Report of, and to be presented by, the Interim Head of Community Services.
The Committee gave consideration to the report and appendix (at pages 21 - 26) as delivered and summarised by the Interim Head of Community Services (“the Head of Service”) which should be read together with these minutes as a composite document.
A debate thereon was had by Members whereby the report on balance was commended. The Committee raised a number of points summarised as follows.
In respect of the Borough Wide Cleaning Contract (at para 3.11), the Committee enquired as to whether the contract and, or, appointed contractor: was to pay the National Living Wage (NLW), sickness and holiday pay; operated zero-hour contracts; was contracted on a daily, weekday basis; was subject to any break clause provision(s); and was subject to any general financial controls, most notably in concerning the contractor’s costs being absorbed into the contract’s function costs. A concern was also raised in respect of the self-monitoring mechanism of the contract and if all Council-owned residential properties had Residents’ Associations who could monitor and report back on standards of cleanliness (due to be) delivered.
The Head of Service advised that the contractor was to pay the NWL, sickness and holiday pay, did not operate zero-hour contracts and was contracted to clean in accordance with the cleaning schedule (incorporated as part of the specification) which varied depending on buildings’ use and requirements. The contract was said to have no break clause however could be terminated at any time if the specification was not met and that all financial controls mentioned had been dealt with in accordance with the contract’s obtaining procedures and protocols. Periodic estate walkabouts were said to be undertaken to ensure standards of cleanliness were to be met to which the contractor, residents, officers and Members were to be invited.
The Committee further: sought clarification as to the position of gas safety compliance as of 30 June (at para. 3.7); requested assurances that action was to be taken to address paint peeling from the exterior of Chartwell House, Oadby; and enquired as to whether the Council’s costs associated with previously serving Untidy Land Notices (under Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act) upon 114 Uplands Road, Oadby would be recovered once the property was sold (para. 3.8).
The Head of Service advised that a 100% compliance rate for gas safety was on target for 30 June. The cause of the paint peeling at Chartwell House was said to be due to isolated incidences of water damage that had since been corrected and that action was being taken to monitor the affected areas. It was said that Council would seek to recover its associated costs regarding 114 Uplands Road.
It was moved by the Chair, seconded by Councillor D M Carter and
UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:
(i) The contents of the report be noted;
(ii) The current rent arrears target of 2% of the annual rent debit for 2017/18 be approved;
(iii) The former tenant arrears target of 2.5% of the annual rent debit for 2017/18 be approved;
(iv) A voids turnaround time of 20 days for 2017/18 be approved; and
(v) An update report regarding the progress of the Borough Wide Cleaning Contract be brought back to the Committee in six-months.