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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health): 6th February 2012

 

Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment): 7th February 2012

 

Scrutiny Committee (Housing and Public Protection): 9th February 2012

 

Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning): 20th February 2012

 

Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources): 21st February 2012

 

 

Report of the Chief Executive

 

Welsh Government Consultation - Shared Purpose - Shared Delivery

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To provide Members of the Committee with the opportunity to respond to the Welsh Government Consultation Document 'Shared Purpose - Shared Delivery'.

Recommendation

1.             That the Committee consider the consultation documents and advise officers of any comments they would like included in the Vale Local Service Board response to the consultation.

Reason for the Recommendation

1.             That Members are aware of the Welsh Government proposals and have an opportunity to participate in the consultation.

 

Background

2.             The Welsh Government has issued a consultation document 'Shared Purpose - Shared Delivery' (Appendix I) and has requested responses by the 30 March 2012.  The new guidance is intended to integrate local service planning, streamline partnership working and strengthen the strategic role and accountability of the Local Service Board.

3.             The Guidance is intended to replace existing statutory guidance deriving from a number of pieces of legislation: Community Strategies (Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009), Children and Young People's Plans (Children Act 2004, Children and Families Measure 2010), and Health Social Care and Well-being Strategies (NHS Wales Act 2006). Community Safety planning is non-devolved (Crime and Disorder Act 1998) so the guidance is advisory only for Community Safety planning in Wales.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.             The Local Service Board (LSB) is the overarching strategic partnership in the Vale.  It is chaired by the Leader of Council and membership includes senior representatives from key organisations operating in the Vale e.g. South Wales Police, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and Cardiff and Vale College.

5.             The Welsh Government has identified the outcomes Wales should work towards and the priority areas for action in the Programme for Government.  These high level outcomes can only be achieved through multi-agency working and according to the draft guidance need to be reflected in single integrated plans produced by Local Service Boards. A single integrated plan would replace the four existing statutory plans and strategies and would be underpinned by clear lines of accountability and performance management arrangements. A single integrated plan should be in place by April 2013.

6.             The view of the Welsh Government is that the LSB should:

  • Agree strategic priorities for multi-agency working to support the agenda set out in Programme for Government and respond to clearly evidenced local needs.
  • Achieve improvements by ensuring appropriate systems are in place and that managers and frontline staff across agencies are working together effectively and that agreed priorities are reflected in individual organisations' corporate plans.
  • Ensure partnership and delivery structures are fit for purpose and accountable.
  • Challenge where there is underperformance or coasting and implement changes that reflect evidenced best practice to improve outcomes for the local population.
  • Review and report annually on progress; to the public, Welsh Government, democratically elected members, and LSB member organisations.

7.             The consultation document details what needs to be included in a single integrated plan in terms of a long term vision, analysis of local need, a 3-5 year action plan, an information strategy and an engagement strategy.  The plans should also include information about LSB governance, performance management and scrutiny.

8.             Chapter 3 of the guidance sets out the Welsh Government proposals for strengthened accountability and covers performance management, scrutiny and inspection and audit. 

9.             In the section on scrutiny (page 17), reference is made to the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 which gives new powers to local authority scrutiny committees to scrutinise other public service providers in their area in addition to Council services. The Measure also contains provision for setting up joint scrutiny committees with other Councils.  Guidance on the Measure is due, and in the absence of this guidance it is difficult to fully respond to proposals regarding scrutiny of partnerships as contained in the 'Shared Purpose-Shared Delivery' consultation document. The consultation document recognises the important contribution of scrutiny but at this stage some of the detail is still unclear.

10.        The Vale LSB has already implemented much of what the Welsh Government are proposing:

  • A new Community Strategy 2011-21 was approved by the LSB last year which brings together the plans and strategies of all the key partnerships in the Vale into one integrated strategy with ten agreed priority outcomes.  The integrated strategy was informed by a Unified Needs Assessment undertaken on behalf of the LSB by the Local Government Data Unit.
  • Performance management arrangements have been established with the key partnerships including a reporting cycle to the LSB and an annual report.
  • A review has recently been undertaken to rationalise the number of sub-groups sitting under the key partnerships and this is due to be approved at the LSB meting on the 24th February.

11.        The Council is also already involved in the joint scrutiny of Prosiect Gwyrdd.  Whilst this work precedes the "formal" joint scrutiny which will be provided for within the Measure, the challenges faced and lessons learnt will prove valuable for any such future arrangements.

12.        Although the LSB has already put in place a significant amount of what is being proposed there is still a great deal to be done to enhance partnership working and further align the work of different partnerships  Work will need to be undertaken to develop an information strategy and an engagement strategy in line with the guidance.

13.        The LSB will be responding to the consultation and it is not the intention that the Council will submit a separate response.  The deadline for comments to Welsh Government is the 30th March however to meet this deadline and in order for the LSB to agree the collective response all comments are requested by the 27th February 2012.  In drafting the response the views of LSB partners, the key partnerships and relevant officers in the Council as well as all Scrutiny Committees are being sought.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment and Climate Change, if appropriate)

14.        The LSB Development Grant from the Welsh Government will continue until 2014/15. In 2011/12 this was £50,000 for the Vale of Glamorgan Local Service Board. The terms and conditions of the grant are being reviewed with a view to focussing on capacity and capability for needs analysis, service commissioning, outcomes planning and performance management.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

15.        The Guidance is intended to replace existing statutory guidance deriving from a number of pieces of legislation: Community Strategies (Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009), Children and Young People's Plans (Children Act 2004, Children and Families Measure 2010), and Health Social Care and Well-being Strategies (NHS Wales Act 2006). Community Safety planning is non-devolved (Crime and Disorder Act 1998) so the guidance is advisory only for Community Safety planning in Wales.

16.        A single integrated plan can be used to meet statutory responsibilities in relation to the development of plans and strategies under the following legislation:

  • Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009 - Part 2: Community Strategies and Planning (Ss37-46)
  • Children Act 2004 (Part 3: S26) (which includes plans required in accordance with the Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010 (S2) and the Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010 (Part 1))
  • Childcare Act 2006 (Ss 22 and 26)
  • NHS (Wales) Act 2006 (Part 3:S40)
  • Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (Part 1: S5).

Crime and Disorder Implications

17.        The guidance is advisory for Community Safety planning in Wales.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

18.        The proposals are intended to improve accountability and integrated plans will include an analysis of trends and local patterns of need and an engagement strategy.

Corporate/Service Objectives

19.        The Corporate Plan includes the following Improvement Objective 'to promote through partnership working greater cooperation with other organisations that deliver services in the Vale, thereby improving the quality of life of its citizens.'

 

Policy Framework and Budget

20.        The Council will contribute to the response of the LSB to the consultation and will not be providing a separate response.  The response will be submitted to Cabinet for information.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

21.        The views of LSB partners, the key partnerships and relevant officers in the Council as well as all Scrutiny Committees are being sought to inform the response of the LSB to the consultation.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

22.        All Scrutiny Committees.

Background Papers

Vale of Glamorgan Community Strategy 2011-21 'Planning and Working Together'

Programme for Government 2011-16 - Welsh Government

 

Contact Officer -

Huw Isaac - Head of Performance and Development

 

Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

 

Responsible Officer:

J. Maitland Evans, Chief Executive

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