Agenda and draft minutes

Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 8th February, 2024 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Catmose, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 6HP

Contact: Democratic Services  Email: democraticservices@rutland.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

WELCOME AND APOLOGIES RECEIVED

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting. 

 

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Councillor Lambert joined the meeting at 7.01 p.m.

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Apologies were received from Councillor Carr, Councillor Powell and Councillor Harvey, who was due to attend as Councillor Powell’s representative.  Apologies were also received apologies from Peter French, the Education Representative.

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:

Councillor Stephenson declared a non-pecuniary interest in that a relative had recently received the support of Adult Social Services and the MiCare team.  There were no other 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 25 and 159.

 

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:

No petitions, deputations or questions were 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 161 and 162.

Minutes:

No questions with notice with notice were 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 163.

Minutes:

No notices of motion were 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 149.

Minutes:

No call-ins were received.

7.

CARE QUALITY COMMISSION (CQC) INSPECTION FRAMEWORK: PROGRESS UPDATE pdf icon PDF 436 KB

To receive a presentation from Kelly McAleese, Adult Social Care Principal Social Worker and Quality Lead and Alison Morgan, Head of Prevention and Assurance.

Minutes:

A presentation was received from Kelly McAleese, Adult Social Care Principal Social Worker and Quality Lead and Alison Morgan, Head of Prevention and Assurance to give an update on the work being done to ensure CQC inspection readiness.  During the discussion, the following points were noted:

 

Two meetings had been held of the CQC Inspection Participation Group, which consisted of 11 members and was aimed at supporting the growth of Rutland’s adult social care services.

The inspection process was a challenge due to the amount of work involved but it was a useful experience as it gave staff an opportunity to showcase the good work being done within the service.

Rutland was actively seeking to learn from the inspections of other local authorities and any comparable issues would be included in its work plan.

Prices within the care home market increased by 48% last year and people paying for their own care needs i.e. self-funders were paying more for services than those people whose care was being paid for by the local authority i.e. state-funders. 

The service was reviewing other options e.g. Shared Lives Scheme, respite care, day care etc. to provide alternative services than that of a residential care home and this included keeping people at home but only when this would be the best option for the person concerned.

Members were informed that the CQC wanted local authorities to be open and honest regarding their service provision and to identify and explain any gaps.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

NOTED the contents of the of the Quality Assurance: CQC Readiness presentation and the work being done. 

 

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Andrea Grinney joined the meeting at 7.32 p.m.

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8.

CHARGING FOR CARE AND SUPPORT POLICY pdf icon PDF 73 KB

To receive Report No. 21/2024 from the Strategic Director for Adults and Health.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report No. 21/2024 was received from Kim Sorsky, Strategic Director for Adults and Health.  During the discussion, the following points were noted:

 

A public consultation had been undertaken to inform the content of the final policy. The results of the public consultation were detailed in Appendix B of Report No. 20/2024.

The 6 proposals identified would be presented to Council on the 25th March.

The policy had been updated to make the process quicker and easier and would treat people as individuals rather than a ‘one size fits all’ process.

Support would continue to be provided to people who were unable to complete the self-assessment process themselves.

From April 2024, people would be invited to undertake an online financial assessment. This would be introduced slowly to enable officers to resolve any issues with the new IT system but a key performance indicator (KPI) would be set at 80% of financial assessments to be completed online.  It is not envisaged that this target would be reached in 2024/25 but rather aimed for moving forward.

Benchmarking had been undertaken for the proposed allowances including comparison with other local authorities. Some were set by the Department of Health or by the NAFAO (National Association of Financial Assessment Officer whilst others were calculated based on actual expenditure.

Disability Related Expenditure (DRE) and allowances related to care and support provided in a home setting only. Some services would be free of charge e.g. reablement for up to 6 weeks but services would only be free if they were detailed as ‘free of charge’ in the Care Act.

Top-ups were detailed in the Care Act which the Council must follow and applied to care home settings only.  The Council was obliged to offer at least one placement that was affordable e.g. at our bed rates. If the person or their family wanted to choose a different care home and the charges were higher than our bed rate, then the family would need to meet the additional cost via a top-up. However, care homes accept the Council’s bed rates for the majority of Council commission placements (approx. 85%).

DRE rates, along with all other allowances/charges etc. were reviewed annually prior to the start of each new financial year. New rates would be considered in light of any changes to state benefits and the level of inflation and individuals would receive an annual review of their charges.

Members stated that:

 

  • the take-up by applicants of the online forms process should be closely monitored as from April 2024
  • the arrangements for people unable to use the online facility, as outlined in Proposal 1, should be more fully detailed in the narrative
  • the term ‘exceptional circumstances’, as outlined in Proposal 6, should be more fully detailed in the narrative.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

NOTED the contents of the Review of the Charging for Care and Support Policy, as set out in Report No. 20/2024.

PROVIDED comments and views for Council to consider in the finalisation of the policy  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

GROUP AND PANEL UPDATES

9a

FLOODING pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Discussion about the way forward regarding the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee’s assistance with the investigation into the recent flooding issues experienced by the Rutland community.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Ross informed attendees that he and the Vice Chair had completed the ‘PICK’ Assessment form and this had identified the use of an Evidence Panel as the best method of scrutiny.

Councillor Stephenson informed attendees that she and the Chair had met with the Chief Executive, the Strategic Director of Places and the Portfolio Holder for Transport, Environment and Communities on the 6th February 2024 to identify the Scrutiny Committee’s role in the flooding review.

The briefing paper, published as supplementary agenda item 9a, had resulted from this meeting and outlined the next steps for the Scrutiny Committee.

The broad scope of the Evidence Panel was detailed in paragraph 3 of the briefing.

The Evidence Panel’s focus would be on Rutland’s residents and the community so would need to work with efficiency and pace.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

APPROVED the formation of a Flooding Evidence Panel with Councillor Lucy Stephenson as its Chair.

AGREED the broad scope of the work as detailed in paragraph 3 of the briefing.

APPROVED that the Chair of the panel would:

 

Email all non-executive members inviting volunteers to be part of the panel, clearly outlining the amount of work and the commitment that would be required by members.

Arrange a meeting with the Portfolio Holder and relevant officers to produce a detailed scoping document for the panel.

Arrange the first meeting of the panel to be held before the end of February 2024.

10.

REVIEW OF THE WORK PLAN pdf icon PDF 93 KB

To consider the current Forward Plan and identify any relevant items for inclusion in the Strategic Overview and Scrutiny Committee Annual Work Plan or to request further information.

 

The Forward Plan is available on the website at: https://rutlandcounty.moderngov.co.uk/mgListPlans.aspx?RPId=133&RD=0

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The work plan and the list of proposed items were reviewed.  During the discussion, the following points were noted:

 

Councillor Ross proposed that ‘Levelling Up Fund’ should be added to the pending list so that the committee received an update in April/May 2024 and that ‘Leisure’ and ‘Waste’ should both be removed from the pending list as the committee had previously commented on both items.

Councillor Ross also proposed that ‘Safety on our Highways’ should be removed from the pending list as the Portfolio Holder had confirmed that no new work would be undertaken regarding the issue of speeding.

It was proposed that the Chair and Vice Chair raise the issue of ‘Safety on our Highways’ at their next meeting with the Leader and Cabinet members on the 20th February 2024 and discuss possible future involvement by the Scrutiny Committee.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee:

 

AGREED to add ‘Levelling Up Fund’ to the pending list for a detailed update to be provided in April/May 2024.

AGREED that ‘Leisure’ and ‘Waste’ should both be removed from the pending list as the committee had previously commented on both items.

AGREED that ‘Safety on our Highways’ should remain on the pending list as it covered more than just the issue of speeding.

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, 21st March 2024 at 7 p.m. in the Council Chamber, Catmose, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP

Minutes:

Thursday, 21st March 2024 at 7.00 p.m. in the Council Chamber.