Agenda Item No. 8


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment): 15 July 2014


Report of the Director of Visible Services and Housing


Visible Services 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.


1.         That Committee note service performance results and remedial actions to be taken to address service underperformance. (Paragraphs 5-26 with full details in Appendix 1.)

2.         That Committee 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 6-7 with full details in Appendix 1.)

3.         That Committee consider proposed service targets for 2014/15. (Paragraphs 27-29 with full details in Appendix 2.)

4.         That Committee refer any recommendations to Cabinet for approval.

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.

4.         Cabinet have final decision making powers.


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

·           An overview provides a snapshot of the 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

5.         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.

6.         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.

7.         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.

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

9.         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.

10.      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.

11.      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.

12.      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.

13.      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.

14.      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.

15.      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.

16.      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.)

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

18.      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.

19.      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.

20.      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)].

21.      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)].

22.      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)].

23.      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.

24.      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.

25.      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.

26.      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)].

Proposed Service Performance Indicators and Targets 2014/15

27.      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 outlines proposed service targets for 2014/15 by service plan area.

28.      Some targets are set in accordance with previously agreed targets in statutory council documents such as the Improvement Plan and the Outcome Agreement. Where relevant, this is indicated in the comment box. Please note that these targets have already been agreed in consultation with members and Welsh Government and cannot now be amended.

29.      The target setting report also includes end of year performance data. In a small number of instances, this may differ from the end of year data in Appendix 1. This is because reports for Appendix 1 are produced through the Ffynnon system, and therefore had to be finalised before the end of the contract at the end of May. Therefore, where data has been updated or verified since this date, this has been updated in Appendix 2, but not in Appendix 1.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

30.      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

31.      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)

32.      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

33.      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)

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

Corporate/Service Objectives

35.      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

36.      This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

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

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

38.      Economy and Environment

Background Paper

End of Year Performance Report, Cabinet, 30 June 2014


Contact Officer

Julia Archampong, Performance Manager.


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

Huw Isaac, Head of Performance and Development


Responsible Officer:

Miles Punter, Director of Visible Services and Housing