Agenda and minutes

Tenant Scrutiny Board - Friday, 23rd September, 2022 12.00 pm

Venue: Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR. View directions

Contact: Emma Lomax 0113 3783330  Email:

No. Item


Welcome Introductions and Apologies

To agree and sign off the minutes of the previous meeting.


JG welcomed everyone to the meeting and apologies were noted for RI, SB, SE, and SB.



Exempt Items




Late Items

To identify items which have been admitted to the agenda by the Chair for consideration.


(The special circumstances shall be specified in the minutes.)




Minutes of Previous Meeting

To confirm as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting held on


The minutes from the last meeting were approved as a true record.



Chair's Report

To receive an update from the Chair on scrutiny activity, not specifically included on this agenda, since the previous Board meeting.


JG – TSB Agenda and minutes have been put onto the Councils website (Modern Gov) and are now up to date. So, thank you to Emma for doing that.

Since our last meeting in July, I have had only one meeting on your behalf and that was with Ian and Peter. The meeting was held to resolve issues around general housekeeping of TSB. I also discussed the agenda for the coming months of TSB. I will speak more about this in item 8, the Forward Plan.

I have provisionally been invited to give an update on TSB work to the Environment, Housing and Communities board at their November meeting.

I expect that in the coming weeks the working group looking at the Tenant Voice Panel who will report back to the board to be getting updates from Ian’s team on its progress.

As you know I am a member of the Ombudsman Tenant Panel, and we will be having our first face to face meeting in Warrington on the 26th and 27th October and I will report back.



Tenant Satisfaction Measures and Other Legislative Changes


Simon introduces himself and talks through the Tenant Satisfaction Measures presentation which Board members have in front of them and presented on screen.

Full consultation published yesterday which was all approved. There could be minor changes to Tenant Satisfaction Measures when passed by the Government, but Simon will advise if anything is likely to change as he talks through presentation. Simon also advises that the Tenant Satisfaction Measure regarding complaints has been removed.


Discussion around the STAR survey which is now being sent out to tenants on a quarterly basis instead of every 2 years, data is being collected by a number of methods. 1/3 phone, paper, online.


IM – Referred to so far as Tenant Satisfaction Measures, but effectively that is the new STAR survey. We used to survey tenants every other year, and all landlords asked tenants the same questions. Government reviewed the set of questions and streamline into 22. The idea of making board aware is this is a key piece of information to help the Board take a view on what’s going well and what’s not going well. Much more real time data. In future when coming to board to decide new topics, across this range of measures you can see that this is how we’re performing. This will be valuable information to view and will help the board to decide on what to review going forward.



SB - No confirmation yet on how many consumer standards there will be, but they will follow 6 themes. There will be a review once the act is passed and in force. 


IM – On the consumer standards, at present they are relatively light touch. e.g., The standard that covers my service says you don’t need a scrutiny board, but you need to give tenants a chance to scrutinise, how we do that is up to us.

In a post Grenfell environment that needs a stronger approach, like building safety, listening, and responding to tenant views and feedback. Had that happened prior then Grenfell could have been a lesser scale of catastrophe or prevented. The new Tenant Voice Panel will help us review our performance against the new consumer standards. The Board will have access to reviewing some of these consumer standards and holding people like me to account, through helpful and respectful engagement, to agree you do X well but not sure about Y. Tenant satisfaction information along with assessment critiqued by tenants will help the service.


JG – At Grenfell, the council weren’t listening to what tenants were saying. Wouldn’t you have thought this is how you engage with tenants?

IM – The government approach and emphasis has now gone the other way; the new consumer standards will be more descriptive and involve more expectation from landlords regarding communication with tenants. Building Safety Act is much clearer and not open for interpretation, for example by autumn next year we will have had to register all high-rise buildings in Leeds with the regulator.

SB –  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Housing Advisory Panels


Dennis Moody, Chair of the Outer South HAP discusses Housing Advisory Panels. 


DM explained that each HAP can have up to 12 members and local councillors, there are currently 99 members throughout all the HAPs, so not all are full.

The number of councillors sitting on a HAP depends on how many wards there are in each area For example, 3 wards = 3 councillors.


Panels are mainly made up of housing tenants, they run the meetings and have the final say. HAP budget comes from council rents and is currently 405k per year, 202.5k is split evenly between 11 HAPs. Other 202.5k is split dependant on how many council dwellings in each area.


During 21/22 HAPs committed 396k over 193 bids throughout the whole of Leeds. Main criteria for any bid is it benefits council tenants.. HAPs give money to various groups, for example, Beeston in Bloom, Bramley Care Bears etc. When we are unable to approve the bid, we will encourage groups to go for alternative funding, such as Wellbeing Fund or similar. Bids can also be submitted by individuals. 


The HAPs meet 6 times per year, owing to Covid 19 some HAPs do face to face meetings in summer and online in winter, so people aren’t coming out in the cold. Application form is in depth, before it gets to HAPs, they are checked to make sure it has been completed correctly. Each HAP has a Tenant Engagement Officer who coordinates everything.


JG – So HAPs don’t decide the criteria, as all are checked by Housing Leeds staff before being passed to your panel for consideration?

DM – If application is not filled out correctly, we will send back for clarification. We had one last night that was not clear enough, so we deferred until next meeting. Sometimes we want more detail. 

JG – Does your HAP know what the criteria is?

IM – It can be difficult to plainly explain the criteria, if you look at a plan on a page for each area, they each have different priorities unique to the area, any application needs to demonstrate how it meets the criteria on the plan on a page. A Tenant Engagement Officer will check the application is meeting criteria before it is presented to the panel. HAP can and will still ask questions and defer for more information. These checks are in place before it gets to HAP to mitigate time wasting at meetings and checklist might identify any holes in applications.

DM – For example, an application wanted a type of barrier on public footpath, and we’re not allowed to use them, as have to make access for wheelchairs and mobility scooters. The reason for the bid was wanting to stop quad bikes but can’t use the type of barriers anymore which would prevent them.

PG – Another example is mushrooms on pavements, they are no longer used as the visually impaired can’t see them.


JG – Those you can consider, do any HAP’s  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Forward Plan


JG discusses ideas for future meetings to help the board decide on the next review.


October – Speak with 4 Housing Officers about their daily/weekly work and priorities.


November – Speak with 4 Housing Managers about their daily/weekly work and priorities.


December – STAR survey analysis


November/December 2022 meetings will take place online. 



Date and Time of Next Meeting


21st October 2022, 12:00 – 14:00.

Civic Hall Committee room 1 and on MS Teams



Sue Easton Questions and Written Responses


Rearranged Tenant Scrutiny Board Meeting now 23 September 2022.


Please accept my apologies I am unable to attend the meeting but have prepared questions which hopefully can be responded to during the meeting.


The Creation of a ‘Golden Thread’


The Government has confirmed that the “Golden Thread of compliance with Building Safety Regulations must be captured and maintained digitally for the entire lifecycle of the building” If the TSM’s are intended to improve Building Safety and strengthen Social Housing Tenants rights to better quality and safer homes access to relevant information to support compliance must be provided to them. Is there going to be investment in improved software to accommodate evidence of compliance, continually updated and following the lifecycle of a building as it not only needs to meet the increased scrutiny of the Housing Ombudsman and of the Regulator but also Residents, Emergency services, contractors etc who at times may be trying to obtain necessary data/documents answers to queries under pressure. How is Leeds addressing the challenge of resourcing all the additional financial and administrative burden of data management and access to this information.

We have a dedicated project team assigned to scoping the requirements of the ‘golden thread’, who will investigate a digital IT solution that will enable the necessary people to access data about the buildings when they need it (including residents). The project team will look into whether the Council can produce something internally as well as looking at external companies to produce an IT solution.


Electrical Safety in High Rise Buildings (Electrical Safety Bill still only at Committee stage)


BS Maintaining Building Safety (satisfaction that the Home is well maintained and safe to live in – To be Safe in Your Home –( this links to TSM’ s - Fire/Building Safety, Transparency, Engagement, Accountability, Repairs/Maintenance, Complaints)


*Electrical Safety It is astonishing that even after 2009 Lakenal House 2016 Shepherds Court to name just two and now a full five years on after the tragedy of Grenfell Towers all with loss of lives and all with links to electrical sources of ignition that Social Housing Residents in High Rise Buildings are still having to wait for an Act to be passed to ensure that the deficiencies of existing regulations are addressed and there is coherence, consistency and monitoring of electrical safety management in High Rise Buildings. Both the Fire Service and the Electrical Profession have repeatedly voiced that “one of the most important Fire/Harm Reduction preventative actions that can be taken is by improved electrical safety” Dame Judith Hackett had in her Enquiry into Grenfell and again in February 2022 called for a complete overhaul of managing electrical systems in High Rise Buildings and she had also appealed for “action now” rather than wait for regulations.

Actions to stop the spread of fire is given prominence (sprinkler systems/compartmentation etc) but preventative measures to stop them in the first place is vital too.

How is Leeds responding/ acting upon this?


Electrical Service Manager, Russell Brown:


We test,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.