Agenda Item No. 8


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment): 14 July 2015


Report of the Director of Development Services


Development Services End of Year Performance Report 2014-15


Purpose of the Report

1.         To present end of year performance results for the period 1st April 2014 to 31st March 2015 outlined in Appendix 1.


1.         That Committee note service performance results and remedial actions to be taken to address service underperformance.

2.         That Committee note progress to date in achieving key outcomes as outlined in the Corporate Plan 2013-17, the Outcome Agreement with Welsh Government 2013-16 and the Improvement Plan Part 1 2014-15.

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 Measure (Wales) 2009.

2.         To consider the Visible Services end of year performance results as at 31st March 2015 in order to highlight areas for service improvement.


2.         The Service Plans for 2014/15 focus on the achievement of key objectives within each directorate which in turn contributes towards the achievement of identified outcomes in the Corporate Plan 2013-17, the Outcome Agreement 2013-16 and the Improvement Plan Part 1 2014-15. 

3.         Quarterly performance reports have been developed to reflect these Service Plans and designed to ensure that the Council reports performance in the context of progress against its objectives. 

4.         End of year (quarter 4) performance reports are cumulative and comprise of performance information covering the period 1st April 2014 to 31st March 2015. The performance 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, the Outcome Agreement 2013-16 and the Improvement Plan Part 1 2014-15 for which the directorate has lead responsibility. Examples of exceptional performance during the quarter are highlighted as are any 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 due actions. Progress is provided for all performance indicators by allocating a performance status, J relates to performance that has met or exceeded target, K relates to performance within 10% of target and L relates to performance that has missed target by more than 10%.

·         A direction of travel arrow is also provided against each measure indicating whether current performance has improved, stayed static or declined on previous year’s performance. An upward arrow indicates that performance has improved from the previous year's performance, a static arrow indicates performance has remained the same and a downward arrow shows performance has declined compared to the previous year.

Relevant Issues and Options

5.         Overall, the Directorate has completed 86% of Service Plan actions at end of year, with a further 6% on track for a later completion date. There are a total of 76 actions in the 2014/15 service plan; 65 are completed, 5 are on track, and 6 have slipped. The actions that are on track are due for completion in 2016/17. The actions that are on track are due for completion in 2016/17. All 6 outstanding actions (slipped) will be carried to the 2015/16 Service Plan.

6.         Development Services completed 83% of actions against the Corporate Plan that were included in the 2014/15 Service Plan and a further 7% of actions are on track for a later completion date. Of the 40 actions within the plan, 33 are completed, 3 are on track and 4 have slipped.

7.         93% of our Improvement Objective actions are completed. Of the 15 actions within the Service Plan, 14 have been completed. 19 Improvement Objective measures; of these 14 (74%) have met or exceeded target, 4 (21%) have missed target by more than 10%, and performance status was not applicable for 1 (5%) indicator. The 4 indicators that have missed target by more than 10% relate to DS/M021, DS/M022c, DS/M022d, and DS/M022f. See relevant objective for reason for underperformance and proposed remedial action where appropriate. 

8.         There are currently no Outcome Agreement actions in place for the service. Of the 11 Outcome Agreement measures, all 11 (100%) have met or exceeded target at end of year.

9.         Of the 69 performance indicators in the plan, performance status was not applicable for 7 (10%) measures. 49 (71%) have met or exceeded target at end of year, 4 (6%) were within 10% of target, and 9 (13%) missed target by more than 10%. The 9 indicators that have missed target by more than 10% relate to DS/M006a, DS/M013, PSR004, DS/M021, DS/M022c, DS/M022d, DS/M022f, DS/M028, and DS/M029b. The reasons for underperformance and any proposed remedial action is provided under the relevant objective. 

10.      In terms of notable service achievements, the Vale of Glamorgan Council was the first authority to complete a Welsh Government 'tackling poverty’ funded project with the conclusion of the café and community space at the Hub before Christmas.

11.      In May 2014, the Council was shortlisted for a number of awards by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport. The Council was highly commended in categories of 'excellence in improving customer experiences’ and 'professional of the year’. The Council was runner-up in the 'travel demand management’ category for the Greenlinks community transport operation and was runner-up in both the 'partnership’ category and 'excellence in passenger transport’ for the work with New Adventure Travel in delivering Bus service 303/304. The Council was the overall winner in the 'Travel Demand’ category for the work with New Adventure Travel in delivering the subsidised 303/304 bus service.

12.      In April 2014, construction projects relating to the new housing scheme at Golwg y Coed and various domestic schemes were winners at the South Wales Local Authority Building Control 'Built in Quality Awards’. Both submissions were judged against all Wales entries in June and a Vale of Glamorgan contractor has been judged the winner for various schemes undertaken in partnership with our Building Control Group within the Vale of Glamorgan, demonstrating excellence in housing construction within the Vale of Glamorgan.

13.      With a focus on sustainable development, 1033 new developments were considered by the Council during the year and 927 (89.7%) were approved.

14.      The performance of the Department when dealing with a range of planning applications and appeals continues to improve during a time when submissions have increased considerably.

15.      Approximately £1.2m was secured through planning obligations and the Community Infrastructure Levy and we have committed/ spent approximately £1m to deliver infrastructure benefits to communities within the Vale this year. A further £14.78 million from signed s106 agreements is due to the Council, and this excludes ongoing major applications that have yet to sign s106 agreements.

16.      The Council facilitated a valuable discussion on its Draft Destination Action Plan at the Vale of Glamorgan Agricultural show in August with the feedback informing on-going consultation on the Plan.

17.      The Council delivered another hugely successful summer events programme at Barry Island which saw significant numbers of visitors to the island for a varied programme of events throughout the summer holidays. The 'Barry Island weekender' alone attracted over 40,000 visitors. The Council’s summer events programme has been recognised by virtue of the Isle of Fire being shortlisted for the best local event in the Visit Wales National Tourism Awards 2014.

18.      The Eastern promenade regeneration scheme on Barry Island was opened for public access during November 2014. It has delivered significant improvement to the public realm, helping to attract more visitors and businesses to the island.

19.      We worked with key partners to complete the refurbishment of Penarth Pier which won 'Pier of the Year award- Wales' and the 'Wales Special Places' voted by the National Trust.

20.      Significant work has been undertaken with schools during the year to promote road safety, including: 35 schools took part in JRSO (Junior Road Safety Officers); short courses delivered to 27 schools; kerbcraft delivered to 300 pupils; 33 schools took part in level 1 and 2 cycle training which was delivered to 968 and 710 pupils respectively; and ran bike-safe courses and delivered Pass Cymru to 100 pupils.

21.      A Communities First Cluster has been established in Barry to help to deliver improved health and wellbeing to residents living within the Community First area. Most targets set by Welsh Government have been met or exceeded. In the Autumn of 2014, we placed our 500th long term unemployed individual in a job. Local employment is increasing and unemployment is below the Wales and UK average.

22.      The Council has been recognised for its work in disability sport through achievement of the bronze award 'In Sport Ribbon'. The Council's play team were also recognised in a national award on play schemes further emphasising the good work being undertaken. The service ranked 1st in Wales for partnership in play activities by Sport Wales in 2014.

23.      In relation to slippage, a procedure has been agreed by Cabinet for the provision of the School Crossing Patrol service and is currently subject to consultation. A Cabinet report is due in May which will incorporate the consultation findings, with the intention of adopting the new Policy in time for September 2015 [DS/A024 (CP/CPS3)]:

24.      Marketing of key sites at Nell's Point and the Innovation Quarter (IQ) will allow the market to be tested for a cinema development in Barry.  The Council has supported the development of the Memo cinema during 2014/15, with grant money via the Regeneration fund [DS/A079 (CP/R7)].

25.      In relation to the completion of the existing Rural Development Programme and promoting a new Rural Development Plan, final Partnership claims will be submitted in June. Evaluation of the programme is being re-commissioned in May for completion in June 2015 [DS/A068 (CP/R13) (IO)].

26.      The work to develop a Master Plan for Barry Island is to be carried forward into the 2015/16 Service Plan.  Nell's Point is to be re-marketed, and work continues in relation to enhancements [DS/A088 (CP/R5)].

27.      The delivery of a 20mph zone for Llandough village has now been presented to Cabinet and implementation is imminent [DS/A181].

28.      Options for improvements to Five Mile Lane continue to be assessed. Key issues around the terms of any grant offer, has resulted in the action slipping [DS/A182].  Cabinet will consider options during spring 2015.

29.      A detailed report of the directorate's overall performance is provided at 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 achievements 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 to the Performance and Development Team. An overall Council report on performance has been considered by Cabinet.  Quarterly performance reports are reported to relevant Scrutiny Committees.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

38.      Economy and Environment

Background Papers

Development Services End of Year Performance Report 2014/15

Contact Officer

Julia Esseen, Corporate Performance Co-ordinator


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

Huw Isaac, Head of Performance and Development

Julia Archampong, Performance Manager


Responsible Officer:

Miles Punter, Director of Visible Services and Housing.