Your Say on how Leeds council housing should be managed

The Council is consulting its tenants about how council housing in Leeds will be managed in the future.

Almo consultation leafletLeaflets have been dropping through letterboxes across the city explaining the proposed changes and asking for comments. There are two organisations managing council housing in our part of the city: Aire Valley Homes manages the bulk, but homes in Belle Isle are managed by the Belle Isle Tenant Management Organisation (BITMO). The Arrangements for Belle Isle are NOT changing and are not affected by this consultation.

Two options are presented. The first is to merge the three Arms Length Management Organisations (ALMOs) across the city into one new ALMO. The second is to bring the service back inside the Council.

These changes are driven by the need to save money and both seek to reduce duplication of services. It is stressed that in both options the front line teams that deal with tenants day to day will remain as they are currently organised. Presumably this means that changes are to made to “back office” functions and senior posts.

Two events are planned for South Leeds:

  • A public meeting at Tenants Hall Enterprise Centre, Middleton on Tuesday 12th March at 6:30pm
  • An informal roadshow at Woodhouse Hill Community Centre, Hunslet on Thursday 14th March from 12:00-2:00pm and 4:30-7:00pm

You can download the leaflet and complete the questionnaire on the Leeds City Council Website here. The consultation runs until Friday 29th March 2013.

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member for neighbourhoods, housing and support services said:

“We want to get the views of tenants, leaseholders and other key stakeholders during this consultation to ensure all views are collated.

“It is important that tenants lie at that the heart of any future model, and that the excellent work already developed by the current ALMOs is retained in whichever future model is chosen.

“I would encourage everyone to take the time to have their say and attend the road shows or public meetings if they have any questions.”

One Reply to “Your Say on how Leeds council housing should be managed”

  1. While it is, of course right that the Council should regard consulting its tenants as the top priority on this issue – they are the ones most affected – I don’t understand why the views of other residents aren’t being sought.

    These changes will affect the lives of people living on Council estates who are owner occupiers, others living next to Council properties and hose who hope to become Council tenants so why aren’t the rest of us being asked our views? How the Council manages its housing services will have implications for its other services so it seems to me strange not to be seeking other views…

    As it is, I think the options selected for consultation are very (woefully) limited and I will be very (pleasantly) surprised if the ultimate decision taken is to create one ALMO.

    Why do i think this is what will happen? Well there is no doubt that it is a cheaper option to bring housing management back in to be directly managed by the Council and, therefore, an attractive option given the Council’s financial pressures. However, I also think it is true that many councillors have not quite adjusted to Council housing being managed at ‘arms length.’

    The report to the Executive Board that has led to this consultation said:
    ‘There is no doubt that housing management and the overall service provided to tenants is in a much better position now than it was 10 years ago and whatever the outcome of the review, there is no desire to return to the old style of housing management that existed pre 2003.’

    I think the Council might want to reflect on why this is the case – is it coincidence that an arms length arrangement has led to better services? Will direct management by the Council lead to further improvements or the reverse…

Comments are closed.