Venue: Norfolk Room, The Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham
Contact: Committee Services Tel: 01362 656870
To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 17 July 2013.
The Chairman welcomed Councillor Stasiak to his first meeting as a member of the Committee.
The Minutes of the meeting held on 17 July 2013 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
Apologies (Agenda Item 2)
To receive apologies for absence.
Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Borrett, Councillor Goreham and Councillor Williams. Councillor R Richmond was present as substitute for Councillor Borrett.
The Executive Member for Community and Environmental Services had hoped to be present but was not able to attend.
Non-Members wishing to address the Meeting (Agenda Item 5)
To note the names of any non-Members who wish to address the meeting.
Councillor B Canham was in attendance.
Report of the Assistant Director for Commissioning.
The Chairman announced that Agenda Item 7 would be heard before Agenda Item 6 for the convenience of the applicant. It was agreed that the applicant would be given the opportunity to speak to the Committee after the Officer had presented the report.
Tamsin Eddison (NP Law) was in attendance as Legal Advisor to the Committee.
The Licensing Officer presented the report and explained the options available to the Committee and the range of conditions that could be attached to the License. The Committee had wide discretion and should consider the application on its own merits.
Norfolk County Council as Highways Authority had objected to the application on the grounds that the footway was not wide enough to accommodate the tables and chairs without restricting pedestrian passage. Additional information had been provided by the applicant in response to that objection and was included on the agenda.
Members were advised that the Council’s decision on the matter was not subject to appeal by the applicant.
Councillor Bambridge asked if the applicant could re-apply if the application was refused and the Legal Advisor confirmed that he could.
Mr Eccleston (applicant) said that in the 13 years that he had been in business at the premises he had seen a decrease in footfall due to the shopping precinct which had opened elsewhere in the town. He also clarified that the Taxi Rank was mainly for the standing of taxis. They generally collected their customers from other locations.
He appreciated the Highway concerns but pointed out that the Licence only lasted for a year and if there were problems the Committee could refuse to renew it. He had contacted a wheelchair user with regard to the width of the footway and that person had confirmed that the tables and chairs would not cause him a problem.
Councillor Canham knew the wheelchair user and confirmed that he used quite a large wheelchair.
Councillor Steward asked about the required width for a footway but in the absence of a Highways Authority representative that could not be confirmed.
Members discussed the width of the highway; the application of conditions to restrict the permission to two tables with no more than two chairs each, positioned parallel to the premises; and the requirement to keep the area clear of litter.
It was clarified that under the standard conditions the Council had the power to revoke the Licence if the tables and chairs caused problems.
RESOLVED that the application be granted subject to the standard conditions.
To adopt the unconfirmed minutes of the meeting held on 26 September 2013.
An amended version of the Minutes had been e-mailed to Members and copies were tabled at the meeting.
(a) Corporate Health & Safety Joint Consultative Group (Minute No 35/13)
Councillor Canham asked whether Breckland Council or NCC were responsible for Health & Safety matters and the Human Resources Manager advised that NCC were advisors and the Council retained liability. Councillor Canham went on to advise that Councillors also had responsibility and she therefore supported the proposal that they should be trained.
1. the provision of induction and update training for staff should be included in the NCC Health & Safety Review; and
2. the Member Development Panel should assume responsibility for ensuring Members received Health & Safety training.
(b) Environmental Services Review (Minute No 36/13)
The recommendation was noted and would be taken into consideration when the matter was discussed at Agenda Item 14.
(c) Any Other Business (Minute No 41/13)
RESOLVED that the proposal to amend the Constitution to allow the LJCC to consider staffing matters affecting less than five staff should be referred to the Constitution Review Working Group without comment.
RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Local Joint Consultative Committee meeting held on 26 September 2013 be adopted.
Report of the Assistant Director for Commissioning.
The Interim Joint Licensing Manager explained that the report was on the agenda for information only. It had been thought that the Committee might be required to deal with Scrap Metal licence applications. However, due to the timescales required to implement the new legislation, the matter had already been discussed at Cabinet and Council and authority had been delegated to the Licensing Committee to deal with Scrap Metal licence applications. The report was the same one that had been presented to Cabinet and Council which was why it contained recommendations, but the Committee was not required to make any decision on the matter.
The report was noted.
Review of the Performance Related Pay Scheme (Agenda Item 9)
To receive a verbal update from Ruth Hassall, HR Manager.
The HR Manager advised Members that the Executive Member for Internal Services had asked the HR Department to look at the Performance Related Pay (PRP) Scheme following comments made in the review undertaken as part of the Investors in People (IIP) assessment.
The review would look at the wider issues associated with PRP which included the Appraisal Scheme and ‘Total Reward’.
It was noted that pay was a significant incentiviser, but due to the current financial climate it was not possible to reward staff with significant pay increases.
Options being considered were:
The item was noted.
Secondment (Agenda Item 10)
Report of the Human Resources Manager.
The HR Manager apologised for the lack of a written report, due to the pressures of other work in the HR Team. She updated Members on the use of Secondment within the organisation.
Currently there was no clear policy on secondment which left the Council open to challenge. The recommendations in the report (which would be presented to the next meeting) included proposals to draft a Policy and for the Policy to place restrictions on who could apply for secondment (ie not in the first year of employment).
Councillor Bambridge was generally happy with the proposals but did not want to see staff held back from moving from one department to another.
It was clarified that the term ‘secondment’ referred to specific transfer for a temporary, fixed period of time. It was acknowledged that a number of people had progressed in their careers through the system.
Councillor Canham asked if an employee could return to their original post if they were not happy with the secondment and was advised that the secondment agreement allowed for the employee, or either Manager, to terminate the secondment with one month’s notice.
The item was noted.
To receive further information, following the deferral of the recommendation to Council in the Minutes of the meeting held on 17 July 2013.
The Assistant Director for Commissioning presented the report and explained that it had come back to the Committee as the original report had not reflected the recent changes in salary brought about by the 2013/14 pay award. He also advised that ARP staff were not part of the PRP scheme.
The position as at 1 October 2013 was that there were five members of staff being paid below the Living Wage and the annual cost of increasing their pay would be £2,169.68. Another factor worth noting was that there were significant implications on existing salary gradings. Grade 12 would become redundant and the bottom half of Grade 11 would also be affected as it fell below the Living Wage.
Members were asked to take those factors into consideration and to also bear in mind the Executive Member’s request for HR to review the PRP Scheme.
Members discussed the implications and felt that the Living Wage proposals should form part of the HR pay review. It was confirmed that the review results would be ready by 1 April 2014 for the new financial year so that staff would know where they stood. Members therefore felt that a one-off ex-gratia payment should be made to bring the five members of staff up to Living Wage standard whilst the review took place.
RESOLVED to RECOMMEND TO COUNCIL that:
(1) the Living Wage should be considered as part of the general review of remuneration being carried out by HR; and
(2) the five staff currently being paid below the Living Wage should each receive a one-off payment to bring their salary for the current financial year up to £14,374.
The Assistant Director for Commissioning confirmed that the results of the review would be reported to the Committee in early 2014.
Next Meeting (Agenda Item 12)
To note that the next meeting will be held on 27 November 2013 at 10.00am in the Anglia Room, Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham. (Please note change of room)
The arrangements for the next meeting on 27 November 2013 were noted.
Exclusion of Press and Public (Agenda Item 13)
To consider passing the following resolution:
“That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and the public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 4 of Schedule 12A to the Act”.
PART B – ITEM FROM WHICH THE PRESS AND THE PUBLIC ARE EXCLUDED
RESOLVED that under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972 the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 4 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.
Environmental Services Review (Agenda Item 14)
Report of the Director of Commissioning.
The Interim Environmental Services Manager presented the report which was very similar to the one presented previously. It had been amended to update the financial figures, the potential for other management synergies and to include the results of the consultation. The report had been presented to LJCC and they had supported the recommendations.
The main proposals were set out in paragraph 1.25. The consultation process had highlighted the need to investigate further the proposed Shared Management post.
Consultation responses had been generally very positive. If approved, the report would proceed to Cabinet on 29 October and to Council on 15 November when the final structure would be announced. Implementation of the new structure would take place from 1 January 2014.
Members discussed the proposals and asked questions about the effect on the Council’s decision making abilities with regard to future contracts. It was clarified that the new proposals would provide the advantage of giving access to operational experience without altering the Council’s ability to re-contract.
Councillor Steward had raised concerns at the previous meeting about contract management and she sought reassurance that it would not be left for the public to notify the Council of problems. She wanted to ensure that problems would be picked up before the public were aware of them.
The Interim Environmental Services Manager advised that the new structure would allow pro-active audit of contract and service performance and would include performance reports from contractor.
Councillors Steward and Stasiak had not received the report in advance of the meeting. They therefore refrained from voting.
1. To approve the implementation of the restructure of Environmental Services within both Breckland D.C. and South Holland D.C. as detailed in the report, including:
a. The provision of the senior management capacity for Environmental Services via the appointment of a Corporate/strategic Manager; jointly shared between the two Authorities. Officers are requested to investigate further and report back on the most appropriate organisational structure/service arrangements to be managed by this position taking into account the potential synergies weaknesses noted with paragraphs 1.19 – 1.20 of this report.
b. The further sharing of posts namely the proposed Senior Environmental Services Officer and Senior Waste & Recycling Services Officer
2. To agree the Environmental Services Statement of Purpose at paragraph 1.7 of the report
3. To agree the headline improvements as at paragraphs 1.33 – 1.35 of the report