues were raised:
    o The small number of local houisng associations involved; it was noted that smaller
        associations had more difficulty bidding at the levels of grant which the Housing Corporation
        would approve given their smaller levels of reserves.

   o   The requirement for those bidding to enter into management agreement with the relevant
       ALMO for management of the stock. It was noted that it had not been the intention to exclude
       associations from this bidding round and that criteria had been drawn up based on „practical

   o   What added value the schemes would bring in terms of contributing to local employment and
       regeneration and how this had been assessed; it was noted that these issues had formed part
       of the original proposals and these issues could be considered as part of the outcomes for the
       next programme of funding; it was agreed a note would be produced indicating the
       „additionality‟ the schemes recommended for bidding would produce.

Phase 2 sites
A report was considered setting out phase 2 sites. It was noted that the three larger sites all required
further work on the best way of procuring them and what development was required given their local
contexts. There were a number of small sites which could also be taken forward. It was agreed
further details on the process for advancing the phase 2 sites would be considered at the next

Role of District Housing Partnerships
A report setting out the role of District Housing Partnerships in helping to assess the local housing
needs of sites forming part of the portfolio of the LAHSPB was agreed.

Updates from Communities and Local Government, English Partnerships and the Housing
In updates from Communities and Local Government (CLG) English Partnerships (EP) and the
Housing Corporation (HC) the following issues were raised:

CLG: The importance of ensuring schemes met a range of quality thresholds and the importance of
community and members‟ engagement generally; the need to look at land development models such
as community land trusts; the need to ensure Leeds‟ work is brought to the attention of government

EP: Interviews for the post of Chief Executive of the agency combining English Partnerships and the
Housing Corporation were being held in October.

HC: Early signs from an initial assessment of the Comprehensive Spending Review was that
substantial funding would be available regionally to provide additional new affordable housing.

Issues arising from the second meeting
The following issues require further consideration:

   o   It has been agreed that the deferred report on Houisng and Planning will be considered at the
       next meeting (13 December 2007). While it is absolutely appropriate that the Council should
       determine its approach to these issues it is also important that partners contribute ideas to the
       debate given the complexity and importance of the issues concerned in terms of the work of
       LAHSPB. This is highly contentious issue given the demands and needs for additional
       housing and the extent to which this may mean developing on greenfield sites.
   o   How non-financial issues, nomination rights and specifically regeneration and employment
       benefits of schemes can best be maximised.

   o   The management of housing produced under the LAHSPB initiative and the rationale for
       deciding who should manage it.

   o   The best way of maximising the provision of affordable housing through planning gain and the
       best and cost effective way of engaging partners‟ input to this process.

   o   How best to determine the procurement route for phase 2 (and other) sites so that high quality
       sustainable proposals which meet local housing needs can most effectively be expedited.

It is recommended members
(a) Comment on the report
(b) Consider whether the draft assessment criteria seem appropriate and
(c) Indicate any further areas of work which they would like the Partnership‟s
     representative to raise.

Appendix 1
                                              SCHEDULE 1


Leeds is a vibrant, successful and growing modern city with a thriving quality of life. In order to
ensure that Leeds can develop and grow in the way the Council wants it to grow, it is essential that
there is a range of good quality housing in the city that meets the needs, requirements and
aspirations of all of our citizens.

The Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership will play a key role in delivering those needs,
requirements and aspirations by providing a strategic approach to increasing the provision of
affordable housing across the city that will benefit all the citizens of Leeds well into the future. This
will be done by:

       Maximising the supply of affordable housing to Leeds

       Increasing access to all neighbourhoods to create a mixed tenure approach that creates
        sustainable mixed communities.

       Enabling mixed tenure provision across Leeds to help create “housing ladders” and mixed

       Ensuring that the Housing and Planning functions have effective integration

       Supporting the aims of the Vision for Leeds 2004-2020 and the Renaissance Business Plan
        within the context of the emerging Leeds City Region.

       Supporting the existing and future major regeneration schemes in the city in ways which
        promote sustainable communities.

       Supporting the use of local labour and local supply chains.

                                        SCHEDULE 2

                                    Strategic Objectives

   To promote and manage the delivery of affordable housing in Leeds

   To make best use of the land made available by the Council for the provision of affordable

   To promote high quality urban design, building design and construction standards in the new
    housing provision

   To pro-actively market intermediate housing options to increase entry into home ownership

   To create mixed tenure provision across Leeds to help create “housing ladders” and mixed

   To ensure the provision of adequate infrastructure to support new developments

   To maximise the use of s.106 agreements to increase the supply of affordable housing

   To develop starter home initiatives and new financial products to support access to home

   To ensure that planning and housing are effectively integrated

   To ensure that decisions taken support the principles of regional and sub regional housing

   To contribute towards the Leeds Empty Property Strategy

   To maintain a strong working relationship with the private rented sector

   To support the delivery of regeneration schemes in the city

   To support the development of mixed tenure supported housing schemes across the city.

   To be pro-active and systematic in the monitoring of delivery to ensure that Councillors and
    Officers are aware of achievements

   To maintain the appropriate controls over the use of land and money in delivering affordable

   To provide a strong governance role on behalf of the Council

                                            SCHEDULE 3

                                       The Partnership Board

The Partnership Board is an advisory and delivery body whose role is as follows:-

      To act as a custodian and promoter of the vision and strategic objectives to maximise the
       delivery of affordable housing across the city.

      To provide strong governance to protect the integrity of the project

      To provide strategic guidance to the delivery team

      To provide regular progress reports to the Council

      To provide advice and progress reports to the Leeds Housing Partnership Executive in
       relation to the delivery of the Affordable Housing Plan 2006/16.

      To consider future land for injection into the Partnership and make representations to the
       Council about the use of such land

      To make decisions about the use of the land, identified by the Executive Board of the Council
       as available for affordable housing, on receipt of reports from the delivery team

      To ensure that those decisions are taken following an assessment of all the relevant data

      To ensure that all decisions taken support the Vision for Leeds 2, Leeds Housing Strategy
       and the Leeds Regeneration Plan.

      To ensure that all decisions provide value for money

Appendix 2

                                     Draft assessment criteria

Value for money
   o Rent levels: year of practical completion and future

   o   Total scheme costs

   o   Social Housing Grant requirements

Meeting housing need
  o Housing mix compared with local housing need (role of District Housing partnership;
      assessment re improved operation locally of „housing ladder.‟)

   o   Management arrangements

Regeneration benefits
   o Neighbourhood and regeneration benefits

   o   Construction employment and training benefits

   o Space standards

   o   Energy efficiency

   o   SAP ratings

   o   Estimated annual energy costs?

   o   Cyclical and major repairs replacement policy

Long term benefits
   o Treatment of stair-casing receipts (shared ownership)

   o   Treatment of right to buy receipts

   o   Nominations: levels and duration

   o   Asset value of land

Quality of partner
  o Audit commission assessment

   o   Commitment to Leeds

   o   Commitment to strategic partnership working

                                                                                                                          Item 7b
                                                                Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12th November 2007

                                                                                                      Delivery Team arrangements


                                                   Development and
                                                   Delivery Manager

                 Asset and                Regeneration                                   Affordable
                Development              Project Manager                               Housing Delivery
                 Manager                                                                  Manager

                 Asset and                Regeneration          Programme                                         Golden Triangle
                Development              Project Officers      Delivery Officer                                   Project Manager
                Senior Officer

 Asset and                   Administration                                   Development          Golden Triangle
Development                     Officer                                       Officers X 3         Project Assistant
 Officers x 2

                                                                           Item 7d
                   Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12 November 2007

                                 2008/11 Housing Corporation Grant Funded Programme

                                                                   Originator:    Megan

Report of:     The Affordable Housing Delivery Team

Meeting:       Leeds Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership Board

Date:          10 October 2007

Subject:       2008/11 Housing Corporation Grant Funded Programme



        A report was brought to the August meeting of the Board outlining the background to

        the establishment of this initiative and the steps undertaken in order to get private

        developers and partner housing associations to submit proposals to develop the

        sites for affordable housing schemes.

           This report provides Board Members with an update following the meeting between

           the Head of Investment at the Housing Corporation and the Chief Housing Services

        Officer which was held on 7 September.

1.0     Purpose Of This Report

1.1     The purpose of this report is to update Members on the process which has been
        undertaken in order to attract Housing Corporation grant funding in order to develop
        Phase 1 of the Council owned sites and how the decision was reached to support
        four RSLs in their bid to secure funding via the National Affordable Housing
        Programme 2008/11.

2.0   Background Information

2.1   A report was brought to the August meeting of the Board which outlined the process
      undertaken to date and requested permission for the Chief Housing Services Officer
      and the Director of Investment at the Housing Corporation to meet and agree which
      RSLs should be supported and that this should then come back to the Board for

3.0   Main Issues

3.1   On 7 September a meeting was held and the Chief Housing Services Officer and the
      Director of Investment from the Housing Corporation evaluated the 6 bid proposals
      as listed above. At this meeting the bids were looked at in detail and the following
      areas were scrutinised:

         The numbers and mix of tenure proposed on each site

         The total grant requirements and grant per unit

         The rents at first let assuming the properties are available in 2010/11

3.2         Following this exercise it was apparent that in terms of tenure split, mix and
      grant requirements all six submissions were very similar. However the proposed
      rent levels varied from £58 per week to £72 per week for a two bed flat and £68 per
      week to £76 per week for a two bed house, £68 per week to £82 per week for a
      three bed house and finally £79 per week to £93 per week for a four bed house.

3.3         It was felt that rent levels are very important and that as the majority of sites
      are within or close by existing council areas to have such high rent levels would not
      be acceptable. There would be a danger of creating a „benefit trap‟ and general
      unease about introducing affordable housing with rents significantly higher than the
      existing council rents in the area.

3.4   A decision was taken by the Chief Housing Services Officer and the Director of
      Investment that two of the organisations could not be supported due to the high
      levels of rents proposed.

3.5   The remaining four organisations demonstrated that their rents were at an
      acceptable level and in terms of tenure mix, split and grant requirements were all
      very similar. Therefore it is recommended that all four organisations are asked to
      submit a bid into the 2008/11 National Affordable Housing Programme in
      accordance with the timescales and requirements of the Programme. The four
      successful organisations are :

         Affinity Sutton

         Arena Housing Group

         Firebird Consortium

         Sanctuary HA

3.6    The Housing Corporation will then use its grant index assessment to choose which
       partner would develop the sites. The grant index includes a number of assessment
       criteria which is used to produce a value for grant score for each project.

3.7    The Housing Corporation will involve the Affordable Housing Delivery Team as the
       bid progresses and further input will be sought in terms of scheme designs and

3.8    The closing date for the bidding round is in November and in previous years the
       successful bids have been announced in March following Ministerial approval.
       However the Board will be notified of the successful bid on a confidential basis
       before this time.

4.0   Conclusion

4.1   The Council has identified 77 acres of land which can be developed for affordable
      housing. Phase 1 includes 6 council owned sites. Work has been undertaken jointly
      by the Council and the Housing Corporation to ensure that the bids which meets both
      the Councils and the Housing Corporations criteria are supported and submitted to
      the 2008/11 bidding round. This will ensure that grant is secured to develop all 6
      sites and provide much needed affordable accommodation across the City.

4.2   Following a meeting between the Chief Housing Services Officer and the Director of
      Investment four RSLs have been selected to submit bids in order to secure the grant

5.0   Recommendations

      The Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership is asked to:

              Note the contents of this report

              Agree that the four organisations listed in para 3.5 are asked to submit bids

               to the Housing Corporation.

              Note that the outcome of the bid evaluation by the Housing Corporation be
               reported to the Board when available.

                                                                               Item 7e
                     Report to Leeds Housing Partnership Executive: 12th November 2007

                                                                     Update on Phase 2 Sites

Report of:    The Affordable Housing Delivery Team
                                                                 Originator: Laura Kripp
                                                                 Tel: 247 6237

Meeting:      Leeds Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership Board

Date:         18 September 2007

Subject:     Update on Phase 2 Sites



        This report provides Board Members with an update on the plans for phase 2 sites,

        identified as being part of the land for the development of affordable housing through

        the Strategic Partnership.

3.0     Purpose Of This Report

3.1     The purpose of this report is to update Members on the plans for phase 2 sites.

4.0     Background Information

2.1     All of the sites included in this report are part of the 77 acres identified for the
        development of affordable housing through the Strategic Partnership. Site plans are
        attached for information.

2.2    With regards to the phase 2 sites, only the Fairfield scheme is at a stage in the
       regeneration planning where a bid for funding could be made to the Housing
       Corporation this autumn i.e. for the other sites a full masterplan would need to be
       completed, and there would need to be a clear picture of housing need/demand,
       numbers of units, locations and design resolutions etc. None of the other schemes are
       at this stage.

2.3    The Housing Corporation have therefore suggested that in-year bids are made for these
       schemes, as and when they are ready.

2.4    If the Strategic Partnership was comfortable with this approach, a list of potential
       schemes would be provided to the Housing Corporation, with the first round of in-year
       bidding taking place in June 2008. However, the Strategic Partnership would need to
       agree with the Housing Corporation that an amount was set aside from the 2008/11
       allocation for Leeds for these in year bids. This would be a new approach.

3.0    Main Issues

3.1   Work update:

       The main focus areas of work has been around the Beckhills, Middleton and Fairfields,
       which have the largest areas of land.

3.2   Beckhills Phase 1 & 2

3.3    Meetings have been held with ENEhl regarding the demolition of site 1, which might not
       be brought forward as quickly as anticipated. The site sits adjacent to a closed school
       site, which Area Management had originally wanted to keep open for community uses.
       However, this was not a long term solution for the site, and there is pressure to dispose
       of the school site earlier than the Strategic Partnership site, in order to realise a capital
       receipt for the Council‟s corporate capital programme. Additionally, through discussions
       with Urban Design, it has been suggested that the Beckhills be considered for an
       exemplar Sustainable Homes scheme. Further meetings to discuss this are taking
       place, to pull together all partners and discuss design ideas.

3.4    However, there are problems in pushing forward this scheme as there are no funds
       available to undertake a masterplanning exercise, and the ALMO have indicated that
       their funding is stretched, which has implications for the decanting and demolition of the
       existing stock.

3.5   Middleton

3.6    The Middleton Partnership Board have been looking at the regeneration objectives for
       the area, which has been collated into a draft strategy and action plan. To compliment
       this work the Housing Strategy Team, Aire Valley Homes and Re‟new are working
       together to draw up a basic masterplan for the area (looking at Housing and
       Environmental issues). This will then be discussed with Planning and Urban Design to
       get their input. A workshop event was held on 21st September with local members to
       discuss the work to date, and further actions were agreed (i.e. to re-open discussions
        with Jephson Housing Association for them to bid to the Housing Corporation for funds
        to remodel unsustainable flats on the estate, into family accommodation). It has also
        been agreed that procurement on this project is crucial, and a Joint Venture scheme
        with the private sector has been proposed.

3.7    Fairfields

3.8     This scheme is part of Northern Affordable Housing Challenge Fund. The bid is to be
        submitted by the Firebird Partnership in autumn 2007, to the 2008/11 bidding round.
        The original proposal was for 300 new units on the site (100 for sale, 100 for submarket
        and 100 for social rent). However, the numbers of units will be reduced due to density
        issues and greenspace provision. A meeting was held on 20th September with Firebird,
        WNWhl, Housing Strategy, Highways and Planning to begin to resolve those issues,
        and ascertain the final number of units which will be bid for. Planning are now working
        closely with Firebird‟s architects to complete the design resolution, in order to have the
        schemes ready to submit for planning permission.

3.9    Smaller schemes:

3.10    Park Lane/ Burley Street – A meeting is to be held in October to look at the financial
        viability and revised plans for this scheme.

3.11    Wade Street, Pudsey (non SP site) – This site is still in charge as an ALMO garage site.
        Planning are assessing the site, and have provided indicative drawings showing
        potential layouts. Planning have also indicated that due to the existing sight lines of
        buildings and the height of surrounding properties, the site could be developed for 4 -8
        units. Elderly person‟s provision would be in keeping with the area, and would resolve
        some of the car parking issues. It has been discussed that this would be an ideal site to
        dispose of on the open market.

3.12    Scott Hall Square – This site is still being utilised as a site compound. A meeting is to be
        set up with planning to discuss the opportunities on the site.

3.13    Hawkesworth Wood – The ALMO put work on the project on hold whilst the re-structure
        took place. Now that roles and responsibilities have been agreed in the new
        organisation, work on this scheme completing option appraisals and finalising
        demolition plans are being picked up again.

3.14    Corporation Street – A meeting is to be set up with planning to discuss the opportunities
        on the site.

3.15   Rookwood Garages –This is a very small site which could be developed utilising
       commuted sums rather that grant. The Strategy Team are to explore this with Planning.

4.0   Conclusion

4.1   In terms of workload, priority has been given to the Fairfields scheme as it will be subject
      to a bid to the 2008/11 Housing Corporation bidding round.

4.2   Work on the other schemes is ongoing, and progress will be regularly provided to the
      Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership.

5.0   Recommendations

      The Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership is asked to:

              Note the contents of this report


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