Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, County Hall, Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. View directions

Items
No. Item

11.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 146 KB

Additional documents:

 

Minutes of the meeting of the Social Housing Strategic Policy Committee held on 6th April and Special Social Housing Meeting held on 27th April 2016 were CONFIRMED and ADOPTED.

 

12.

Matters arising from the Minutes

 

No matters were raised by members.

13.

Information submitted by members for written reply

13a

Cllr Cormac Devlin

 “That the Chief Executive outlines this Council’s policy in relation to the refurbishment of Council properties and the rationale for not retaining perfectly good fixtures and fittings?”

 

Reply:

Housing Maintenance Services uses the opportunity of a vacant dwelling to upgrade its condition before re-letting it. These works can involve installation of new windows, rewiring, smoke alarm attic insulation, external maintenance works as well as internal decorative works.  Housing Maintenance Services sometimes encounter problems where works carried out by the tenants - such as replacement windows, kitchens, doors, structural works, electrical works - do not comply with current regulations and safety standards and all of these have to be rectified before re-letting.

 

At all times the Council will assess the condition of a property and will not remove any fixtures or fittings which are in good condition and would have a negative impact on the standard or the turnaround time of the dwelling. On average over 90% of vacant dwellings that are with the Housing Maintenance Section are handed back to the Allocations Section for re-letting within 5weeks and we work closely with Allocations Section to continually improve the process. 

 

Contact:  Ann Hegarty, Senior Executive Officer, Housing.

 

The reply was NOTED.

 

14.

Directors Business

14a

Anti-Social Behaviour Strategy

 

A presentation on the Draft Anti-Social Behaviour Strategy was given by Mary Ruane, SEO, Housing.

 

The report was NOTED.

 

There followed a discussion which the Director and Mary Ruane responded to Members’ queries. Two amendments to the Strategy were put before the committee for approval:

 

First amendment proposed:

Cllr Merrigan:  Amendment to Page 19: 

Proposal:  That, the section on ‘NOISE’ be amended to ensure that it complies with the legal principle that ‘the rights of Council tenants cannot be less than those of tenants of private landlords in similar circumstances’ and to ensure that complaints are dealt with in a timely manner in the interest of good estate management.

 

The section currently reads:

Noise

Unreasonable noise from a dwelling is a common problem and if a resolution cannot be agreed then a complainant can make an application to the District Court for a Noise Abatement Order in accordance with S108 Environment Protection Act 1992. If the noise is significant and persistent and affects more than one neighbour it will be viewed as a breach of the tenancy agreement and the anti-social section will investigate the matter. Issues involving dogs will be recorded and referred to the Environment Department and the Dog Warden.

 

The section should be amended to read as follows:

 

Noise

Unreasonable noise from a dwelling is a common problem and if a resolution cannot be agreed then a complainant can make an application to the District Court for a Noise Abatement Order in accordance with S108 Environment Protection Act 1992.  If the noise is significant and persistent the anti-social section will investigate the matter as it may constitute a breach of the tenancy agreement.  Issues involving dogs will be recorded and referred to the Environment Department and the Dog Warden.

 

The amendment was put forward by the Chairman and was AGREED by the members.

 

Second amendment proposed:

Cllr Curran: Amendment to Title:

To change the title of the Anti-Social Behaviour document to “Social Housing – Anti Social Behaviour Strategy”

 

The amendment was put forward by the Chairman and was AGREED by the members.

 

15.

Work Programme

15a

Quarterly Report January - March 2016

 

The report was NOTED.

15b

Items for Consideration for Future Work Programme

 

a)                   Cllr C. Devlin:

 

That the Chief Executive provides a detailed report on the various responsibilities for our social housing tenants and those of this Council (as landlord) regarding maintenance and repair of these properties, particularly that for our elderly citizens and that this Strategic Policy Committee discusses possible changes to these?

 

Reply:

Housing Maintenance Services is responsible for the maintenance of the Council’s   approx. 4500 housing stock. Before a dwelling is allocated all tenants sign a Tenancy Agreement which outlines their responsibilities regarding the maintenance and repair of their new home and which is also outlined in the Tenants Handbook. The Council is responsible for the main structural elements, including any exterior repairs, electrical and heating and any other works which is not considered tenants responsibility. As set out below the following are considered tenants responsibilities regarding maintenance.

Internal Repairs

  • Filling Plaster Cracks
  • Repairing and replacing cupboards, wardrobes, kitchen units and their doors, hinges, handles, locks, catches and drawers. 
  • Repairing, replacing and fitting wall and floor tiles and floor covering
  • Damage caused by the tenant, members of the household or visitors.
  • Carrying out repairs due to condensation
  • All internal decoration
  • Repairing woodwork including floors, doors and skirting boards
  • Chimney sweeping

 

Electrical Repairs

  • Repairing or replacing ceiling roses, lamp holders and plugs of any appliances.
  • Replacing fuses, except for mains fuse
  • Replacing elements for electric fires
  • Repairing electrical appliances, fires and heaters not installed by us
  • Replacing light bulbs and pilot lights bulbs
  • Installing and repairing doorbells.

Note:  All electrical repairs (other than replacing bulbs and fuses) must be carried out by a qualified and competent electrician. 

Doors and Windows

  • Repairing or replacing external and internal door locks and handles
  • Repairing window stays, catches and restrictors.
  • Draught proofing doors and windows.
  • Replacing broken glass
  • Repairing permavents where fitted
  • Repairing or replacing internal tiles on windowsills and window boards
  • Repairing letter boxes
  • Painting Internal timber work on windows and doors

External Repairs

  • Keeping gardens and hedges tidy
  • Repairing or replacing fences, gates and garden boundary walls, whether erected by the tenant or the council
  • Repairing or replacing or re-erecting front gates, side gates or doors leading to garden areas.
  • Repairing fuel sheds or outhouses, unless they form part of the structure of the house.
  • Cleaning silt, leaves or other deposits from gutters or downpipes.     

Plumbing Repairs

  • Cleaning gully traps
  • Paying the cost of clearing a blocked house drain (if you have a single drain) and paying part of the cost if you have a combined drain
  • Repairing or replacing waste pipes inside your home
  • Clearing airlocks in pipes
  • Repairing or replacing taps on sink units and wash hand basins, including leaking or dripping taps.
  • Repairing or replacing a toilet bowl except if it is cracked and leaking due to normal wear and tear.
  • Repairing or replacing a ballcock or other water flotation device in a toilet cistern.
  • Repairing or replacing of toilet seats, chains and handles
  • Repairing burst pipes caused by frost or freezing temperatures and repairing damage to contents resulting  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15b

16.

Any Other Business

 

The Director advised that Bernadette O’Donoghue Hynes from Dublin City Council will be giving a presentation on Homeless statistics at the next SPC meeting.  This was AGREED.

 

The Chairman advised that presentations to the committee should last no longer than 15 minutes.  This was AGREED.

 

17.

Date of Next Meeting

 

The next meeting of the Social Housing SPC will take place on Wednesday 28th September 2016.