Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee
Tuesday, 20th September, 2016 7.00 pm

Venue: Civic Offices, Shute End, Wokingham RG40 1BN

Contact: Neil Carr  Principal Democratic Services Officer

Items
No. Item

23.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted by Kate Haines, John Kaiser and Philip Mirfin.

24.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 160 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 July 2016.

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 12 July 2016 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

25.

Declaration of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

26.

Public Question Time

To answer any public questions

 

A period of 30 minutes will be allowed for members of the public to ask questions submitted under notice.

 

The Council welcomes questions from members of the public about the work of this committee.

 

Subject to meeting certain timescales, questions can relate to general issues concerned with the work of the Committee or an item which is on the Agenda for this meeting.  For full details of the procedure for submitting questions please contact the Democratic Services Section on the numbers given below or go to www.wokingham.gov.uk/publicquestions

Minutes:

There were no public questions.

 

27.

Member Question Time

To answer any member questions

Minutes:

There were no Member questions.

28.

Discussion with Councillor Angus Ross, Executive Member for Environment pdf icon PDF 115 KB

To question Councillor Angus Ross, Executive Member for Environment, on the operation of services within his portfolio and any upcoming issues. (20 minutes).

 

A list of the Executive Member for Environment’s specific portfolio responsibilities is attached.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Angus Ross, Executive Member for Environment, had been invited to discuss current issues relating to his portfolio and to take questions from Committee members. Josie Wragg (Head of Community Services) was also in attendance.

 

Councillor Ross referred to the following issues:

 

Grass cutting – following intensive work with the new contractor the overall situation was much improved. Members and Officers had visited a number of areas to discuss local issues with Ward Members and Town/Parish Councils. The lessons learned in mobilising the new contract would be reflected in the 2017 grass cutting programme. Councillor Ross asked Members to provide details of any local areas where there were still problems or concerns relating to grass cutting or proposed future planting.

 

During the discussion of this item the following points were made:

 

·       Members asked to be involved in discussions about the specific local areas to be used for wildflower planting;

 

·       Members asked for more details of the planned improvements to Council sports pitches arising out of the new contract arrangements.

 

Waste recycling levels – in line with national trends the Council’s waste recycling performance had plateaued in recent years (the 2015/16 actual figure was 38%). In line with the Waste Framework Directive the Council had to achieve a recycling target of 50% by 2020 in order to avoid significant financial penalties.

 

Work was ongoing through a Member working group and the re3 partnership to identify new initiatives to improve recycling rates. It was noted that the Councils with the highest recycling rates had adopted a combination of food waste recycling, containment of residual waste, alternate week (or longer) collections and robust enforcement activity. A significant driver of improvement would be the Council’s new waste contract, to be implemented in 2019.

 

During the discussion of this item the following points were made:

 

·       Members noted that the amount of packaging used by supermarkets had reduced, however some of this packaging could not be recycled;

 

·       Recent Member briefings on waste issues had been held with a total of 32 Members in attendance;

 

·       It was important to maintain high levels of communication with residents about changes to the waste collection arrangements;

 

·       Members asked for details of the new charging regime for DIY materials, set out in the recently published Waste Acceptance Policy.

 

Country Parks – the progress made at Dinton Pastures Country Park, including the recent Marvellous Festival, was highlighted. Attention was now turning to California Country Park. A planning application was due to be submitted in the autumn relating to an improved access road and car parking provision. If approved, work was likely to commence at California Country Park in the autumn of 2017, with completion in time for the 2018 summer season.

 

Flooding and drainage – Councillor Jarvis referred to the recent localised flooding in the Borough and asked about the implications for the potential sites recently put forward in relation to the Local Plan Update. Councillor Ross confirmed that all sites put forward for consideration would be assessed in terms of flood  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

Council Plan Performance Monitoring 2016/17 Q1 pdf icon PDF 146 KB

To consider a report relating to the Council’s Quarter 1 Council Plan Performance Monitoring report.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the Q1 Council Plan Performance Monitoring Report 2015/16, set out on agenda pages 13 to 72.  Julie Holland, Service Manager, Business Improvement, introduced the report and answered Member questions.

 

Julie Holland stated that this was the first monitoring report of the 2016/17 Municipal Year and that a number of new indicators had been introduced. Appended to the report was a description of the Council Plan indicators, with details of the thresholds used in allocating Red, Amber or Green status. The report indicated that the breakdown of performance indicators in Quarter 1 was 42 Red, 6 Amber and 5 Red. The indicators of greatest concern (Red) related to:

 

·         % child protection visits due in the period which were on time (within 10 days of the previous visit);

 

·         % of secondary schools with a current Ofsted rating of “good” or better;

 

·         % of special schools with a current Ofsted rating of “good” or better;

 

·         Children who attended a Wokingham Borough school (primary, secondary or special) with an Ofsted rating of “good” or better;

 

·         Kilograms of residual household waste per household per annum.

 

Members considered performance relating to the key indicators. During the discussion the following points were made:

 

·         Members noted that changes to the Council meeting schedule meant that the Committee would receive the quarterly monitoring reports closer to the end of the relevant reporting period;

 

·         Members requested greater clarity in the printed report on Green, Amber or Red status;

 

·         Members requested that the Summary at the start of the report should include information about trends from earlier reporting periods;

 

·         % care proceedings completed in 26 weeks of application – it was confirmed that the report contained an error; the target for Green status was 60% not 100% as printed;

 

·         % of looked after children living within 20 miles of Berkshire West – Members asked for clarification about the use of “Berkshire West” instead of Wokingham;

 

·         Members noted that a number of Red indicators related to schools – it was confirmed that the introduction of more rigorous Ofsted inspections had resulted in reduced performance rating for a number of schools;

 

·         Care Governance indicators – Members asked for more details on these indicators and the provider numbers set out in the report;

 

·         Members noted the amount of time and effort used to collect and present the performance data each quarter and expressed the view that the 21st Century Council programme should provide some improvements in this regard.

 

RESOLVED That:

 

1)      the updates on performance indicators and major projects be noted;

 

2)      the additional information and clarification requested by Members be incorporated into the next performance monitoring report.

 

 

30.

Monitoring Public and Member Questions pdf icon PDF 107 KB

To consider the list of Public and Member questions which have been submitted to Council and the Executive since the last Management Committee meeting held on 12 July 2016.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report which set out public and Member questions submitted to the meetings of Council on 21 July 2016, the Executive on 28 July 2016 and the Extraordinary Executive on 1 September 2016.

 

Members considered each of the questions submitted and discussed the potential for further investigation.

 

RESOLVED: That the report be noted, with no further action to be taken.

 

31.

Consideration of the current Executive and Individual Executive Member Decision Forward Programmes pdf icon PDF 197 KB

To consider the current published version of the Executive Forward Programme and the Individual Executive Member Decision Forward Programme.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a copy of the Executive Forward Programme and Individual Executive Member Decision Forward Programme as set out on Agenda pages 85 to 94.

 

Members discussed the Forward Programmes and considered the potential for items to be reviewed by the Overview and Scrutiny Committees. During the discussion the following points were raised:

 

·         Evening Car Park Charges – Members requested an update on the impact of the new charges and data on the additional income generated to date;

 

·         Corporate Peer Review – Members noted that the findings from the review would be considered at a future meeting of the Committee.

 

RESOLVED:  That the Executive and Individual Executive Member Decision Forward Programmes be noted.

32.

Update reports from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee Chairmen pdf icon PDF 253 KB

To consider update reports from the Chairmen, or nominated Member, of the three Overview and Scrutiny Committees.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received update reports from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee Chairmen. During the discussion the following points were made:

 

·         Items on Overview and Scrutiny Committee Agendas should be supported by written reports circulated in advance with the Committee papers;

 

·         The next meeting of the Community and Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee (7 November) would be held at Winnersh Community Hall;

 

·         A Borough-wide meeting was to be held with Town and Parish Councils to discuss flood risk management.

 

RESOLVED: That the update reports from the Chairmen of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees be noted.

 

33.

Committee Work Programmes pdf icon PDF 284 KB

To discuss the Work Programme of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee and the three Overview and Scrutiny Committees.

Minutes:

The Committee considered its forward work programme and the work programmes of the three Overview and Scrutiny Committees.

 

During the discussion of this item it was noted that Councillors Baker and Pollock had been invited to attend the next meeting of the Management Committee on 22 November 2016.

 

RESOLVED:  That the Overview and Scrutiny Committee forward work programmes, as amended, be approved.