Agenda Item No
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources): 8 December 2015
Report of the Managing Director
Local Service Board Update
Purpose of the Report
- To enable Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources) to consider the progress made by the Local Service Board (LSB) and key partnerships in delivering the Community Strategy Delivery Plan 2014-18. To update Members on progress against the priorities outlined in the Community Strategy 2011-21.
- That Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources) note the achievements made in delivering the Community Strategy and Community Strategy Delivery Plan.
- That Committee note the implications the Well Being of Future Generations Act (Wales) will have for the LSB and the establishment of a Public Services Board.
Reasons for the Recommendations
- To enable the Committee to consider progress on the Community Strategy and work undertaken by the LSB and key partnerships.
- To advise Members of the upcoming legislative changes that will establish a new board with a statutory role.
- The LSB is the overarching strategic partnership in the Vale. It is chaired by the Leader of the Council and membership includes senior representatives from key organisations operating in the Vale of Glamorgan e.g. South Wales Police, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, Glamorgan Voluntary Services and Cardiff and Vale College.
- The Community Strategy 2011-21 is the single integrated plan which brings together the plans and strategies of all the key partnerships in the Vale. Performance management arrangements have been established, including annual reports to the LSB and the key partnerships.
- The Annual Report attached as Appendix A provides an update on the work of the LSB since the previous report in December 2014.
- A Community Strategy Delivery Plan was agreed in November 2014 with a focus on Tackling Poverty. The plan is the response to the key findings of the Unified Needs Assessment (emphasising the importance of early intervention, disadvantaged communities and inequalities and an ageing population), as well as future legislation and policy direction. The Delivery Plan builds on the Welsh Government Tackling Poverty Action Plan 'Building Resilient Communities' and identified activities around the three themes of:
- Preventing Poverty - Alignment of Families First, Flying Start and Communities First
- Helping People into Work - focus on employment and skills
- Mitigating Poverty - advice and support services, with a focus on mitigating the impact of welfare reform
- Work to establish a Joint Cardiff and Vale LSB was completed in 2014. The board continues to meet regularly to address issues that have effects on the region and to monitor the Board's work programme.
Relevant Issues and Options
- The LSB and key partnerships have undertaken a wide range of activities to deliver the Community Strategy and Delivery Plan commitments and to ensure that there are robust arrangements in place to support effective partnership working.
- To assist in the delivery of the Delivery Plan the following partnership arrangements are in place:
- An Improving Opportunities Board, focusing on employment and skills activities. Supporting the helping people into work theme of the delivery plan the group was established to increase links between regeneration and learning and skills.
- The Financial Inclusion Group, which has an increased profile and wider remit than the previous Welfare Reform Group as it plays a significant role in the delivery of some of the key aspects of the delivery plan supporting the mitigating poverty theme.
- The Poverty Alignment Group supports the preventing poverty theme of the delivery plan and the alignment of Families First, Flying Start and Communities First.
- The Safer Vale Partnership continues to lead on improving community safety in the Vale.
- The Children and Young People Board builds on the work of the Children and Young Peoples Partnership following a review of membership and an increased remit.
- This partnership structure will be reviewed in the light of the Well Being of Future Generations Act (Wales). A diagram of the current structure is attached as Appendix B and further information about the role of the groups can be found in the Community Strategy Delivery Plan 2014-18.
Performance and Monitoring
- The purpose of the Delivery Plan is to provide a focus to LSB activities, allowing the board to monitor progress to tackle poverty in a more detailed manner. Monitoring arrangements are in place and a number of regular reports are submitted to the LSB alongside updates from partners and partnership groups. The new performance and monitoring regime of the LSB was adopted to ensure that both the Community Strategy and Community Strategy Delivery Plan are monitored sufficiently. The regular reports are as follows:
- Community Strategy Delivery Plan Progress Report (Biannual)
- Core Indicators Report (Annual)
- Annual Report
- The first progress report against the Delivery Plan actions was submitted to the LSB in April, with the next update being prepared for the December meeting. The document along with all documents can be found on the LSB's web pages.
The Annual Report 2014/15
- The Annual Report is attached as Appendix A. The focus of this report is on work that has taken place during 2014/15. Details of progress are provided for the three poverty work streams in the Delivery Plan 2014-18 as well as each of the ten priority outcomes within the Community Strategy. Details are also provided of regional work taking place the challenges faced and the key actions which will be delivered in 2015/16.
- Below are details of some of the achievements and differences made through partnership working in 2014/15:
- In 2014 the Local Government Data Unit (LGDU) were commissioned to undertake an analysis of poverty in the Vale of Glamorgan, building on the previous needs assessment and providing greater clarity about some of the issues in the Vale. This report has been well received by partners and is being used to focus activities aimed at tackling poverty. In particular the report has helped influence the development of a Financial Inclusion Strategy for the Vale of Glamorgan and will also inform work being undertaken to map assets and services in St Athan.
- In response to the Childcare Sufficiency Assessment and Action Plan completed in March 2014, work has continued to ensure appropriate childcare provision where parents want it, including Welsh medium holiday provision and an after school club.
- Community engagement is also evident in the levels of volunteering in the Vale. The monetary value of volunteering in the Vale in 2014/15 was £42,289,090, with 3,272,688 hours of volunteering undertaken.
- In 2014/15 the rate of Delayed Transfers of Care improved significantly compared with 2013/14. Improved and integrated access arrangements, discharge services and reablement have all helped support improvement in this area.
- The number of dwelling burglaries occurring in the Vale decreased from 333 in 2013/14 to 269 in 2014/15. This is a reduction of 19.2% and is attributable to the work of a multi-agency task and finish group which was established in response to a previous increase in incidents. Although overall crime figures show an increase of 4.6% in 2014/15 this is due to the new 'Crimed at Source' method of recording which has been introduced.
- Five Vale parks have won the coveted Green Flag Award. This has been achieved by working closely with local communities and groups and is a recognition of the excellent local amenities and continued community involvement in our local parks.
- The Vale Greenlinks rural community transport initiative now has over 860 members and was awarded runner up in the category of 'travel demand management' at the Cymru-Wales National Transport and Logistics Awards.
- The Regional Collaboration Fund project to remodel health and social care across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan continues to progress. The project includes a number of strands that are being delivered on time and on budget, including the setting up of Community Resource Teams, creating streamlined integrated assessments, enhancing services for people with learning disabilities and enhancing occupational therapy services.
- Work has taken place to develop integrated services between the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Cardiff and Vale UHB for the benefit of customers. The Vale's Community Resource referral service has been launched with staff from the Council and the Health Board trained to handle enquiries using the different ICT applications.
- In March 2014 a multi-agency workshop was hosted by the Financial Inclusion Group to help shape the development of the Financial Inclusion Strategy which is due to be published in December 2015. The group has evolved from its original focus on welfare reform and has supported work around digital inclusion and in-work poverty as well as out of work poverty. Partners have also continued to promote Cyd Cymru, the collective energy switching scheme.
- Work has continued to more closely align the Communities First, Flying Start and Families First work programmes through the Poverty Alignment Group. One example of this has been a shared approach to training, and examples include Solution Focused Therapy, Building Confident Families, Safeguarding and Perinatal training. Further opportunities for joint training/ workforce development are being explored, including a Parenting Conference, Family Fun Day and a Social Services and Wellbeing Event.
- Work has continued to increase the number of work-based apprenticeships, work experience and training opportunities available in the Vale to help people of all ages to develop their skills and secure employment. During 2014/15 a number of job fair events were held and these attracted over 2, 000 attendees.
- Between October 2014 and March 2015 the Communities First led 'Transition' project engaged with 99 pupils and 32 parents, supporting them through the transition from primary to secondary school. The project is delivered with the help of community volunteers, with 249 volunteer hours being accumulated during this period.
- More details and progress reports about the work of the LSB and key partnerships are available on the website. http://www.valeofglamorgan.gov.uk/en/our_council/local_service_board/local_service_board.aspx
- To build on the work undertaken in the Unified Needs Assessment a series of 'live' reports have been developed on the LSB's InfoBase Vale system. This provides an up to date set of data to monitor progress. http://vale.infobasecymru.net/IAS/launch
The Transition from Local Service Board to Public Service Board
- The Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act received Royal Assent earlier in the year and will come into force in April 2016.
- The Act states that there must be a Public Services Board (PSB) for each local authority area in Wales. The board will include the Local Authority, Local Health Board, the Welsh Fire & Rescue Authority and Natural Resources Body for Wales as statutory members. In addition the board must invite ('invited participants') the Welsh Ministers, the Chief Constable of the police force in that area, the Police and Crime Commissioner, a person required to provide probation services in relation to the local authority area, and a body representing voluntary organisations in the area. Other relevant organisations can also be invited to join the board. Membership of the new Vale of Glamorgan PSB is currently being reviewed and Terms of Reference drafted.
- The aim of the Public Service Board will be to improve the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of its area in accordance with the sustainable development principle and Wellbeing Goals outlined in the Act. The board will be required to publish an assessment of the state of the economic, social and environmental wellbeing in the Vale prior to the production of a local Wellbeing Plan. This is similar to previous arrangements for Local Service Boards and the existing practice of undertaking needs assessments and planning but will be a statutory requirement.
- To assist in the transition to a PSB and to begin to plan and formulate the structures needed to produce the Wellbeing Assessment a workshop session was held with the LSB's Business Intelligence Group in late November.
- A diagram of the responsibilities attached to the PSB and how these differ from the role of public bodies is shown in Appendix C.
- The Act sets out seven wellbeing goals against which the PSB must consider in formulating its own wellbeing objectives. These objectives must be designed to maximise the contribution to the achievement of the wellbeing goals.
- The Wellbeing goals are:
- A more prosperous Wales
- A resilient Wales
- A healthier Wales
- A more equal Wales
- A Wales of cohesive communities
- A Wales of vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language.
- A globally responsible Wales
- The PSB will also be required to produce an Annual Report setting out the steps taken to meet its objectives.
- The work of the PSB must be scrutinised by a designated local authority scrutiny committee, although the guidance acknowledges it will be legitimate for a subject scrutiny committee to scrutinise the work of the PSB in relation to a particular issue.
- The following illustrates the activities that must be undertaken in implementing the Act in relation to the PSB:
Public Service Board to be established
Well Being Assessment to be completed by PSB
Wellbeing Plan to be published by PSB
Annual Report to be published by PSB
To be published at least 12 months before publication of the Wellbeing Plan
No later than 12 months following the 2017 local government election and no later than 12 months after each subsequent ordinary election
No later than 14 months after the publication of its first local Wellbeing Plan.
- Draft statutory guidance on the Act was published by Welsh Government on the 7th September. An LSB response was submitted to the consultation document. The draft guidance is available on the Welsh Government website: http://gov.wales/consultations/people-and-communities/shared-future-shared-purpose/?status=open&lang=en
- A consultation is currently ongoing to the release of the National Indicators to support the Act. An LSB response is being drafted and will be discussed at the next meeting of the board. Further information is available on the Welsh Government website: http://gov.wales/consultations/people-and-communities/future-generations-act-how-do-you-measure-a-nations-progress/?lang=en
- Improving engagement remains a key priority for the LSB and there has been significant progress in the range of activity undertaken. We have continued to build on a more joined up approach with a network of officers across partners. A number of surveys have been undertaken through Vale Viewpoint, the LSB Citizens Panel, which has over 1,000 members. The results have informed a number of pieces of work and the panel has been used by the Cardiff and Vale Public Health Team and South Wales Fire and Rescue Service. Vale Viewpoint is just one tool being used by partners but we are keen to improve its value as a means of consultation. Other engagement activities include newsletters, jobs fairs, a weekly stall in Barry Market and a wide range of themed events.
- The next LSB Local Service Forum will be held in a half-day session in the Spring of 2016. The focus of the event will be an update from partners regarding the reshaping services to build on the event held in December 2014 and the Wellbeing of Future Generations Act.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
- All the actions detailed in the ten year Community Strategy have been agreed by all participating organisations and should therefore be funded by those partners and partnerships. In developing the new delivery plan partners were mindful of the resources required which will have to be met from existing resources.
- The extension of the LSB Development Grant from Welsh Government of £30,400 is due to end in March 2016. The grant has been used to fund the LSB Support Officer post. Further information is awaited from Welsh Government regarding whether there will be further funding to support the work of the new PSBs from April 2016.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
- One of the ten priority outcomes in the Community Strategy is 'Vale residents and organisations respect the local environment and work together to meet the challenge of climate change'. The delivery of the Community Strategy is consistent with the Council's commitment to promote sustainability and takes account of the four essential principles of sustainability in terms of environment, economy, a strong, healthy and just society and good governance.
- The Well Being of Future Generations Act (Wales) will place the sustainable development principle at the centre of decision making across the public sector. The principle, which is made up of five key ways of working, must be taken into account when undertaking sustainable development.
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
- The Well Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act requires that Local Service Boards become Public Service Boards, a statutory requirement responsible for the development of a local Wellbeing Assessment and Plan.
- The objective of the Safer Vale Partnership is to reduce crime and disorder within the Vale of Glamorgan. The Council is a key partner along with South Wales Police, South Wales Fire and Rescue, Wales Probation Trust, and the Vale Centre for Voluntary Services. The Community Strategy ensures that the Local Authority is addressing and meeting the requirements as detailed in Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998.
Crime and Disorder Implications
- One of the ten priority outcomes in the Community Strategy is 'Residents and visitors are safe and feel safe and the Vale is recognised as a low crime area.' Achievements in this area are detailed in the Annual Report.
Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)
- An Equalities Impact Assessment (EIA) of the Community Strategy was undertaken as part of the development of the Strategy.
- An EIA has been undertaken of the Delivery Plan.
- The Corporate Plan 2014-17 emphasises the importance of partnership working and includes the following objective in the Community Leadership section; 'Explore opportunities for working collaboratively within the Vale and regionally which will lead to improved services for customers, support innovation and deliver savings.'
- The revised Corporate Plan 2016-20, currently under consultation, will emphasise the need to work with partners and build further on current relationships to ensure the successful delivery of the requirements of the PSB.
Policy Framework and Budget
- The Community Strategy was approved by Council in June 2011. The Annual Report details progress in delivering the Strategy.
- The Community Strategy Delivery Plan was approved in November 2014. The Annual Report and the Delivery Plan progress reports detail progress in the delivering the plan.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
- The Annual Report was considered by all the key partnerships and has been approved by the LSB.
- Partners are currently being consulted on the process of establishing the Public Service Board.
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
- Corporate Resources
Vale of Glamorgan Community Strategy 2011-21
Vale of Glamorgan Community Strategy Delivery Plan 2014-18
Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act - Welsh Government 2015
Local Service Board Response to Shared Future Shared Purpose Consultation
Helen Moses - Strategy and Partnership Manager
Huw Isaac, Head of Performance and Development