To consider the report of the Director of Resources and Housing which seeks approval for the proposed strategy to deliver Housing Responsive Repairs, Voids and Cyclical Maintenance to the city’s housing stock from 2021, specifically including a proposal to internally deliver the service through Leeds Building Services in the South and East of the city and an external contractor to deliver such services for the West.
The Director of Resources and Housing submitted a report which sought approval of the proposed strategy to deliver Housing Responsive Repairs, Voids and Cyclical Maintenance services to the city’s housing stock from 2021, specifically including a proposal to internally deliver provision through Leeds Building Services (LBS) in the South and East of the city, with a proposal that a procurement exercise be undertaken for an external contractor to deliver such services in the West.
The following options were detailed in the submitted report, with option 4 being the recommended option:
1: External contractors to deliver the service citywide;
2: Maintain current arrangements, LBS to deliver for the East only;
3: LBS and external contractors each deliver to about half of the city;
4: LBS delivers for the East and South, and an external contractor delivers for the West;
5: LBS delivers the service citywide.
Members welcomed the mixed economy approach which was being proposed.
In terms of a Member’s comments regarding the recruitment and retention of staff as part of the proposed approach, a request was made that the Member in question received a briefing on such matters, as and when appropriate. In addition, the Board was provided with information on the actions which would be taken to minimise any risk in this area, whilst the need for LBS to be viewed as an attractive employer was emphasised, with the associated apprenticeship schemes being highlighted as a current successful example.
Members also received further information on the proposed contract period of 5 years, with it being highlighted that following consultation with the private sector, this was seen as the minimum period in which to attract competitive interest in this area, however it was emphasised that there was no intention to go beyond a 5 year contractual period.
Responding to a Member’s enquiry, the Board was provided with further information on the actions which would be taken to monitor and promote sustained performance by both the internal and external provider.
(a) That approval be given for LBS to deliver housing responsive repairs and voids services for the East and South of the city, and that an external contractor deliver such services for the West (in line with option 4 above / detailed in the submitted report), with it being noted that the new arrangements are planned to start from autumn 2021;
(b) That it be noted that this proposal involves changing existing service delivery boundaries in order to align with Leeds electoral Wards;
(c) That it be noted that the feedback received from the proposed consultation exercises will be considered and taken into account by the Director of Resources and Housing in implementing the proposals;
(d) That the Board’s agreement be given that a procurement exercise should be undertaken for housing responsive repairs, voids & cyclical maintenance services in the West of the city, using a restricted procedure in accordance with the Public Contracts Regulations 2015, in order to establish a contract;
(e) That agreement be given that the procured contract should be for a period of 5 years, with an estimated total value of £72m, given an estimated annual value of £14.35m;
(f) That it be noted that LBS’ housing responsive repairs and voids service delivery will expand from the current provision of 33% of the city (circa 17,000 of a total of circa 51,000 properties), to 61% of the city (circa 31,000 properties), with it also being noted that this represents an 83% increase;
(g) That approval be given to delegate the responsibility for implementing these proposals to the Director of Resources and Housing.