Agenda for Overview and Scrutiny Board on Monday 26th March 2018, 6.00 p.m.

Agenda and minutes

NOTE - item 6 of the agenda has been withdrawn., Overview and Scrutiny Board - Monday 26th March 2018 6.00 p.m.

Venue: Parkside Suite - Parkside. View directions

Contact: Amanda Scarce  and Jess Bayley

No. Item


Apologies for Absence and Named Substitutes


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors S. R. Colella and C. J. Spencer, with Councillor S. Baxter attending as substitute for Councillor Colella.


Declarations of Interest and Whipping Arrangements

To invite Councillors to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Other Disclosable Interests they may have in items on the agenda, and to confirm the nature of those interests.


Both Councillors L. C. R. Mallett and C. A. Hotham declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in respect of Minute No. 104/17 Hospital car park charges – Board Investigation.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 182 KB


The minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Board held on 12th February 2018 were submitted.


A typographical error on final paragraph on page 4 under Minute No. 89/17 was highlighted and noted.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Board held on 12th February 2018, subject to the preamble above, be approved as a correct record.


Transport Planning Report pdf icon PDF 157 KB

A draft outline of the suggested report is attached for Members consideration, together with extracts from Board minutes at which the topic has been discussed.


Members are asked to consider whether they wish to amend this outline report in anyway.



Additional documents:


The Chairman introduced this item and reminded Members that following a number of meeting where this had been discussed, the Strategic Planning and Conservation Manager had been tasked with providing an outline of the areas to be included within this report in order for Members to have a starting point for further discussion.


The Strategic Planning and Conservation Manager explained that the headings gave a view of the current position and a number of key areas.  He had spoken to Mott Macdonald in respect of the Western Distributor Road who were prepared to respond with some high level recommendations.  It was also suggested that Members may wish to include comments provided by community groups such as the Whitford Voice.


Following receipt of the report Members raised a number of areas which were discussed in more detail:


·         The cost of the work carried out by Mott Macdonald in respect of the Western Distributor Road – it was confirm that the initial work would be carried out within the existing contract with them.  This would be a high level report which they could prepare in 2-3 weeks and was likely to cost £1ks rather than £10ks.

·         Who was paying for the extra costs incurred and whether this should be included within the report.  It was understood that the Council would seek reimbursement from Worcestershire County Council (WCC).  It was confirmed that this was the case; however the cost of the work in respect of the Western Distributor Road may not fall within the scope of this.  It was important to highlight to and reassure residents that every effort was being made to recover these costs.

·         It was confirmed that a letter had been sent to WCC on 10th March requesting this reimbursement and the Leader further confirmed that he had also been dealing with this matter.

·         The two previous traffic counts which had been carried out and the accuracy of the predictions within those.  It was important that as accurate data as possible was produced in order to carry out future projections.  It was noted that from the previous data a suggested reduction in traffic was predicted, when in fact an increase of an estimated 7% had been shown.

·         It was important that the Council was able to show the expected traffic counts in 2030 and 2040 in order to be able to see the impact on the roads within the District, particular in light of the potential impact of future housing needs.

·         Concerns were raised that the current data collection process was not accurate but that there was new technology which would change how this modelling was carried out.  Investigation of modelling should therefore be included within the report.

·         Members shared their disappointment at the responses received from WCC after it was made very clear that both Members and residents were greatly concerned at the ever increasing congestion in the District due to the lack of appropriate infrastructure.

·         The Strategic Planning and Conservation Manager highlighted that the review of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 99/17


Leisure Centre Sports Hall Options Appraisal - Presentation pdf icon PDF 208 KB


The Chairman welcomed the Press and public to the meeting and it was confirmed that the slides from the presentation would be placed on the Council’s website the following day.  It was agreed that questions and comments would be taken at the end of the presentation.


The meeting was adjourned for 10 minutes to allow for extra copies of the presentation to be printed for the public.


The Executive Director, Finance and Resources gave a presentation which covered the following areas (attached at appendix 1):


·         Project Scope

·         Various Options – each with an alternative option which provided added value based on soft play/tag active).

·         Capital Costs for each of the options – detail was provided around preliminaries and overheads of profit as detailed in the chart.

·         Affordability – high level revenue modelling had been undertaken and demonstrated an indicative positon.  The potential need for borrowing and the use of balances was highlighted.

·         Programming – dependent on the option chosen estimated completion dates were provided.

·         Proposed next steps in the process – consideration by Cabinet and further work which would need to be undertaken.


During the presentation it was confirmed that negotiations with BAM had been around use of the sports hall for 48 weeks and then it had been solely the decision of the Head Teacher at the school to reduce this to 38-40 weeks, to take account of the examination period.  Details around why this decision had been made were provided and the impact this had had.  It was also confirmed that an approach had been made to Sports England in respect of support and funding. 


Following receipt of the presentation Members discussed a number of areas in more detail, including:


·         The advantage and disadvantages of the use of a modular unit.  The life expectancy was approximately 40 years.

·         The potential to bring the running of the sports hall back in house and the potential to make some profit from it.

·         It was confirmed that the Head of Leisure and Cultural Services would lead on the project.

·         The continued negotiations with BAM and the background around how the focus of these had changed following the School’s decision to limit the availability of the sports hall from the period originally agreed (it was confirmed that whilst the contract had been drawn up this had not been signed).

·         Accrued income and the payback period in respect of the options which included the value added element.

·         The need for any building to be compliant with Sports England guidelines.

·         The original report from Sports England when it was highlighted that there was sufficient sports hall provision in the district.  Members questioned whether this report would be reviewed and revisited.  The Executive Director, Finance and Resources confirmed that this was in the process of being done. 

·         Views which had previously been put forward by the Board following the work of the Leisure Provision Task Group, where it had been recommended to Cabinet that the option for a sports hall remained open and that this  ...  view the full minutes text for item 100/17


High Street Market Report - pre scrutiny pdf icon PDF 200 KB

Additional documents:


Members were advised that this item had been withdrawn from the agenda and the planned Cabinet meeting, when it would have been discussed; on 28th March had been cancelled.  The Executive Director, Finance and Resources explained that after further consideration it had been agreed with the Leader, Councillor K. May as Portfolio Holder and the Chief Executive that the original report did not contain as much detail as necessary in order for a decision to be made, hence its withdrawal.


It was understood that the revised report would now be presented to Cabinet on 11th April 2018.   It would therefore be necessary for the Board to hold an extra meeting in order to pre-scrutinise this report prior to it being considered by Cabinet.  The Chairman therefore proposed that the Board meet prior to the Cabinet meeting on 11th April.  This had been discussed with the Leader and he was in agreement that Cabinet be put back to 6.30 pm in order for the Board to meet at 5.30 pm.  This would be the only substantive item on the agenda, which would be published on Tuesday 3rd April 2018.


RESOLVED that Officers arrange an extra meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Board to be held on 11th April 2018.



Finance and Budget Working Group - Update


Councillor L. C. R. Mallett, as Chairman of the Finance and Budget Working Group, explained that the Group had met last week to plan its work for the year ahead and carry out a review of the previous year’s work.


The Group had considered how it could best assist at a strategic level with fees and charges, the Capital Programme and the budget setting process.  The Group aimed to meet with all Heads of Services over the summer period and take a cross cutting approach to fees and charges with a view to having some continuity across all services, as it had been felt that each service tended to work in a “silo” and the Group hoped to be able to encourage Heads of Service to take a different approach.  The Group anticipated that they would devise some sort of framework in which officers could work in order for the process to run more smoothly and be more consistent.


Members had also discussed the need for greater accuracy and accountability as it had been noted that there had been significant variances and the aim would be to get the Heads of Service to talk through their budgets and if necessary call them back on a regular basis to explain those variances and consider how savings could be made.


From the planned work programme it was anticipated that the Group would need to meet on at least a monthly basis (perhaps more during certain periods) and officers were currently looking at scheduling in meetings for the new municipal year.


Measures Dashboard Working Group - Update


Councillor Webb, as Chairman of the Measure Dashboard Working Group confirmed that the next meeting of the Group would take place on 18th April and that the Chief Executive had confirmed his attendance at that meeting.



Task Group Updates

·         CCTV Short Sharp Review

·         Road Safety Around Schools Task Group

·         Hospital Car Parking Charges (Board Investigations)



CCTV Short Sharp Review


In the absence of the Chairman, Officers confirmed that the consultant who was carrying out the review of the CCTV system had almost completed his work and it was hoped the Group would meet with him prior to receiving his final report in early May, in order to agree the next steps of the process.


Road Safety Around Schools Task Group


Councillor C. J. Bloore, as Chairman of the Task Group confirmed that they had met with Officers from Wychavon District Council who managed this service on behalf of the Council.  There had been lively discussions around the enforcement officers’ attendance at schools during peak times in comparison with other areas.  A press release had been issued and a number of responses already received.  Future meetings would involve interviews with the Police and officers from Worcestershire County Council.  There were a number of options which could be considered to deter parking and Councillor Bloore was of the view that there would be a number of recommendations made by the Group and encouraged Members to get in touch with any complaints they had received.


Hospital Car Parking Charges (Board Investigation)


Councillor Bloore confirmed that the Group would hold a short meeting directly following the Board meeting in order to agree how to move this investigation forward.


Worcestershire Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Update


Councillor C. J. Bloore as the Council’s representative on the Worcestershire Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) provided an update on its most recent meeting.  The Ambulance Service had attended and they had provided details around the work current position in respect of waiting times at the Acute Hospitals.  Members had been informed that there had been occasions when ambulance staff had been dealing with life threatening situations and acting as medical staff within the hospital environment due to both the waiting times and shortage of beds and staff.  This had led to ambulances and staff not being able to carry out their main role as effectively as they should. It was clear from the Ambulance Services point of view that there were serious concerns around both waiting times and delays in moving people out of hospital and into social care together with a real need for extra beds to be made available.  Councillor Bloore raised concerns around the role of HOSC and its ability to be able to take any effective action and what its powers actually covered.


Officers agreed to circulate the minutes from the HOSC meeting electronically, when available.



Cabinet Work Programme pdf icon PDF 70 KB


Officers confirmed that the majority of items referred to in the Cabinet Work Programme were already scheduled in to the Board’s Work Programme.  Specific reference was made to the Industrial Units investment – Outline business Case and it was confirmed that this was now expected in June.  The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 report would also now be received at the June Cabinet meeting.


The Transport Planning Review item and the CCTV Short Sharp Review, which were reports from the Board were also likely to be put back.


RESOLVED that the Cabinet Work Programme 1st April to 31st July 2018 be noted.


Overview and Scrutiny Board Work Programme pdf icon PDF 247 KB


Officers reminded Members that at the April meeting a presentation would be received from Worcestershire County Council Officers in respect of Safeguarding and Early Help. 


The following items and suggested changes were also highlighted:


·         As the item in respect of Anti-Social Behaviour, taken from the Cabinet Work Programme has been put back to June, it was agreed that the scrutiny of the Crime and Disorder Partnership would also be put back.


·         The CCTV Short Sharp Review would not be ready for the April meeting and should also be put back to June. 


·         The Hospital Car Parking Charges Board Investigation would be provisionally put back to the May Board meeting.


·         Following this evening’s meeting it was also agreed that the Transport Planning Report would be scheduled in for the May meeting.


RESOLVED that subject to the pre-amble above the Overview and Scrutiny Board’s Work Programme be noted.

Appendix pdf icon PDF 208 KB