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CABINET

 

Minutes of a meeting held on 4 March, 2013

 

Present:  Councillor N. Moore (Chairman); Councillor S.C. Egan (Vice-Chairman); Councillors Ms. B.E. Brooks, L. Burnett, R.F. Curtis, C.P.J. Elmore and G. John.

 

Also present: Councillor(s), B Penrose, J Thomas, N Hodges, S William

 

C1235                        MINUTES –

 

At the meeting the Cabinet member for Environment and Visible Services commented that to mark the start of the fair-trade fortnight members of the Cabinet at the meeting held on the 25 of February served fair-trade tea, coffee, orange juice, biscuits and chocolate to members of the public. He also explained that the fair-trade goods were paid for by him personally and not from Council funds.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the minutes of the meeting held on 25 February, 2013 be approved as a correct record.

 

C1236                        DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST –

 

The following declaration was received.

 

Councillor R Curtis

Agenda Item No 17 – Cabinet Initial Consideration of Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee Draft School Reorganisation Programme 2013 to 2019 –

 

Reason For Exemption

 

Councillor Curtis declared his personal interest as a Local Education Authority (LEA) Governor on Oakfield Primary School. As an LEA Governor his personal interest did not equate to a prejudicial interest and therefore he was  able to speak and vote on the matter.

 

 

C1237                        CABINET’S INITIAL CONSIDERATION OF LIFELONG LEARNING SCRUTINY COMMITTEE DRAFT SCHOOL REORGANISATION PROGRAMME 2013 TO 2019 (CS) (SCRUTINY – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

At the meeting, the Leader of the Council brought this item forward from its position on the agenda in order to be the first issue considered in light of the number of public in attendance to hear the outcome of this report. He thanked those in attendance and acknowledged the petition that was handed in by parents and children from Oakfield School.

One of the statutory functions of a local authority was to ensure that there were sufficient places for all pupils.  This meant that the Council needed to ensure that there were the right numbers of schools of the right type and size and in the right locations to fully and efficiently meet the needs of the pupil population.  The organisation of schools was an important driver of pupil attainment and school improvement and was one of the Council's key responsibilities as a local educational authority.

The number, type and sizes of local schools should be reviewed regularly to ensure that changing educational priorities and demographic forecasts inform future plans. 

Leighton Andrews, Minister for Education and Skills, issued a statement to Cabinet Members responsible for education highlighting the principal priority of the current Welsh Government of improving school standards. A central theme of the minister's statement was the reduction of the number of surplus places to ensure that no more than 10% surplus capacity existed in the primary and secondary sectors, and the Council was committed to meeting this target by 2016.

In September 2012 there was an overall surplus of 14.74% in the primary sector and 9.28% in the secondary sector within the Vale of Glamorgan, with an overall surplus of 12.01% across both.  Pupil number forecasts for 2017, assumed that no action was taken, project surplus places in the primary sector falling to 10.17% but secondary school surplus places increasing to 13.15%, giving an overall figure of 11.52%. However, the surplus capacity in secondary schools was predicted to start to fall after 2017 when the larger primary school cohorts entered the secondary sector.

To date the Council had already taken the opportunity to start the reduction of surplus places in the secondary sector through the reorganisation of St Cyres Comprehensive School onto a single site.  Further surplus places would be removed from Llantwit Major Comprehensive School as a result of the proposed rebuilding of the school, which was currently planned for completion in 2017.

As previously reported to Cabinet on 4 February 2012 (minutes C1209 and C1214 refer) members of lifelong learning scrutiny committee considered wide ranging pupil, property and financial data on schools and their catchments to determine whether the existing distribution of schools continues to meet the needs of their local areas. The group established that there was a significant number of schools with high levels of long standing surplus capacity. 

Further work was now required to fully evaluate the Scrutiny Committee’s recommendations in order that the most appropriate package of proposals was brought forward for Cabinet consideration and public consultation. 

it was clarified that there were no proposals for the closure of Llancarfan, Llanfair or Oakfield schools to be recommended to Cabinet as part of the package of proposals.  It had become clear that information about the recommendations from the Scrutiny Committee concerning the future of these schools had been widely communicated and was causing uncertainty and confusion.  It was therefore considered appropriate, ahead of the consideration of the package of proposals to provide clarity on this matter.

The Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee had commented on the small numbers of children from within the catchment areas attending Llancarfan and Llanfair schools, with low number of births forecast in future years.  Most pupils attending the schools travelled from outside the catchment areas and in both cases capital investment was required in future years to address the poor condition of the buildings. 

However, further work carried out by Cabinet following the Scrutiny Committee’s report had concluded that on balance the following reasons for keeping the schools open outweighed the case made by the Scrutiny Committee for closure. The decision to continue to maintain Llanfair and Llancarfan primary schools reflected the good reputation that they both enjoyed with many parents seeking places for their children at these well-established schools.  Pupils at both schools attained above the Welsh average in teacher assessment and both schools had had good Estyn inspection outcomes.  MOD plans for St Athan were unknown, but any additional personnel may increase demand for school places in the Rural Vale.  Furthermore, any residential development around St Athan and Rhoose could further increase the demand for places.

The Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee had noted the longstanding surplus capacity in schools in the area and had advised that Oakfield Primary School in Barry should close.  Following an Estyn inspection Oakfield School was currently subject to special measures and, with capacity for a total of 210 pupils, currently had 85 on roll.  The school had worked very hard to make improvements following the inspection and had addressed many of the inspectors’ recommendations, but overall there still remained more work to be done.

The draft school reorganisation programme that would be presented at a future meeting of Cabinet would clarify any outstanding issues and set out proposals for Cabinet’s consideration and, if agreed, these would be the subject of public consultation. 

 

At the meeting the Cabinet member for Environment and Visible Services and Local Education Authority Governor to Oakfield Primary School gave his fullest support to the recommendation not to close Llancarfan, Llanfair and Oakfield schools.

As the longest serving governor on Oakfield School, he said that he would not pretend that everything was perfect with the school, but felt that with the support of parents, the public and the Council, the school could recover from its current position and go from strength to strength. The cabinet member reiterated his frustration on how a scrutiny report was being portrayed as Council policy. He further commented that there was a requirement to  understand the separation of the Executive which make policy decisions and Scrutiny whose role it was to recommend changes in policy and to scrutinise the decisions of the Cabinet.

The Leader explained the differing roles that Scrutiny and Cabinet play in the decision making process of the Council and he clarified that it was Scrutiny’s role to scrutinise or make recommendations to cabinet. He further explained that there were five scrutiny committees, each having their own special areas of responsibility. On this occasion, the Lifelong Learning scrutiny committee considered the task and finish groups report currently being discussed and used the term ‘approved’ in their recommendation to Cabinet, however to clarify Scrutiny had no policy decision making powers. This was a matter for Cabinet and it was up to the Cabinet to decide whether to follow through with the scrutiny committee’s recommendations.

The Leader clarified that the recommendation from Scrutiny had then been leaked before the Cabinet had the opportunity to consider it. He noted his disappointment at this as it led to incorrect information being fed into the public domain, leading to unnecessary confusion and distress to both children and parents.

The Leader commented that after the Cabinet had considered the recommendation from Scrutiny, it was noted that the recommendation to close the schools failed to take into account parental choice and the educational standards being achieved by the schools. He further explained that Llancarfan and Llanfair Schools were very popular and this was another reason why cabinet could not support the closure of these schools. He acknowledged that there was a high surplus capacity in Oakfield School and it had also been placed under special measures. However, the Leader confirmed that there was a need to ensure that this school was provided with every support to help it address the problems it was facing. The Leader also acknowledged that the school was in a Communities First area and that the community required as much support as possible and that included the school. The Leader could not therefore support the closure of these schools.

The cabinet member for Housing, Building Maintenance and Community Safety expressed her support for the recommendations and highlighted the unnecessary stress and suffering which had been caused by the scrutiny report being leaked into the public domain.

The cabinet member for Regeneration, Innovation, Planning and Transportation welcomed the additional support to be given to Oakfield School, particularly as it was within a Community First area. She further emphasised the importance of helping people to understand the difference between scrutiny and cabinet reports and that unnecessary hardship had been caused by the Scrutiny Committees recommendation being leaked which was understood by the public as a decision of the Council, which it was clearly not.

The Leader put the motion whether or not to close Oakfield, Llancarfan or Llanfair to a full cabinet vote. It was unanimously agreed that the resolutions below be accepted.

This was a matter for Executive decision       

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee, the Task & Finish Group and Officers be thanked for their work on producing their draft School Reorganisation Programme, albeit being incomplete in many aspects.

 

(2)       T H A T it be confirmed that Cabinet will not progress Scrutiny’s recommendations to close Llancarfan, Llanfair or Oakfield Primary Schools.

 

(3)       T H A T the Scrutiny Committee report be noted due to insufficient information and rationale contained within it, and that it took no account of the wider social,  economic and educational issues of the Authority.

 

(4)       T H A T the Cabinet member for Children’s Services bring a report back to a future meeting of cabinet which would consider the social, economic and educational impacts of school organisation within the Authority.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To thank Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee for their work in preparing their draft plan.

 

(2)       To provide reassurance to pupils, parents, staff, governors and the wider community about the future of the three schools.

 

(3)       To ensure that any proposals for any future school reorganisation are fully considered by Cabinet

 

(4)       To provide a further update to Cabinet.

 

C1238            CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE SERVICES – COMMISSIONING STRATEGY AND ACTION PLAN 2013 – 2018 (REF) -

The Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health) on 11 February, 2013 considered the above report of the Director of Social Services.

 

Councillor C.P.J. Elmore, with the consent of the Committee, advised that Budget discussions had been undertaken and Social Services must take their share of the cuts.

 

Councillor Elmore stated that he agreed with the report in principle but it was necessary to see how the budget was developed.

 

Committee were provided with an opportunity to consider the final draft of the Children and Young People Services Commissioning Strategy and Action Plan 2013-18, attached at Appendix 1 to the report.

 

It was known that children and young people looked after by the Local Authority rather than by their parents or within their families were among the most vulnerable groups in society.  As their Corporate Parents, it was the Council’s responsibility to keep them safe, make sure their experiences in care are positive and improve their life chances.

 

Given the need to meet statutory responsibilities and to deal with the significant financial pressures faced by the Council, there was a need to focus on:

 

·                     preventing children and young people becoming looked after where this is not necessary to safeguard their welfare

·                     enabling those that do come into care to be rehabilitated back to their family network were it is safe to do so

·                     providing the best possible outcomes for those who remain accommodated.

 

The Strategy focuses on these three key stages in the “care journey”.

 

The Strategy contained four key objectives:

 

·                     To support families to stay together and reduce the need for children to be looked after by ensuring a focus on early intervention and preventative action across all service provision for children, including statutory and independent providers.

·                     To manage risk confidently and provide support at the “edge of care” by making sure that need and risk were accurately assessed and received the proper response, so that the right children were accommodated at the right time.  This included supporting families by making private arrangements within their wider family networks.

·                     To provide and commission a flexible and affordable mix of high quality placements that met the diverse range of children’s needs.

·                     To give children clearly planned journeys through care which remained focused on achieving care plans, prevent drift, enable them to be reunited with family and friends were possible, provide them with stable placements and opportunities to exit the care system positively.

 

These objectives were underpinned by the following key principles:

 

·                     the responsibility for meeting the needs of children and young people looked after or at risk of becoming looked after rests across all services for children, including statutory and independent providers

·                     the majority of children were most likely to thrive and achieve good outcomes if they were cared for within their own families

·                     preventative services and early intervention to support children in need and their families should be provided to give them every chance to stay together

·                     where children cannot be supported within their immediate family, families will be supported to make private arrangements within their wider family and friendship networks and, where necessary, make these arrangements permanent through the use of Residence Orders and Special Guardianship Orders

·                     formal kinship fostering arrangements would be explored as the preferred alternative arrangement where it was necessary for the local authority to share parental responsibility or to intervene in managing risk and protecting children

·                     where a child’s needs could not be adequately met through the arrangements described in the principles above, the majority would have their needs best met in a substitute family – preferably with in-house foster carers and, if not, with Independent Fostering Agency carers (wherever possible, living in the Vale of Glamorgan)

·                     residential care placements would be made only where the complexity and challenge of meeting a child or young person’s needs meant they were unable to live within a family setting or where a young person was subject to a Secure Remand

·                     placement should be local, to enable children and young people to remain in their communities, maintain their networks and minimise disruption in their lives

·                     placements should be defined in terms of the child / young person’s needs.  It was the role of the Placement Panel to agree that a child should become looked after and to consider the most appropriate type of placement to meet their needs with due consideration given to the available resources

·                     all Looked After Children of statutory school age should receive appropriate education provision regardless of their placement and ability to access mainstream schooling.  Providing appropriate support to enable engagement in education was just as important as finding suitable care placements for Looked After Children

·                     placements should support a positive transition to independence, adulthood, education, employment, training and, where applicable, resettlement back into the community from custodial settings (i.e. enabling young people to succeed in achieving their aspirations).

 

Developing the Strategy marked a start; it was delivery of the objectives included in it and the actions that would make the difference.  A number of the key actions contained within the Strategy had already been put in place and these were beginning to show positive outcomes.  However, successful implementation of the Strategy would require a continuing and co-ordinated effort that was Council-wide and which included other Divisions and service providers.

 

The Children and Young People Services Division Management Team would be responsible for overseeing delivery of the Strategy and the action plan, monitoring the impact on children and their families and driving forward the focus on reducing admissions to care and increasing reunification to family and friends as a key priority for the Directorate.  Scrutiny Committee would receive six monthly progress updates.

 

Concern was expressed about the effect of welfare cuts, including homelessness.  Members also spoke on the volatility of the Looked After Children budget.  Committee was advised that it would soon receive a report dealing with the issue of recruitment for Foster Carers.

 

Members were also advised that any homeless 16 or 17 year old had the option of being classed as “Looked After” following an assessment which demonstrated a need to be accommodated.

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the content of the Children and Young People Services Commissioning Strategy and Action Plan be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the impact that successful delivery of the Strategy was intended to have on improving services within the context of achieving agreed savings targets be noted, although Committee considered that savings in family support services would have an adverse impact on the costs of Children’s Services.

 

(3)       T H A T the report be referred to Cabinet with a recommendation that it endorses the objectives and principles contained within the document and the action plan.

 

(4)       T H A T the report be referred to Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) for information.

 

(5)       T H A T Committee receives regular progress updates on the delivery of the action plan.

 

Reason for recommendations

 

(1-5)    To provide Elected Members with the opportunity to consider the Commissioning Strategy, to influence the priority areas for future development and to exercise appropriate oversight of this key function for the Council.”

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health)

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the objectives and principles contained within the Children and Young Peoples Services Commissioning Strategy and the Action Plan 2013 - 2018 attached to the report be supported.

 

(2)       T H A T Cabinet receive regular progress updates on the delivery of the action plan.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1&2)  To provide Elected Members with the opportunity to consider the Commissioning Strategy, to influence the priority areas for future development and to exercise appropriate oversight of this key function for the Council.

 

 

C1239                        AUTISTIC SPECTRUM DISORDER: COMMUNITY MONITORING AND SUPPORT PROJECT (REF) –

The Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health) on 11 February, 2013 considered the above report of the Director of Social Services.

 

Committee were provided with an update on the Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Community Monitoring and Support Project and outlined were the future actions to be undertaken as part of the project.

 

In 2009, an Adult Task and Finish Group, established by the Welsh Government issued a report describing how service provision for adults with ASD was very inconsistent across Wales.  As a consequence, local authorities were given the opportunity to bid for grant funding.  In partnership with Cardiff, the Vale of Glamorgan Council applied for funding to establish a Community Monitoring and Support Project across part of the South East Wales region.  This was agreed by the Welsh Government in April 2011, indicative until March 2014.

 

The funding had been allocated specifically for providing a service to adults with high functioning autism and Asperger’s Syndrome who were at risk of social isolation of vulnerable to mental ill health and who, currently were not able to access or not eligible to access statutory services.  It enabled the Council to employ two ASD Community Project Workers with responsibility for establishing and delivering the service across the Vale of Glamorgan, Cardiff, Rhondda Cynon Taff and Merthyr Tydfil. 

 

The service offered short-term, targeted intervention which promoted the independence and autonomy of adults with high functioning autism and Asperger’s Syndrome by:

 

·                     providing them with a clear point of contact for information and advice

·                     ensuring that those who were eligible for statutory support were redirected to existing services

·                     signposting those who do not meet the eligibility criteria for statutory social services to appropriate services located in their communities

·                     reducing the risk of crisis and helping to prevent enduring mental health problems by encouraging socialisation and directing individuals to social groups, local events and activities

·                     profiling any unmet need and highlighting any gaps in provision which could then be relayed to local steering groups and to the Welsh Government for consideration. 

 

Access to the service was via telephone, online engagement, face to face meetings or by referral by partner agencies.  To date, 78 separate enquiries had been received.

 

The key performance indicator for the service was that individuals felt less isolated and receive support to help them live independent lives. 

 

The service had been successful in reaching out to clients through new media.

 

·                     the Adult Autism Advice web page received 1,194 page views in 2012, or which 619 were unique page views

·                     our Facebook page had 92 likes

·                     the generic Adult Autism Advice e-mail address has received 50 different contacts.

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the work being undertaken by the Autistic Spectrum Disorder Community Monitoring and Support Project be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T Committee receive regular updates on the work of the project.

 

(3)       T H A T Cabinet be invited to indicate their support for the project.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1&2)  To keep Members apprised of the work of the ASD Community Monitoring and Support Project and its achievements to date.

 

(3)       To seek the views of Cabinet.”

 

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At the meeting the Cabinet member for Adult Services referred members to the case work in appendix A that was attached to the report, that highlighted the good work being carried out.

 

Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the work of the Autistic Spectrum Disorder Community Monitoring and Support Project be supported.

 

Reason for decision

 

To acknowledge the work of the ASD Community Monitoring and Support Project and its achievements to date.

 

 

C1240                        SUSTAINABLE SOCIAL SERVICES FOR WALES: A FRAMEWORK FOR ACTION

The Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health) on 11 February, 2013 considered the above report of the Director of Social Services.

 

Committee were provided with an update in respect of “Sustainable Social Services for Wales – A Framework for Action”, the Welsh Government policy document which set out plans “to renew social services and social care for the next decade”.

 

In February 2011, the Deputy Minister for Social Services announced a new strategic plan for putting social services on a sound footing, “Sustainable Social Services for Wales – A Framework for Action”, a copy of which was attached at Appendix 1 to the report.

 

The policy paper concluded that the choice was either retrenchment or renewal.  Retrenchment would see fewer people receiving services, greater expectations that people find their own solutions, increased burdens on informal carers and a growing number of disputes between services such as the NHS and social care about who was responsible for services.  Renewal meant focusing more clearly on delivery (including preventative services), continuing to innovate and creating sustainable services.

 

Section 3 of the paper set out eight priorities for action that would be introduced in support of renewal.  In summary, the priorities were:

 

·                     a strong national purpose and expectation, and clear accountability for delivery

·                     a national outcomes framework

·                     citizen centred services

·                     integrated services

·                     reducing complexity

·                     a confident and competent workforce

·                     safeguarding and promoting the wellbeing of citizens

·                     a new improvement framework.

 

On 31st October 2012, Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) and the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS) Cymru produced for the Deputy Minister a final Local Government Implementation Plan for Sustainable Social Services.  This provided a detailed framework for delivering a range of commitments spanning the next two years.  A copy of the Plan was attached at Appendix 2 to the report.  The Bill was intended to provide the legal architecture to deliver “Sustainable Social Services for Wales: A Framework for Action”.  It would bring together, into a single unified legal framework:

 

·                     the duties of local authorities and their partners to safeguard and promote the wellbeing of people and their functions in relation to social care

·                     key processes of social work practice

·                     the regulation and inspection of bodies / professionals who provide care services.

 

The collaborative agenda for local authorities set out in Sustainable Social Services for Wales – A Framework for Action was very congruent with the work being done by the Vale in the South East Wales Improvement Collaborative (SEWIC).  The plan also proposed that the Welsh Government would prioritise integrated services, in particular for families with complex needs, looked after children, transition to adulthood and frail older people.  Here again, the work of the Integrating Health and Social Care Improvement Board placed this Council in a good position for responding positively to increased emphasis on implementing new service models. 

 

Similarly, the agenda for change in respect of other priority areas set out in the strategic plan matched closely the direction established for the Vale in last year’s annual report of the Director of Social Services.  These included:

 

·                     citizen centred services – with users and carers having a much stronger voice and greater control over their services but without the English system of personal budgets

·                     a confident and competent workforce – more confident in its own professional judgement and with a reduced volume of prescriptive government guidance about processes

·                     safeguarding and promoting the wellbeing of citizens – cutting complexity by reducing the number of Local Safeguarding Children Boards and joining up the adult protection and children’s safeguarding agendas.

 

However, if many of the proposed changes set out in the document were likely to assist in promoting improvement, this may often be at the level of principles and goals.  In the relatively few areas where the strategy was more specific, there was some cause for concern.  For example, plans to introduce portable assessments may require the Welsh Assembly Government to resolve fundamental issues about the use of different eligibility criteria by local authorities and discrepancies in the resources made available to them for the provision of social services.  It was also difficult to reconcile the wish to introduce more elements of a national social care service and the emphasis upon greater corporate working within local authorities to promote wellbeing and social inclusion.  Getting the correct balance between national prescription and flexibility for local determination was crucial. 

 

Moreover, the strategy was predicated upon an assertion that there was a choice between retrenchment and renewal but without an economic or business case to demonstrate this premise to be true.  There was strong evidence that the current systems underpinning the provision of social care were fundamentally broken, especially the economic model given the failure to deal with issues around paying for care and the scale of the financial challenges which local government faces in meeting in full the duties placed upon it by statute and regulation.  In response to this crisis, the Vale of Glamorgan was in the forefront to efforts to reshape the range of social care services it provided, based upon agreed principles:

 

·                     an emphasis on promoting preventative services which divert people form inappropriate and higher cost provision or mange demand at lower levels of intensity / intrusiveness and which could be accessed without complex assessments

·                     clear tiers of services, with known thresholds

·                     service models which are underpinned by the concepts which service users and others believe are necessary to underpin a dignified life, independence, choice and control, wellbeing, social inclusion.

 

The work being done in this Council to develop new models of care had clear merits:

 

·                     providing opportunities for radical and creative thinking about how services were delivered, encouraging dialogue and getting consensus about overall direction

·                     providing a way of establishing priorities and clarity for staff, partners and service users / carers

·                     acting as a precursor for decisions about investment of resources and commissioning.

 

The three year change plan for social services was helping the Directorate to tackle the overall strategic agenda required, especially in developing the tools needed for reshaping services, with better links between planning and partnerships, commissioning and contracting and resources management.  Recent work undertaken with the Social Services Improvement Agency to emphasise reablement and restoration had encouraged a whole systems approach to problem solving, lessening the grip of traditional silos and helping the Directorate to develop integrated models of health and social care for Older People.  The vale had taken a leading role in taking forward the work of the regional improvement collaborative.

 

The Directorate was building on acknowledged strengths, but the only way to deal effectively with a context where the need for social care was growing rapidly and resources were not keeping pace was a combination of reshaping services to divert demand, retrenchment and reducing costs.  Efforts to modernise services faced many obstacles, including:

 

·                     budgetary pressures and the need for savings

·                     finding the resources required to bring about transformational change

·                     the risks that new legislation will impose increased costs

·                     the scale of the agenda, with a need to focus on innovation and continuous improvement in all areas of service design, delivery and evaluation

·                     the risks of cost shunting from the NHS and other partners, including central government.

 

It was important, therefore, that local government collectively asserts considerable influence over the programme of change in social services and takes control of key elements where possible.  Operational delivery of the service commitments in the Implementation Plan would be led by ADSS Cymru with a specific contribution from the Social Services Improvement Agency in relation to building strategic capability and supporting service transformation. The Welsh Government was currently undertaking a review of Social Services improvement capacity across Wales and it was essential that the case be made for retaining improvement capacity within local government to ensure delivery of our commitments.  ADSS Cymru operated from a strong base in local government.  Directors worked through the governance and accountability structures within their own local authorities and those endorsed regionally and nationally by Leaders, Executive / Cabinet Members and Chief Executives.  ADSS Cymru would be able to supply consistent professional leadership and best use of collective knowledge and experience.  WLGA would seek to provide strong political accountability and leadership for the programme, information for Elected Members and improvement support.

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T Committee receives regular updates about the progress made in achieving the actions set out in the Local Government Implementation Plan for Sustainable Social Services, jointly submitted to the Deputy Minister for Children and Social Services by the Welsh Local Government Association and the Association of Directors of Social Services Cymru.

 

(3)       T H A T Cabinet be recommended to endorse the Local Government Implementation Plan.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1&2)  To ensure that Scrutiny Committee receives regular updates in respect of this major policy statement by the Welsh Government and the actions taken within local government to achieve the commitments to action contained in its Implementation Plan.

 

(3)       To demonstrate the Council’s approval of the specific commitments to action set out in the Local Government Implementation Plan.”

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the Local Government Implementation Plan for Social Services as attached to the report be supported.

 

Reason for decision

 

To demonstrate the Council’s approval of the specific commitments to action set out in the Local Government Implementation Plan.

 

 

C1241            REVENUE AND CAPITAL MONITORING FOR THE PERIOD 1ST APRIL, 2012 TO 31ST DECEMBER, 2012 AND UPDATE ON THE SOCIAL SERVICES BUDGET PROGRAMME (REF) –

The Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health) on 11 February, 2013 considered the above report of the Director of Social Services.

 

Committee received a report which:

 

·                     advised the Committee of the position in respect of revenue and capital expenditure for the period 1st April 2012 to 31st December, 2012 regarding those revenue and capital budgets within the Committee's remit and which sought a change to the Capital Programme

·                     updated Committee on the progress made in delivering the Social Services Budget Programme.

 

The current forecast for Social Services at the year end still remained as an underspend of £403,000.  This was as a result of the savings identified for the year and anticipated to be achieved, being £403,000 in excess of the actual savings required for the year, set as part of the Social Services Budget Programme.  Whilst this was an achievement for the Directorate, it was noted that this was only a short-term gain as the total savings target for the whole of the Budget Programme over the four year period had not yet been finalised. 

 

Children and Young People’s Services - the year end projected outturn was an overspend of £123,000.  An underspend in the Social Services Business Management and Innovation Division would reduce the recharge to Children and Young People’s Services, and thus reduce the overspend.  The service itself was actually projected to overspend by £177,000.  There continued to be pressure on the Children's Placement Budget, specifically from children with especially complex needs.  There was also pressure on the budget in respect of accommodation costs for homeless young people and on the Adoption Budget due to the high cost post adoption support package.  Any increase in the number of children becoming looked after by the Council over the year could have a significant impact on the service.

 

Adult Services - the year end projected outturn was an underspend of £526,000.  An underspend in the Social Services Business Management and Innovation Division would reduce the recharge to Adult Services and thus increase the underspend.  The service itself was actually projected to underspend by £391,000.  There was continuing pressure on the Community Care Packages Budget, which was extremely volatile and could be adversely affected by outside influences such as last years introduction of the First Steps Initiative by the Welsh Government which capped charging for non-residential services to £50 per week.  The impact of this change would continue to be monitored as the year progressed, and discussions with the Welsh Government regarding the issue continued.  Another issue to affect the year end position would be the 2012/13 fee set by the Council in respect of personal care costs for residents placed by the Council in residential and nursing homes provided by the independent sector.  Currently, 2% was included in the budget but a higher increase was being sought by the sector.

 

Business Management and Innovation - the year end projected outturn was an underspend of £189,000 but this would be recharged to other areas of Social Services showing a breakdown position under this heading.  The reason for the underspend was mainly due to staff vacancies being held under the Protection and Policy heading pending a review of service provisions. 

 

Appendix 2 to the report detailed financial progress on the Capital Programme as at 31st December, 2012. 

 

Extra Care / Elderly Mental Infirm (EMI) Feasibility - studies into a suitable site for the provision of a new EMI facility were on hold whilst an Older People's Accommodation Strategy was drafted, which would inform the future development requirements.  As a result, the current year allocation of £50,000 would no longer be required.  It was proposed that some of the underspend on the EMI Budget would be used to fund works at Rondel House, in place of a proposed revenue contribution from Social Services of £25,000.

 

With regard to the Social Services Budget Programme Update, the Directorate was currently required to find savings totalling £8.5m by the end of 2015/16.  Progress in identifying the savings had been made and the following table showed the current position.  Sufficient savings had been identified to meet the targets for 2012/13 and 2013/14 but there still remained £3.9m to be identified for 2014/15 and 2015/16.  In addition, Directors had been requested to formulate additional options for savings for future years in the light of a predicted worsening financial position for the Council. 

 

Year

Savings Required

£000

Savings Identified

£000

In Year (Surplus)/Shortfall

£000

Cumulative (Surplus)/Shortfall

£000

2012/13

1,430

1,833

(403)

(403)

2013/14

2,150

2,040

110

(293)

2014/15

2,150

675

1,475

1,182

2015/16

2,757

25

2,732

3,914

TOTAL

8,487

4,573

3,914

 

 

The Social Services Directorate was committed to achieving a balanced budget.  The corporate programme board and project teams overseeing the plan would continue to develop it further and ensure delivery and progress. 

 

It was reported that the reference in Recommendation (3) of the report to Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources) should have read “Cabinet”.

 

RECOMMENDED -

 

(1)       T H A T the position with regard to the 2012/13 Revenue and Capital Monitoring be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the proposed amendments to the Capital Programme to reduce the Extra Care / Elderly Mental Infirm (EMI) Feasibility Budget to nil be endorsed and referred to Cabinet for approval.

 

(3)       T H A T the progress made on the Social Services Budget Programme be endorsed and referred to Cabinet for information.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       That Scrutiny Members are aware of the position in regard to the 2012/13 Revenue and Capital Monitoring.

 

(2)       That Cabinet approves the proposed amendment to the Capital Programme.

 

(3)       That Scrutiny and Cabinet Members are aware of the progress made to date on the Social Services Budget Programme.”

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the proposed amendments to the Capital Programme to reduce the Extra Care / Elderly Mental Infirm (EMI) Feasibility Budget to nil be approved.

 

Reason for decision

 

To approve the proposed amendment to the Capital Programme.

 

 

C1242            REVENUE AND CAPITAL MONITORING FOR THE PERIOD 1ST APRIL 2012 TO 31ST DECEMBER 2012 (REF) –

The Scrutiny Committee (Housing and Public Protection) on 13 February, 2013 considered the above joint report of the Director of Development Services and the Director of Visible Services and Housing.

 

The Revenue Budget and projected outturn for 2012/13 was shown in Appendix 1 to the report.  The Public Sector Housing (HRA) was predicted to outturn on target and currently showed a favourable variance of £134,000 against the profiled budget.  The variance was made up of a number of factors as detailed in paragraph 4 to the report. 

 

The General Fund Housing was currently showing a favourable variance of £11,000 on supplied and services but was expected to outturn on target.

 

The Private Sector Housing and Public Protection accounts were both predicted to outturn on target. 

 

Appendix 2 to the report detailed the financial progress on the Capital Programme as at 31st December 2012. 

 

In regard to the Housing Improvement Programme, it was noted that as works were proceeding on the WHQS it had become evident that the existing budgets need to be updated in order to reflect what was achievable on each budget by the year end.  There was no issue with underspending on the total budget but each individual allocation required to be reviewed.  This review would take place in the next month and would be undertaken via delegated authority to officers.  Members would be advised of any changes in the next capital monitoring report. 

 

Variances between actual spend to date and profiled spend related to the following matter:

 

·                     Castleland Renewal Area – as stated in the last report to Committee on 16th January 2013, payments had been behind profile on property lifting scheme due in part, to low takeup of insulation works by householders who had already had these works undertaken by other means as well as delays on site due to bad weather.  As a result it is requested that Cabinet (and Council) be asked to approve slippage of the projected underspend of £445,000 into the 2013/14 financial year in order to fund the next phases of the renewal area works.

 

Having regard to the above and related issues, it was

 

RECOMMENDED – T H A T the position with regard to the 2012/13 Revenue and Capital Monitoring be noted and the proposed amendment to reduce the Castleland Renewal Area capital budget to £1.26m. in 2012/13 and the carrying forward of £445,000 to 2013/14 be endorsed and referred to Cabinet and Council for approval.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

To apprise Members of the current position with regard to revenue and capital monitoring expenditure and to seek Cabinet and Council’s approval of the proposed amendment to the Capital Programme.”

 

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendation of the Scrutiny Committee (Housing and Public Protection)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the position with regard to the 2012/13 Revenue and Capital Monitoring be noted and the proposed amendment to reduce the Castleland Renewal Area capital budget to £1.26m. in 2012/13 and the carrying forward of £445,000 to 2013/14 be accepted and referred to Council for approval.

 

Reason for decision

 

To approve the proposed amendment to the Capital Programme.

 

 

C1243                        CAPITAL MONITORING REPORT FOR THE PERIOD 1ST APRIL TO 31ST DECEMBER, 2012 (REF) -

The Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources) on 19 February, 2013 considered the above report of the Managing Director.

 

The report provided Members with an update of the progress on the 2012/13 Capital Programme for the period 1st April 2012 to 31st December 2012.  The Head of Service for Accountancy and Resource Management in presenting the report referred to various schemes, as detailed in the report, where the relevant officers had been required to provide explanations where it was evident that the full year’s budget would not be spent during the year.

 

In considering the report Members referred to the Extra Care / Elderly Mental Infirm (EMI) feasibility scheme under the Directorate of Social Services and queried the reasons for the delay, particularly in view of the fact that a £50,000 allocation had been regularly reported to Committee over the past few years.  It was agreed that the information together with confirmation of whether work on the Older People's Accommodation Strategy had commenced be e-mailed to Members following the meeting.

 

In response to a query regarding the Leisure Centre Refurbishment and the loan repayable to Salix Finance, from revenue, Members queried the contractual arrangements in terms of the energy agreement and were advised by the Head of Service that the contractual arrangements were for a 50 : 50 split between the Council and Parkwood in relation to future savings resulting from reductions in energy usage.

 

Following consideration of Appendix 1 the issue of a grease duct safety programme was raised with it being noted that this referred to catering activities and the requirement to comply with School Catering Standards. With regard to a query in relation to Pencoedtre Park refurbishment detailed at Appendix 2, it was noted that this should have also been reflected in Appendix 1 of the report with the request for further detail on the underspend to be emailed to Members. The Committee also requested to receive further information in respect of the roof renewals expenditure as to the detail for the additional works that had been required and the resulting overspend.

 

Having fully considered the report it was subsequently

 

RECOMMENDED -

 

(1)       T H A T the responses to the queries outlined above be e-mailed to Members prior to the next meeting of the Committee.

 

(2)       T H A T recommendations (1-7) contained within the report be noted.

 

(3)       T H A T the following recommendations, as detailed within the report, be referred to Cabinet for consideration and Council for approval:

 

·                     Castleland Renewal Area - reduce the current budget to £1.26m (carry forward £445k to 2013/14). 

·                     Carbon Management Fund - reduce the budget to £168k (carry forward £75k into 2013/14).

·                     Council Chamber Access Improvements - reduce the budget to nil (carry forward £250k into 2013/14).

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       To inform Members.

 

(2)       It being noted that other Scrutiny Committees had already been requested to forward the recommendations within their remit to Cabinet and Council.

 

(3)       To obtain approval."

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the following recommendations, as detailed within the report, be approved.:

 

·                     Castleland Renewal Area - reduce the current budget to £1.26m (carry forward £445k to 2013/14). 

·                     Carbon Management Fund - reduce the budget to £168k (carry forward £75k into 2013/14).

·                     Council Chamber Access Improvements - reduce the budget to nil (carry forward £250k into 2013/14).

 

Reason for decision

 

To approve changes to the phasing of expenditure

 

 

C1244            CIVIL PARKING ENFORCEMENT – PROGRESS (REF) -               

The Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) on 12 February, 2013 considered the above report from the Director of Visible Services and Housing.

 

The Committee was updated with progress that was being made towards the Council obtaining civil parking enforcement powers.  Members were advised that Alpha Parking had undertaken a review of existing Traffic Regulation Orders, signs and lines with any discrepancies between the TROs, signs and lines having been addressed. Buchanan Order Management had been commissioned to produce hard copy plans to cover the whole of the Council's administrative area from map based schedules.

 

The Joint project team which comprised of officers from both the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Bridgend County Borough Council continued to meet regularly and Bridgend had recently appointed a Parking Manager, two supervisors and one administrative assistant for the project.  The Civil Enforcement Officer posts had been advertised with currently a total of 13 of the 15 vacancies having either been slotted in or an offer of employment made.  A second round of recruitment to finalise the remaining vacant posts was due to commence shortly.  Appropriate training would be provided following appointment and a Procedures Manual produced.  The Civil Parking Enforcement officers (CEO) uniforms had been selected and were currently being procured.  All hand held equipment had been purchased in readiness for testing the system prior to the go-live date in April 2013.

 

Approval had been obtained from the Director of Visible Services and Housing in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Environment and Visible Services to give public notice of the Council's intention to introduce Traffic Regulation Orders to cover existing on-street and off-street parking restrictions and off-street car parks.  Members were advised that if any objections to the proposals were received these would be presented to Cabinet for determination.  Office accommodation for the Vale based CEOs had been identified at the Alps Depot, Wenvoe, with appropriate desks, lockers and computer equipment being installed in due course.  A Service Level Agreement had also been made with Denbighshire County Council as they would provide the back-office support in relation to the issuing of notices and collection of fines, the Agreement being for three years.

 

In response to a question relating to an appeals process for the service it was noted that an independent body would consider appeals. In referring to job adverts in the press Members stated that it had been an opportunity missed as articles placed had mainly referred to appointments with Bridgend County Borough Council.  The Director advised that the issue had already been raised and that future adverts would incorporate more information in relation to appointments within the Vale of Glamorgan area.  Members requested that the Council’s Corporate Management Team be alerted to such issues and that they be borne in mind when undertaking further collaborative initiatives.  It was noted that the enforcement service would be expected to operate on at least a cost neutral basis.

 

RECOMMENDED - T H A T the report on the progress being made and the above comments of the Committee be referred to Cabinet for consideration.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

To provide Cabinet with the details of the report and the views of the Committee.”

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendation of the Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

Reason for decision

 

To note the contents of the report.

 

 

C1245                        FEES AND CHARGES - COUNTRYSIDE SERVICES (REF) -

The Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) on 12 February, 2013 considered the above report from the Director of Development Services.

 

The report detailed the proposed charges to be levied at Cosmeston Lakes, Porthkerry Country Park and the Glamorgan Heritage Coast Centre which were contained in Appendices A. B, C and D to the report. The suggested implementation date of April 2013 was also recommended.

 

The Operational Manager for Countryside and Economic Projects presented the report outlining that for Cosmeston Lakes Country Park the prices had been held in many cases or increased to broadly reflect inflation.  For Porthkerry Country Park these had largely been held or increased to reflect inflation.  With regard to the Glamorgan Heritage Coast Centre charges for educational sessions had been increased reflecting the fact that the sessions lasted up to a full day as opposed to the country parks where the basic session was for a few hours.

 

Car park charges were also proposed to be increased in order to maintain a proportionate contribution towards the costs of maintaining the broader facility. 

 

In considering the report, local Members referred to the car parking charges at Porthkerry Country Park and the fact that in their view they were inappropriate particularly as no car parking charges were being made at Cosmeston.  Of note was the fact that visitors to Porthkerry only attended the facilities for a small amount of time as opposed to much longer attendance at the other parks. Members were advised that the instigation of car parking charges at Porthkerry had been in response to traffic management issues, in particular to ensure that emergency services were not blocked from accessing houses served via the park, and park users by inappropriate car parking. Income from car parking, charged only at peak times, is used to employ dedicated staff to manage parking.  In general Members agreed that the Council should consider other ways of addressing the traffic management issues at Porthkerry rather than setting car parking fees.

 

With regard to the Glamorgan Heritage Coast Centre some Members considered that an increase in car parking charges was also unacceptable but were reminded that the revenue received was used to enhance the facilities at the site.

 

During discussions reference was also made to an error in Appendix C in that the proposed charge for ranger led walks (adult) at Porthkerry Country Park for 2013/14 should read £4.25.

 

Having fully considered the report and following a vote it was 

 

RECOMMENDED -

 

(1)       T H A T Cabinet be requested to review the traffic management arrangements in Porthkerry with a view to reducing or ending the car parking charges in Porthkerry Country Park.

 

(2)       T H A T notwithstanding recommendation (1) above the remaining fees and charges as contained within the Appendices to the report, together with the amendment to ranger led walks (adult) Porthkerry Country Park for 2013/14 of £4.25 be recommended to Cabinet for approval.

 

(3)       T H A T all charges set be the maximum cost with the Director of Development Services having the ability to reduce for promotions.

 

(4)       T H A T the above recommendations be referred to Cabinet for consideration for approval.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       To consider alternative arrangements in light of the Committees concerns.

 

(2)       To reflect costs and market conditions.

 

(3)       To allow prices to be used as a marketing tool.

 

(4)       In order for the charges to receive approval.”

 

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment)

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the Director of Visible Service and Housing be requested to review the traffic management arrangements in Porthkerry with a view to reducing or ending the car parking charges in Porthkerry Country Park and that a further report be brought back to a future Cabinet for decision.

 

(2)       T H A T the remaining fees and charges as contained within the Appendices to the report, together with the amendment to ranger led walks (adult) Porthkerry Country Park for 2013/14 of £4.25 be approved.

 

(3)       T H A T all charges set be the maximum cost with the Director of Development Services having delegated authority to reduce for promotions.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To consider alternative arrangements in light of the Committees concerns.

 

(2)       To reflect costs and market conditions.

 

(3)       To allow prices to be used as a marketing tool.

 

 

C1246            LOCAL FLOOD RISK MANAGEMENT STRATEGY (REF) -

The Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) on 12 February, 2013 considered the above report.

 

Cabinet had referred the report to the Scrutiny Committee to ensure the views of the Scrutiny Committee were obtained as part of the consultation process.  The Council had a duty to produce a strategy in line with the national strategy and guidance. The general requirements and responsibilities of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and the Flood Risk Regulations 2009 had been detailed in a Cabinet report of 8th June, 2011. 

 

The number of flooding incidents seen across the U.K. had been on the increase each year and to address the situation and protect communities in the future a series of fundamental changes had been made to legislation relating to flooding.  The Flood and Water Management Act of October 2011 designated each local authority as the Local Lead Flood Authority (LLFA) and placed new responsibilities on local authorities to develop, maintain, apply and monitor a strategy for local flood risk management in their areas.  This also included sources of flooding, ordinary water courses, surplus water run-off and ground water.  The flood management responsibilities for main rivers however, remained with the Environment Agency.  The Act also provided the Environment Agency with a strategic responsibility for supervising the management of flood and coastal erosion risk whilst placing the local leadership role with local authorities directly.  Approval from local authorities as LLFA’s would be required in order to erect a dam, weir or other life obstruction to the flow of any ordinary water course, erect a culvert or alter a culvert in a manner that would be likely to affect the flow of an ordinary water course.

 

The Act also required the development of Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) where practicable in all new developments.  The introduction of such national standards was aimed at reducing the risk of flood damage and improving water quality.  The Act established the need for a SuDS Approving Body (SAB) which with the approving body's consent new developments would not be permitted to commence construction.  Visible Services currently held the drainage function for the Council and was also recommended to be the SAB for the Council.  The SAB process was fee generating with the hope that the fees would support further resources as and when required.  However, further guidance on the national standards for design, construction and maintenance of SuDS was yet to be issued for consultation.  Each LLFA would be required to collect, collate and maintain a drainage asset register recording the ownership, condition and maintenance records of such assets.  The aim of the register was to protect flood mitigation measures and help inform maintenance regimes minimising flood risk in priority areas in the Vale of Glamorgan.  As an LLFA the Council also had a responsibility to investigate all surface water flooding and take appropriate action including commissioning surveys and investigations into the causes, advising third parties on mitigation and to undertake work to resolve flooding issues. 

 

An executive summary of the draft Local Flood Risk Management Strategy was attached at Appendix A to the report with a full version being available in the Council's Members' Room and the Council’s website.  The document was sub-divided into three parts: Local Flood Risk Management Strategy, Volume 2 Strategic Environmental Assessment and Volume 3 Habitats Regulation Assessment.

 

It was noted that the Welsh Government had provided initial funding of £90,000 in 2011/12 and a further £90,000 in 2012/13.  The funding had been provided to support the initial implementation of the Flood and Water Act requirements and to support the development of a Local Flooding and Coastal Erosion Strategy.  Welsh Government highlighted that the cost of mitigation measures could be significant and could not be implemented by current available funding. There was an expectation on local authorities to have to afford additional expenditure in future budget setting and to give consideration to additional charges, levies and partnership arrangements wherever possible.  Although national and European funding may be available the report highlighted that it would be insufficient to afford all mitigation measures required across Wales.  Therefore, funding would be allocated strictly on a risk-based priority by the Welsh Government to deliver long term investment plans.  The Council would be in a position to bid for any available funding streams in 2013/14 if the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy was approved by the Cabinet and endorsed by Welsh Government prior to 1st April, 2013. 

 

The Director urged Members to consider the document and to identify any areas within their Wards that they felt may need further consideration. He advised that he would be happy to receive any individual comments from members as part of the consultation process; alternatively members could provide comments via the Council’s web site.  Following the consultation a further report would be presented to the Scrutiny Committee.  All Council strategies would be provided to Welsh Government and this would enable a more strategic approach to be taken on flood risk management funding decisions in future. Members noted the significant responsibilities of the legislation and the duties required by the local authority and were particularly concerned that the resources may not be available to deliver the Strategy.  They referred to a number of areas throughout the Vale where problems currently existed and although they were pleased that a strategy was being addressed the long term financial implications for the Council was of significant concern.   It would also be important to ensure that the sharing of expertise with neighbouring authorities and consultants was encouraged.

 

Having considered the report it was subsequently

 

RECOMMENDED - T H A T the discussions above be forwarded to Cabinet for consideration and information.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

To outline the Committee's concerns to Cabinet.”

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendation of the Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

Reason for decision

 

To note the report.

 

C1247            LOCAL AVERAGE INTEREST RATE (MD) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – CORPORATE RESOURCES) -

Cabinet received a report which recommended the rate of interest to be charged on Council mortgages.

The report outlined that the rate of interest currently charged on Council mortgages was 5.83%.  The local average interest rate had been calculated at 5.83% and the Standard National Rate of interest was at 3.13%.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED – THAT the local average rate of interest be unchanged on all new and existing variable housing loans including the sale of Council dwellings of 5.83% with effect from 1st February, 2013.

 

Reason for decision

 

Interest rate recalculated in accordance with statutory requirements.

 

C1248                    GRANTS TO COMMUNITY / VOLUNTARY ORGANISATIONS 2012/13 (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – CORPORATE RESOURCES) -

Approval was sought to award of further grants from the 2012/13 corporate revenue budget.

Local community / voluntary organisations had, as in previous years, been invited to apply for this funding that had been advertised on the Council's web site and also in local newspapers.

The report set out at Appendix "A" the applications for consideration and the recommended grant in respect of each.

The scheme Eligibility Criteria and Decision Criteria was set out at Appendix "B" to the report, thus allowing Cabinet to ensure that the criteria was being met and that the grants were awarded in accordance with the Council's priorities.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T grants be awarded as set out in the table below;

 

Organisation

Amount

 

Cardiff Shopmobility

1000.00

Mind in the Vale of Glamorgan

500.00

Cwm Talwg Community Association

1000.00

Castaways Luncheon Club

150.00

Penarth Baby Latte Club

150.00

1st Penarth Company, The Boys Brigade

250.00

2300 (St Athan) Squadron ATC

500.00

Llantwit Major Girlguiding

500.00

Rhoose Lifeguard Club

500.00

Barry Wanderers Cricket Club

500.00

South Wales Chess

250.00

Best Kept Village – Vale of Glamorgan

1500.00 per annum for 3 years

Cosemeston Medieval Village Trust

500.00

 

Reason for decision

 

To award grants in accordance with the approved scheme.

 

C1249            COGAN CORONATION AFC - STAND AND DUG OUTS (LPCSD) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

At the meeting the Cabinet member for Leisure, Parks, Culture and Sports Development commented that paragraph 6 of the report should be changed to read an under-cover stand and not an under-cover seating facility as stated.

Approval was sought to permit Cogan Coronation AFC to erect a stand and dugouts adjacent to pitch No. 1 at the Cogan Recreation Ground, Penarth and to grant retrospective approval for the location of a shipping container already at the site.

Cabinet previously agreed (Minute No. C974 2004 refers) that Cogan Coronation AFC be permitted to install fencing and barriers around pitch No.1 at Cogan Recreation Ground.

Cogan Coronation AFC required additional facilities to those already agreed to progress through the Welsh League system.  They also required a guarantee of tenure of at least 10 years in order to balance their investment; and to provide greater external grant funding opportunities for the future.

The football clubs proposal was to provide under-cover seating for up to 160 spectators and dug outs for the team officials from both sides.  In addition the club wished to regularise the permission for a storage container that was already located on the site.

Detailed plans of the club's proposals were shown at Appendix A to the report, and appendix B indicated the land to be licensed which formed part of the footprint of the new facilities. The facilities would also require planning permission and be subject to building control regulations.The report noted that Cogan Coronation AFC would apply for all relevant planning permissions and building control approvals at their cost.  .

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)                  That the land at Cogan Recreation Ground required for the installation of a stand, dugouts and shipping container is licensed to Cogan Coronation AFC at a nominal licence fee for a period of 10 years on terms and conditions to be agreed by the Managing Director in consultation with the Head of Legal Services and the Director of Visible Services & Housing

 

(2)                  That Cogan Coronation AFC fund all relevant planning permissions, building control applications and all other costs associated with the construction of the stand and dugouts.

 

(3)                  That subject to the appropriate planning permission being obtained all facilities be manufactured and installed to the satisfaction of the Director of Visible Services & Housing and at no cost to this Council.

 

(4)                  That the Head of Legal Services be authorised to prepare and execute the new licence(s) with Cogan Coronation AFC on behalf of the Council and any other documents that may be required in connection with the project.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)                  To improve partnership working with the voluntary sector and to ensure that Clubs are supported in playing a higher standard of local football.

(2)                  To ensure that there is no cost to the authority.

(3)                  To ensure that the facilities are manufactured and installed to an appropriate standard.

(4)                  To secure the completion of the new licence(s)

 

C1250                        COUNTY SURVEYORS SOCIETY WALES PARKING STANDARDS 2008 (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) -

Cabinet were advised on the County Surveyors Society (CSS) Wales Parking Standards 2008.

Since 1993 there had been a fundamental shift in national planning and transport policy and a move away from providing a minimum number of parking spaces associated with any development.

Particular mention was made to paragraphs 8.4.2 and 8.4.3 of Planning Policy Wales Edition 5 (November 2012)(PPW). From these it was no longer considered appropriate to utilise a minimum parking standard to determine the parking requirements of new developments and joint working with adjacent local authorities was supported.

In response to changing national policy, the CSS developed new parking standards on behalf of and endorsed by the 22 Welsh Unitary Authorities and the four regional transport consortia. The CSS Wales: Wales Parking Standards 2008 sought to ensure a transparent and consistent approach to the provision of parking, submission of travel plans and sustainability considerations that aimED to:

  • Assist developers, designers and builders in the preparation and submission of planning applications;
  • Achieve a common approach to the provision of vehicle parking facilities associated with new development and change of use.

 

The CSS Wales: Wales Parking Standards 2008 were attached to the report at Appendix 1.

A fundamental departure from previous practise was the documents requirement for local authorities to introduce a system of zones for parking purposes into their Local Development Plans (LDPs) and the document laid out six such zones each with differing designated levels of parking requirement for development control purposes.

This new approach to transport, with the change from predicting and providing for cars to managing traffic and reducing car dependency, meant a new role for parking provision and control which the CSS standards had been prepared to address. The aim as before remained to ensure that new development proposals or changes of use were accompanied by sufficient parking space for private cars and service vehicles to avoid the need for vehicles to park on street and thereby cause congestion, danger and visual intrusion. The standards were therefore intended to cover all built up and rural areas in order to facilitate the application of appropriate and sufficient levels of parking in all circumstances.

Officers of the Council had been involved in the preparation of the CSS parking standards via the South Wales Highway Development Forum.

Once endorsed, the CSS Wales Parking Standards 2008 would form the basis for revised Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) which would replace the Standing Conference on Regional Policy in South Wales Parking Guidelines (Revised in 1993 with a 2001 Addendum).  The SPG would in due course be reported to Cabinet in advance of consultation on the same.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the County Surveyors Society Wales Parking Standards 2008 be endorsed for use in the production of Supplementary Planning Guidance for the Vale of Glamorgan LDP.

 

(2)       T H A T a further report be presented to Cabinet on a draft Supplementary Planning Guidance for Car Parking Standards.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To endorse the CSS Wales Parking Standards 2008 for use within the Vale of Glamorgan.

 

(2)       To enable a draft Supplementary Planning Guidance for Car Parking Standards to be produced for consultation purposes.

 

 

 

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