Agenda item

Corporate Plan Refresh 2021 (Agenda item 11)

Report of Councillor Mark Robinson, Executive Member for Customer, Digital and Performance.


Councillor Mark Robinson, the Executive Member for Customer, Digital & Performance presented the report.


The current Corporate Plan had been adopted by the Council in February 2019 and was scheduled to finish in 2023.  However, over the last 15 months the landscape in which the Council operated and what it had looked to achieve had changed.  The current Plan had been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Council’s 10-year strategic partnership with South Holland District Council had ended and a climate emergency had also been declared.


All the above had significantly impacted the Council moving forward and rather than the usual light touch refresh it had been decided that a more fundamental review and rewrite was required to ensure that the Council had a clear and transparent direction of travel going forward.


The new Corporate Plan had been set out at Appendix A of the report and aimed to set the vision under three external focused themes and one internal focused theme (see section 1.4 of the report).


It was noted that the Corporate Plan refresh had also been considered at a recent meeting of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission.  The feedback from that meeting was read aloud and Members were assured that the suggestions had been considered and some had been incorporated.


The look and feel of the document would become more accessible to a variety of different audiences and a more infographic style would be adopted and would be included on the Council’s website.


The recommendations were proposed and seconded.


Councillor Birt was disappointed about the ‘soft touch’ of the climate emergency within the Corporate Plan.  He did recognise a number of small improvements that had been made and felt that this was a step in the right direction; however, referring to page 91 of the agenda pack under the strategic priorities he was not happy with the wording under bullet point 5 and felt that it should be a ‘requirement’ to deliver the Council’s target to be NetZero by 2035 and not ‘working towards it’.  He would; however, vote in favour of this refreshed Corporate Plan but felt it still had some way to go.


Councillor Atterwill had read the Plan thoroughly and had welcomed this Corporate Plan refresh.  He did however have a question relating to the last paragraph on page 88 of the agenda pack where it stated: “Finally, we are extremely excited to share our Breckland Cares campaign for the first time, which is made up of seven ‘campaigns’ delivered over a rolling twelve-month programme” and he asked where in this document could any detail about the seven campaigns be found and if, they were not listed anywhere, should they be listed or would these come in an addendum at some point later on.


In response, the Executive Member for Customer, Digital & Performance informed Members that the Corporate Plan was an overarching document and set out the path that the Council would be taking, and such details would follow.


Councillor Atterwill acknowledged what had been said but felt that the way it had been written there should be headings to explain what these seven campaigns were included in that paragraph.


The Leader apologised as he had omitted to include the details of these seven campaigns in his weekly briefing paper that had recently been emailed to all Members but would include them in the next one.  As mentioned earlier, the Corporate Plan was an overarching document but underneath it would be the seven themes that would constantly change under the direction of Members, the Chairman of the Council and any feedback received from staff.


RESOLVED that the content of the new Corporate Plan 2021-2023 be approved.

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