Committee seeks advice on elder housing

The pensioner flat decision is expected to become part of the Long Term Plan discussions.

The City Council Community and Culture Committee is seeking public advice on whether the council should sell off its council flats.

Council has 246 Elder Housing units spread across nine villages in Greerton, Mount Manganui and Tauranga Central.

The decision to ask for public advice comes after an in-depth investigation of how best to provide elder housing services in Tauranga.

Councillors were given two choices: selling the ratepayer investment to one or more registered community housing providers or setting up a lease agreement with a community housing providers.

Community and Culture Committee chair Terry Molloy says the main objective is to ensure tenants receive the best possible service to meet their needs now and in the future.

“Tenant welfare has been the primary consideration, with an agreed outcome that tenants are no worse off than before, and with access to better wellbeing services and affordable housing,” says Terry.

The report includes the findings from a full financial analysis, as well as independent property and legal investigations.

It recommends selling the pensioner flats to one or more approved community housing providers as being the most viable option to meet the long-term needs of current and future tenants.

Community housing providers are community based, not-for-profit organisations focused solely on meeting the needs of a wide range of low and moderate income groups.

They are better placed to provide all tenants with access to wraparound services and new tenants with access to income related rent subsidies.

Any profits are reinvested back into providing services and housing, with the goal of delivering long-term housing affordability.

“We are committed to finding the best outcome so that tenants have access to fit-for-purpose, affordable housing in Tauranga, and that includes protecting the welfare and tenure of our current tenants,” says Terry.

“Community housing providers can deliver long term sustainability and portfolio growth to meet future demand, something that Council is unable to achieve on its own under present IRRS conditions.”

The recommendation will go to a full Council meeting on November 21. The decision made at this meeting will then be included as part of the next Long Term Plan, where it will be publicly consulted in March/April 2018.

“There will be an opportunity for the community to have their say through the public consultation process next year.

“We want the outcome to be in the best interests of the community, especially current and future tenants, so it is important that we receive public feedback,” says Terry.

Feedback received will be considered before a final decision is made in June 2018.

Reviewing how council provides services is a requirement of the Local Government Act.

The council commissioned The New Zealand Housing Foundation, an independent charitable trust, to review its current Elder Housing portfolio and service delivery while taking into account future demand for Elder Housing in Tauranga. NZFH provided a report on how this service can best be delivered in the future.

The report recommends that Council sell its portfolio to a community housing provider (CHP). It also provided the option of Council retaining ownership and partnering with a CHP. Both options underwent an in-depth investigation.

Council also established a tenant advisory group and working group. A tenant from each of the nine Elder Housing villages in Tauranga made up the tenant advisory group. Representatives from a range of community organisations, government agencies, technical experts and a representative from the tenant advisory group, formed the working group.



6 Comments

Bequeathed money IS available if not already misappropriated

Posted on 16-11-2017 12:01 | By Murray.Guy

The Tauranga City Council is tasked with administering the trust deeds of the Stewart and Carruthers Trusts, and distributing the income. The Stewart Trust is to be used for the relief of poverty, the Carruthers Trust for providing essential maintenance of housing for the elderly. Perhaps the 'Sun' might investigate and report on these 'Trusts', the dollar value held today, the distribution recipients from each Trust over, say the past 5 years.

SLASH and BURN AGAIN

Posted on 15-11-2017 16:00 | By tabatha

Ratepayers of years gone by wanted to see this type of housing. I seem to remember the help a particular TCC worker did during the floods in Otumoetai making sure all residents were safe. It was from memory not from a phone call to her but by her own actions. All I can say is please back off and look after the elderly residents there and forget about making a little from the sale or lease out. It is a pity that the council has not got an Elected Member from one of these communities to put their view point. Just think how some of them will go into Christmas wondering about the future. Perhaps the committee wanting to the changes could dip into their pockets and take a nice present to the residents. Come on EM's far more important things to get right first.

No no no

Posted on 15-11-2017 13:44 | By elldee

Please we cant let this be done - only the elderly who cant look after themselves are able to go into a privately owned retirement village. Instead of getting rid of these villages we should be building more. Private rental fees are far too expensive for an elderly person and not all own their own homes or have a relative who can take them in. As the need for these villages increases more and more councils are putting it into the too hard basket. These villages are then rented out as units at market rent. Perhaps more thought should be given to future of elder housing and where these people can go besides onto the streets and caravan parks.

Smoke and Mirrors, play things before people.

Posted on 15-11-2017 07:45 | By Murray.Guy

ONLY two options! Bollocks. This is about removing the need to increase and upgrade our commitment to Elder Housing and our people (which has no direct ratepayer impact) and using the borrowing to fund the aspirations of the Paul Adams/CAG, rugby stadiums, museums etc which DO impact on ratepayers. IF there are proven benefits by the Elder Housing portfolio being a separate legal entity (to qualify for additional funding support) then the activity area can easily be managed by a CCO (Council owned and controlled organisation) just as Baywave, ASB Baypark is managed. We are getting tucked people, by mischievous manipulators of public assets and ratepayer purses.

here we go again

Posted on 15-11-2017 04:46 | By old trucker

ITS probably already signed off to sell, asking for PUBLIC ADVICE is rubbish,NO ONE listens to us, how much did all those HUGE LIGHTS COST at the park and how often will they be used,why could they not use Baypark and save money, GOLLY all you have to do is play during the day and save money,this was also said they were looking at getting those lights there and to see what we thought,but NO, this would have been already signed off before it was said, this would have taken 2 years to plan and build ,if so more,like the overhead Gantry on free way, it was already built before we all said NO,these should be taken down and SHIPPED to Auckland to the Tunnel entrance to pay, we a being hit twice here, or could be taken to the waikato express way,my thoughts only,Thanyou,10-4 out, phew.

I just hope that NONE

Posted on 14-11-2017 23:33 | By The Caveman

Of the current Councillors ever find themselves in need to look for a reasonably rental unit. While I don't agree that the Council should be in the business of a "massive" rental portfolio, it should however be maintaining and retaining what it already has - especially when it comes to the senior citizens that they currently cater for. Just remember, that the Council currently only has to ensure that their current rental stock "pays its way". Lease, sell or whatever, to anybody else and the operator will want a PROFIT - and a big PROFIT on top of the rental/operating costs. Who gets hit - the elderly tenants - most of whom are on VERY limited incomes...................

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