Agenda and minutes

Performance Scrutiny Committee
Thursday, 24th May 2018 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, City Hall

Contact: Democratic Services - 01522 873387 

No. Item


Confirmation of Minutes - 29 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 134 KB


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 29 March 2018 be confirmed.


Declarations of Interest

Please note that, in accordance with the Members' Code of Conduct, when declaring interests members must disclose the existence and nature of the interest, and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) or personal and/or pecuniary.


Councillor Pat Vaughan declared a Personal Interest with regard to the agenda item titled 'Q4 2017-2018 Operational Performance Report'.


Reason: His daughter worked in the Benefits department at the City of Lincoln Council.


Councillor Pat Vaughan declared a Personal Interest with regard to the agenda item titled 'Financial Performance - Outturn: 2017-18'.


Reason: His Granddaughter worked in the Finance department at the City of Lincoln Council.


Central Lincolnshire Joint Strategic Planning Committee/ Local Plan Annual Report 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 68 KB


Toby Forbes Turner, Principle Planning Policy Officer:-


a.    presented a report which detailed the work undertaken by the Central Lincolnshire Joint Strategic Planning Committee (CLJSPC) from April 1st 2017 through to 31st March 2018


b.    stated that the Central Lincolnshire Local Plan was formally adopted at the 24th April 2017 CLJSPC (Central Lincolnshire Joint Strategic Planning Committee) meeting


c.    explained that The Local Plan set out the planning policies for Central Lincolnshire (including the City) and this involved allocating parcels of land for development as well as identifying land which should be protected from development


d.    highlighted that The Plan included a set of 57 policies which guided decision makers i.e. Planning Committee on future planning applications for the City


e.    invited members’ questions and comments.



Question: Who had taken over from Carillion on the Eastern Bypass?


Response: The subcontractors had been getting more involved in the work however there was currently a delay of 6 months. handover to a new contractor had taken place.


Question: With regards to new house builds, could land be bought in West Lindsey?


Response: Yes the city council can buy land in another district to provide housing, but the preference remains for sites within the boundaries.


Question: Would it be possible to update members at planning on application of policies within the local plan?


Response: There was only a certain amount of time in each committee but regular updates on the local plan could be provided.


Question: Did officers meet with applicants to explain the impacts that the local plan could have on their application?


Response: Officers could provide advice to applicants, where requested/sought.


Question: With regards to dwellings in the Five Year Land Supply Report, did it involve the WGC? (Western Growth Corridor)


Response: Yes it would involve parts of the WGC.




1.    The expanded figures for the CLJSPC budget to be circulated to members by officers.


2.    The content of the report be noted.






Confirmation of Housing Scrutiny Sub-Committee Minutes pdf icon PDF 78 KB


RESOLVED that the Housing Scrutiny Sub-Committee minutes of 19 March be confirmed.


Financial Performance: Outturn 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 185 KB


Rob Baxter, Financial Services Manager:


a)            presented a report detailing the provisional financial outturn position on the Council’s revenue and capital budgets for 2018/19 including:


·         The General Fund

·         Housing Revenue Account

·         Housing Repairs Service

·         Capital Programmes


b)            provided members with a summary of actual income and expenditure compared to the revised budget and how any surpluses had been allocated to reserves


c)            gave details of variances to the General Fund forecast, Housing Revenue Accounts, Housing Repairs Service and Capital programmes as detailed within the appendices to the report


d)            explained that the financial performance quarterly monitoring report for the third quarter had predicted an underspend against the revised budget (exclusive of approved carry forwards) of £457,620 as outlined in 3.2 of the report


e)            invited members’ questions and comments.


Question: The underspend for the General Fund appeared to be a third of the overall budget. How much would be carried forward as a deferred payment?


Response: The whole of the underspend would be spent in the future on other projects.


Question: with regards to staff training, why hadn’t the £50,000 been spent in the last year?


Response: There had been a new training initiative that had been introduced last year which would be rolled out this year so that money would be spent in this financial year.


Question: Did the City of Lincoln Council own Broadgate Car Park?


Response: Yes.


Question: With regards to reference within the report to the noise monitoring equipment, what did it mean?


Response: It was the noise monitoring device that was used by the Anti-Social Behaviour Team. The monitoring system was old and had been replaced.




1.    The provisional 2017/18 financial outturn for the General Fund, Housing Revenue Account, Housing Repairs Service and Capital Programmes as set out in 3 – 7, and in particular the reasons for any variances be noted


2.    The proposed transfer to General Fund earmarked reserves in paragraph 3.6, 38, 3.9 and 3.11, prior to reporting to the Executive be noted


3.    The proposed transfer to HRA earmarked reserves in paragraph 4.4 be noted


4.    The financial changes to both the General Investment Programme and the Housing Investment Programme (paragraphs 7.3, 7.4 and 7.10) that were above the 10% budget variance limit delegated to the Chief Finance Officer be noted.


Q4 2017-18 Operational Performance Report pdf icon PDF 663 KB

Additional documents:


Pat Jukes, Corporate Policy Business Manager:


a)    presented a report on the operational performance under quarter 4 of the financial year 2017/18 (from December 2017 to March 2018)


b)    explained that the regular monitoring of the Council’s operational performance was a key component of the Local Performance Management Framework


c)    detailed the key headlines from the four corporate measures:

·         Sickness – split by long and short term

·         Corporate complaints including Ombudsman rulings

·         Employee FTE headcount, vacancies and turnover

·         Staff appraisals completed


d)    referred to Appendix A which detailed all measures by individual directorate grouping with annual and quarterly measures split separately


e)    invited members’ questions and comments.


Question: Had the shortage in staff in DHR been noted and why was the level of recruitment so low?


Response: In DHR, whilst there were currently 28 vacancies, some of these were held for a variety of planned reasons.


The breakdown of the vacancies was as follows:


·         4 posts which were removed from the establishment but weren’t taken off the list of posts

·         8 posts were held pending review of the service area

·         5 posts had dropped from full time to part time/flexible working, with the vacant hours not recruited to -  representing a cumulative impact

·         5 were currently in recruitment

·         4 were recruited to but weren’t showing that they had been

·         The remaining posts were a mixture of maternity leave etc and in some cases were being covered by agency staff (ie a person in post, but as it wasn’t a permanent recruitment the post still showed as a vacancy)Stress and anxiety were some of the main key reasons for the sickness but interestingly there was no apparent link between the level of vacancies and the level of sickness within the teams


Question: How were staff being supported?


Response: Simon Walters had spent some time in the homelessness team (a team that had suffered a lot of sickness) and found that they worked very well together as a team so they were able to support each other. However, management were acutely aware of the pressures and were putting additional staff resources in place 


Question: Did the Council reduce contracted hours due to staff returning from sickness?


Response: Some hours were reduced due to maternity and for short periods during return to work phases. In some cases employees have agreed to reduce their contract work hours, and this has been agreed where the service allows 


Question: With regards to business rates, had the Council received many appeals?


Response: None had been received yet however it was taking longer for them to come through.


Question: What was the response time for Customer services when dealing with customers through email/telephone?


Response: The information wasn’t available to hand however customer services did gather it. It was highlighted that there needed to be a more uniform approach when gathering this information as it’s gathered differently in every department. Jo Crookes had been looking email responses and agreeing an appropriate time.


Question: What responsibility did the Council  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Treasury Management Stewardship and Actual Prudential Indicators Report 2017/18 (Outturn) pdf icon PDF 169 KB


Rob Baxter, Financial Services Manager:


a.    presented a report covering the treasury management activities and the actual prudential and treasury indicators for 2017/18


b.    advised that the annual Treasury Management stewardship report was a requirement of the Council’s reporting procedures due to regulations issued under the Local Government Act 2003


c.    gave a summary of performance against the Treasury Management Strategy


d.    invited members' questions and comments.


Question: With regards to the money that the Council recuperated, was it used to pay off the debts?


Response: The money would contribute towards the Car Park etc. however that could be short/long term.




  1. The actual prudential indicators contained within Appendices A and B of the report be noted and referred to Executive for review prior to recommending to Council for approval


  1. The Annual Treasury Management report for 2017/18 be noted and referred to Executive for review. 


Strategic Plan Progress - Outturn 2017-18 pdf icon PDF 83 KB


Rob Baxter, Financial Services Manager:


a)    presented a report updating members on strategic projects against their milestones for the final quarter of 2017/18


b)    advised that of the 16 strategic projects monitored, 14 projects were on track in terms of their physical and financial milestones and risk profiles, of these a further 2 projects had been completed and were awaiting a Post Implementation Review to be submitted and signed off


c)    stated that there were no projects currently off track in all three areas of monitoring as detailed in paragraph 2.3 of the report


d)    reported that 3 new projects had been reviewed and recommended to the Executive for approval in the final quarter


e)    updated members on the following two mega projects:


·         Western Growth Corridor

·         Transport Hub


f)     highlighted the work of the Section 106 Group and annual ongoing projects at paragraph 6 of the report


g)    invited members’ questions and comments.


Question: When would the report for the Western Growth Corridor be done?


Response: The Council was still in the consultation stage for the WGC, however a Member Development session would still be going ahead. Rob agreed that he would find out more details.


RESOLVED that the report be noted.


Performance Targets for 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 62 KB

Additional documents:


Pat Jukes, Corporate Policy Business Manager:


a)    presented the report on the draft targets for the agreed sub set of Strategic Measures for information before initial reporting in Q1 2018/19


b)    explained that the performance targets were introduced in 2016/17, but needed reviewing each year to reflect changes in the market place as well as current outturn achievements. This report proposed a number of considered changes to targets for the new year


c)    highlighted that since 2013, trended performance had been reported to Members via a set of c70 measures defined as the key operational measures


d)    outlined the final table of proposed targets and red alerts detailed in Appendix A of the report


e)    invited members’ questions and comments.


Question: Why had the overall percentage utilisation of the car parks gone down?


Response: There were 1,000 new spaces made available for expected city growth and it would take time for them to fill up.


RESOLVED that the report be noted.


Strategic Risk Register - Quarterly Review pdf icon PDF 66 KB

Additional documents:


Rob Baxter, Financial Services Manager:


a)    presented the report ‘Strategic Risk Register – Quarterly Review’ and provided members with the revised Strategic Risk Register as at the end of the fourth quarter 2017-18


b)    advised that the Strategic Risk Register was developed under the risk management approach of ‘risk appetite’, which was last presented to Members in February 2018 and contained seven strategic risks


c)    highlighted that since it was last reported in August 2017, the Strategic Risks Register had been reviewed and updated


d)    further highlighted that the updated Register contained seven strategic risks an outlined in Appendix A of the report


e)    updated members on the key movements which were outlined as follows:-


·         Engaging with Strategic Partners, staff and stakeholders to deliver the Vision 2020.

·         To ensure compliance with statutory duties and appropriate governance arrangements were in place.

·         Meeting the emerging changes required in the Councils culture, behaviour and skills to support the delivery of the Council’s Vision 2020 and the transformational journey to a “performance culture”.


f)     identified the risk implications as outlined in 6.1 of the report


g)    invited members’ questions and comments.


RESOLVED that the report be noted by the Performance Scrutiny Committee.


Work Programme 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 47 KB

Additional documents:


The Democratic Services Officer:


a)    presented the Performance Scrutiny Work Programme for 2018/19 (Appendix A)


b)    advised that the work programme for the Performance Scrutiny Committee was put forward annually for approval by Council; the work programme was then regularly updated throughout the year in consultation with the Performance Scrutiny Committee and its chair


c)    reported that items had been scheduled in accordance with the existing work programme and officers’ guidance regarding the meetings at which the most up-to-date information could be reported to the committee; the work programme also included the list of portfolio holders under scrutiny


d)    requested any relevant comments or changes to the proposed work programme for 2018/19.


RESOLVED that the work programme 2018/19 as detailed at Appendix A to the report be noted, subject to the inclusion of additional reports requested by members:


·         A thematic review of sickness absence in July 2018 to coincide with the Portfolio Holder under Scrutiny for Our People and Resources

·         A thematic review of Homelessness in August/October 2018. A date would be confirmed at the next meeting by Yvonne Fox.

·         A thematic review of the Western Growth Corridor (WGC) in October to coincide with the Portfolio under Scrutiny for Economic Growth.