4 – Housing Policy Social and Cultural Development
Minutes of Strategic Policy Committee 4 – Housing Policy/Social and Cultural Development held on Thursday, 3rd October, 2013 at 11.30am in The Training Room, Sligo County Council, County Hall, Riverside, Sligo
- Councillor G. Mullaney,
- Councillor M. Fleming,
- Councillor C. MacManus,
- Councillor J. McDonagh
OFFICIALS IN ATTENDANCE:
- Ms. D. Clarke, Director of Services
- Ms. O. Campbell, A/Housing Officer
- Ms. G. Timlin, Assistant Staff Officer
- Ms. Pauline Brennan, Senior Executive Librarian
- Ms. S. Malone, Assistant Staff Officer
- T. McDaid,
- S. Boles
Proposed by Councillor C. MacManus
Seconded by J. McDonagh
“That minutes of meeting of SPC 4 held on 3 April 2013, be and are hereby approved”.
MATTERS ARISING FROM MINUTES:
There were no matters arising from minutes.
THE GATHERING 2013:
A report was circulated to the Members with the agenda.
The Assistant Staff Officer, Community and Enterprise outlined that the Gathering 2013 was a Government led initiative which aims to deliver an additional 325,000 overseas visitors to Ireland which will generate an extra €170 million in revenue and create up to 3000 new jobs across every county in Ireland.
In response to Councillor Mullaney, Ms Timlin advised that the definitive number of visitors who had visited Ireland would not be known until later in the year.
The members agreed that The Gathering had been a huge success.
LOCAL AUTHORITY HOUSING PROGRAMME:
The Acting Administrative Officer, Housing Section, advised members that the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government issued a Circular Letter 21/2013 on 1st July, 2013, seeking proposals for acquisitions in 2013 with a deadline for submission by 25th July, 2013.
She advised that a total of 8 proposals were submitted for both Borough and County (28 units) at various locations of need with a value of €4,116.800. Department approval for 3 units totalling €500,000 was received on 31st July, 2013, with funds to be claimed by the end of November.
The Acting Administrative Officer further advised that Circular letter 20/2013 Call for Proposals 2013 - Acquisitions under the Capital Assistance Scheme issued on 28th June, 2013. Local authorities were requested to submit a limited programme (no more than 4 proposals) of acquisitions under CAS to be funded from savings in 2013 CAS provision and completed by year end. Submissions were received from various voluntary bodies and forwarded to the Department by 16th July. The Department issues approval in the amount of €662,908 on 30th July, 2013 for the acquisition of 7 units by Focus Housing Association. Funds to be drawn down from the Department on contract signing with a deadline of 30th November, 2013, for receipt of claims.
DEPOSITS AND RENT CREDITS FOR LOCAL AUTHORITY HOUSES:
The Acting Administrative Officer Housing Section gave a report on deposits and rent credits for local authority houses.
She advised that from 1st January 2014 all rent deposits will remain as a credit in the customer account until such time as the tenant vacates the property. Once the tenant vacates the property an inspection would be carried out by the housing technical staff to assess the condition of the property. If the property has been left in good condition, the deposit will be refunded to the tenant, however, if the property is not left in good condition, the deposit will be coded to a housing maintenance code.
POLICY ON PURCHASE OF HOUSES IN PRIVATE ESTATES:
The Acting Administrative Officer Housing gave a report on this item and advised members that Sligo County Council and Sligo Borough Council will subject to funding purchase a number of houses on the open market each year as part of the Social Housing Investment Programme.
The Acting Administrative Officer Housing gave a report on this item.
She advised the members that an application has been prepared under the Local Authority Labour Activation Scheme “Jobstart” scheme. This is a scheme whereby the Local Authority can engage a person for a 24 month placement. The employers for the duration of the initiative will be the local authority.
STRATEGY FOR PUBLIC LIBRARIES 2013-2017:
The Chairman welcomed Ms Pauline Brennan, Senior Executive Librarian to the meeting.
The Senior Executive Librarian gave a presentation on the Strategy for Public Libraries 2013-2017 which included three key recommendations:
- Shared ICT
- Library Service Organisation & Delivery
- Shared Procurement
Mr J. McDonagh complimented the library staff and all members thanked the Senior Executive Librarian for her presentation.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS:
Mr McDonagh requested that Disability be placed on the agenda for the next SPC 4 meeting.
The meeting concluded at 1.05 pm.
Meeting Date 03/10/2013