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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 30 June, 2014

Report of the Leader

End of Year Performance Report 2013/14 and Target Setting 2014/15

Purpose of the Report

1.         To present end of year performance results for the period 1st April 2013 to 31st March 2014 and proposed service targets for 2014/15.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet note service performance results and remedial actions to be taken to address service underperformance. (Paragraphs 30-122 with full details in Appendix 1 which is available on the Council's website and in the Members Room.)

2.         That Cabinet note progress to date in achieving key outcomes as outlined in the Corporate Plan 2013/17 and the Improvement Plan Part 1 2013/14. (Paragraphs 6-29 with full details in Appendix 1, which is available on the Council's website and in the Members room.)

3.         That Cabinet consider proposed service targets for 2014/15. (Paragraph 123 with full details in Appendix 2, which is available on the Council's website and in the Members room.)

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To ensure the Council is effectively assessing its performance in line with the requirement to secure continuous improvement outlined in the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009.

2.         To enable the Council to demonstrate achievement of its objectives and identify service areas for improvement work.

3.         To ensure challenging targets are set against the Council's measures for improvement, reflecting our commitment to continuously improve services whilst mindful of significant financial and service demand pressures over the coming year.

Background

2.         Service Plans for 2013/14 focus on the achievement of key objectives within each directorate which in turn contribute towards the achievement of Corporate Plan and Improvement Plan outcomes.

3.         Quarterly performance reports reflect 2013/14 Service Plans and are designed to ensure the Council reports performance in the context of progress against its objectives. 

4.         Service performance against key outcomes and objectives is monitored via Ffynnon.

5.         End of year (quarter 4) service performance reports are cumulative and comprise performance information covering the period 1st April 2013 to 31st March 2014. The reports are structured as follows:

·               An overview provides a snapshot of each directorate's progress towards achieving the objectives contributing towards its service outcomes. It highlights progress towards key actions in the Corporate Plan 2013-17 and the Improvement Plan Part 1 2013/14 for which the directorate has lead responsibility. Examples of exceptional performance during the year are highlighted as are key areas of slippage and the planned remedial action.

·               A brief evaluation is provided of each service outcome outlining overall progress (including actions and performance measures) towards achievement.

·               Detailed progress is reported for each service objective looking at all actions broken down into completed, on track, slipped and not started actions. Progress is provided for all performance indicators using the traffic light system (red, amber and green).  A 'red' status relates to measures that have missed target by more than 10%, 'amber' relates to performance within 10% of target and 'green' to performance that has met or exceeded target.  All areas of underperformance identified include a reason for the poor performance and proposed remedial actions.

Relevant Issues and Options

6.         Overall, the priorities in the council's four year Corporate Plan are on track to be achieved. Of the 181Corporate Plan actions for 2013/14, 65% (117) were completed at end of year, with a further 15% (28) on track, 18% (32) slipped and 2% (4) not started but due to have. Details on slippage and proposed remedial actions are provided in the relevant service areas within the report.

7.         The majority of our priorities as outlined in the Improvement Plan Part 1 (2013/14) have been achieved with 78% (24) of actions completed, 3% (1) on track and 19% (6) slipped. Slippage was reported in relation to Improvement Objectives (IO1) [(VS01/A014)], (IO2) [DS/01/A011)], (IO6) [(CC07/A05), (CC07/A052)], IO7 [(VS03/A029), VS03/A026]. Refer to paragraphs 38,64,65,67 and 106 of the report for further details on reasons for slippage and the proposed remedial actions.

8.         Whilst for the most part, the key outcomes we set in our Improvement Objectives have been achieved for 2013/14, they remain long term strategic objectives for the Council and work to date represents the start of what will be a long programme of initiatives to secure greater improvement in the future.  Progress against key action plans will continue to be monitored by CMT, Scrutiny Committees and the Cabinet. A detailed review of our performance against our improvement objectives will be reported in the Improvement Plan Part 2 in September 2014.

9.         An Outcome Agreement for 2013-16 has been agreed with Welsh Government (1st April 2014).  The agreement came too late to include within service plan monitoring for 2013/14 consequently progress against achievement of agreed measures for that period will be reported separately to CMT and Cabinet in July.

10.      A detailed report of the Council's overall performance by directorate for quarter 4 (end of year) 2013/14 is provided in Appendix 1.  Key performance results for each directorate are highlighted within the report (refer to paragraphs 30-122).

Achievements and Notable Performance

11.      Despite a difficult economic climate and increasing service demands, we have been successful in achieving many positive outcomes for citizens of the Vale. Highlighted below are some of our main achievements and areas we excelled in during 2013/14.

12.      We continued to develop our website to enhance customer experience and encourage citizen engagement. A  new content management system has given our website a new updated look and is providing visitors to our website with a better experience when accessing the council’s website using either mobile or desktop devices. The 'Browsealoud' software enables users with sight or literacy issues to highlight text which the computer reads aloud. Our website has been ranked by Sitemorse as number 2 in Wales. Customer feedback software implemented during quarter 1 is being more effectively used by services to inform future improvements. There is a high take up of our Vale Connect subscription service which enables customers to receive email updates on subject matter of choice and currently has over 10,000 individual subscribers and 18,000 topics of subscription. We continued to develop social media as a channel for handling customer enquiries and the number of followers on Twitter and Facebook continues to increase (Facebook: 4210 and Twitter: 8543). In September 2014, post call customer feedback surveys were introduced for Contact OneVale. During the period to the end of March 2014, over 5000 surveys were completed with an average satisfaction rating for services delivered at 95%.

13.      We remain committed to ensuring that our customers can access council services conveniently. During 2013/14, 95.1% of all payments in the Vale were made by electronic means, the third highest in Wales. The average was 88.4%. We have successfully installed wireless networks into all of our schools and a free public access wi-fi to all of the main council buildings that are accessed by the public.

14.      We successfully completed the replacement of Barry Island Station Footbridge at an overall cost of £570k, improving accessibility for people with impaired mobility, and reflecting the importance of the footbridge and station as part of the wider pedestrian network. This also builds on the council's commitment to maximise Barry Island as a leisure destination and as an attractive place to live and work.

15.      We repaired over 2400 extra potholes last year through the Council’s BIG Fill project visiting all 23 wards and encouraging the public to get involved with the reporting of highway defects which were then repaired over one weekend in each ward.

16.      Our Leisure Centre Partnership with Parkwood has proved to be a success, both in terms of reducing costs and improving customer experience as a result of the implementation of improvements to all centres.

17.      We exceeded our Improvement Objective target for delivering disabled facilities grants (326 days) by 42 days. Delivery time for disabled facilities grants continue to improve with our performance at 284 day from 346 in the previous year.  Over the past 5 years we have achieved a 75% improvement in our waiting times for delivery of DFGs from 1,046 days in 2008/9 to 284 days in 2013/14. Over 97% of people who received disabled facilities grants during 2013/14, felt that the assistance had made them safer and more independent in their own homes. This is a further improvement on our performance of 90% in 2012/13. We are committed to delivering further improvements in delivery waiting times for our customers and will continue to review our internal processes in order to achieve this.

18.      We successfully developed, designed and delivered a number of schemes to improve highway and pedestrian safety throughout the Vale, using a £240k Road Safety Grant received from Welsh Government. This includes remodelling of the roundabout junction on Port Road with Morfa Lane, Wenvoe; widening of an existing footway on Cardiff Road in Dinas Powys; improvement works to Barry Road Zebra Crossing, Barry; and a major scheme was commenced at Cowbridge by-pass with the purchasing and installation of driver warning signs during inclement weather.

19.      In the Community Mental Health Team for Older People, waiting times for assessment reduced significantly. This performance was commended by CSSIW following its inspection.  The percentage of adult protection referrals where the risk had been managed improved from 96% to 100%.  There was an 8% increase in the number of adults supported to live at home, contributing to the Council's aim to help people maintain their independence for longer. 

20.      We met our Improvement Objective target to increase the number of in-house foster carers in the Vale with an additional 8 foster cares being recruited.  Additionally, we also achieved a reduction in the number of externally provided foster carer placements.  As a consequence, expenditure per looked after child in fostering placement reduced.  100% of young carers known to the Council were assessed.  Completion of core assessments within the recommended 35 working days rose to 91%, compared with a Welsh average of 76%.  The percentage of children with three of more placements has reduced from 14% in 2012/13 to 11% in 2013/14.  Every looked after child has an allocated Social Worker, every care placement starts with a care plan in place and 97% of all care plans are reviewed within timescale.

21.      A large number of housing schemes have been approved which will deliver affordable housing in the Vale over the coming years including, Culverhouse Cross, Wenvoe, Ystradowen and Llantwit Major, contributing to the Council's aim of affordable, good quality suitable housing for residents.

22.      Barry Island regeneration which is due to be completed in June 2014 will see significant improvements to the public realm, helping to attract more visitors and businesses to the island.

23.      Rapid progress has been made to increase Key Stage 3 performance, particularly in relation to the Core Subject Indicator. Improvement has been made with all 6 measures of Key Stage 3 performance and the rate of improvement on all six measures is above that of Wales. We met our Improvement Objective targets and are now in the top 4 performing authorities in Wales at Key Stage 3 which provides a good basis for further improvement.

24.      100% of final statements of Special Educational Need are now being issued within the national target period of 26 weeks. This has been a major area of improvement and will see our end of year performance improving from 20th in Wales (47.8% in 2012/13) to joint top in Wales.

25.      We successfully secured an additional £625k in Social Housing Grant from the Welsh Government to deliver 14 new one and two bedroom affordable housing units in partnership with Newydd Housing Association. This will benefit existing social housing tenants in the Vale of Glamorgan who are affected by the welfare reforms through the under occupation of their existing homes (by enabling them to downsize to smaller more suitable accommodation).

26.      Our commitment to using other forms of temporary accommodation has had a significant financial benefit for the Council in terms of the general fund but more importantly, more appropriate forms of accommodation have been used for those in housing need. No families with children have been placed in B&B since August 2012. As of January 2013 the homelessness service has had no one residing in Bed and Breakfast.

27.      The "lean" principle adopted in managing empty properties from the 'keys in' stage to the 'keys out' stage continues to yield improvements. The number of lettable empty properties (excluding those empties that are classed as 'hard to treat' or suspended lets) has reduced significantly since April 2013 from 107 to 53. The time associated with letting the 'lettable' empties from keys in to keys out has also halved from 100 days to 46 days. Our work in this area continues to ensure further improvements are achieved in line with the Council's commitment to reduce the number of empty homes.

28.      Our Welsh Housing Quality Standard (WHQS) programme is being delivered to time and to budget. To date 54.2% of the internal work has been completed in tenants’ homes. Tenant satisfaction in relation to WHQS work continues to improve across the entire contractor framework with Building Services receiving the highest level of satisfaction in terms of the process and completed work. Our average satisfaction score is 9 out of 10.

29.      We successfully secured additional resources through the Welsh Government’s Local Government Borrowing Initiative (LGBI) to help improve the Vale’s local road network infrastructure. This helped to resurface or surface treat over 40 roads last year as well as enabling a considerable LED street lighting renewal project, reducing street lighting energy costs and the Council’s carbon footprint.

Corporate and Customer Services

30.      The department has completed 54% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 8% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 52 actions in the plan; 28 are completed, 4 are on track, 19 have slipped and 1 has not been started.

31.      The department has completed 47% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan and a further 20% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 15 actions within the service plan, 7 are completed, 3 are on track and 5 have slipped.

32.      60% of our Improvement Objective actions are completed. Of the 5 actions within the service plan, 3 have been completed and 2 have slipped.

33.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

34.      Of the 27 performance indicators in the plan, 8 (29%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 11 (41%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 1 (4%) was within 10% of target and 5 (19%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 2 (7%) indicators.

35.      In terms of notable performance, funding of £1.2m was secured from successful achievement of the Outcome Agreement 2010-13 with Welsh Government.  Our new website has been ranked by Sitemorse as number 2 in Wales.  A new charter with Town and Community Councils has been agreed which has led to improved working relationships between the Vale and Town and Community Councils.  Customer feedback software implemented during quarter 1 is being more effectively used by services to inform future improvements.  We continued to develop social media as a channel for handling customer enquiries and the number of followers on Twitter and Facebook continues to increase (Facebook: 4210 and Twitter: 8543). There is a high take up of our Vale Connect subscription service which enables customers to receive email updates on subject matter of choice and currently has over 10,000 individual subscribers and 18,000 topics of subscription. In September 2014, post call customer feedback surveys were introduced for Contact OneVale. During the period to the end of March 2014, over 5000 surveys were completed with an average satisfaction rating for services delivered at 95%.

36.      In terms of slippage, the development of self-service options to be made available through the council’s website [CC01/A006 (CP/CL3)] has been paused while waiting for the final implementation of the new Content Management System and approval of new Customer Service and Channel Strategies. The Connecting with our Customers Strategy has now been approved and the associated action plan has begun to be implemented.

37.      A new process for the use of the hate crime helpline and complaints system is being finalised [CC04/A036 (CP/CL9)]. This has been delayed due to a change in personnel. A programme of training is continuing to help raise awareness council wide of the public sector equality duties and issues affecting people with protected characteristics [CC04/A038 (CP/CL9). An e-learning module is available. Training on British Sign Language and deaf awareness took place in January and February. Attendance and participation is monitored and will be reported back to managers.

38.      The Corporate Consultation Officer is currently filling another post, which has caused a number of consultation actions to slip into 2014/15.  An LSB Information and Engagement Strategy has been agreed and an action plan is being implemented in order to coordinate consultation across partners [CC07/A047 (CPCL1)]. Communication and consultation methods are currently being reviewed with LSB partners to ensure all available engagement tools are being utilised [CC07/A048 (CP/CL1).  A consultation calendar is being developed and an informal network of officers involved in consultation across partner organisations is being formed to share good practice [CC07/A050 (IO/06)]. The Vale Public Opinion Survey will take place in the summer of 2014 [CC07/A052 (IO/06)].

Resources

39.      The department has completed 82% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 3% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 71 actions in the plan; 58 are completed, 2 are on track, 10 have slipped and 1 has not been started.

40.      The department has completed 88% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan. Of the 8 actions within the service plan, 7 are completed and 1 has slipped.

41.      There is 1 Improvement Objective action in the service plan, which is completed.

42.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

43.      Of the 23 performance indicators in the plan, 2 (9%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 18 (78%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 2 (9%) were within 10% of target and 1 (4%) missed target by more than 10%.

44.      In terms of notable performance during the quarter, the service has achieved Public Services Network (PSN) accreditation in compliance with information security standards.  We have successfully installed wireless networks into all of our schools and a free public access wi-fi to all of the main Council buildings that are accessed by the public.

45.      We remain committed to ensuring that our customers can access council services conveniently. During the year, 95.1% of all payments in the Vale were made by electronic means, the third highest percentage in Wales. The average was 88.4%.

46.      We continued to radically review how we work and the way in which services are delivered in order to make the most effective use of limited resources. During 2013/14 we exceeded our Outcome Agreement target for procurement savings of £1.8 million for the year. However, more work needs to be done, in order to make further savings over the next three years whilst continuing to deliver on our ambitious improvement programme.

47.      A significant volume of organisational change has been successfully managed in consultation with trade unions with successful efforts made to mitigate the adverse implications for staff. This has impacted positively in a number of areas; staff turnover figures have improved from 10.28% (2012/13) to 8.64% (2013/14) and sickness absence levels across the Council (8.75 days per employee for 2013/14) continue to be lower than public sector national comparators.

48.      A draft protocol to increase public engagement and participation in the Council’s scrutiny process has been endorsed by the Scrutiny Committee Chair and Vice-Chair Group [RS05/A038 (CP/CL6)]. This will now be progressed via the Constitution Working Party and Council as appropriate.

Visible Services

49.      The department has completed 31% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 9% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. Of the 55 actions in the plan; 17 are completed, 5 are on track, 31 have slipped and 2 have not been started.

50.      The department has completed 25% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan and a further 33% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 12 actions within the service plan, 3 are completed, 4 are on track, 4 have slipped and 1 has not been started.

51.      43% of our Improvement Objective actions are completed with a further 14% on track towards a later completion date. Of the 7 actions within the service plan, 3 have been completed, 1 is on track and 3 have slipped.

52.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

53.      Of the 34 performance indicators in the plan, 5 (15%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 15 (44%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 4 (12%) were within 10% of target and 2 (6%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 8 (23%) indicators.

54.      In terms of notable performance, we repaired over 2400 extra potholes last year through the Council’s BIG Fill project visiting the 23 wards and encouraging the public to get involved with the reporting of highway defects which were then repaired over one weekend in each ward.

55.      We successfully secured additional resources through the Welsh Government’s Local Government Borrowing Initiative (LGBI) to help improve the Vale’s local road network infrastructure. This helped to resurface or surface treat over 40 roads last year as well as enabling a considerable LED street lighting renewal project, reducing street lighting energy costs and the Council’s carbon footprint. This LGBI funding will enable us to make further improvements to the local road network in the current financial year. We are committed to reducing highway maintenance costs and to achieve this we have been trialling a new cost effective road patching system which enables us to carry out repairs quicker and at a cheaper unit cost. A programme of works using this new system will be carried out at the end of July 2014.

56.      Following winter storms earlier this year, we successfully bid for and received an additional £50k funding from Welsh Government to carry out emergency repairs to the revetment protecting Harbour Road, the main route into Barry Island. We have also successfully completed repairs and improvements to storm damaged access ramps at Whitmore Bay, Barry Island in readiness for the forthcoming summer season.

57.      Our Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS) has been approved by Cabinet and submitted to the Welsh Government for Ministerial approval to comply with the Council’s responsibilities under The Flood and Water Management Act 2010.

58.      The first year of managing Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE) in partnership with Bridgend Council, has proved to be successful in helping to address parking issues in key areas of the Vale, particularly Barry, Penarth and Cowbridge with the Vale’s Civil Enforcement Officers issuing over 8,500 Penalty Charge Notices.

59.      We successfully procured and commenced works on the realignment of the B4265 at Gileston to Old Mill in January 2013 to improve highway safety and access to St Athan and the western Vale. This scheme is funded by Welsh Government to the sum of £3.2 million over a 3 year period with the scheme due for completion in November 2014.

60.      We have successfully developed, designed and delivered schemes as part of NCN Route 88 in the Vale contributing to the Council’s objective to develop sustainable transport opportunities and support the health and wellbeing of residents of the Vale. These include a high quality shared path along Railway Walk that improves conditions for walking and cycling around Penarth Town (funded by £255k from Sewta) and a new shared footpath / cycleway along Porthkerry Road, Rhoose (funded by a £165k RDP grant.)

61.      Belle Vue Park, Penarth and Victoria Park, Barry, were awarded the nationally recognised Green Flag Award, an achievement in light of challenging resources.

62.      Over the year, we successfully refurbished the interior and exterior of Colcot Sports Centre and nine play areas in the Vale, contributing to wellbeing of residents by improving the community facilities available to them.

63.      We assisted in the delivery and have taken on the maintenance of NCR88 on parks land at Railway Walk and Wales Coastal path around Friars Point, Barry.

64.      We are waiting for Welsh Government waste preventer guidance in order to direct work towards achieving the non-statutory 1.2% reduction target for annual waste generation [VS01/A014 (IO/01)].

65.      A Flood Risk Management Plan will be produced in 2014/15 to identify and develop flood risk management schemes [VS03/A029 (CP/E5) (IO/07)].

66.      A draft report has been produced in relation to the reduction of fly tipping, litter, dog fouling and graffiti through enforcement arrangements and education and awareness raising campaigns [VS03/A024 (CP/E2)].

67.      A review of the flood management organisational structure is underway [VS03/A026 (IO/07)]. Two Engineering Assistants, (FCERM) are taking up posts in the first quarter of 2014/15.

68.      The final Allotment Strategy has yet to be agreed by Cabinet [VS06/A046 (CP/E12)]. The reduction in the availability of both revenue and capital funding going forward will have a bearing on any future action plans agreed.

69.      Green Flag status has been retained for two Vale parks [VS06/A051 (CP/E10)]. Unfortunately, any progression further than this has been affected by the limited amount of finances available for the investment required to achieve the status. This remains an aspiration however it is likely to require significant assistance from volunteers/community groups. This will be taken forward to 2014/15 and 2015/16.

70.      Work to deliver the Tree Management Strategy action plan will now be considered as a part of the 2014/15 service plan [VS06/A049 (CP/E9)].

Social Services

71.      The department has completed 65% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 23% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 52 actions in the plan; 34 are completed, 12 are on track and 6 have slipped.

72.      The department has completed 74% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan and a further 26% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 19 actions within the service plan, 14 are completed and 5 are on track.

73.      100% (all 3) of our Improvement Objective actions are completed.

74.      No Corporate Plan or Improvement Objective actions have slipped for 2013/14.

75.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

76.      Of the 74 performance indicators in the plan, 11 (15%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 42 (57%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 12 (16%) were within 10% of target and 8 (11%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 1 (1%) indicator

77.      In terms of notable performance, we met our Improvement Objective targets to increase the number of in-house foster carers in the Vale with an additional 8 foster cares being recruited.  Additionally, we also achieved a reduction in the number of externally provided foster carer placements.  As a consequence, expenditure per looked after child in fostering placement reduced.  100% of young carers known to the Council were assessed.  Completion of core assessments within the recommended 35 working days rose to 91%, compared with a Welsh average of 76%.  The percentage of children with three of more placements has reduced from 14% in 2012/13 to 11% in 2013/14.  Every looked after child has an allocated Social Worker, every care placement starts with a care plan in place and 97% of all care plans are reviewed within timescale.

78.       In the Community Mental Health Team for Older People, waiting times for assessment reduced significantly. This performance was commended by CSSIW following its inspection.  The percentage of adult protection referrals where the risk had been managed improved from 96% to 100%.  There was an 8% increase in the number of adults supported to live at home. 

Housing and Building Services

79.      The department has completed 58% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 2% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 69 actions in the plan; 40 are completed, 1 is on track, 25 have slipped and 3 have not been started.

80.      The department has completed 53% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan. Of the 32 actions within the service plan, 17 are completed, 13 have slipped and 2 have not been started.

81.      There are no Improvement Objective actions for Housing and Building services.

82.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

83.      Of the 15 performance indicators in the plan, 4 (27%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 5 (33%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 3 (20%) were within 10% of target and 2 (13%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 1 (7%) indicators.

84.      In terms of notable performance, we successfully secured an additional £625k in Social Housing Grant from the Welsh Government to deliver 14 new one and two bedroom affordable housing units in partnership with Newydd Housing Association. This will benefit existing social housing tenants in the Vale of Glamorgan who are affected by the welfare reforms through the under occupation of their existing homes (by enabling them to downsize to smaller more suitable accommodation).

85.      Our commitment to using other forms of temporary accommodation has had a significant financial benefit for the Council in terms of the general fund but more importantly, more appropriate forms of accommodation have been used for those in housing need. No families with children have been placed in B&B since August 2012. As of January 2013 the homelessness service has had no one residing in Bed and Breakfast.

86.      The "lean" principle adopted in managing empty properties from the 'keys in' stage to the 'keys out' stage continues to yield improvements. The number of lettable empty properties (excluding those empties that are classed as 'hard to treat' or suspended lets) has reduced significantly since April 2013 from 107 to 53. The time associated with letting the 'lettable' empties from keys in to keys out has also halved from 100 days to 46 days.

87.      Our Welsh Housing Quality Standard (WHQS) programme is being delivered to time and to budget. To date 54.2% of the internal work has been completed in tenants’ homes. Tenant satisfaction in relation to WHQS work continues to improve across the entire contractor framework with Building Services receiving the highest level of satisfaction in terms of the process and completed work. Our average satisfaction score is 9 out of 10.

88.      Even with the pressures of welfare reform our year end rent arrears figures are lower than those of 2012/13.

89.      The tender has been completed to provide a new 6 unit 24 hour supported housing project for young and vulnerable clients [HS01/A069 (CP/CYP7)]. This will open in May 2014.

90.      A feasibility event took place on 10 April 2014 to develop further service improvements through a Housing Solutions Service [HS01/A003 (CP/H9)]. Feedback from this event will be taken forward to inform options.

91.      A draft Local Housing Strategy is due to go to Cabinet in June 2014 [HS02/A010 (CP/H1)].

92.      A consultant has been appointed to write an Older Person’s Accommodation Strategy with care and housing representatives [HS02/A016 (CP/H2)]. This work is being progressed through Social Services.

93.      The review of Housing and Building services is ongoing with new roles currently progressing through job evaluation [HS05/A026 (CP/H13)]. Interim posts have been filled in Compliance and Responsive Repairs and a new Operational Manager for Building services is due to start 1 May 2014. A keystone training plan programme has been agreed to improve the effectiveness of the current OHMS housing management system [HS05/A027 (CP/H13)].

94.      A review of the role of Tenant Engagement Associates has been deferred until 2014/15 due to additional consultation training being provided for TEAs [HS06/A055 (CP/H12)]. A recent Housing Service Review Forum agreed to delay the visit to a Registered Social Landlord until training needs have been identified and agreed for the group [HS06/A054 (CP/H12)]. A report analysing gaps and under-represented groups across the Vale as part of the Tenant Engagement Strategy has been delayed until June 2014 as sub groups and fun day evidence is still being collated [HS06/A053 (CP/H12)][HS06/A048 (CP/H12)]. Options for establishing a tenant’s resource centre will also be considered as part of the Tenant Engagement Strategy, which is delayed until June 2014 [HS06/A046 (CP/H12)]. Whilst no Tenant Young People’s Forum has been established, an Easter Family Event took place on 16 April with all tenants invited to attend [HS06/A050 (CP/H12)]. Attendees were asked to complete a short questionnaire at the event telling us of how they would like to be consulted i.e. twitter, facebook, text etc. A Rural Vale Tenant and Resident Association will now be established during 2014/15 when events will take place encouraging rural residents to get involved [HS06/A049 (CP/H12)].

95.      We are in the final stages of completing the Supporting People Outcomes Framework in the Vale Standard, and results will be published via the Council website, twitter and various links [HS07/A065 (CP/H10)]. We are awaiting Welsh Government guidance in order to establish an accreditation procedure for all Supporting People Services where funding transfers to the authority [HS07/A061 (CP/H10)].

Development Services

96.      The department has completed 71% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 11% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 157 actions in the plan; 112 are completed, 17 are on track, 26 have slipped and 2 have not been started.

97.      The department has completed 70% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan and a further 23% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 44 actions within the service plan, 31 are completed, 10 are on track and 3 have slipped.

98.      67% of our Improvement Objective actions are completed. Of the 3 actions within the service plan, 2 have been completed and 1 has slipped.

99.      There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

100.   Of the 75 performance indicators in the plan, 20 (27%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 33 (44%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 7 (9%) were within 10% of target and 4 (5%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 11 (15%) indicators.

101.   In terms of notable performance, a large number of housing schemes were approved during the year which will deliver affordable housing in the Vale over the coming years including, Culverhouse Cross, Wenvoe, Ystradowen and Llantwit Major, contributing to the Council's aim of affordable, good quality suitable housing for residents.

102.   Barry Island regeneration which is due to be completed in June 2014 will see significant improvements to the public realm, helping to attract more visitors and businesses to the island.

103.   The annual school sport survey highlighted that 44% of children and young people in the Vale participate in sport and physical activity at least 3 times a week. This performance ranked the Vale 2nd in Wales for participation, contributing to the council's aim of increasing levels of physical activity and encouraging healthy lifestyles.

104.   Our Leisure Centre partnership with Parkwood has proved to be a success, both in terms of reducing costs and improving the experience to the customer as a result of the implementation of improvements to all centres.

105.   Delivery time for disabled facilities grants continue to improve with our performance at 284 day from 346 in the previous year.  Over 97% of people who received disabled facilities grants during 2013/14, felt that the assistance had made them safer and more independent in their own homes. This is a further improvement on our performance of 90% in 2012/13.

106.   The tender for a framework contract to enable a more effective delivery of Adaptation works was advertised on 31 March 2014 [DS01/A011 (IO/02)]. Builders are to be interviewed on the 20 and 21 May with the intention for the framework to commence on 1 July 2014.

107.   Work to produce a procedure for the provision of a School Crossing Patrol service will be carried forward to the 2014/15 service plan [DS02/A024 (CP/CPS3)]. The focus this year has been on maintaining an adequate service in light of challenging resources.

108.   The Barry Island Regeneration project is due for completion in June 2014 [DS06/A103 (CP/R9)].

109.   A scheme allowing objectors and applicants to directly address the Planning Committee is in progress and will be introduced following the annual meeting in May 2014 [DS10/A151 (CP/CL6)].

Learning and Skills

110.   The department has completed 79% of service plan actions at end of year, with a further 7% on track for a later completion date. Details are available under each objective. There are a total of 114 actions in the plan; 90 are completed, 8 are on track, 13 have slipped and 3 have not been started.

111.   The department has completed 74% of the actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2013/14 service plan and a further 12% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 51 actions within the service plan, 38 are completed, 6 are on track, 6 have slipped and 1 has not been started.

112.   100% (all 12) of our Improvement Objective actions are completed.

113.   There are no Outcome Agreement actions in the 2013/14 plan, as the Outcome Agreement was not agreed until 1 April 2014.

114.   Of the 75 performance indicators in the plan, 34 (46%) did not have targets set for 2013/14. 23 (32%) met or exceeded target at end of year, 7 (10%) were within 10% of target and 1 (1%) missed target by more than 10%. Data was unavailable for 8 (11%) indicators.

115.   Rapid progress has been made to increase Key Stage 3 performance, particularly in relation to the Core Subject Indicator. Improvement has been made with all 6 measures of Key Stage 3 performance and the rate of improvement on all six measures is above that of Wales. We are now in the top 4 performing authorities in Wales at Key Stage 3 which provides a good basis for further improvement.

116.   100% of final statements of Special Educational Need are now being issued within the national target period of 26 weeks. This has been a major area of improvement and will see our end of year performance improving from 20th (47.8% in 2012/13) to joint top in Wales.

117.   It has been agreed that joint scrutiny arrangements are no longer going to be implemented for the Joint Education Service [LS02/A010 (CP/LS8)].

118.   Action to increase access to Adult and Community Learning (ACL) programmes for learners from under-represented groups will be completed by the end of the academic year [LS04/A041 (CP/LS17)]. The new curriculum planning tool will inform the new 2014/15 ACL programme. Stakeholders from under-represented groups have been approached for their views on courses that would benefit/engage their clientele.

119.   A review of basic skills and ESOL provision is on-going [LS04/A045 (CP/LS9)]. Provision is funded by a franchise arrangement with Cardiff and the Vale College who determine the required output. Any cut to this funding will reduce our ability to deliver this tranche of learning. Basic skills delivery is being reviewed on a Cardiff and the Vale wide basis, hence the change in timescales.

120.   The consortium pupil tracker to monitor individual progress has not yet been developed [LS07/A065 (CP/LS10)] [LS08/A075 (CP/LS5)]. Liaison with consortium colleagues will continue in order to ascertain the viability of further developing this tracker system.

121.   The Learning and Skills Partnership discontinued the Essential Skills Subgroup in January 2014 to avoid duplication with the work of the Cardiff and Vale Adult and Community Learning Partnership (CLP). The PIAP action to develop a strategy to improve the development of ACL learners’ essential / basic skills is being taken forward by Cardiff &Vale CLP [LS08/A073 (CP/LS15)]. The Essential Skills task and finish group are collating information about current practice across the partnership to inform the strategy.

122.   The feasibility study into Barry co-educational secondary schooling is being undertaken by a specialist consultant who will report in the summer. The expansion of Welsh medium education is progressing on target. Approximately 140 comments were received in relation to the Llanilltud Fawr/Eagleswell Primary school amalgamation, predominantly concerned with Highways and planning issues, the consultation report will be presented to Cabinet on the 28 April requesting approval to publish a statutory notice to amalgamate the two schools [LS12/A108 (CP/LS2)].

Proposed Service Performance Indicators and Targets 2014/15

123.   A review of performance indicators has taken place to ensure that the Council collects indicators which effectively monitor service plan objectives and outcomes. New indicators and deletions have been proposed to enable services to better demonstrate achievement of service objectives and outcomes.  Appendix 2 (which is available on the Council's website and in the Members room) outlines proposed service targets for 2014/15 by service plan area. Blank boxes denote non responses.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

124.   There are no additional budgetary implications arising from this report although underperformance in some areas may have a negative impact on external assessments of the Council and could put certain funding opportunities at risk.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

125.   Underperformance issues relating to sustainability will be given due consideration both corporately and within the relevant service areas.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

126.   The Local Government Act 1999, the Wales Programme for Improvement and the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009 require that the Council secure continuous improvement across the full range of local services for which it is responsible.

Crime and Disorder Implications

127.   Underperformance issues relating to crime and disorder will be given due consideration both corporately and within the relevant service areas.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

128.   Underperformance issues relating to equalities will be given due consideration both corporately and within the relevant service areas.

Corporate/Service Objectives

129.   The Corporate Plan 2013-17 outlines community leadership as a priority for the Council. Improving how the council evidences and reports achievement of its outcomes and objectives contributes towards effective community leadership.

Policy Framework and Budget

130.   This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

131.   The information contained within the report is based on quarterly returns provided by service directorates on Ffynnon.  Quarterly performance reports are reported to Cabinet and all Scrutiny Committees.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

132.   All

Background Papers

Contact Officer

Julia Archampong, Performance Manager.

 

Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

Huw Isaac, Head of Performance and Development

 

Responsible Officer:

Sian Davies, Managing Director

 

 

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