Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

Executive Scrutiny Committee Minutes

Date:
Tuesday, 17th November, 2009
Time:
09.30 a.m.
Place:
Lecture Theatre, Stockton Central Library, Church Road, Stockton-on-Tees, TS18 1TU
 
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Present:
Cllr Robert Gibson (Chairman), Cllr Mrs Ann Cains, Cllr Dick Cains, Cllr Ken Dixon, , Cllr David Harrington, Cllr Miss Tina Large, Cllr Colin Leckonby, Cllr Mrs Jean O'Donnell, Cllr Maurice Perry, Cllr Mrs Maureen Rigg, Cllr Mick Stoker, Cllr Bill Woodhead.
Officers:
Graham Birtle, Fiona Shayler, Judith Trainer, Margaret Waggott (LD). Paul Diggins, Jamie McCann (DNS); Tony Beckwith (CESC).
Apologies for absence:
were submitted on behalf of Cllr Cherrett, Cllr Smith, Cllr Trainer, Paul Connaughton, Mr Frank, Judith Robson.
Item Description Decision
Public
EXC
36/09
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
None
EXC
37/09
MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 20TH OCTOBER 2009
The minutes of the meeting held on 20th October were agreed as a correct record.
EXC
38/09
EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENT AND TRANSFORMATION (EIT) - COMMERCIAL TRADING SERVICES
RESOLVED that the update on progress being made on the EIT Review of Commercial Trading Services, and the emerging findings from this review be noted.
EXC
39/09
EIT REVIEW OF COMMUNICATION, CONSULTATION AND ENGAGEMENT
RESOLVED that the final report be noted and forwarded to Cabinet for endorsement.
EXC
40/09
EIT REVIEW OF COMMISSIONING AND PROVISION OF PUBLIC AND COMMUNITY TRANSPORT
RESOLVED that the final report be noted and forwarded to Cabinet for endorsement.
EXC
41/09
ENVIRONMENT SELECT COMMITTEE - FINAL REPORT OF CARBON MANAGEMENT
RESOLVED that the final report be noted and forwarded to Cabinet for endorsement.
EXC
42/09
ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE - SECOND REVIEW TOPIC
 
EXC
43/09
SCRUTINY OF PARTNERSHIPS AND THE LAA
RESOLVED that the report be noted and further investigations take place.
EXC
44/09
FORWARD PLAN
RESOLVED that the forward plan be noted.
EXC
45/09
REPORT ON CHAIRS UPDATES
RESOLVED that the Chairs updates be noted.

Preamble

ItemPreamble
EXC
38/09
Members were provided with a report providing an update on progress being made on the EIT Review of Commercial Trading Services, and the emerging findings from this review.

The Executive Scrutiny Select Committee noted the detailed baseline and initial challenge information at its meeting on 22nd September 2009.

The overall aim of the EIT review was to investigate options for the future strategy and business development of the Commercial Trading Services. This would help to ensure that these services were commercially focused and at least maintain their market share and profitability during the economic downturn and were fully prepared to take advantage of the opportunities for appropriate growth afforded by economic recovery. Services included were:

Heating, ventilation and electrical works
Civic catering
Fleet management
Vehicle maintenance
Highway schemes and improvements
Commercial trade waste collections

An update on the progress being made on the EIT Review of Commercial Trading Services, to the end of October 2009 was provided.

Detailed analysis had been undertaken on a number of different strands of work. A number of options had been developed, which were currently being appraised for their financial benefits to the Council, as well as the impact on the service provided.

Amongst the options being considered were:

- Reduction in commercial waste collections from two rounds to one (estimated savings 40k per annum);

- Use of re-useable waste sacks rather than disposable (estimated savings 50k per annum)

- Dedicated procurement/contracts officer to generate savings through improved buying of materials and negotiation of contracts.
EXC
39/09
Members were provided with the final report for the Efficiency Improvement and Transformation (EIT) - Commercial Trading Services. Councillor Stoker presented the final report and held discussion with Members on the recommendations.
EXC
40/09
Members were provided with the final report following the Efficiency Improvement and Transformation review of Communication, Consultation and Engagement. Councillor Perry highlighted the report and answered Members queries.
EXC
41/09
Members were provided with the final report of Carbon Management. Councillor Mrs Rigg highlighted the report and detailed each recommendation.
EXC
42/09
This item would be deferred until the next meeting.
EXC
43/09
The report provided a summary of new legislation which strengthens scrutiny powers to enable Councils to hold LSPs and their partners to account for local action and public spending. The report suggested that it was timely to review the Council's scrutiny arrangements to ensure that our scrutiny structures were fit for purpose and our scrutiny activity focused on providing effective and robust partnership scrutiny which fully exploited the new scrutiny powers.

The Executive Scrutiny Committee were asked to consider how the Council's scrutiny function could respond to the new legislative developments prior to consultation with the Local Public Service Board on how best to involve partners in discussions on developing working arrangements.

In taking this issue forward, it was proposed to seek initial views on this issue from the Local Public Service Board (where there was representation from key partners) and seek suggestions on how best to develop working arrangements.

The level and approach of future involvement of Select Committees in the Council's EIT Programme would need to be reviewed alongside the development of partnership scrutiny to ensure that the scrutiny work programme was achievable and could be adequately resourced.
EXC
44/09
Members were provided with the forward plan for 1st November 2009 to 28th February 2010.
EXC
45/09
Members were provided with an update from each of the Select Committees.

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