|In accordance with the procedure for the appointment of school / academy governors, approved as Minute CAB 27/13 of the meeting of Cabinet held on 13th June 2013, Cabinet was invited to consider the nominations to school / academy Governing Bodies attached to the report.|
|Consideration was given to a report that following consultation presented a proposed calendar of school term and holiday dates for the 2015/2016 academic year.|
School employers were required to set the term dates of their school year. Employers are:-
the Local Authority in community, voluntary controlled and community special schools and maintained nursery schools;
the Governing Body in foundation and voluntary aided school;
the academy trust in academies and free schools.
In line with statutory requirements and the protocol agreed in 2008, consideration had been given to compile a set of term and holiday dates for schools in the Borough.
Officers consulted with colleagues from all neighbouring authorities to endeavour to reach consensus on a proposed model for the academic year.
Attached to the report were the proposed dates for 2015/2016 option 1 and option 2.
As part of the consultation process these documents were duly circulated to schools and all other relevant parties, including unions and associations.
Twenty one comments were received and attached to the report.
To date a majority of neighbouring authorities had either been recommended or approved proposed 2015/2016 term dates. This level of agreement between authorities will relieve many of the cross boundary issues that many families had suffered in the past.
|Consideration was given to a report on the Stockton Globe. There had been several reports to Cabinet detailing the progress of regeneration, economic development and infrastructure projects across the Borough's town centres. The report provided a progress update regarding Stockton Globe following the Heritage Lottery Fund grant allocation, to develop the scheme to Development Appraisal, in October 2013.|
There had been significant progress made on the development and delivery of infrastructure works in Stockton town centre, business support and development initiatives, alongside major projects to support economic growth, and in February 2014, Cabinet was advised that funding had been granted by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Enterprise Programme, giving the green light for a more detailed Development Phase (stage two) application to be completed.
The Heritage Enterprise Scheme was a new HLF funding stream with criteria for approval which fitted with the aspirations for the refurbishment of the Globe as a live music and comedy venue, and the positive impact it would have on the surrounding properties and businesses.
In order to be eligible to bid for the Heritage Enterprise Scheme, The Globe Stockton Foundation (the Foundation) was established, comprising three unpaid Directors, with specific portfolio responsibilities. At this time, it was envisaged that the Chief Executive of Stockton Borough Council would join as a fourth Director, as the Council's nominee.
The Heritage Enterprise fund assesses applications in two rounds. The first saw the immediate release of £401,600 from HLF, which alongside contributions from the Council and Jomast, as owners of the Globe, would fund the development of the project and enable the work up of detailed proposals for the redevelopment. These proposals would then be submitted to HLF, and subject to their final approval, the award for the project would be confirmed which would see the remaining £3.5M released by HLF and work begin on site.
Following a Start' meeting held in January 2014 with HLF, and various discussions since, the Council, Jomast, and Foundation had been working together to establish a governance structure and agreed way of working with HLF.
Now established, this governance, sees the Council take the role of accountable body for the Development Phase, and lead the procurement of expert and specialist support to work up the Development Appraisal. Any contracts procured by the Council would feature a break-clause, with progression subject to HLF funding approval. On receipt of funding, these contracts would be novated to the Foundation, which would be responsible for the actual submission of the stage two application.
Presently, the Foundation was confirming its representation with a view to securing charitable status. Representation consisted of three private individuals and it was proposed to have the Chief Executive of the Council join as the Council's nominee.
Further governance arrangements for the Foundation would be confirmed as part of the development phase.
In addition to governance, the Development Phase was on programme and on budget, as identified in the stage one application, and good progress was being made with procurement, which would take place over summer 2014.
The procurement of expert and specialist advice for a building of this nature was fairly extensive and included a digital survey of the whole building, theatre specialist advice and conservation plan. A design team would work up detailed proposals and also incorporate educational and heritage interpretation and activities into the plans.
In preparation for the Globe re-opening, work would commence in Autumn 2014 on a brand new art installation, known as STELLAR: The Stars that Fell on Stockton, which was designed to pay tribute to the galaxy of famous stars who had performed at the Globe over the years. The artwork, designed by artist Simon Watkinson, was inspired by the cosmos and the trajectory of the stars as they move through space. It would be installed on the paved area in front of the Globe and would see the use of colourful LED light strips, as well as 15 spotlights, each etched with a portrait of one of the Globe's past performers. In March 2014, 10 famous faces were selected by a panel to occupy a spotlight and the public were asked to nominate their favourites for the remaining five.
Following consultation, The Bee Gees, Norman Wisdom, Ken Dodd, T-Rex and local band The Blue Caps were chosen by to join the other ten acts (Buddy Holly, Cliff Richard, Ike & Tina Turner, Morecambe & Wise, Roy Orbison, Shirley Bassey, Status Quo, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Tom Jones) in the Hollywood style Walk of Fame.
|Consideration was given to an update report on the Economic Climate. The report provided Members with an overview of the economic climate, outlining the effects that this was having on Stockton Borough, and the mitigations already in place and those being developed in response to this. |
A report was submitted to Cabinet in December 2008, which set the scene of the economic downturn, and the effects that the global recession and economic climate were having on businesses, rising unemployment, and mortgage repossessions.
The monthly update report would enable a focussed account to be made of any recent changes to economic circumstances (both positive and negative), the direct impact that this may be having on the Borough, and the responses and mitigations either in place or being developed to support businesses and residents. Attached to the report was a summary of those changes and responses.
|Consideration was given to a report on the North Tees District Heating Scheme. The Council had reviewed the long term energy supply for both Council and Borough to develop a route to price stable, sustainable energy sources contributing to reduction in carbon emissions for business, residents and Council. District heating was an important element in the future energy mix to reduce dependency on fossil fuels although it was recognised that efficient burning of natural gas would form a major part of this energy supply for a number of years supplemented by surplus process heat from local chemical industries. |
Within the Borough a number of energy intensive process industries shared a common inheritance from ICI that had resulted in several unique features including:-
1. Existing heat, steam, gas and other chemical distribution infrastructure
2. Close proximity of energy intensive industries to commercial, residential and public sector properties
3. Strong interest from the process industry to increase efficiency by utilising heat currently lost to atmosphere.
Initial scoping work had been carried out in collaboration with GrowHow UK Ltd who manufactured 45% of the UK nitrate fertilizer market and consume 1% of the entire UK natural gas supply at their Billingham site.
This work had established that there was a realistic prospect of developing a district heat network to serve parts of the Borough near the GrowHow site with potential extension to that network in the future. On this basis a programme of work to develop the heat network design, determined the business case, establish an appropriate governance model and generate tender specifications had been included in the Tees Valley City Deal bid resulting in an award of £850,900 over 4 years requiring match funding of £419,100 to cover the estimated total cost of required work of £1,270,000.
|In accordance with the Council's Constitution or previous practice the minutes of the meeting of the bodies indicated below were submitted to Members for consideration:-|
Safer Stockton Partnership - 25th March 2014
Teeswide Safeguarding Adults Board - 1st April 2014
The Housing and Neighbourhood Partnership - 22nd April 2014
|Consideration was given to a report on the Xentrall Annual Report 2013-2014. Xentrall Shared Services, the Stockton and Darlington partnership, was established in May 2008 and was six years through the original ten year partnership agreement. The original business case identified a number of efficiencies and benefits to be delivered resulting in initial savings of £7.4m over the original ten year period. It had delivered all of these plus additional efficiencies and benefits and was on target to make £13.6m savings over the same ten year period.|
|Consideration was given to a report that provided an update on the Asset Review and builds on earlier reports to Members. |
The report summarised progress in implementing the recommendations in respect of the Review of Libraries, provided an update on progress around Asset Transfer arrangements and provided a recommendation around the future of the Education Centre Site.
Members were aware of previous reports outlining the approach to building assets and investments in schools capital, with the latest being presented to Cabinet in November 2013.
The reports sought approval to explore options and opportunities relating to the utilisation of assets in the context of ongoing service reviews and opportunities for Community Asset Transfer, including the creation of a Community Building Trust. The report provided an update on progress, with specific information regarding the creation of a Community Building Trust and subsequent asset transfer of four community buildings.
This was the latest in a series of reports on the EIT Asset Review. The review had financial savings targets of £250,000 in 2012/13 and £1,000,000 per annum thereafter.
The original target saving from the Asset review was to deliver savings of £1m by 2013/14. Overall the savings would exceed the target and the latest estimate was £1.4m by 2015/16. There would however be a shortfall in 2014/15 due to the delays associated with the Education Centre and Ragworth Neighbourhood Centre and this would be factored into the MTFP. The review had also generated capital receipts of over £1m to date and this would increase with further disposals.
The review had covered a wide range of Council owned buildings; including Office Accommodation, Children's Centres (linking into the EIG review), Libraries and Youth and Community Buildings.
The savings were summarised as follows:-
Rationalisation of Office Accommodation - resulting in the closure of 4 buildings. This has generated a revenue saving of £230,000 per year and also generated capital receipts of £1m. The sale of Gloucester House also resulted in the relocation of Visualsoft (a successful and growing local company) into the Town Centre.
Operation of Childrens' Centres - Linking into the EIG Review which reported to Cabinet in November 2011, £140,000 was saved on building running costs per annum on associated Centres covered in the review.
Libraries - The review of the library service included the co-location of facilities and changes to opening hours at a number of libraries and this has saved £400,000. Investment continues in our libraries and following the redevelopments of Thornaby and Stockton Town Centre libraries, the new facility for Billingham will open in the Town Centre January 2015.
Youth & Community Centres - four community centres have now been transferred to a new charitable organisation, OnSite Building Trust. This ensures that the buildings remain open for community use, while generating a saving of £195,000pa for the Council.
Other Buildings - there were a number of buildings which are no longer occupied and buildings vacated (e.g. Youth Café, Skinner Street). This has saved £160,000 and generated capital receipts of £115,000.
The majority of savings had been delivered through rationalisation of facilities, co-location of services and alternative means of delivery rather than any reduction in front line services to the public. The updated savings profile would be incorporated into the next update of the Medium Term Financial Plan.
|Consideration was given to a report on Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 ("RIPA"). The report requested Cabinet confirm the Council's Corporate Policy and Procedures Document for 2014/15 and provided, as previously agreed, details of the Council's surveillance activity during 2013/14.|
Specific details of authorisations / activity during the year were attached to the report.
|Consideration was given to a report on the revised arrangements for the leadership and management of the NEPO Service and Regional Collaborative Procurement.|
The North East Procurement Organisation (NEPO) was responsible for organising collaborative contracts through which councils purchase goods and services. It was governed through a Shared Services Arrangement entered into on 28th October 2010 by the 12 local authorities in the North East (the "LA12"). Gateshead was the host authority for NEPO (i.e. employing the NEPO staff and holding its financial assets) and supports its work with the provision of a range professional and support services. The LA12 pay an annual subscription to contribute to NEPO's costs.
Following an extensive review during 2013, and subsequent reports to the Regional Chief Executives' Group, the Executive Subcommittee of NEPO, and to the ANEC Leader's and Elected Mayors' Board it was resolved to take steps to improve its efficiency and effectiveness, including exploring options, and then to set up arrangements, for the purpose of transforming the way in which regional procurement will be delivered in future.
Consequently it was agreed to:-
Create a revised accountability structure and strengthen member involvement with the NEPO Service via ANEC (the Association of North East Councils Ltd).
Clarify strategic leadership through ANEC's management structure and governance.
Improve the operational relationships between NEPO and the LA12.
Improve credibility for NEPO and provide clarity about its new role and agree areas of common purpose managing delivery and harnessing collaboration.
Apply a flexible approach to local sub regional and regional procurement using NEPO or alternatives within or outside of the region
Clarify what activities and procurements should be led under the NEPO branding for the LA12
Create sustainability for the NEPO Service via appropriate funding arrangements and business plans.
At its meeting on 9th April 2014 the Executive Sub-committee of NEPO approved a detailed report outlining new and revised functions and objectives for the NEPO Service and future collaborative procurement activity; it proposed establishing a new arrangement for the governance of the NEPO Service and for regional collaborative procurement generally via ANEC.
It was agreed that the NEPO Joint Committee should be disestablished by the LA12 and new governance and delivery arrangements for the collaborative procurement service be created under ANEC. Decisions were to be considered formally by ANEC and a final meeting of NEPO's Joint Committee will be convened.
These changes would require the LA12 to terminate the current Joint Committee arrangement and, through ANEC, agree a new arrangement under the Leaders and Elected Mayors' Group (as ANEC's Member Management Board) with strategic direction and advice available through the proposed member-led Collaborative Procurement Subcommittee advised by two lead Directors of Resources on behalf of the Directors of Resources Group. Under this proposal issues can if necessary be referred to the Regional Chief Executives' Group.
Local Authorities would appoint members to the NEPO Collaborative Subcommittee at Cabinet/Annual Council as appropriate.
The Leaders and Elected Mayors' Group of ANEC would have the following responsibilities:-
Overarching responsibility for North East collaborative procurement activity and the NEPO Service.
On the recommendation of the Collaborative Procurement Subcommittee, approval of the annual business plan, annual report and work programme.
Receive regular six-monthly updates from the NEPO Collaborative Procurement Subcommittee and;
Receive reports on other relevant issues where necessary for decision.
The Collaborative Procurement Subcommittee would have the following responsibilities:-
Develop an annual business plan and work programme for North East collaborative procurement activity including the existing regional service known as NEPO and to prepare and agree an annual report for approval by the Leaders and Elected Mayors' Group.
Monitor and scrutinise the provision of collaborative procurement services and their budget.
Monitor the range and effectiveness of collaborative procurement activity being undertaken generally.
Provide the Leaders and Elected Mayors' Group with assurance on all aspects of internal controls and risk management.
Keep under review appropriate strategic plans, a regional procurement strategy and an appropriate performance management framework.
Ensure that there are appropriate and effective arrangements for stakeholder engagement in the NEPO service and;
Ensure appropriate protocols and procedures are in place to secure the effective operation of the service and collaborative procurement across the north east.
Following completion of a staffing review staff transfer arrangements would be undertaken in accordance with TUPE regulations and all existing assets and contracts would be passed to ANEC Ltd under the terms of an agreement to be entered into between the 12 constituent authorities of NEPO and ANEC Ltd. The intention was for the new structure and governance to come into effect on 1 July 2014 and for TUPE to apply from 1 August 2014.
Gateshead Council had had a long and successful association with the provision of legal and financial support services to NEPO. ANEC Ltd had indicated that, subject to formal approval, it wished to continue with those arrangements going forward, at least for an initial period to support a smooth transition to the new governance and service delivery model. Accordingly, and for that purpose, it was envisaged that a further agreement would be entered into between ANEC Ltd and Gateshead Council under which those support services arrangements would continue to be provided to them on similar terms as previously.