Agenda and minutes

Special, Housing Scrutiny Commission - Monday, 30 January 2023 5:30 pm

Venue: Meeting Room G.01, Ground Floor, City Hall, 115 Charles Street, Leicester, LE1 1FZ

Contact: Jerry Connolly, Scrutiny Policy Officer, Email:  Jason Tyler, Democratic Support Officer, Email:

No. Item




No apologies for absence had been received.



Members are asked to declare any interests they may have in the business to be discussed.


The Chair declared that his family were council tenants

Councillor Aqbany noted that he lived in a council property



The Director of Housing submits a report, which describes the City Mayor’s draft budget for 2023/24 including the Capital Programme.


Members of the Commission are recommended to note the contents of the report and comment as appropriate prior to consideration at Council.


The Chair introduced the item on the draft Housing Revenue Account (HRA) budget including the Capital Programme 2023/24 and noted that the report being considered this evening related to the proposals for next year’s HRA.


The Chair noted that information on district heating, was included within the report along with other information and took the opportunity to thank the Commission for the work which had gone in to preparing the report.


The Chair further noted that, as an authority the council had invested heavily in maintaining and improving the existing homes, managing them as well and in building new homes for the people in greatest need in Leicester. Much of that spending comes from money the council get from rents, which were the lowest in the city, and lower than neighbouring authorities. At a time when inflation is over 10% the government has ordered us to keep our rent increases to seven per cent.


The Assistant City Mayor for Education and Housing noted that due to the years of austerity local authorities had been impacted and that although increasing rent rates was uncomfortable, the council took pride in being the best landlord in the city with no evictions in the last year including the delivery of vital works for tenants.


The director for Housing delivered a presentation to the Commission outlining the HRA and the Capital Programme. It was noted:

·         There were £19.4million worth of pressures as a result of the rise in energy cost and inflation

·         The proposal for raising the rates in district heating to address the energy crisis impacting the budget by £10.2million

·         Information on the varying charges were, dependant on the number of bedrooms, from £59 a week for a bedsit to £150 for a four bedroom property.  The average charge across all property types would be £99.

·         If the increased cost of gas being used under the district heating network was not passed on to those who receive the service, then the cost would fall to all other HRA tenants to bear and there would be less money available for investment into the properties and estates.

·         An increase in rent prices by 7% was also prosed which had been supported by the Tenants Association

·         The rise in rents would affect 30% of Council tenants as the rest of the Council tenants were recipients of Housing Benefits which would cover the increases

·         Rent collections were at a 99% success rates and the evictions were at its lowest with only 5 during this year

·         The impact of a lower rate of increase in rent would have a dramatic effect on the HRA

·         Service charges were proposed to increase at 10.1%, the rate of inflation.


Capital Programme

·         £18million for affordable housing coming from 50%in loans and 50% from Right to Buy receipts

·         Overall slowing down the delivery of the capital programme such as renovating bathrooms and kitchens


The Director of Housing noted that the next steps would be to take the report to OSC for consideration and then  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.




There being no other items of urgent business the meeting closed at 7:34pm