Agenda and minutes

Cabinet
Tuesday, 24th November, 2015 14:30

Venue: Committee Rooms 1/2/3, Civic Offices Angel Street Bridgend CF31 4WB. View directions

Contact: Andrew Rees  Senior Democratic Services Officer - Committees

Items
No. Item

788.

Apologies for Absence

To receive apologies for absence from Members / Officers for the reasons so stated.

Minutes:

None.

789.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest (if any) from Members/Officers in accordance with the provisions of the Members’ Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1 September 2008.

Minutes:

Councillor HJ Townsend declared a prejudicial interest in agenda item 11 – Appointment of Local Authority Governors as an applicant for a place on the governing body of Archbishop McGrath School and withdrew from the meeting during consideration of this item.      

790.

Approval of Minutes pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To receive for approval the Minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet of 27 October 2015.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:               That the minutes of the meeting of Cabinet of 27 October 2015                               be approved as a true and accurate record. 

791.

Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales Performance Evaluation Report 2014/15 pdf icon PDF 62 KB

To present to Cabinet, the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW) Performance Evaluation Report 2014/15 and request that Cabinet note the judgements reached locally about social care services in Bridgend. 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Social Services and Wellbeing introduced Anne Rowling of the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW) who had been the lead inspector in the Annual Review and Evaluation of Performance 2014-15 of the Council’s social services functions. 

 

The CSSIW Inspector informed Cabinet that the CSSIW had taken into account sources of evidence including the Annual Report of the Director of Social Services including evidence available from inspections, reviews and investigations in compiling the evaluation report.  The CSSIW had also taken into account areas of good practice and areas which had been identified for improvement and follow-up.  The CSSIW Inspector thanked the staff of the Directorate for their support and who had arranged for her to visit various facilities as part of the inspection.  She stated that she was very much aware of the challenges facing social services working in a climate of reduced financial resources which had been taken into account in the evaluation report.  The Inspector was also very much aware of the need for services to change in readiness for the implementation of the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014.  The remodelling programme of adult social care is ongoing and on target.  The Inspector outlined the areas of follow-up, progress and for improvement identified by the CSSIW in adult and children’s services and that it would be conducting thematic reviews of domiciliary care; services for people with learning disabilities and care planning for looked after children.  The Inspector commended the way in which staff had worked with the CSSIW throughout the inspection process and she looked forward to the positive relationships developed with the authority continuing. 

 

The Leader stated that the Minister was very proud of the new legislation but its implementation would come at a cost although it would be embraced by the Council.  He commended staff for the way in which they had accommodated the CSSIW during the inspection and that Cabinet had strengthened its support for social services with two portfolios having responsibility for social services functions.    

 

The Cabinet Member Adult Social Care and Health and Wellbeing commented that he looked forward to welcoming the CSSIW back to the authority when it would be conducting the thematic reviews it had identified.  He recognised that pressures in all areas affecting social services are increasing and commended staff on being extremely supportive of service users.  The Cabinet Member Childrens Services and Equalities commented that the CSSIW inspection report is an accurate reflection of where the Council is at and that work is ongoing on the areas identified by the CSSIW for improvement.  She stated that Looked After Children numbers are down to 372 and work was being undertaken through the hubs to safely reduce those numbers. 

 

The Deputy Leader commented on the positive nature of the report but there was also much work which needed to be done.  He questioned the progress being made with bringing district nursing services in to the integrated referral management centre and increase in the number of referrals.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 791.

792.

Regional Economic Development Cardiff Capital Region City Deals pdf icon PDF 99 KB

To update Cabinet on the progress of the ten South East Wales local authorities, in partnership with the Welsh Government, in developing and securing a City Deal with the UK Government. 

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented an update on the progress of the ten South East Wales local authorities in partnership with the Welsh Government in developing and securing a City Deal with the UK Government.  He stated that the report should have been submitted in his name and not that of the Corporate Director Communities and deleted reference in the report to Appendix 1, the contents of which had been encapsulated within the report.  He also drew Cabinet’s attention to the financial implications in the report wherein the sum for the fund scenario should have been £1.28 billion and not £1.28 million. 

 

The Chief Executive reported that Cabinet at its meeting on 14 July 2015 authorised participation in discussions to take forward the Capital City Region concept and the Great Western Cities initiative including the contribution of up to £47k towards the participation of a City Deal bid for Cardiff and South East Wales.  It also supported the preparation of a regional growth plan, based on an update to the South East Wales Strategic Framework. 

 

He reported that the ten local authorities are at the early stage of negotiating a Cardiff Capital Region City Deal with the UK and Welsh Governments, comparable to the Glasgow City Region.  He stated that a £1.28 billion submission had been presented to the UK Treasury, supported by the First Minister for the development of a City Deal.  The submission was based on the need to adopt a new approach to improving economic outcomes in South East Wales to attract higher levels of investment to address productivity per capita in Wales being the lowest in the UK.  He stated that a City Deal and Infrastructure Fund could provide a mechanism to unlock growth potential through targeted investment.  The Cardiff Capital Region had set itself the target of 5% per annum in Gross Value Added over an initial 10 year programme which equated to net increases of £200m per annum. 

 

The Chief Executive reported that the basis of the City Deal with the Treasury would focus on delivering ambitious economic growth targeted on Connectivity; Digital; Innovation; Skills and Business Support.  In order to deliver the above the Cardiff Capital Region will seek new powers and fiscal flexibilities.  He stated that a joint letter had been submitted by the ten South East Wales local authorities supported by the First Minister to HM Treasury proposing a £1.28 billion fund over ten years with contributions of £580m from the Welsh Government; £120m from the 10 local authorities and £580m from the UK Government. 

 

The Chief Executive informed Cabinet that the City Deal concept is predicated on a Payment by Results (PbR) approach and local authorities borrowing on behalf of the UK Government the funding required for it to invest £580m.  Under this scenario the Welsh Government would also provide a £580m contribution to the Fund in the form of additional capital investment or capital grant and not predicated on a PbR approach.  The model also assumed that the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 792.

793.

Caerau Housing Renewal Area: Group Repair Programme 2015/17 pdf icon PDF 56 KB

To seek the approval of Cabinet for the future Group Repair Programme for 2015/2017.

 

Minutes:

The Chief Executive sought approval of the future Group Repair Programme for 2015/17. 

 

He reported that the Caerau Ward had been declared a Housing Renewal Area in September 2006 for a lifespan of 10 years and that over the past 9 years £6,148,000 Specific Capital Grant investment from the Welsh Government had been spent improving properties and undertaking various environmental schemes within the Ward.  He stated that a block of properties in Greenfield Terrace was identified as being eligible for Group Repair Scheme works at the same time as Pleasant View, however due to the construction of the new Caerau Primary School at the time it was not deemed technically feasible to commence at the same time as it would have caused an obstruction to the main access route to the new school site.  He informed Cabinet that there was sufficient funding within the programme to complete the works at Greenfield Terrace.

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet approved the inclusion of Greenfield Terrace on                                 the Group Repair Programme for 2015/17. 

794.

Budget Monitoring Quarter 2 2015-16 pdf icon PDF 124 KB

To provide Cabinet with an update on the Council’s financial position as at 30th September 2015.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Resources reported on an update on the Council’s financial position as at 30 September 2015.  She stated that there was an overall projected under spend of £1.346m which comprised under spends of £571k on Directorates and £775k on corporate budgets.  The budget had been set on the basis of budget reduction requirements across the Council’s budget of £11.225m.  The Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) approved by Council in February 2015 and updated in July 2015 identified the need to develop recurrent budget reduction proposals of around £49.6m over the next four years.  She stated that consideration would be given at year end to requests from Directors to carry forward any planned Directorate underspends for specific purposes into the following year. 

 

The Corporate Director Resources also reported on the monitoring of budget reduction proposals in that 83% of the proposals are green and 17% are either amber or red.  Directors continue to work to deliver their proposals or would have to find alternative proposals. 

 

The Corporate Director Resources reported on the monitoring of the capital programme for 2015-16 which totalled £40.252m of which there was a projected under spend of £70k against budget and slippage against the revised budget of £1.659m to be carried forward into 2016-17.  This mainly affected the Vibrant and Viable Places scheme and the provision of temporary accommodation at Tondu Primary.  She stated that at this point in the financial year and following discussions with Directorates that projects will be in line with the revised budget.  However this was dependent on any inclement weather which may be experienced which may place additional pressure on project timescales. 

 

The Corporate Director Resources also reported that the Council is required to maintain adequate financial reserves to meet its needs.  She stated that Directorates in the first half of 2015-16 had drawn down £236k of funding from their Directorate specific earmarked reserves and £1.793m from Corporate Reserves including the Major Claims Reserve.

 

The Cabinet Member Resources informed Cabinet that it was pleasing to note that in a challenging financial year with £11m budget reductions having to be made, Directorates are doing their utmost to achieve those reductions and balance their budgets.  He stated that 83% of the budget reductions are on target to be achieved and Directorates are on target to generate a net under spend of £500k, with a further £700k generated from corporate budgets. 

 

The Cabinet Member Resources also informed Cabinet that those under spends will be used to support specific Directorate corporate risks and pressures in the current and forthcoming financial year, in which the Council is expected to have to make a further £13m of budget reductions.  He stated that budgets would continue to be monitored closely to assess how best to maximise the under spend to reduce future years running costs either by repayment of debt, or investing in additional capital works through the capital programme. 

 

The Cabinet Member Resources stated that details of the Local Government Settlement for 2016-17 were awaited and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 794.

795.

Regional Strategic Framework For South East Wales and Draft European Project Prospectus pdf icon PDF 91 KB

To provide an update on the Regional Strategic Framework for south-east Wales and project prospectus for the 2014 – 2020 European funding programmes.

 

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Communities reported on an update on the Regional Strategic Framework for South East Wales and project prospectus for the 2014-15 European funding programmes.  He stated that the Regional Strategic Framework set out a vision for economic development in South East Wales.  The regional project prospectus outlined a series of collaborative proposals for economic development activity with a view to seeking funding support from the next round of European programmes 2014-2020.  This had been developed by each of the ten local authorities in South East Wales under the direction of the South East Wales Directors of Environment and Regeneration (SEWDER).  He stated that for this programming period, 2014-2020, around £1.7 billion of EU grant aid was available to the West Wales and Valleys area for business support, infrastructure, low-carbon economy and labour market interventions. 

 

He reported that the Regional Strategic Framework features agreed priorities to complement and support Welsh Government policies and programmes in relation to tackling poverty, developing skills, implementing physical regeneration initiatives, and securing business development, affordable housing, efficient and accessible transport, and excellent connectivity in its widest sense.  He stated that since 2003, SEWDER had sought to develop the strategic priorities within the Regional Strategic Framework.  It had also been considering how the Regional Strategic Framework could influence the direction and priorities of other major regional initiatives, including the Cardiff City Region and City Deal.  He stated that Cabinet at its meeting on 14 July 2015 had endorsed the preparation of a regional growth plan, based on an update of the South-East Wales Regional Framework, to contribute to the current Cardiff Capital Region/City Deal initiatives.  Based on this endorsement by the 10 local authorities, the Welsh Local Government Association had worked with the Wales European Funding Office to embed the strategic priorities of the Regional Strategic Framework into the future European programmes 2014-2020 by linking them to the key economic opportunities identified in the South East Wales regional chapter of WEFOs Economic Prioritisation Framework.  

 

The Corporate Director Communities reported that with regard to the development of the European project prospectus, regional proposals being taken forward for European funding support as a result of the work of the SEWDER task groups were summarised.  Overall, the European project prospectus has been progressed in part with mixed outcomes.  He stated that he led a cross-Directorate working group which is facilitated by the Regeneration Funding Team who will continue to co-ordinate the development and delivery of European-funded projects to ensure that they build on the successful delivery of current regeneration programmes and link to strategic priorities at both a regional and local level.

  

The Cabinet Member Regeneration and Economic Development in commending the report thanked the officers for being at the forefront of the initiatives.  The Cabinet Member Communities commented on the importance of the Council working in partnership with the South East Wales local authorities in the region.

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet:

 

(1)  Endorsed the progress in developing the Regional Strategic Framework for South-East Wales and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 795.

796.

Proposed Introduction of a Road Works Permit Scheme pdf icon PDF 75 KB

To propose changes to the current method of street work management from its current noticing method to that of a permit scheme and to seek authorisation from Cabinet to commence consultation on this proposal and subject to that consultation seek authorisation from Welsh Assembly Government to authorise such a scheme within Bridgend County Borough.

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Communities reported on proposed changes to the current method of street work management from its current noticing method to that of a permit scheme.  He also sought to commence consultation on this proposal and subject to that consultation seek authorisation from Welsh Assembly Government to authorise such a scheme within Bridgend County Borough. 

 

The Corporate Director Communities informed Cabinet that the authority has a statutory duty to co-ordinate works in the highway and manage the highway network effectively in accordance with the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 and the Traffic Management Act 2004.  He stated that the Traffic Management Act Network Management duty requires local authorities through their Network Management Plan and the Traffic Manager to proactively minimise traffic congestion.  Monitoring street works activities relies heavily on the resources being available to inspect works on the highway and the provision of this resource without the support of a Permit Scheme will be unsustainable given the level of savings the highways budget will have to deliver in line with the Medium Term Financial Strategy.  Without this support the inevitable result will be uncontrolled works being carried out on the highway network of Bridgend with increasing frequency. With the potential for substandard works to be missed and resulting accidents, claims and reactive repair costs having to be borne by the Authority. 

 

The Corporate Director Communities reported that the Traffic Management Act includes provision for Permit schemes to enhance the management and coordination of network activities.  The permit scheme will seek parity between the way it deals with all works promoters with both Utility companies and the Highway authority needing to apply for a permit to occupy the road.  The scheme is aimed to be self-financing with the charges to be determined carefully calculated as profits as profits are not permitted under theTraffic Management Act 2004.  He stated that the delivery of a successful Permit Scheme will be the subject of stakeholder consultation to be entered into with organisations such as the statutory undertakers, the emergency services, the Passenger Transport Authority and other organisations that the authority deem appropriate to include in the consultation process.  The consultation will invite responses from the participant organisations as to elements such as the conditions attached to permits granted within the proposed scheme.

 

The Cabinet Member Communities welcomed this innovative approach to keeping the highway network moving and he looked forward to seeing the consultation responses. 

 

      RESOLVED:               That Cabinet:

 

(1)  approved the advancement of the scheme to stakeholder engagement;

 

(2)  that following the stakeholder consultation a further report is presented to Cabinet prior to the business case being submitted to the Welsh Government for approval.

       

           

797.

Draft Local Housing Strategy 2016-2018 pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To seek Cabinet approval to begin formal consultation on the draft Local Housing Strategy 2016-2018.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Communities sought approval to commence formal consultation on the draft Local Housing Strategy 2016-2018. 

 

He reported that the purpose of the strategy is to set out a clear vision for housing within the County Borough and the key priorities through which it is to be delivered.  He stated that the strategy must be as responsive as possible to the challenges ahead, enabling the key housing objectives to be delivered in light of political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental influences on the housing sector in the County Borough. 

 

The Corporate Director Communities highlighted the proposed vision for the County Borough which would be delivered through five proposed housing priorities to allow resources and work streams to be targeted and to define how the Council will work with partners in the public, private and voluntary sector.  He informed Cabinet that consultation on the strategy will take place with key stakeholders, namely, Registered Social Landlords, housing developers, housing and other third sector / voluntary groups and other statutory organisations.  It was also proposed to consult with the public through a questionnaire which will be publicised via a press release on the Council web pages and on the Bridgend Housing Options web pages.  Hard copies of the Strategy and the questionnaire will be provided in libraries and Council Offices. 

 

The Cabinet Member Childrens Social Services and Equalities requested that consideration be given to including in the strategy the work being done with Looked After Children leavers.  The Cabinet Member Regeneration and Economic Development requested that consultation take place with private landlords.              

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet: 

 

1.   Noted the additional requirements placed on the Authority in relation to its strategic housing function, as a result of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014, and the funding pressures arising from this in future years;

2.   Approved that formal consultation takes place on the draft Local Housing Strategy;

3.   Noted that a further report would be presented to Cabinet   following the consultation exercise; 

4.   That the Corporate Director Communities include in the draft      Local Housing Strategy the work being undertaken with                 Looked After Children leavers and consultation on the draft             Local Housing Strategy take place with private landlords.           

798.

Appointment of Local Authority Governors pdf icon PDF 83 KB

To seek approval from Cabinet for the appointment of Local Authority governors to the school governing bodies listed.

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation sought approval from Cabinet for the appointment of Local Authority governors to the school governing bodies listed. 

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet approved the appointments listed in paragraphs                                  4.1 and 4.2 of the report. 

799.

Inspire 2 Achieve and Inspire 2 Work - A European Funded Operation Between Regional Partners - Blaenau Gwent CBC (Lead Beneficiary) and Bridgend CBC (Joint Beneficiary pdf icon PDF 113 KB

To seek approval from Cabinet to deliver a joint regional project with Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council funded through the European Social Fund (ESF) under Priority 3 – Youth Employment and Attainment.

 

Minutes:

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation sought approval to deliver a joint regional project with Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council funded through the European Social Fund (ESF) under Priority 3 – Youth Employment and Attainment. 

 

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation reported there are 2 strands to the proposal, namely Inspire 2 Achieve and Inspire 2 Work.  Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council is the Lead Beneficiary for both strands of the operation; however, due to the nature of the work being developed under each proposal, the joint beneficiaries differ.  She stated that both Inspire operations have been developed to align with the work already implemented within each authority under the Welsh Government Youth Engagement and Progression Framework (YE&PF), which supports the identification, tracking and mapping of services and outcomes for young people from education into employment.  This alignment will ensure a consistent approach when supporting young people at risk of becoming Not in Employment Education or Training (NEET).  

 

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation reported that the proposal for Inspire 2 Achieve (I2A) is to seek a three year operation, to contribute to ESF Priority 3 Youth Employment and Attainment.  The specific objective is to reduce the number of young people aged 11- 24 at risk of becoming Not in Employment Education or Training (NEET).  Inspire 2 Achieve is designed to identify and address the needs of those most at risk of disengagement, and support them to reintegrate into mainstream education provision or alternative curriculum models.  The operation will target early intervention for those most at risk across the 11 – 24 year old age range and aim to work with a total of 1110 participants.  She stated that the proposal is for as combined team of 5 full time staff to be employed solely through ESF grant funding. 

 

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation reported that the proposal for Inspire 2 Work (I2W) is to seek a three year operation, to contribute to ESF Priority 3 Youth Employment and Attainment.  The specific objective is to reduce the number of 16 – 24 year olds who are NEET.  I2W is designed to identify and address the needs of NEET 16 -24 year olds and bring about their sustainable integration into the labour market, thereby contributing to a reduction in youth unemployment.  Over the course of the operation, the proposal is to work with a total of 375 participants.  She stated that the proposal is for as combined team of 5 full time staff to be employed solely through ESF grant funding. 

 

The Corporate Director Education and Transformation reported that project costs for the additional staff would be fully funded through the European Social Fund; however there would also be contributions made to the salaries of a number of existing staff involved with the management of the two operations and associated staff, for the duration of the project. 

 

The Deputy Leader in commending the proposal stated that it would target resources towards assisting people in vulnerable groups.  The cabinet  ...  view the full minutes text for item 799.

800.

Webcasting of Council Meetings pdf icon PDF 70 KB

To update Cabinet regarding the progress that has been made in respect of the implementation of webcasting for meetings of Cabinet, Council and its Committees.

 

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services reported on progress which had been made on the implementation of the webcasting of meetings of Cabinet, Council and its Committees.  He stated that Council at its meeting on 30 April 2014 had approved the recording and broadcasting of meetings and approved initial proposals to take forward the webcasting of meetings. 

 

The Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services reported that quotes were obtained to provide 150 hours of webcasts over a 3 year period, with quotes assessed on a 60% quality and 40% cost basis.  He stated that a supplier was awarded the contract and installation of the webcasting control system took place in October 2015.  He informed Cabinet that in order to satisfy the requirements of the Welsh Language Standards, simultaneous translation of meetings was expected to be implemented from 30 March 2016.  It was planned to undertake a technical test of the webcasting service in December 2015 following which it was proposed to undertake further webcasts of formal meetings from January 2016.  He outlined a schedule of formal meetings to be webcast before 30 March 2016 and given the higher level of public interest in meetings of the Development Control Committee it was proposed to webcast 2 meetings of this Committee during this period.  He stated that additional webcasting refresher training would be provided to Members and officers in January 2016. 

 

The Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services informed Cabinet that a subsequent report will be presented to Council with proposals for webcasting following the implementation of the updated Welsh Language Standards.     

 

The Cabinet Member Resources in commending the proposal to webcast meetings stated that providing simultaneous translation of meetings would have to be funded at a time of diminishing financial resources. 

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet considered the content of the report and                                             approved the implementation of webcasting for meetings of                            Cabinet.    

 

            

 

 

 

 

801.

Information Reports pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To inform Cabinet of the Information Reports and minutes of Joint Committees which have been published since its last scheduled meeting.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Executive Legal and Regulatory Services presented a report, the purpose of which was to inform Cabinet of the Information Reports and minutes of Joint Committees which have been published since the last meeting.

 

RESOLVED:               That Cabinet acknowledged the publication of the documents listed in the report:-

 

                                    Title                                                     Date Published

 

                                   Half-Year Treasury Management       18 November 2015

                                    Report 2015-16                                  

                                     

                                   Corneli Primary School Progress       18 November 2015

                                    

                                   LA Support for Head teacher

                                    Appointments                                      18 November 2015

                                   

                                    Progress Report on the Western        18 November 2015

                                    Bay Intervention Service

 

                                   Coychurch Crematorium Joint            18 November 2015

                                    Committee Minutes of 10 June 2015      

 

                                    Catalogue Supplies Joint                    18 November 2015

                                    Committee Minutes of 25 June 2015

 

The Deputy Leader informed Cabinet that Corneli Primary School remained subject to Estyn monitoring, however a recently retired head teacher will be supporting the school.    

 

802.

Urgent Items

To consider any items of business that by reason of special circumstances the chairperson is of the opinion should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency in accordance with paragraph 2.4 (e) of the Cabinet Procedure Rules within the Constitution.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.