Cabinet Minutes

Thursday, 13th December, 2018
Jim Cooke Conference Suite, Stockton Central Library, Church Road, Stockton on Tees, TS18 1TU
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Cllr Robert Cook(Chair), Cllr Jim Beall, Cllr Nigel Cooke, Cllr Mrs Ann McCoy, Cllr Steve Nelson, Cllr Michael Smith and Cllr Norma Wilburn.
Neil Schneider (CE), Julie Danks, Margaret Waggott, Peter Bell (DCE), Beccy Brown, Jonathan Nertney (HR&L), Garry Cummings (F&BS), Richard McGuckin (ED&D), Jamie McCann (CS), Reuben Kench (C,L&E).
In Attendance:
Members of the Public.
Apologies for absence:
Item Description Decision
The Worshipful the Mayor welcomed everyone to the meeting and the evacuation procedure was noted.
Councillor Nigel Cooke declared a personal prejudicial non pecuniary interest in respect of agenda item 7 - Financial Update & Medium Term Financial Plan as he was a member of Tees Music Alliance. Councillor Nigel Cooke withdrew from the meeting and left the room during consideration of the item.

Councillor Steve Nelson declared a personal non prejudicial interest in respect of agenda item 7 - Financial Update & Medium Term Financial Plan as he was a Director of Thirteen.
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 15 November 2018 be confirmed and signed as a correct record.
Cabinet Decision Record D180091

1. The flowchart (Appendix 1 of the report) setting out the steps to be followed when a service request in respect of verge parking is received be endorsed.

2. The Enforcement Service investigate the feasibility of introducing, where appropriate, the approach adopted by Middlesbrough Council where persistent offenders are sent letters asking them to refrain from verge parking and recouping the repair costs if the verge parking continues.

3. The use of Community Protection Notices, Public Space Protection Orders and Traffic Regulation Orders are in future considered as part of a range of measures to prevent verge parking.

4. Supplementary Planning Documents incorporate detailed guidance and standards on visitor parking for new housing developments.

5. Funding of the measures to address verge parking issues be considered in the context of the overall financial position, particularly noting that the Ward Member Community Participation Budgets are included in the Medium Term Financial Plan until 2019/20.

6. Publicity and awareness raising campaign be established highlighting the damage caused by verge parking and that Place Select Committee are consulted as part of the development of the campaign and all Members supplied with appropriate text and images/leaflets for them to raise awareness within their wards.
Cabinet Decision Record D180092
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meetings detailed in the appendices be approved / received, as appropriate.
Cabinet Decision Record D180093

1. The Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) and the current level of General Fund balances be noted.

2. The recently announced Winter Pressures Funding for 2018/19 be used to support investments in Adult Social Care to support the management and prevention of pressures associated with winter.

3. The prudential borrowing required to fund additional costs associated with The Globe be supported in principle, with this being formally recommended for approval in the February report.

4. The position on the High Needs Block of the Dedicated Schools Grant be noted.

5. The emerging issues for the MTFP be noted.

6. The revised Capital Programme attached at Appendix B of the report be noted.
Cabinet Decision Record D180094

1. The successful approach taken by the Council to date in building community wealth be noted.

2. A detailed action plan be developed built around the key actions identified in the report.
Cabinet Decision Record D180095
RESOLVED that the report be noted, and in particular:-

- The continued challenges around demand.
- The current position in relation to the numbers of children in care.
- The continued high performance around meeting statutory deadlines and timescales.
Cabinet Decision Record D180096

1. The standards and achievement across the Borough for vulnerable groups of children be noted.

2. The strong overall performance of Stockton schools at both primary and secondary phases be noted.
Cabinet Decision Record D180097

1. The business case be agreed.

2. A further report be received following the publication of the arrangements.
Cabinet Decision Record D180098

1. The Council’s achievements in Customer Service Excellence including the 2018 surveillance assessment be noted.

2. The continuation of Customer Service Excellence accreditation for three years from May 2019 be approved.
4.30pm to 6.30pm


Consideration was given to the minutes of the meeting held on 15 November 2018.
Consideration was given to a report that presented the findings and recommendations of a Scrutiny Review of Parking on Grass Verges carried out by a Task and Finish Group appointed by the Place Select Committee.
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 - 30 October 2018
Teeswide Safeguarding Adults Board 1 November 2018
Consideration was given to a report that presented the financial performance and position at the end of the second quarter of the 2018/19 financial year and updated the Medium Term Financial Plan accordingly.

A table within the report detailed the projected budget outturn position for each directorate in 2018/19, based on information to 30 September 2018. The reasons for any significant movement in variances from the last reported position (in excess of £100,000) were set out for each directorate.

The Council aimed to retain General Fund balances at a recommended level, currently £7,400,000. As reported to Cabinet previously the level of balances, and unutilised managed surpluses, exceeded the recommended level by £515,000. This sum of £515,000 was therefore available to support the MTFP, including to offset the projected pressures summarised in paragraph 1 of the report should these materialise at year end. The position would be kept under review throughout the remainder of the financial year and would be considered again as part of the next report in February.

The approved MTFP position in March 2018 was detailed within the report.

There were some areas of additional income which could be brought into the plan:-

• Business Rates
• New Homes Bonus
• Adult and Children’s Social Care Grant

The Capital Programme was set out at Appendix A of the report and summarised in the table within the report.

£583,567 had been added to the capital programme to support the full demolition of Elm House, fully funded by Thirteen.

An additional £186,517 grant contribution for Phase 4 of the England Coastal Path had been added to the capital programme.

With regard to additional funding a £333,872 contribution from TVCA development funding had been added into the capital programme to fund feasibility works A689 Wynyard scheme, including a £117,549 repayment to LTP towards previous years costs.

The Plan had been updated to include the funding for highways maintenance (including potholes) and detailed plans were being developed.

The Department for Transport had confirmed £3,307,000 LTP Grant for 2019/20.

Members were provided with a note on the Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement 2019/20.
Consideration was given to a report that was produced by members of the Council’s Talent Network and introduced the concept of Community Wealth Building making particular reference to the approach used in Preston via the Preston Model. It outlined the proactive initiatives already undertaken by the Council, the results of which compare favourably to those achieved in Preston. It also advised on a number of areas for ongoing development.

A detailed action plan would be developed and key actions would include:

• An expansion of the successful Meet the Buyer approach across all large contracting activity.
• Continue to support the NEPO Business Club approach providing support to the supplier training/engagement programme and actively communicate opportunities with SMEs and the VCSE.
• Continue to liaise with the Federation of Small Businesses to ensure a good understanding of any issues faced by the businesses within our area.
• Where appropriate redesign contracts to alleviate issues caused for the SMEs and VCSE around insurance, finance and risk clauses, as well as contract length.
• Continue the dialogue with the VCSE to ensure early involvement with the sector when services are being redesigned.
• Support the SMEs and the VCSE to build consortia where this approach is applicable.
• Introduce the Themes Outcome Measures Framework to assist the contract evaluation process.
• Raise awareness of the Council’s achievements to date and work with other anchor organisations to encourage a similar approach.
• Consider the establishment of a “Stockton Local” Charter, working with key anchor organisations across the Borough.
• Use the information gathered to identify gaps in the supply market to highlight new business opportunities and help the economy grow.
Consideration was given to a report that provided a summary of performance across Children’s Services for Quarter 2. It was based on the Children’s Strategy priorities agreed by Cabinet in June 2017.

The report summarised performance information in relation to the Children’s Services Strategy 2017-20. This strategy, agreed by Cabinet in June 2017, set out the key priorities for Children’s Services and the key performance indicators associated with delivery.

The update report was in three parts:

a. Update on 2018/19 priorities.
b. Update on other actions and progress against the wider strategy
c. A summary of key points
Consideration was given to a report that presented a headline, summary analysis of performance in the academic year 2017 - 2018 against all key stages for all providers in the Borough for vulnerable pupils. It was informed by the latest available data, some of which remained un-validated and compared to national averages where they exist. It included performance outcomes for:

- Pupils in receipt of Pupil Premium Funding;
- Performance by gender;
- Black and Minority Ethnic children;
- Looked After Children;
- Children with Special Needs;
- Attendance and exclusion figures for Stockton.

In summary:-

- There was a continued strong trajectory of improvement evident in the performance of vulnerable pupils.
- Attainment for disadvantaged pupils had improved from the previous year in all key stages.
- Improvement in attainment was largely evidenced for both boys and girls across key stages. However, the progress of disadvantaged boys remains an area of focus at Key Stage 4.
- Attainment for BME pupils was mainly equal to or above attainment from the previous year in all key phases other than Key Stage 1, where attainment was equal to national averages. Progress for BME pupils had also improved at KS4. BME KS2 attainment in Maths was an area of focus.
- Overall the gap between SEN and Non SEN in Stockton was closing when compared to 2016/17.
Consideration was given to a report on Safeguarding Children Partnership Arrangements.

Approval was sought for the establishment of a Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees Safeguarding Children Partnership and that Hartlepool Borough Council would be the host of the new partnership.

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council and Hartlepool Borough Council already had effective partnership working through:

• The Children’s Hub, hosted by Hartlepool Borough Council
• Tees Valley Adoption Agency, hosted by Stockton
• Emergency Duty Team , hosted by Stockton

Due to this established working, and in particular the performance and quality of the multi-agency arrangements in the Children’s Hub it was agreed to explore a new safeguarding arrangement across North Tees.

A project group and partnership group were established at the beginning of 2018 with Hartlepool Borough Council, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees Clinical Commissioning Group and Cleveland Police. Work had been undertaken through these groups to develop a new model which was set out in the attached Business Case at Appendix 1 of the report.

The new model was based on an active learning approach with the focus being on front line practitioners being involved in shared learning.

The new model would consist of an executive partnership with membership from statutory partners. There would also be an engine room group that would identify key lines of enquiry for possible learning activity.

Themes would be identified through qualitative and quantitative data, local reviews, national reviews and audit practice across the system (single agency and multi-agency). Action learning would be commissioned to look at the themes identified which would involve front line practitioners. This model allowed practitioners to learn as they take part in the activity. This learning would also be shared with the executive group to ensure that the learning was disseminated across the system.

The business case set out the model however there was further work needed to develop some detail in the model. This work would take place within the groups already identified in paragraph 6 of the report.

It was proposed that the new model would be tested in January 2019 alongside the current arrangements. An ongoing review would take place to ensure that any learning was captured in the new arrangements. It was intended for the new model to go live formally in April 2019 with the new partnership arrangements being published in April 2019 (as required within the Children and Social Work Act 2017).
Consideration was given to a report on Customer Service Excellence.

Customer Service Excellence was a practical tool to support public services to drive customer-focused change and to evaluate success.

Customer Service Excellence accreditation was achieved through an objective external assessment of the Council’s Customer Service delivery measured against the Customer Service Excellence standard.

The Council achieved Customer Service Excellence accreditation for the first time in June 2010 and had been reaccredited twice, once in May 2013 and again in May 2016. Accreditation operated on a three year cycle with two interim annual surveillance visits with the current accreditation due to expire in May 2019.

The purpose of the report was to inform Members of the benefits and costs of Customer Service Excellence accreditation and to gain approval to seek accreditation for a further three years from May 2019. Appendix A of the report contained a summary of the Criteria and the Council’s position.

The annual Customer Service Awards recognised staff who exemplify Customer Service Excellence in practice and provided an opportunity to celebrate success across the Council’s workforce. Judging panels included the voice forum of the Catalyst group, Customer Service Excellence assessors and Stockton Council Officers who allocated one award in each of the following categories:-

• Pride of Stockton Award: To recognise individuals who the judging panel consider to have helped others and to show them they are valued, trusted and supported in their actions.
• Extra Mile Award To recognise individuals who have worked hard and are not afraid to try something new and have gone above and beyond the call of duty.
• Team Award To recognise a team within our organisation which has made the most effective use of the individuals within it.
• Shining Star Award: One member of staff is nominated by each Service Director and Xentrall Shared Services and is then voted for by staff.

One of the actions resulting from recommendations of the recent IIP accreditation was for the SBF Culture work stream to consider the development of a Customer Culture Statement, tied into the performance achieved through the Customer Service Excellence accreditation.
As a response to this action it was intended to review the current Customer Charter with the SBF Culture work stream.

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