Before the Committee was a report by the Director for the Economy, copies of which had been circulated to all Members and a copy of which is attached to the signed copy of these minutes as Item 10.
The report provided an update to members on the development of Rowlands Road and Downview Road and the expected savings to the Council.
The Committee was advised that the figure of £387,826 shown in recommendation 2.2 was incorrect and should have been £378,500.
The report sought approval for the release of a further sum of £378,500 from the unallocated temporary accommodation capital budget for Rowlands Road to meet affordable housing needs.
The report proposed that Worthing Borough Council became a Registered Social Landlord for the purpose of attracting Homes England / Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government funding towards the provision of new temporary and emergency accommodation noting that there was no intention or need to have a separate accounting system or Housing Revenue Account.
Members sought assurance in relation to the survey work undertaken at outset, whether the costs per unit represented good value and whether registering as a social landlord would be beneficial in the long term. Officers assured Members that the feasibility survey work undertaken had been robust, highlighting that there were more unknowns with refurbishment projects than with new build; that investment in temporary accommodation was good value for the community and that registering as a social landlord provided a seat at the table to engage and access wider funding available. It was also noted the Council would benefit from not having to pay stamp duty as a Registered Social Landlord.
Members welcomed the proposals which were unanimously supported by the Committee.
The Joint Strategic Committee
1. noted the contents of the report;
2. approved the release of further net budget for Rowlands Road of £378,500, to fund the increased costs associated with the refurbishment contract from the unallocated temporary accommodation budget;
3. authorised the registration of Worthing Borough Council as a Registered Social Landlord and recommended to Worthing Full Council that it approved the Registration of Worthing Borough Council as a Registered Social Landlord; and
4. authorised the Monitoring Officer to make consequential amendments to the
Constitution arising from the registration above.
The call-in deadline for decisions 1, 2 and 4 will be 5.00pm on 17 September 2021.
There is no call-in for recommendation 3 to Worthing Council.