Arrive back from holiday in Tenerife and go straight into one of APSEs main committees on my first day back. As well as the business side of the meeting, there is also two policy papers which are up for debate and the Committee are in the mood for a discussion.
The first paper is very much about the future of social housing and how it should be viewed in a wider regeneration role. We are also calling for a new Decent Neighbourhoods Standard to replace the Decent Homes Standard and a levelling of the funding options available to local authorities. However we all agree that the paper needs strengthening around new built affordable social housing and that this housing should be seen as a quality choice rather than some kind of safety net.
Next up is our Environmental paper which gets an even rougher ride, this means a rewrite of where we are at. We were pushing a line around punishing all polluters, including an annual household waste allowance in order to change the publics behaviour. However the policy committee want to pursue the producers first and hold back on the consumers at present. That's democracy, its the membership who own APSE and there representatives who have the final say!