Agenda Item No. 7


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment): 2nd December 2014


Report of the Director of Visible Services and Housing


Quarter 2 Visible Services Performance Report 2014-15


Purpose of the Report

1.         To present the performance results for Quarter 2, 1st July-30th September, 2014-15.


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 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 Quarter 2 Visible Services performance results as at 30th September 2014 in order to identify service areas for improvement.


2.         The Service Plans are designed to focus on the achievement of key objectives within each directorate which in turn contribute 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.         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 to bring these back on track.
  • 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 is on or has exceeded target. All areas of underperformance identified include a reason for the poor performance and proposed remedial actions.

Relevant Issues and Options

5.         Visible Services is on track to achieve the objectives contributing to its service outcomes. As at quarter 2, 88% of all Service Plan actions were either completed or on track. Of 41 actions, 5 actions (12%) were reported as slipped.

6.         Of 13 Corporate Plan actions 92% (10) are either completed or on track for completion, and 1 action has slipped.

7.         There are no actions relating to the Improvement Objectives.

8.         Of the 2 Outcome Agreement actions for the service, 1 has been completed and the other is on track for completion.  There are 6 measures relating to the Outcome Agreement, 5 of which are reported on a quarterly basis. Of these, 4 have met or exceeded target and 1 has missed target by more than 10%.

9.         Of 18 performance indicators within the Service Plan, 9 have either met or exceeded target, 3 are within 10% of target, 5 have missed target by more than 10% and a RAG status was not available for 1 PI. This is a slight improvement from Q1 where the Service reported 7 PIs having either met or exceeded target.

10.      The indicators  that have missed target relate to:

  • [WMT/010i (OA5)] - The percentage of local authority collected municipal waste prepared for reuse. The lack of Community Reuse Schemes within the Vale has adversely affected performance against this indicator.  A performance of 0.30% was achieved against a quarterly target of 0.42%.
  • THS009 - The average number of calendar days taken to repair street lamp failures during the year. A performance of 4.03 days was achieved against a target of 3.38 on average. It is suggested that this target be changed to 5 days as the current target is not achievable with the resources now available within the street lighting team. This is not an area that receives many complaints and this reduction in repair standards will not have significant impact on the citizens of the Vale.
  • VS/M009a - The total number of successful third party claims against the Council for trips and falls (footway claims). A performance of 6 was reported against a targeted number of 3. No comment provided.
  • VS/M009b - The total number of successful third party claims against the Council for vehicle damage (carriageway claims). The service reported that 14 claims were successful against a target of 5.  This is due to the current national trend.
  • STS007 - The percentage of reported fly tipping incident which lead to enforcement activity. During this quarter enforcement officers have focussed their resources on other work priorities, primarily the checking of commercial premises, relevant duty of care notes, service level reviews and customer satisfaction surveys.

11.      In terms of exceptional performance, five parks in the Vale have now won the coveted Green Flag award, that is, Central Park, Romilly Park, Victoria Park, Belle Vue Park, Alexandra Park and Windsor Gardens.  Green Flag status is a mark of excellence demonstrating good amenities and community involvement in parks [CP/E10 (VS/A051)].

12.      Significant preparation work undertaken by the service in relation to Prosiect Gwyrdd will allow the Vale to start using Virridor’s site in Cardiff from November this year which will save the Council up to £1.6m per annum.

13.      Vehicle tracking has been introduced to 98% of the Council’s fleet, including facial/fingerprint recognition technology for monitoring the timekeeping of all staff and a new home to work transport policy which saw 63 vehicles returned back to the depots for overnight parking saving the Council over £100k per annum. Completion of an independent review of the Council’s transport operations (EDGE Review) identified possible savings of £1.59m over three years. This has been agreed in principle by Cabinet and the work on the savings has already started.

14.      Work commenced on the Coldbrook Catchment Flood Risk Management scheme over the summer holidays, a £5m Vale ERDF and WG funded project, aimed at reducing flood risk to over 100 domestic properties and three schools in the Barry area. This scheme is due to be completed in 2015.      

15.      Slippage was reported in a number of actions:

  • The Council's Allotment Strategy will be revised to reflect WGs, 'Improving availability of Allotments' guidance once published in October 2014 [CP/E12 (VS/A046)].
  • The restructuring of collection and recycling rounds using electronic data has been programmed to start later in the year [VS/A059].
  • The review of collection arrangements for commercial residual waste and recycling has been delayed [VS/A063]. The Waste Management and Cleansing Commercial Team have started to carry out a satisfaction survey of our commercial customers to assess the services we are providing. Officers are also producing a more up to date database of existing customers that use our collection services and to assess the level of service for 2014/2015. This work will also be closely linked to a similar review of the Domestic Collection Services.
  • Cabinet reports are scheduled for November in relation to the introduction of appropriate delivery arrangements for restricted kitchen waste bag deliveries for food waste disposal [VS/A064] and [VS/A066a], the introduction of a new policy for missed refuse and recycling collections from domestic properties which avoids going back to properties after the regular collection arrangements.

16.      A detailed report of the directorate’s overall performance is provided at Appendix 1.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

17.      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

18.      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)

19.      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

20.      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)

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

Corporate/Service Objectives

22.      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

23.      This is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

24.      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

25.      Economy and Environment

Background Papers

Quarter 2 Performance Report

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.