Tuesday, 30 October 2007


Nobody could accuse South Tyneside Homes being afraid to place itself under public scrutiny. Poor audit ratings, failure to gain grants, a slight short fall of £500,000 and employees who are jumping ship quicker than a Titanic crew, are all examples of recent column inches in the Shields Gazette. However, it’s tonight’s little snippet which really shows that this particular ship is completely rudderless.

STH is donating a prize of £250 to the first tenant drawn out of the hat who has paid their rent on time, owe no other debt to the council and keeps to the terms of their tenancy agreement. If that’s not bad enough, you can win £75 if you give four weeks notice of intention to leave, in addition to making sure the house and garden are all in order.

So that’s £325 of Borough tax payers money for merely doing what any other law abiding council tenants would do and is required to do i.e. pay your rent, look after the property and don’t do a moon light flit. STH officials defend their public hand out’s on the grounds that they spend a lot of money covering up for people who don’t look after their houses. A cheaper method may be to actually not rent them homes in the first place.

Who on earth advises these people? Are we paying staff to actually sit around and think of cheap gimmicks worthy of Ant and Dec?

South Tyneside Homes, an organisation, created under “arms length management organisation” legislation, needs to shut down, it’s stock placed back in the hands of the Borough, and start again.

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