Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - Town Hall, Maidenhead

Contact: Oran Norris-Browne  Email: Oran.Norris-Browne@RBWM.gov.uk

Video Stream: Click here to watch this meeting on YouTube

Items
No. Item

112.

Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor’s Luxton and Davey with Councillor’s Shelim and Taylor substituting.

113.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 219 KB

To receive any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

114.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 207 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 8th June 2021.

Minutes:

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That the minutes of the meeting held on 8th June 2021 were approved.

 

This was proposed by Councillor Haseler and seconded by Councillor Singh

115.

Q1 Performance Report pdf icon PDF 3 MB

To consider the report.

Minutes:

Andrew Durrant (Executive Director of Place Services) began by stating that in terms of the Q1 Performance Report, the council was currently working to an interim strategy, which was adopted on the 30th July 2020. The date and performance report provided progress updates against key priorities in the interim strategy and the remainder of the report sets out performance and related commentary for metrics in the current performance management framework that were relevant to the panel's remit.

 

Andrew Durrant continued by stating that the council was currently developing a new corporate plan to succeed the interim strategy, and it had been agreed that performance reporting against the interim strategy, continued through to such a time as when the corporate plan was adopted, and a new performance management framework was approved.

 

Andrew Durrant noted that a metric related to highways was previously reported under the heading commissioning or commissioning infrastructure and this was now listed under neighbourhood services after the organisational and structural change which was in effect from April. Alysse Stracham had now been appointed as Head of Neighbourhood Services.

 

Andrew Durrant referred to table 2, page 13, which gave an overview of performance metrics versus set targets.

At the close of quarter one of 2021/22:

·     6 out of 8 performance metrics were meeting or exceeding set targets.

·     1 was just short of target but still within the accepted tolerance threshold.

·     The remaining metric, which was volume of homeless households and temporary accommodation continued to be untargeted as the effects of the pandemic could still be felt in many areas.

 

Reflections on Q1 included the recovery strategy in terms of the successful initiative rolled out in Windsor using technology for good through the engagement tool ‘Hello Lamppost’. This innovative platform let people talk to street objects and share their thoughts on what they wanted to see in their towns and then these comments were considered as part of the local recovery plan as it moved forwards.

 

The ‘don't let your guard down campaign’ was noted as now being well established and that people had become used to that brand, out and about in towns and it was providing reassurance to visitors returning to the borough’s town centres. Town centre footfall trends had also risen steadily with the easing of restrictions. Page 26 demonstrated a further increase of over a million visitors across Windsor and Maidenhead for the month of June.

 

Andrew Durrant identified that time had elapsed since then, when now reporting on Q1, but the positive trend had continued over the summer and the data continued all the way through.

 

Andrew Durrant then discussed the RBWM recovery strategy and stated that it would continue to promote the commercial centres of the borough as a safe place to visit and focus on retaining local spend. The number of households where prevention duty had successfully ended was above target and this was even with a previously increased target to 17 per quarter this year when compared to 15 per quarter last  ...  view the full minutes text for item 115.

116.

Annual Complaints and Compliments Report 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 2 MB

To consider the report.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman invited Nikki Craig (Head of HR, Corporate Projects and IT) to begin discussing the report. A local authority had a statutory obligation to report on complaints relating to its adults and children services, but not those relating to other corporate services. However, the RBWM’s annual report covered all compliments and complaints in terms of the complaints process.

 

Corporate complaints had a 2-stage process.

·     A review of the complaint would be undertaken and would ideally be responded to in 10 days or ask for an extension could be asked for, if required

·     Stage 2 gave a time frame of 20 days, where a director for that service would carry out a review of the stage 1 complaint

 

There were opportunities there to raise this further with local government and social care ombudsman.

 

The Chairman invited Nikki Craig (Head of HR, Corporate Projects and IT) to begin discussing the report. A local authority had a statutory obligation to report on complaints relating to its adults and children services, but not those relating to other corporate services. However, the RBWM’s annual report covered all compliments and complaints in terms of the complaints process.

 

Corporate complaints had a 2-stage process.

·     A review of the complaint would be undertaken and would ideally be responded to in 10 days or ask for an extension could be asked for, if required

·     Stage 2 gave a time frame of 20 days, where a director for that service would carry out a review of the stage 1 complaint

 

There were opportunities there to raise this further with local government and social care ombudsman.

 

In 2020/21 there were:

·     2,268 contacts made to the compliments and complaints team.

·     415 were progressed and dealt with as formal complaints.

·     Just over 350 of these complaints related to services, which were not adults or children.

·     There were 766 compliments made to the team, compared to 355 the previous year.

·     There were 15 compliments for housing, 14 for planning and 8 for highways.

 

The Chairman reiterated the focus being only on Highways, Planning, Housing and Transport in this report.

 

Councillor Taylor asked Nikki Craig, what was officially classed as a complaint.

 

Nikki Craig responded by stating that of the 2,268 contacts, some were simply called service requests, such as a resident’s bin not being emptied. This would then be filtered through the appropriate channel leaving the figure of 415 formal complaints.

 

Councillor Taylor expressed her acknowledgment of the increase seen in compliments and asked if the impact of the pandemic had impacted this? If it had, could this be adopted for the future, to continue this increase in compliments.

 

Nikki Craig said that the pandemic had changed how some things have operated, such as increasing communication electronically with residents.

 

Councillor Taylor also asked how long the local government and social care ombudsman (LGSCO) paused their service during the lockdown?

 

Nikki Craig said it was back up before the 2nd lockdown and that the LGSCO had taken the decision to pause their investigation  ...  view the full minutes text for item 116.

117.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To consider the Panel’s Work Programme for the remainder of the municipal year.

 

To include consideration of items scheduled on the Cabinet Forward Plan.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Taylor asked the Chairman if she was able to read out a statement to do with the work programme from Councillor Davey who was unable to attend. At the Chairman’s discretion, this was allowed. Councillor Taylor began to read the statement on Councillor Davey’s behalf, but was stopped by the Chairman. The Chairman asked what the main points of the statement were, in relation to the work programme specifically and added that if Councillor Davey wished to make suggestions then he would have to approach the clerks or the panel at the next meeting.

 

The supporting clerk then confirmed that the Head of Governance had given permission for the statement to be read, all be it at the Chairman’s discretion. The supporting clerk suggested that there should be a discussion offline, where the work programme could be updated to address out of date items. The supporting clerk also made it clear to panel members that the way going forward was now changing to a new system. Panel members would approach lead officers regarding an issue, to allow for more scrutiny to take place at future panels.

 

The Chairman stated her support for this way forward. Councillor Singh stressed his frustration at this process and labelled it an attempt for some panel members to have behind-closed-doors discussions. The supporting clerk attempted to explain further and reassure panel members that this way forward was a work in progress and was currently being trialled in separate panels. Councillor Singh said that he had a suggestion for the work programme regarding Tivoli. The supporting clerk advised that this was part of the Communities Overview and Scrutiny Panel and therefore was not appropriate to be discussed.