Agenda and minutes

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No. Item


Apologies for Absence and Temporary Appointments


Apologies were submitted from Councillor Mike Fox-Davies (Councillor Anda Fitzgerald-O’Connor substituting) and Councillor Nick Carter.



Declarations of Interest - Guidance note on back page of the agenda


There were no declarations of interest.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 144 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 15 June 2017 and to receive information arising from them.


The minutes of the meeting held on 15 June 2017 were approved and signed as a correct record.


On item 29/17, Members noted that the Police and Crime Commissioner had not yet responded to questions raised at the discussion.



Thames Valley Police Annual Report pdf icon PDF 1 MB



A presentation from the Chief Constable, Thames Valley Police, will address performance against the 2016/17 delivery plan and introduce the 2017/18 plan.



Additional documents:


Chief Constable Habgood gave a presentation on the Thames Valley Police’s performance against the 2016/17 delivery plan and introducing the 2017/18 plan.  He highlighted that research is being undertaken into the reasons for increased numbers of emergency and non-emergency calls, although numbers have started to reduce recently.


Members raised a number of points which Mr Habgood responded to:


·         TVP has moved away from setting specific targets.  The value of setting a target to reduce crime by 2% for example was questionable, when in reality they want to reduce it as much as possible.  This view on targets is shared by the Police and Crime Commissioner.

·         Data is available on the TVP and PCC websites and is compared to other police forces.  Such figures have been presented at previous Performance Scrutiny Committee meetings.

·         The time that police officers spend helping with incidents out-of-area is relatively small and TVP benefits from such arrangements too and can learn from such experience.

·         Burglaries now tend to focus on jewellery and car keys.  The public are recommended to sign up for Thames Valley Alerts to get advice on crime prevention.

·         Cooperation with the fire service includes basing a neighbourhood team in the new station at Carterton.  Risk information is shared so that officers visiting sites can give advice on both security and fire risk.

·         The distribution of tazers among police officers has been reviewed recently and it was found that the current availability is about right.

·         Neighbourhood Action Groups that are working well are not under any threat.  However different models may work better in different localities, for example working with the Parish Council.

·         Staff are being trained to identify situations which may relate to mental health issues in order to refer immediately to appropriate services.

·         Reporting of hate crime is up as people are being encouraged to report it and reports from third parties are included in the figures.


The Chairman thanked the Chief Constable for his presentation and asked if he could, on his next visit to the Committee, share the results of research into predicting harm.



Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service Annual Report 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 3 MB



Report by Chief Fire Officer Simon Furlong: Director of Community Safety Services


Community Safety Services Annual Report 2016-17 is produced for the County Council, Councillors and members of the public to provide them with a review of the Service's performance over the last financial year. Community Safety Services set realistic but challenging performance measures every year, aligned to our 365alive vision.


The Committee is RECOMMENDED to approve the publication of this Annual Report 2016-17.


It was agreed to take agenda items 6 and 7 together.


The Chief Fire Officer introduced the Annual Report and the Draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) Action Plan 2018/19.  On the Annual Report Mr Furlong highlighted work with other services: police, ambulance and the highways team.  On the Action Plan, the service engages in a much wider consultation process than the minimum that is required.


Officers responded to Members’ questions as follows:


·         While seeking increased diversity in the service, the criteria for jobs has not changed.  Having more women or more people from the BME community helps the service to understand issues affecting all sectors of the community.

·         Fire service personnel are trained for co-responding but only respond at the request of the ambulance service.  The call-outs are charged to the South Central Ambulance Service at cost.

·         Road weight restrictions are enforced through a combination of technology and surveillance.  Locations are prioritised according to their importance in infrastructure, road safety issues, air quality and other factors.

·         It is not possible to predict where Gypsies and Travellers will go when they are moving sites.  However a weekly bulletin is available showing current locations.

·         The service has a legal requirement to support neighbouring services.  There is an agreement in the Thames Valley area that the quickest appliance will be sent to an incident.  Mr Furlong stated that this has never resulted in a problem for the Oxfordshire service.

·         The service has a dedicated mental health team supporting officers.  Staff are encouraged to talk about problems and duty officers actively check after an incident.


Members thanked the officers for their dedicated service and in particular in supporting residents of Oxford tower blocks following the Grenfell fire.



Draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) Action Plan 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 1 MB



Report by Director for Community Safety & Chief Fire Officer.


The following projects will be included within the fire authority’s CRMP for the fiscal year 2018/19:

o   Project 1: Establishing Community Safety Advocates or Wardens. (ACO Grahame Mitchell)

o   Project 2: To increase the diversity of the operational workforce in order to reflect the community that we serve. (David Heycock)

o   Project 3: To review resourcing of our fire protection service delivery and the effective enforcement of fire safety legislation in the County. (Richard Webb)

o   Project 4: Implement the outcomes of the 2017/18 review whole-time shift duty system (David Heycock)


Our medium term financial plan and supporting business strategies underpin the proposals within our CRMP action plan.


The Committee is RECOMMENDED to approve the publication and public consultation of this Community Risk Management Action Plan.



This item was taken with Agenda Item 6.



Safer Oxfordshire Partnership Community Safety Agreement 2016-17 pdf icon PDF 182 KB



Report by the Director of Community Safety and Chief Fire Officer.


Community safety legislation states that there is a requirement for an annual countywide Community Safety Agreement in two tier local authority areas. The agreement provides a joined-up approach to community safety service delivery in order to enable more effective and co-ordinated strategic planning across partner agencies and to ensure sustainable and lasting improvements in delivering outcomes.  It is supported by an annual strategic intelligence assessment which sets out the main trends relating to crime and anti-social behaviour over the previous year.


The Committee is RECOMMENDED to advise on areas of improvement for the partnership in delivering against its priorities for 2017/18.


Additional documents:


Councillor Kieron Mallon, Chairman of the Safer Oxfordshire Partnership, introduced and summarised the report.  With regard to a discussion on the previous agenda item, he noted that Thames Valley Police are organising training aimed at a consistent approach to unlawful encampments.


Councillor Mallon and council officers responded to the following issues raised by Members:


·         Due to changes in the recording of hate crime and violent crime, it will be a number of years before proper comparisons can be made to determine trends.

·         The Refresh Café on Cowley Road has been successful in helping offenders get work experience to improve their chances of getting employment.

·         The Community Safety Practitioner based in the Emergency Department at the Hospital Trust works with staff in other hospitals including Horton.

·         A pathway of floating and accommodation based support is out for tender with new services to be in place by 1 April 2018. Currently domestic violence refuges do not accept males over 15 years old.  A mixed model of accommodation based support including both traditional refuge provision and some dispersed units is being pursued for this and other reasons.

·         Asked if the £400,000 from the home office is one-off funding or more sustainable, Ms Carter stated that funding is secure for two years but they are looking to source funding beyond that.

·         Oxfordshire is still considered to be a low risk area in terms of extremism.  Intelligence suggests that the main concerns are balanced between right-wing and Islamist views.  It would appear that mental health issues play a big part.

·         Members and officers agreed that Prevent training could be improved and tailored for Oxfordshire.



Quarter 1 Business Management Report and Committee work programme pdf icon PDF 514 KB



This paper provides details of performance for quarter one 2017-18 for Performance Scrutiny Committee to consider before making comments to Cabinet in October. The report, and any comments made by the Committee, are required so that the Cabinet can monitor the performance of the council in key service areas and be assured that progress is being made to improve areas where performance is below the expected level.


The Committee is RECOMMENDED to:


a)   Note the performance reported, in particular items which members wish to schedule for future scrutiny, and make any comments necessary for escalation to Cabinet before 17 October;


b)   Note the ongoing work to improve business management and performance reporting.


Mr Dyson introduced and summarised the main points of the report.  The report showed a positive account of the council’s performance in the first three months of the year. Overall the number of red outcomes has decreased over the last 5 quarters from 6 to 2.  The priorities in the People Directorate have been refreshed and work was in progress to refresh those in the Resources and Communities directorates.  Mr Jones clarified that a green indication in the report means that the relevant officers are satisfied that the end of year target will be met; also that, while the data is for the period to the end of Quarter 1, the narrative in the report may reflect the situation half way through Q2.


Members noted areas that the Committee could look at further:

·         Staffing issues related to reablement and Delayed Transfers of Care – already on the work programme for the May 2018 meeting.

·         There has been a surge of planning applications creating a danger that important objections may be marginalised.  It was suggested that OCC could circulate executive summaries of major applications to district councils.

·         The question was raised could the caseload target of 75% (indicator 18) be made more challenging.  Officers responded that it was agreed with the Health and Wellbeing Board but a change during the year could be discussed.

·         The forecast for Home to School Transport spend will be refined at the start of the academic year.


The Chairman recommended that Members keep the quarterly reports in order to be able to make comparisons with future reports.


The Committee Work Programme circulated to Members at the meeting was agreed.