02/01/18: Breckland Councillors vote to continue housing partnership that delivers savings
Breckland Cabinet members voted today (2 January) to formalise a working arrangement between Breckland Council and Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council that delivers savings, improved business resilience and a number of other efficiencies.
This decision means that the two councils can continue working together to deliver the Housing Strategy and Enabling Service, which primarily is responsible for enabling the delivery of affordable and specialist new housing, undertaking research, and developing strategy and policy, for the next two years, following the completion of a successful two-year trial period.
This trial arrangement delivered a number of benefits including:
financial savings in terms of salary expenditure;
significant efficiencies of processes in how the service operates;
increased resilience and responsiveness by pooling staff resources;
and improved performance through the sharing of best practice.
In agreeing to formalise the shared services agreement - also known as a S113 agreement - Breckland Councillors are ensuring the two local authorities work together to deliver the Housing Strategy and Enabling Service until March 2020, subject to final decision at 18 January Council.
Cllr Gordon Bambridge, Breckland's Executive Member for Growth, said: "The work of the Housing Strategy and Enabling Team supports several of our key corporate priorities and plays an important role in the delivery of the Breckland Housing and Homelessness Strategy, so it's vital that this team functions as effectively and efficiently as possible. Partnership working with other local authorities brings considerable benefits to Breckland residents and I'm delighted that our successful relationship with housing officers at Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council will continue."
Today's announcement comes after Breckland partnered with North Norfolk District Council and Kings Lynn and West Norfolk Borough to appoint a shared Community Housing Delivery Officer, funded by a government grant, in late 2017.