Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Town Hall
Contact: Matthew Pawlyszyn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Declaration of Interests
Members are reminded of their responsibility to declare any pecuniary interest in respect of matters contained in this agenda.
If you have a pecuniary interest you must withdraw from the meeting. Normally you should leave the room before the business starts to be discussed. You do, however, have the same right to speak as a member of the public and may remain in the room to enable you to exercise that right and then leave immediately. In either case you just not seek to improperly influence a decision on the matter
No interests were declared.
Discussion with MP Chorley - Sir Lindsay Hoyle
The Task group welcomed Sir Lindsay Hoyle, MP for Chorley to the Task Group, to share his experience with Select Move.
Banding caused frequent confusion and misinformation, as both applicants and properties on Select Move were banded. It was highlighted that a large proportion of Band B properties were adapted and were for mobility and medical needs, which explained why some believed Band C provided more opportunities for properties than Band B.
The issues with banding could be addressed within the Allocations Policy review, it was added that there had been cases where applicants were mis-banded, but mistakes were rectified upon discovery.
75% of lets through Select Move had to be evidenced that the applicant met the criteria for local connection. Andy Gale previously stated that the current policy was considered to be generous at six months residency in the borough, as the majority of English councils required two years.
It was the responsibility of partners to relay their true void information and that they have met the 75% requirement. The process had been on hold during the pandemic but restarted by the Select Move Coordinator. There was no way to audit the information provided, but there was no evidence to suggest dishonesty or deceit had taken place.
It was questioned by the MP if the 25% was used to move ‘trouble’ residents from one area to another and raised that there had been occasions of families moved into Chorley disrupting neighborhood’s with threats, intimidation, and property damage.
The MP commented that the six months local connection policy was absurd and that the vetting process was not as thorough as required and believed that the other local authorities of the partnership were benefitting at the expense of Chorley residents which was unacceptable.
Migration into the Borough
The MP held concerns that there were far greater numbers of people migrating into Chorley from South Ribble and Preston via Select Move than people emigrating from Chorley to the partner authorities.
Chorley, Preston and South Ribble all adhered to the same allocations policy. Figures were unavailable to document migration into Chorley from neighbouring authorities such as West Lancs, Wigan, Bolton, and Blackburn, nor information to show those that left Chorley and the span of the partnership. It was reiterated that there was no local connection requirement for those fleeing domestic abuse to be housed in the area.
The overall net migration figure as of February 2022 was a +2% migration into Chorley. The figure could be monitored and shared quarterly.
Concern was raised with the use of Cotswold House from those outside of Chorley, as residence for six months would meet the criteria for local connection. It was explained that Cotswold House was temporary accommodation and not intended for residents to stay more than a few months, however, due to the need and lack of larger and adapted properties, some residents were housed longer than desired.
Cotswold house had not been used by South Ribble Borough Council in ... view the full minutes text for item 12.
Date of Next Meeting
Thursday, 1 September 2022, 6:30pm
The next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Task Group – Select Move will take place 8 September 2022, at 4:00pm.