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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet: 28 April 2014

 

Report of the Leader

 

Final Outcome Agreement 2013/14 - 2015/16

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To advise members of the final Outcome Agreement negotiated between the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Welsh Government covering the period 2013/14 - 2015/16.

Recommendations

1.         That members note the Outcome Agreement.

2.         That members receive a further report in July 2014 highlighting progress in achievement of targets for the period April 2013 to March 2014.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To agree mutually beneficial targets that will secure the incentive grant from Welsh Government.

2.         To ensure regular scrutiny of progress of the actions and targets to be undertaken.

Background

2.         The council entered into four previous agreements with the Welsh Government (Policy Agreements in 2001-04 and 2004-07, an Improvement Agreement in 2008-2010 and an Outcome Agreement in 2010-2013). These agreements were based on the premise that we share common objectives and that agreements could be entered into to assist in achieving these objectives. Welsh Government paid a grant to the council to incentivise achievement of targets, to the value of £1.2 million annually.

3.         As reported to cabinet on 4 November 2013, under the new Agreement there are fewer outcomes (reduced from 10 to 5) to reflect the difficult budgetary decisions councils have to make. Some of the grant (30%) will now be targeted to address known weaknesses rather than given as an unhypothecated reward.  Finally, the agreement must be linked to the WG 'Programme for Government' and to the Vale's 'Single Integrated Plan' (Community Strategy).

4.         In order to reduce the reporting burden, the council will only need to report on the delivery under part 1: outcomes.  This will be a self-assessment of the extent to which the council has delivered against the agreed outcomes.  We will not be required to report anything under part 2, corporate governance, as the Welsh Government will have this information already. 

5.         If successful in achieving our targets and avoiding statutory intervention, the council could expect to receive £1.2 million per year of the term of the agreement. 70% of the grant is unhypothecated and is paid into the general funds of the council the remaining 30% of the grant is unhypothecated unless the council receives statutory intervention.

Relevant Issues and Options

6.         Following negotiations with Welsh Government, the Outcome Agreement has been finalised and signed off by the Minister for Local Government and Government Business. A copy of the final Agreement is attached in appendix 1.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

7.         Welsh Government has set aside £31 million for 2013/14 for the Outcome Agreement across the whole of Wales. If entirely successful in achieving our targets, we could expect to receive £1.2 million each year of the Agreement (over 3 years). The grant is entirely unhypothecated. Where appropriate, under the new agreement, some of this may be targeted to address known weaknesses rather than given as an unhypothecated reward as in previous years, strengthening councils capacity to address concerns from audit, inspection and regulatory bodies.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

8.         There are a number of targets and actions that will contribute to: ensuring a strong, healthy and just society; achieving a sustainable economy; living within environmental limits; and promoting good governance.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

9.         Improvement agreements have no basis in statute. They are therefore voluntary in nature and there are no sanctions relating to non-achievement of targets, apart from the loss of financial incentive

Crime and Disorder Implications

10.      There are no specific activities/indicators in the proposed Agreement relating to crime and disorder, however some actions and targets will contribute towards public protection.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

11.      There are no specific activities/indicators contained in the proposed Agreement that relate to improving equalities outcomes, however some actions and targets will contribute towards equality and access..

Corporate/Service Objectives

12.      The Outcome Agreement links to the Corporate Plan objective of Community Leadership, and assists in focusing the council’s activities on national objectives. The agreement must be linked to the Single Integrated Plan. The council and Welsh Government jointly negotiate the targets contained within the Agreement.

Policy Framework and Budget

13.      This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

14.      Senior officers of the council and Corporate Management Team have been consulted on the content of the Agreement.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

15.      Corporate Resources

Background Papers

Appendix 1 - Vale of Glamorgan Outcome Agreement 2013-2016

 

Contact Officer

Julia Archampong, Performance Manager

 

Officers Consulted

Directors

Head of Performance and Improvement

Head of Business Management and Innovation (Social Services)

Head of Housing and Business Services

Head of Achievement and Additional Learning Needs

Head of Strategic planning and Performance (Learning and Skills)

Operational Manager - Countryside and Economic Projects

Operational Manager - Waste Management and Cleansing

 

Responsible Officer:

Sian Davies, Managing Director

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