Agenda and draft minutes

Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 9th June, 2022 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Catmose, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 6HP and via Zoom: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/82172739960

Contact: Governance  Email: governance@rutland.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

WELCOME AND APOLOGIES RECEIVED

Minutes:

Councillor Waller welcomed everyone to the first meeting of the new Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee (SOSC). 

 

Apologies were received from Councillor Paul Ainsley, Councillor Ken Bool, Councillor Rick Wilson. 

 

Councillor Nick Begy and Councillor David Blanksby were welcomed as the attending representatives for Councillors Ainsley and Wilson. 

 

Councillor Waller also welcomed Councillor Jeff Dale to the meeting, who was attending as a non-voting member.

2.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

In accordance with the Regulations, Members are invited to declare any personal or prejudicial interests they may have and the nature of those interests in respect of items on this Agenda and/or indicate if Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

3.

PETITIONS, DEPUTATIONS AND QUESTIONS

To receive any petitions, deputations and questions received from Members of the Public in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rules 28 and 216.

 

The total time allowed for this item shall be 30 minutes.  Petitions, declarations and questions shall be dealt with in the order in which they are received.  Questions may also be submitted at short notice by giving a written copy to the Committee Administrator 15 minutes before the start of the meeting.

 

The total time allowed for questions at short notice is 15 minutes out of the total time of 30 minutes.  Any petitions, deputations and questions that have been submitted with prior formal notice will take precedence over questions submitted at short notice.  Any questions that are not considered within the time limit shall receive a written response after the meeting and be the subject of a report to the next meeting.

Minutes:

There were no petitions, deputations and questions received.

4.

QUESTIONS WITH NOTICE FROM MEMBERS

To consider any questions with notice from Members received in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rule No 218 and No 218A.

Minutes:

There were no questions with notice received from members.

5.

NOTICES OF MOTION FROM MEMBERS

To consider any Notices of Motion from Members submitted in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rule No 219.

Minutes:

There were no notices of motion received from members.

6.

CONSIDERATION OF ANY MATTER REFERRED TO THE COMMITTEE IN RELATION TO THE CALL-IN OF A DECISION

To consider any matter referred to the Committee for a decision in relation to call in of a decision in accordance with Procedure Rule 206.

Minutes:

There were no call-ins received.

7.

ELECTION AND APPOINTMENTS

To appoint the Vice Chair of the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee for the municipal year 2022-2023

7a

ELECTION OF A VICE CHAIR

To appoint the Vice Chair of the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee for the municipal year 2022-2023

Minutes:

·       Councillor Sue Webb was nominated for the role of Vice-Chair. 

·       There were no other nominations.

 

---oOo---

Councillor Paul Browne joined the meeting at 7.04 p.m.as a non-voting member

---oOo---

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

a)    Unanimously APPROVED Councillor Sue Webb as the Vice-Chair.

7b

CONFIRMATION OF STATUTORY MEMBERS - EDUCATION REPRESENTATIVES pdf icon PDF 108 KB

To approve the appointment of the Statutory Members – Education Representatives for the municipal year 2022-2023

Minutes:

Councillor Waller informed attendees that the previous Children and Young People Scrutiny Committee had education representatives as statutory co-opted members to speak and vote on matters of education.  Under the new scrutiny arrangements, the approved co-opted members would be invited to attend meetings of the SOSC when an education related matter was on the agenda.

 

·       As per Procedure Rule 136, the following were nominated as the named education representatives:

 

               i.         Peter French, Church of England Diocese

              ii.         Sarah Stickland, Parent Governor

             iii.         Sian Armstrong, Parent Governor

            iv.         Andreas Menzies, Roman Catholic Diocese

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

a)    Unanimously APPROVED the named nominations as the Statutory Co-opted Members – Education Representatives to the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee for 2022-2023.

7c

ELECTION OF REPRESENTATIVES

To confirm the additional member and substitute representative at the Leicester, Leicestershire & Rutland Joint Health Scrutiny Committee

Minutes:

Councillor Waller informed attendees that, as Chair of the SOSC, she would attend meetings of the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Joint Health Scrutiny Committee but that an additional member and a substitute representative would be required to attend.

 

·       Councillor Ainsley was nominated as the additional member. 

·       Councillor Toseland was also nominated as the additional member but she declined the nomination due to the time commitment required.

·       There were no other nominations.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

a)    Unanimously APPROVED Councillor Paul Ainsley as the additional member to the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Joint Health Scrutiny Committee for 2022-2023.

 

·       Councillor Webb was nominated as the substitute representative. 

·       There were no other nominations.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

b)    Unanimously APPROVED Councillor Sue Webb as the substitute representative to the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Joint Health Scrutiny Committee for 2022-2023 to attend meetings as and when required.

8.

DRAFT IMPROVEMENT PLAN pdf icon PDF 212 KB

To receive a briefing from the Chair regarding an improvement plan for the new scrutiny function as requested by Council on the 11 April 2022.

Minutes:

Councillor Waller briefed attendees on the draft improvement plan for the new SOSC, which was requested by Council.  During the discussion, the following points were noted:

 

·       All councillors would be invited to a scrutiny training session that was being organised by Governance.

·       It was proposed and agreed that the draft improvement plan should be reviewed after members had received their scrutiny training.

·       Improved communication with residents was raised and it was agreed that this should be incorporated into the proposed ‘Customer Experience’ item for addition to the committee’s work plan.

9.

ANNUAL WORK PLAN pdf icon PDF 134 KB

To discuss options for addition to the Annual Work Plan and to agree how these options should be undertaken e.g. Task and Finish Group, Working Party, Evidence Panel etc.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Waller briefed attendees on the draft annual work plan, which had been compiled by the Corporate Leadership Team and Portfolio Holders.  During the discussion, the following pointed were noted:

 

·       The draft work plan and the list of options for addition to the work plan included items carried over from the previous scrutiny committee meetings and proposed upcoming items.

·       Eight items were proposed for scrutiny by the committee:

 

               i.         Grounds Maintenance

              ii.         Museum and Castle (including future options)

             iii.         Local Plan – what are other Local Authorities doing?

            iv.         Use of CIL and S106 monies

              v.         Cost of home to school and SEND transport

            vi.         Speeding (including work done by the Highways Transport Working Group)

           vii.         VAR Closure – where have services re-located to?

          viii.         Prioritisation of sites for footpaths etc.

 

·       Other items proposed by members included:

 

               i.         Homelessness

              ii.         Impact of Rail Expansion

             iii.         Children’s Services (including OfSTED readiness and Family Hubs)

            iv.         Fees and Charge – do we recover all costs?

              v.         Asset Review

 

·       The Chief Executive reported that ambitious targets had been set for the Council to be net carbon zero so a Carbon Reduction Plan was required to achieve this.  The committee was requested if it wanted to be involved in the creation of the plan e.g. by examining best practise of carbon reduction by other Local Authorities, private organisations and companies and so make recommendations for inclusion into the Carbon Reduction Plan.

·       The Leader suggested looking at parish council re-charging as a whole rather than the specific charges just for grounds maintenance.

·       The Chief Executive proposed that the committee included the scrutiny of the museum and castle as part of the Culture Review as this could include examination of other local authority best practice and the proposition of recommendations for inclusion into the Culture Review.

·       Members were reminded that the committee must identify what difference would be made by scrutinising a subject and how the subject should be best scrutinised i.e. report to the SOSC, a Task and Finish Group, Evidence Panel, etc. 

·       Matters members needed to be aware of would not be brought to the SOSC ‘for information’ as done previously but would instead be circulated to all members for their attention.

·       Members agreed that homelessness within the county should be a priority for the SOSC.

·       It was agreed that the following items should be removed from the list of options to be scrutinised:

 

               i.         Local Plan – what are other Local Authorities doing? 

Work had already been done on this subject matter so the SOSC would not add anything new.

 

              ii.         Cost of home to school and SEND transport

Can be dealt with directly by officers.

 

             iii.         VAR Closure – where have services re-located to?

Can be dealt with directly by officers.

 

            iv.         Prioritisation of sites for footpaths etc.

Can be dealt with directly by officers.

 

·       The subject matter of SEND: Delivery Better Value for investigation by the committee was raised.

---oOo---

Councillor Leah Toseland declared a conflict of interest as her children  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

RCC GUIDE TO STRATEGIC OVERVIEW AND SCRUTINY pdf icon PDF 704 KB

To review and recommend to Cabinet/Council the approval of the RCC’s Guide to Strategic Overview and Scrutiny

Minutes:

Councillor Waller briefed attendees on the proposed Guide to Strategic Overview and Scrutiny which was planned for publication on the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny webpage.  During the discussion, the following points were noted:

 

·       The clarification regarding the difference between ‘a public meeting’ and ‘a meeting held in public’ was duplicated within the guide.

·       The term ‘citizen’ needed changing to ‘resident’.

·       The SOSC must not duplicate or seek to overtly influence the work of other external bodies e.g. the Safer Rutland Partnership.  Many of the external bodies are statutory groups and must be allowed to set their own agenda.

·       The Proposal Form for the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee Work Plan should be amended to be more accessible for use by the public as the current format would only be understood by officers.

·       Members recommended that an executive summary of the guide be produced and that overall communication to engage the public must be improved.

·       It was confirmed that information from the SOSC to Cabinet/Council would be presented using the most appropriate method, which would not always entail the use of the template shown in Appendix C of the guide.

 

RESOLVED

 

a)    The Guide to Strategic Overview and Scrutiny would be updated with the amendments recommended by the SOSC.

11.

ANY URGENT BUSINESS

To receive any items of urgent business, which have been previously notified to the person presiding.

 

Minutes:

There was no urgent business

12.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

Thursday, 7th July 2022 at 7 pm in the Council Chamber, Catmose, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP and via Zoom at https://us06web.zoom.us/j/88698257402

 

Minutes:

Thursday, 7th July 2022 at 7.00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at Catmose, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP.

SUMMARY OF AGREED ACTIONS

No.

Ref.

Action

Person

1.     

9

Councillors Toseland, Lambert and Waller to establish a Homelessness Evidence Panel to gather evidence regarding the issue of homelessness in the county and report their findings to the SOSC.

 

Councillors Toseland, Lambert and Waller

2.     

9

In September 2022, Councillor Begy to lead/establish an Evidence Panel to gather information about the implementation of the Council’s Minerals Authority Contract and report back to the SOSC. 

Councillor Begy

3.     

9

Chief Executive and the Leader to discuss highways and transport – particularly the issue of speeding - with the Portfolio Holder for Planning, Highways and Transport and the Portfolio Holder for Communities, Environment and Climate Change to help inform the committee on the best method of scrutinising this important issue.

Chief Executive / Leader of the Council

4.     

9

Councillors Ainsley, Begy, Webb and Browne to consider how to follow up on the SEND work that was started by the last Children and Young People's Scrutiny Committee; especially in light of the Government's support via the Delivering Better Value programme. 

 

Councillors Ainsley, Begy, Webb and Browne

5.     

9

Councillor Waller to contact the non-executive councillors about the creation of a ‘Customer Experience’ Task and Finish Group to learn more about what Rutland residents experience when accessing Council services.

 

Councillor Waller

6.     

9

Councillors Waller and Webb to discuss with portfolio holders the following items for possible inclusion on to the Committee’s Work Plan, ready for final approval at the next meeting:

 

·       Devolution

·       Economic Development Strategy

·       UK Prosperity Fund

Councillors Waller and Webb

7.     

9

The Leader to discuss with the Portfolio Holder for Communities, Environment and Climate Change the possibility of an informal briefing session for all Councillors about the current status of the Culture Review and identify what the SOSC could do to assist the Council as part of the review process.

Leader of the Council