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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Executive held on 13/06/2006
Waverley Borough Council Housing Strategy 2005-2010



APPENDIX S
WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL

COMMUNITY OVERVIEW AND SCRUTING COMMITTEE
22nd MAY 2006

executive -13th june 2006

Title:

WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL HOUSING STRATEGY 2005-2010

[Wards Affected: All]

Summary and purpose:

This report, which was considered by the Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee at its meeting on 22nd May, recommends that members approve the attached draft of the Waverley Borough Council Housing Strategy, which will run from 2005 to 2010.

Environmental implications:

There are none arising from the recommendations in this report.

Social/community implications:

The highest priority of this strategy is to facilitate the provision of affordable housing as a result of the significant need for affordable housing across the borough. The second priority is to meet the decent homes target, due to the positive impact good quality housing has upon peoples health, educational and social well being.

E-Government implications:

It is anticipated a version of this housing strategy will be available through the Council website in order to increase the availability of the document, allow updates and progress reports to be made and work in a more cost effective way.

Resource and legal implications:

There are no legal implications arising from this report. The action plan sets out a work plan, which includes an indication of resource implications.

Introduction

1. In order to be rated as an ‘excellent’ Local Authority during Comprehensive Performance Assessment, Waverley Borough Council needs to have developed a Housing Strategy which has been assessed as achieving ‘Fit for Purpose’ status by the Government Office for the South East (GOSE).

2. Officers have been working on a new draft of the Housing Strategy since December 2004. The strategy is currently subject to a final assessment by GOSE as to whether the Fit for Purpose standard has been achieved. Fit for Purpose status has been developed by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister. A copy of the draft Housing Strategy is attached at Annexe 1. It should be noted that this is still in draft form and some final revisions/ amendments are yet to be made, particularly in relation to end of year statistics for 2006/07.

3. Various mapping exercises have been carried out in order to assess need, demand and supply for housing in Waverley to inform the Housing Strategy. This has included a 2005 update to the Housing Needs Survey, which estimated an annual shortfall of 622 affordable homes each year. Other data sources used include the Council’s Housing Needs Register, lettings and vacancy information and information collected from local housing associations who hold stock in the borough.

4. Consultation has been carried out through a range of forums. A copy of the draft Housing Strategy and feedback form has been available on the Council’s website, www.waverley.gov.uk with alternative formats available on request. The Council held a one day Housing Strategy Conference on 16th September 2005 to which stakeholders and partners were invited. The conference was attended by 40 delegates from agencies including local Banks, Parish Council members, representatives from Citizens Advice Bureaux, Housing Associations, Waverley Borough Councillors, Tenants’ Panel members, Town Councillors, Adults and Community Care Team and developers..

5. As a result of the conference:
Summary and Overview of Waverley Borough Council Housing Strategy

6. As Waverley is an area of high house prices, with first time buyer accommodation and affordable housing in short supply, facilitating the provision of affordable housing is the strategy’s number one priority. Waverley is also committed to ensuring all residents have a good quality home to live in, through working to meet the Government’s Decent Homes targets, as well as improving energy efficiency.

7. The aims of the Strategy are wider reaching than simply bricks and mortar, with commitments to enhance the local environment, improve community safety and protect the disadvantaged and vulnerable through better use of housing. The action plan encompasses the work of officers in Housing, Planning, Finance and Environment and Leisure.

8. The Strategy sets out a plan for action for the duration of the strategy, which shows how each action will contribute towards corporate, housing and service priorities. Each item demonstrates resource implications, how progress against the action will be monitored, shows progress made, nominates a lead officer and designates a timescale. The action plan feeds directly into individual service plans and the Corporate Plan.

Conclusion

9. Members are asked to approve the proposed structure of the Housing Strategy, as outlined above.

Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee

10. At its meeting on 22nd May, the Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee considered and agreed the draft of the Waverley Borough Council Housing Strategy, subject to minor typographical changes being made.

Recommendation

It is recommended to the Council that the Housing Strategy 2005-2010 be approved and adopted.

Background Papers (DoH)

There are no background papers (as defined by Section 100D (5) of the Local Governmnet Act 1972) relating to this report.


CONTACT OFFICER:

Name: Alice Baxter Telephone: 01483 523096
E-mail: abaxter@waverley.gov.uk


Comms/executive/2006-07/027