10 February 2022 meeting… Rent review, repairs contract, communal spaces, hardship fund, link to board…
Next engagement panel meeting: Tuesday 15 March
Co-chair Pete Kennedy-Watson gave an update from the rent review session with the board on 20 January 2022, following discussions with the panel in December about the rent review proposals. It was reflected that while some views of the board differed, there was a clear emphasis on wanting to support tenants as best we can through the increase of cost of living and rent increase, and the idea of a support fund was favoured. The panel will further discuss this in March, once a decision has been made.
Claudia Cobban, customer service director, updated the panel on what had been happening with the repairs options appraisal since this was last discussed in October. A detailed report had been given to the board for their considerations, and several options had been discussed at length at a recent board meeting. Further analysis is underway, which will help define the cost benefit analysis, risks, desired outcomes, legalities, procurement and service scope. Claudia will be returning to the engagement panel in March with a detailed next steps progress update.
Improving communal spaces for flats
Danielle Jones, resident engagement officer, shared an update on an engagement team activity, which factored in an update on one of the customer promises. One of BP’s customer promises to us as residents was to assess and improve communal areas in all our blocks of flats. This has begun with two pilot projects at schemes in Lockleaze and Lawrence Weston. Watch this space!
Claudia shared ideas of a support fund with the panel as Brighter Places wants to support tenants who may be facing hardship. The panel were fully supportive of this idea, and a criteria and allocation approach is to be decided, which will be presented back to the engagement panel in March.
Link between panel and BP board
Scott Jacobs-Lange, community and resident engagement manager, shared a proposal to formalise a stronger connection between the panel with the board, to ensure regular, planned opportunities to touch base.
Thanks to Claire
Sadly we then said farewell to Claire Moulds, the engagement team administrator. The panel thanked Claire for her efforts and support.
Finally, we had a reminder about our upcoming facilitation training, a joint session with various BP colleagues, run by a professional facilitator.
Pete Kennedy-Watson, Co-chair