Agenda and minutes

Venue: County Hall, Oxford, OX11ND

Contact: Sue Whitehead  Tel: (01865) 810262; E-Mail:  sue.whitehead@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

121/09

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for lateness were submitted from Councillor Louise Chapman who was on Council business.

122/09

Minutes pdf icon PDF 106 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 24 November 2009 (CA3) and to receive for information any matters arising therefrom.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 24 November 2009 were approved and signed, subject to the following correction:

 

Page 1 and Minute Nos 113/09 and 117/09 – The name of the speaker to be corrected to read Councillor Patrick rather than Councillor Altaf-Khan.

123/09

Questions from County Councillors

Any county councillor may, by giving notice to the Proper Officer by 9 am on the working day before the meeting, ask a question on any matter in respect of the Cabinet’s delegated powers.

 

The number of questions which may be asked by any councillor at any one meeting is limited to two (or one question with notice and a supplementary question at the meeting) and the time for questions will be limited to 30 minutes in total. As with questions at Council, any questions which remain unanswered at the end of this item will receive a written response.

 

Questions submitted prior to the agenda being despatched are shown below and will be the subject of a response from the appropriate Cabinet Member or such other councillor or officer as is determined by the Cabinet Member, and shall not be the subject of further debate at this meeting. Questions received after the despatch of the agenda, but before the deadline, will be shown on the Schedule of Addenda circulated at the meeting, together with any written response which is available at that time.

Minutes:

Councillor John Sanders had given notice of the following question to the Cabinet Member for Children, Young people & Families

 

“1.  Is it the intention of the Cabinet to propose to Council that funding for the County Youth Service be cut in the next financial year?”

 

Councillor Mitchell (in the absence of Councillor Chapman:

 

Cabinet proposals to Council for the 2010/11 budget will be published on 8 January 2010.

 

Supplementary question:

 

Councillor Sanders referred to concern that in his area good work being undertaken by youth workers to combat gang related crimes such as drugs, guns and knives could be put at risk of restriction or privatisation. He sought an assurance that the problems of youths, particularly in deprived areas would be looked at carefully?

 

Councillor Mitchell replied that the Cabinet Member for Children, Young People & Families was detained on Council business so was not here to respond in person. It was not possible to give assurances about the outcomes of the service and resource planning process.  In noting that youth work was not part of the Council’s statutory duty, he would share concerns if the process resulted in the loss of provision for young people.

 

Councillor Zoe Patrick had given notice of the following question to the Deputy Leader:

 

“2   When will the Vale County Councillors be given their Locality briefing?  This event has now been cancelled on two occasions without any further attempt to make a new date.”

 

Councillor Robertson:

 

The Senior Democracy Officer in Democratic Services has been asked by the Chief Executive to re-arrange the locality briefings for the Vale and West as both had to be cancelled a second time.  She will be contacting Group Leaders and the relevant lead officers to find suitable dates for the New Year, taking account of other councillor events due to take place.

 

Councillor Zoe Patrick had given notice of the following question to the Leader:

 

“3. The County Council's Audit Commission report was published last week and I have read the Leader's comments regarding making improvements.  However, according to the new OnePlace website Oxfordshire has no less than 70 areas in which the indicators are described as 'deteriorating' including adult social care, safeguarding children, educational achievement , NEETs etc. (far too many to list here but I am assuming he is fully aware of them all).  When is he going to address this - or is he content to take this council's rating down from 3 star to 2?”

 

 

Councillor Mitchell:

 

I must confess that I have taken little notice of the discredited CAA process and look forward to its disappearance shortly after the General Election next year.  I have not accessed the One Place web site, having been rather more pre-occupied with the future of this council in terms of its finances than its past.  I do understand that officers who have attempted to access the site have been unable to do so.

 

I will respond to the Leader of the Opposition's question although I do wonder whether  ...  view the full minutes text for item 123/09

124/09

Petitions and Public Address

Minutes:

The following requests to address the meeting had been agreed:

 

Speaker

Item

Councillor Jean Fooks

9. Performance Management: 2nd Quarter Progress Report Against Priorities and Targets.

 

10. Establishment Review – December 2009

 

125/09

Financial Monitoring - December 2009 pdf icon PDF 128 KB

Cabinet Member: Leader

Forward Plan Ref: 2009/110

Contact: Kathy Wilcox, Principal Financial Manager (01865 323981)

 

Report by: Assistant Chief Executive & Chief Finance Office

 

This is the seventh financial monitoring report for the 2009/10 financial year and covers the period up to the end of October 2009 for both revenue, balances, reserves and capital. 

 

The report sets out explanations where the forecast revenue outturn is significantly different from the budget along with proposals to recover the position where appropriate.

 

The in – year Directorate forecast is an overspend of £3.238m.

 

The current position for general balances is set out in Annex 5 and shows an unchanged forecast of £14.088m.  After taking into account the forecast Directorate overspend, the consolidated revenue balances forecast is £10.850m.

 

The report also includes Capital monitoring against the programme agreed last month.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to:

 

(a)               note the report;

 

(b)              note the use of £0.472m one – off funding from the Highways Agency to offset the overspend in Transport (paragraph 42);

 

(c)               approve the virements as set out in Annex 2a;

 

(d)              agree the proposed changes to Adult Learning charges from January 2010 (paragraph 59).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet received the seventh financial monitoring report for the 2009/10 financial year covering the period up to the end of September 2009 for revenue, balances, reserves and capital. 

 

The in – year Directorate forecast was an overspend of £3.238m.

 

The current position for general balances showed an unchanged forecast of £14.088m and after taking into account the forecast Directorate overspend, the consolidated revenue balances forecast was £10.850m.

 

The report also included Capital monitoring against the programme agreed last month.

 

Officers drew attention to the supplementary report and additional recommendation contained in the addenda.

 

The Leader highlighted areas where pressures had been identified and in particular out of County placements in Children’s, Young People & Families, the pooled budget figures for Social & Community Services and ICT services. Cabinet noted the action being taken as detailed by individual Cabinet Members and the Chief Executive..

 

RESOLVED:                        to:

 

(a)               note the report;

 

(b)               note the use of £0.472m one – off funding from the Highways Agency to offset the overspend in Transport (paragraph 42);

 

(c)               approve the virements as set out in Annex 2a;

 

(d)               agree the proposed changes to Adult Learning charges from January 2010 (paragraph 59); and

 

(e)       approve a one off payment of £1,887,000 for the early repayment of SAP and associated licences to be funded through prudential borrowing.

126/09

Service & Resource Planning Report for 2010/11 - 2014/15 pdf icon PDF 147 KB

Cabinet Member: Leader

Forward Plan Ref:  2009/136

Contact: Lorna Baxter, Assistant Head of Finance (01865 323971)

 

Report by: Chief Executive, Assistant Chief Executive (Strategy) and Assistant Chief Executive & Chief Finance Office

 

This is one in a series of reports on the Service and Resource Planning process for 2010/11 to 2014/15, providing councillors with information on budget issues for 2010/11 and the medium term. It follows on from reports to Cabinet on 16 September and to Strategy & Partnerships Scrutiny Committee on 25 November 2009.  The report sets out the review of charges, provides an update on the Service and Resource Planning process and includes the Directorate Business Improvement & Efficiency Strategies. The strategies set out the identified pressures and priorities over the medium term and the proposals for savings.

 

The Council is required under the Local Government Finance Act 1992 to set a budget requirement for the authority and an amount of Council Tax.  This report contains information to be considered in leading to the budget requirement and Council Tax being agreed in February 2010.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to:

 

(a)               note the report;

 

(b)              note those charges prescribed by legislation;

 

(c)               approve those charges where there is local discretion as set out in Annex 4; and

 

(d)              approve those charges for which an increase will commence before April 2010.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered one in a series of reports on the Service and Resource Planning process for 2010/11 to 2014/15, providing information on budget issues for 2010/11 and the medium term. The report set out the review of charges, provided an update on the Service and Resource Planning process and included the Directorate Business Improvement & Efficiency Strategies. The strategies set out the identified pressures and priorities over the medium term and the proposals for savings.

 

Cabinet also considered a supplementary report providing further information relevant to the financial position of the Council that had become available since the publication of the main report.

 

The Leader highlighted the implications of the Government’s pledge on personal care at home which he felt should be fully funded by Government. Referring to the level of council tax he stated that the figure reached was a balance between the need to maintain and improve services and to constrain the burden on council tax payers.

 

RESOLVED:                        to:

 

(a)               note the report;

 

(b)               note those charges prescribed by legislation;

 

(c)               approve those charges where there is local discretion as set out in Annex 4; and

 

(d)               approve those charges for which an increase will commence before April 2010.

 

127/09

Oxfordshire Children and Young People's Plan 2010-13 pdf icon PDF 55 KB

Cabinet Members: Children, Young People & Families and Schools Improvement

Forward Plan Ref: 2009/172

 

Contact: Sian Rodway, Lead Officer, Performance (01865 815142)/Paula Tansley,Interim Head of Commissioning Performance & Quality Assurance (01865 815212)

 

Report by: Director for Children, Young People & Families

 

The report focuses on Oxfordshire's proposed second Children and Young People's Plan. It outlines the outcome of the formal consultation and the priorities, aims and objectives of the plan.  The full plan is attached to the report. 

 

Cabinet are asked to approve the plan, alongside all other partners in advance of the final approval by the Oxfordshire Children and Young People's Trust at its meeting in January. 

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to approve the Children and Young People’s Plan, subject to any final editorial adjustments by the Oxfordshire Children and Young People’s Trust Board in consultation with the Director for Children, Young People & Families.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report on the Oxfordshire's proposed second Children and Young People's Plan. It outlined the outcome of the formal consultation and the priorities, aims and objectives of the plan.  The full plan was attached to the report. 

 

During discussion Cabinet noted the consultation that had taken place on the plan, particularly with users and stressed that the plan was a partnership document. It was hoped that it would lead to even more joined up working including joint resourcing and the opportunity that provided for savings.

 

RESOLVED:             to recommend to Council to approve the Children and Young People’s Plan, subject to any final editorial adjustments by the Oxfordshire Children and Young People’s Trust Board in consultation with the Director for Children, Young People & Families.

 

128/09

Performance Management: 2nd Quarter Progress Report Against Priorities and Targets pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Cabinet Members: Leader & Deputy Leader

Forward Plan Ref: 2009/133

Contact: Alexandra Bailey, Corporate Performance and Review Manager (01865 816384)

 

Report by: County Council Management Team

 

The report shows the council's performance in the four key areas of: customer, projects, finance, and people. Progress against targets is shown by directorate, including a summary of what is going well, what needs to develop, and what requires attention. This is the performance report for Quarter 2, 2009/2010.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to note this report.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report showing the council's performance for Quarter 2, 2009/10 in the four key areas of: customer, projects, finance, and people. Progress against targets was shown by directorate, including a summary of what was going well, what needed to develop, and what required attention.

 

Councillor Fooks expressed disappointment that some of the same issues appeared in each report such as the restructuring of the Children’s, Young People & Families Directorate. She expressed concern over a number of areas including educational attainment, the speed of assessments with regard to safeguarding children and the completion levels for staff appraisals.

 

Councillor Robertson replied that it was important to have ongoing information on achievement in schools and that there was a review on performance being undertaken by officers with a report to come back to Cabinet. Councillor Waine added that although the increase in GCSE results had been disappointing this year it followed four years of increases. The re-organisation of the Raising Achievement Team had been brought forward to October 2008 and the finishing touches had taken place as recently as September 2009.  

 

On appraisals Councillor Robertson was personally aware that the completion figures were higher that that recorded and that there seemed to be some problem with the managers not completing the reporting form.

 

Councillor Waine responded in respect of the restructuring that it was always known that it would be an ongoing process taking two years.

 

Councillor Chapman referred to a recent independent inspection that had found the work of the Safeguarding Board to be excellent. Twelve new posts had been created in children’s social care. Awareness of potential problems had been heightened by the baby p and other cases leading to far more referrals. She refuted any claims that Looked After Children reviews were failing. She was glad of Councillor Fook’s interest and would be happy to go through the figures outside the meeting.

 

RESOLVED:           to note the report.

129/09

Establishment Review - December 2009 pdf icon PDF 61 KB

Cabinet Member: Deputy Leader

Forward Plan Ref: 2009/134

Contact: Sue Corrigan, Strategic HR Manager (01865 810280)

 

Report by: Head of Human Resources

 

This report gives an update on activity since the implementation of the Establishment Review and associated Recruitment Approval process on 1 August 2005. It provides detail on the overall objectives of the review and summarises progress made against the targets which were agreed to ensure delivery of those objectives. Details of the agreed establishment figure at 30 June 2009 in terms of Full Time Equivalents is provided, together with the detailed staffing position at 30 June 2009. These are shown in the report by directorate and service area.

The report also provides information on current activity and in addition there is information on grant funded posts and those vacancies which are being covered by agency staff and at what cost.

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to:

(a) note the report;

(b) confirm that the Establishment Review continues to meet the Cabinet’s requirements in reporting and managing staffing numbers.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report giving an update on activity since the implementation of the Establishment Review and associated Recruitment Approval process on 1 August 2005. It provided detail on the overall objectives of the review and summarised progress made against the targets which were agreed to ensure delivery of those objectives. Details of the agreed establishment figure at 30 September 2009 in terms of Full Time Equivalents was provided, together with the detailed staffing position at 30 June 2009. These were shown in the report by directorate and service area.

The report also provided information on current activity and in addition there was information on grant funded posts and those vacancies which are being covered by agency staff and at what cost.

 

Councillor Fooks, Opposition Deputy Leader, commented on the figures and in particular expressed interest in being given information on the numbers of people who had not been successfully redeployed. She noted that the figures had gone up and queried whether the review was meeting the requirements.

 

The Deputy Leader responded to the comments made and undertook to provide the information requested on people not redeployed. He noted that the figures were not up to date and that the December figures did show a drop. He thanked officers as he was aware of the great deal of effort that went in to the reports and indicated that the next one would be available a month earlier.

During discussion of agency staff cabinet members stressed that their use was sometimes essential.

130/09

Forward Plan and Future Business pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Cabinet Member: All

Contact Officer: Sue Whitehead, Committee Services Manager (01865 810262)

 

The Cabinet Procedure Rules provide that the business of each meeting at the Cabinet is to include “updating of the Forward Plan and proposals for business to be conducted at the following meeting”.   Items from the Forward Plan for the immediately forthcoming meetings of the Cabinet appear in the Schedule at CA10.  This includes any updated information relating to the business for those meetings that has already been identified for inclusion in the next Forward Plan update.

 

The Schedule is for noting, but Cabinet Members may also wish to take this opportunity to identify any further changes they would wish to be incorporated in the next Forward Plan update.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to note the items currently identified for forthcoming meetings.

 

 

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a list of items (CA11) for the immediately forthcoming meetings of the Cabinet together with the following changes and additions:

 

Oxford – Highfield Traffic Management  - Added to 7 January 2010 meeting of the Transport Decisions Committee

 

Provision of Alarms, Daytime Support, Emergency Response and Telecare Services – It was noted that it would be considered at the 3 February delegated decisions session by the Cabinet Member for Adult Services.

 

RESOLVED:                        to note the items currently identified for forthcoming meetings.