DD2026 Additional posts to support private rented sector projects

Type of decision: 
Director's decision
Code: 
DD2026
Date signed: 
19 July 2016
Decision by: 
David Lunts, Executive Director Housing and Land

Executive summary

This decision requests approval of expenditure to cover the costs of two temporary posts to be created -  a Project Manager (grade 10) and a Project Officer (grade 8), to project manage the delivery of the Mayor’s proposals for improving London’s private rented sector. Both posts would be created in the Programme, Policy and Services unit of the Housing and Land Directorate on a 12 month fixed term basis, at a total cost to the GLA of £118,000. The posts are required to increase capacity to deliver a key area of the Mayor’s manifesto.

 

Decision

That the Executive Director approves expenditure of up to £118,000 to fund two new 12 month fixed-term posts to be created – a Project Manager (grade 10) and a Project Officer (grade 8) – to project manage the delivery of the Mayor’s proposals for improving London’s private rented sector.

 

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1    The Mayor’s manifesto includes commitments relating to London’s private rented sector. These include:
•    ‘naming and shaming’ rogue landlords;
•    establishing a London-wide lettings agency to help tackle high letting agent fees;
•    promoting and supporting borough property licencing schemes; and
•    supporting the Build to Rent sector. 

1.2    Delivering these commitments is a key early priority for the new Mayor. Under the previous Mayor, the GLA’s work in this area was limited to the London Rental Standard, a light touch project that could be managed by the core housing policy team. The new projects require additional dedicated capacity, particularly during the project development and implementation phases.

1.3    The proposal is to create two new temporary posts, as follows:
•    a Project Manager (grade 10), with overall responsibility for delivering all of the private rented sector projects’ and
•    a Projects Officer (grade 8), who will support the Principle Projects Officer and lead on specific elements of the work programme. 

1.4    Both posts will be fixed term for one year. After that time, it is anticipated that a wider review of the GLA’s capacity in this area will be required so that new projects can be properly resourced in the long term. The total cost to the GLA of this decision is £118,000, consisting of salaries and relevant on-costs.

1.5    There are no previous approvals related to this matter. 
 

Objectives and expected outcomes

2.1    The objective is to create a new private rented sector project management team to enable the GLA to implement the Mayor’s policies in this area. The outcome will be additional resources to develop and implement these projects. 

 

Equality comments

3.1    London’s private rented sector is home to around 800,000 households from all different backgrounds. It is a particularly important housing tenure for poorer households, including those who have been accepted as homeless and who are unable to access social housing. Moreover, 65% of household heads in the private rented sector are BAME, compared to 40% in other tenures, so improvements in the PRS will have a disproportionately positive impact on these groups.

 

Other considerations

a)    Key risks and issues

4.1    There is a risk that no suitable candidates will be found. This will be mitigated through utilising the GLA’s human resources policies and ensuring the posts are advertised through the usual channels.

b)    Links to Mayoral strategies and priorities

4.2    The Mayor’s manifesto contains clear commitments to deliver projects to improve London’s private rented sector. These include ‘naming and shaming’ rogue landlords, setting up a London-wide lettings agency, and promoting borough licensing schemes. 

 

Financial comments

5.1    This decision seeks approval to create a new private rented sector project management team to enable an implementation of Mayor’s policies in this area. The team will consist of two new members of staff employed on a 12 months fixed term basis (Project Manager (grade 10) and a Project Officer (grade 8)), with a total cost to the GLA of £118,000.
 
5.2    The above expenditure will be utilised from GLA’s Contingency Budget. Any changes to this proposal, including the requirement of additional funds, will be subject to further approval via the Authority’s decision making process.
 

Planned delivery approach and next steps

7.1       The recruitment will be delivered in accordance with the GLA’s human resources policies and procedures.

Activity

Timeline

Advertise jobs

Early July 2016

Interviews and appointment

Mid July 2016

Start date

TBC depending on notice periods