The Board met in person on 18th May, at the Housing Solutions office.

Jackie Fearon, Director of Resident Services & Community presented a very positive update on the great work being done to engage with residents and encourage feedback following the easing of lockdown restrictions, as we are once again able to work with residents in person. The Board was updated on a busy schedule of events since the last Board meeting in March including community litter picking along with various other well supported pop-up community events. The team also hosted a thank you dinner for the Service Improvement Team in acknowledgement of the time they have given in scrutinising key areas of our operations.

As is the practise at Board meetings, David Joyce (Director of Finance) provided an extensive overview of the management accounts and financial position of the Group as well as an update on the 30-year Business Plan.

The Board was pleased to be able to approve several policies including our new Resident Engagement Policy.

Next Debbie White (Customer Service Manager) was invited to present Housing Solutions’ self-assessment against the Housing Ombudsman Complaints Handling Code for the year ending 31st March 2022, together with details of the new Housing Ombudsman Complaints Handling Code applicable from 1 April 2022 against which future self-assessments will be carried out.

As Chief Executive, Orla Gallagher gave her report to the Board on activity across Housing Solutions over recent months. This included the formal confirmation from the Regulator of Social Housing following an in-depth assessment of our G1 V1 regulatory ratings, while discussing the challenging operating environment we are seeing affecting providers across the sector.

Director of Property and Development, Steve Brookfield then shared the Operations and Compliance Report. This included strong year to date performance for all compliance areas including 100% achievement for 14 out 15 key areas, including gas and electrical inspections. In addition, almost 100% of emergency repairs were completed during the priority timescale, which was noted as a fantastic result all round.

The Board received a brief report from Mary Swaine, Assistant Director of Governance and Corporate Compliance on actions taken to transition to the new National Housing Federation Code of Governance (2020).  The Board was pleased to hear that full compliance against the NHF 2020 Code of Governance had been achieved for 2021/22 and a statement to this effect will be made in the Annual Accounts and Financial Statements for the year. 

The Board received a comprehensive end of year performance report from Carol Lovell, Director of Corporate Services.  This outlined strong performance particularly in governance, compliance and safety for the year and an update on actions to deliver our new Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Strategy.

To close the meeting, Greg Whelan (Assistant Director of Finance and Procurement) presented a thorough report on our first year’s performance against the value for money strategy.

The meeting was brought to a close.  The Board will meet again in person on 27th July. 

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