A report from the Director of Finance, Resources and Customer Services and Director of Health, Housing and Adult Social Care is attached. This seeks approval, for recommendation to full Council, the revenue estimates of the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) for 2013/14 and the updated position on the HRA 30 year business plan . (Key decision – reference number 3621)
(8.35 – 8.45 pm)
Councillor Ahmet Oykener (Cabinet Member for Housing) introduced the report of the Director of Health, Housing and Adult Social Care and Director of Finance, Resources and Customer Services (No.152) presenting for approval by full Council the revenue estimates of the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) for 2013/14 and the updated position on the HRA 30 year business plan.
1. the recommendation that the rents be increased in line with national social rent policy which would result in an average increase of 3.9% for Enfield tenants. This was in common with other local authorities. Enfield’s level of increase was one of lowest in London. The increase would result in an average rent rise of £3.61;
2. the proposed service charges as detailed in the report;
3. that the updated HRA 30 Year Business Plan was appended to the report, Appendix 9 to the report referred;
4. that agreement was being sought to the total HRA capital programme of £47.5m; this would include works to Council homes and estate regeneration schemes;
5. that the Proposed Temporary Accommodation rents for 2013/14 were appended to the report, Appendix 5 to the report referred. The rents were unchanged from 2012/13.
Alternative Options Considered: NOTED that two alternatives had been considered; these were not increasing rents in line with the national social rent policy as recommended by the Government and increasing rents above this guideline. These two options were both discounted. If rents were not increased this would mean significant loss of income and would undermine the business plan in future years. The HRA self financing settlement was based on the assumption that rents were increased in lien with national social rent policy. If rents were increased above this policy this would put additional unnecessary financial pressures on tenants.
RECOMMENDED TO COUNCIL
1. that the detailed revenue estimates of the Housing Revenue Account for 2013/14 be approved.
2. that the rents be increased in line with national social rent policy. This will result in an average increase of 3.9% for Enfield tenants.
3. that all void properties be re-let at target rent.
4. the level of service charges as set out in paragraph 6.1 of the report for those properties receiving the services be agreed for 2013/14.
5. that the proposals for increases in other income as detailed in Appendices 2 and 3 be agreed for 2013/14.
6. that the Temporary Accommodation rents as set out in Appendix 5 of the report be agreed for 2013/14.
7. that the total HRA capital programme of £47.5m be agreed.
8. that authority should be delegated to the Cabinet Member for Housing and the Director of Health, Housing and Adult Social Care to approve tenders for Decent Homes and General Works.
Reason: In view of the implications of the alternatives mentioned in paragraph 19 of the report, it is recommended to increase rents in line with national social rent policy and Government guidance on self financing.
(Key decision – reference number 3621)