To receive a summary of performance against strategic priorities and an update on other performance areas relevant to the Scrutiny Board (Environment, Housing & Communities).
The report of the Director of Communities, Environment and Housing provided a summary of performance against the strategic priorities for the council and city and other performance areas relevant to the Environment, Housing and Communities Scrutiny Board.
Appended to the submitted report included:
o Best City Ambition Performance Dashboard (Appendix 1)
o Performance update (Appendix 2)
The following were in attendance for this item:
o Councillor S Arif, Executive Member for Public Health
o Councillor M Harland, Executive Member for Communities
o Councillor M Rafique, Executive Member for Environment and Housing
o James Rogers, Director Communities, Housing and Environment
o Ian Strickland, Business Development Manager
o Lee Hemsworth, Chief Officer Community Hubs, Welfare and Business Support
o Paul Money, Chief Officer Safer, Stronger Leeds
o Gerard Tinsdale, Chief Officer Housing
o John Woolmer, Chief Officer Environmental Services
o Adam Crampton, Head of Property Management
o Tim Rollett, Intelligence and Policy Manager
The Business Development Manager introduced the report and explained that over time specific analytic information relevant to the Scrutiny Board can be provided in the next couple of months.
In responding to a question regarding accessing crime information, the Chief Officer Safer Stronger Leeds explained that elected members are able to access data sets from their Neighbourhood Policing Teams (NPTs), and such information should be provided on a regular basis.
Board members raised the following key points:
Homelessness – further detail was sought about the differentiation of street homelessness and those without a home, or in temporary accommodation. To be provided with a breakdown and information on engagement. Officers confirmed that there are currently around 93 people in emergency accommodation, and 30 rough sleepers. It was confirmed that information can be broken down further. It was noted that the city’s performance on homelessness is significantly above with core city averages. It was acknowledged that there are a number of ‘ghost’ tenancies in the city but these can be difficult to identify. Where such contracts have been identified data can be shared with members.
Claims for disrepair – it was confirmed they are accurately recorded on a weekly basis, and it is possible to report back to the Scrutiny Board on the number of disrepair cases on a quarterly basis.
Bin collections – the Executive Member for Environment and Housing noted several persistent challenges for service delivery including obstructive vehicles preventing access, vehicular breakdowns, roadworks, and staff illness. However, the position in 2022 for missed bins, was considered good. Further to a question regarding the use of new technologies, it was confirmed that there will be an opportunity for improved in-cab technology to enable crews to take photographs of offending vehicles, and CCTV will be upgraded across all wagons to enable 5G capability.
Members were informed that the end of day report provides reliable information, and the service are looking to improve communications around the importance of reporting missed bins.
Work is on-going to look at re-designing routes so that they are more co-terminus with Community Committee boundaries, to provide localised performance information. Further to this, a member shared her positive experience of how responsive the crews in her area have been in relation to localised access issues.
Waste reductions – officers confirmed that whilst there are issues in terms of size, geography and varied housing types in Leeds, only 0.5% of waste in Leeds ends up in landfill. The service is continuing work to develop its new waste strategy, which will be informed by anticipated national announcements. Recent liaison with DEFRA has been positive, particularly with regard to potential options for new responsibilities for packaging producers.
A suggestion was made that positive information regarding the Recycling and Energy Recovery Facility be incorporated into the narrative of future performance reports.
Further to a suggestion around collecting data about the development of circular economies and reducing waste by re-using, it was confirmed that tonnage information and carbon measures for services the authority are contractually responsible for, is possible in some instances. In terms of statistics for projects where third sector organisations are responsible, it will be confirmed at a later date what information can be made available.
Safer Stronger Communities
Anti-social behaviour – it was acknowledged that ASB issues related to the use of motor carriages (including quad bikes) across Leeds continue to be an issue of concern. The authority is working in partnership with the police to reduce the number of cases and have engaged with a number of young people, including as part of operation Diesel Quest, to tackle motorbike crime specifically in East and South Leeds. The service will continue to take enforcement action where appropriate but prefer a more preventative approach and to provide diversionary activities, often working with third sector organisations.
Further to a request for clarity on electric scooter guidance, members will be provided with information via e-mail.
The Chair thanked officers for their attendance.
RESOLVED – To note the submitted report, as well as the latest performance information as contained within the appendix and the issues which have been highlighted.