Agenda item

Quarter 2 and Quarter 3 Performance Reports (Agenda item 7)

Report of the Assistant Director for Finance & Democratic Services.


In the absence of the Joint Performance Team Leader, the Assistant Director of Finance and Democratic Services and the Senior Performance Analyst were in attendance for this item.


The Performance Team had brought forward a report that pulled together all performance of the Council whilst trying to make the performance processes slicker, more meaningful and gathering information that could be used by Members. There had been significant changes in the process and this was still on-going.  Training had been carried out for Officers that were responsible for the input of data and the quality of information was being increased to ensure that the right things were being measured.


The frequency of reporting projects and performance indicators (PIs) to Committee was an issue as on some occasions the information gathered was slightly out of date by the time it was presented to the meeting.


Councillor Gilbert said that he had read all of the report in particular the document that had since been replaced on which he had prepared questions. He had concerns about the replacement document as it did not contain as much information and he felt from a scrutiny point of view there would be opportunities missed.  The Assistant Director of Finance and Democratic Services reminded the Committee of the plea from Members –not to give them too much information; it was the Portfolio Holders that required more detail which in turn could be disseminated to Members if they so wished.  Councillor Gilbert was not happy with the response and asked if he could forward his questions relating to the original document.  It was agreed that any questions would be forwarded by email to the Assistant Director for a response.


As one of the Portfolio Holders, Lynda Turner, the Executive Member for Community and Environmental Services pointed out that this was an evolving document and they, as Executive Members, would be challenging this all the way through until it ended up as a document that was fit for purpose.


The Vice-Chairman concurred with the views of Councillor Gilbert and asked a question in relation to staff sickness which he had raised before as a concern but had never received an adequate response.  He assumed the figure quoted in the report was for the whole Council, if this was the case, he would prefer to see the sickness absence data for each service area.  Members were informed that the sickness reporting was at a higher level; however, this could be seasonal and it would be better to wait until a year’s worth of data had been gathered.  The Chairman referred to the wording used in the comments, stress, anxiety and depression, and felt that this was indicating a trend and echoed the Member’s concerns on this matter.  He felt that any issues that the Council was not managing to control should be brought forward as a scrutiny matter for support.


Councillor Kybird referred to Moving Thetford Forward project contained in the report and raised concerns in relation to the commentary as he thought that the Planning Inspector had already reported on the bus station issue.  The Chairman raised concern about this particular matter having two quarters as ‘amber’ that signified, in his opinion, that there was a problem.  Councillor Kybird reported some breaking news on the bus station stating that there would be a fast track completion by January 2015.  The Assistant Director of Finance and Democratic Services said that there would always be an inbuilt time lag by 10th of each month.


The report was otherwise noted.

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