Agenda and minutes

Performance Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 20th January 2022 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Rooms 1-2, City Hall. View directions

Contact: Clare Stait 

No. Item


Confirmation of Minutes - 18 November 2021 pdf icon PDF 263 KB


During consideration of the minutes of the meeting held on 18 November 2021 it was agreed that Councillor Pat Vaughan should had been listed as In the Chair, as although he had not been formally appointed as the Chair by Council, he had acted as temporary chair for this meeting.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 18 November 2021 be confirmed and signed as a correct record, subject to the above amendment being made.


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.


No declarations of interest were received.


Fire Safety Update pdf icon PDF 175 KB


Andrew McNeil, Assistant Director, Housing and Matt Hillman, Assistant Director, Housing:


a)    presented a report to Performance Scrutiny Committee with an update of actions/progress on fire safety in light of the Hackitt review following the tragic events at Grenfell Tower;


b)    explained the current position on fire safety in paragraph 6.1 of the report and the future position in paragraph 6.5 of the report; and


c)    invited members comments and questions.


During the discussion on the report, the following points were noted:


·         It was confirmed that none of the buildings owned by the City of Lincoln Council or any privately owned buildings had the combustible cladding on.

·         Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service had continued its inspection programme with an inspection of St Botolph’s Court carried out in December 2021, in which minor issues had been highlighted.  These included remedial work on some letter boxes and the moving of furniture.   All towers had previously been inspected.

·         The draft Building Safety Bill; Fire Safety Bill; and the Fire Safety Order consultation would improve safety standards for residents of all blocks of flats of all heights, with even more stringent approaches and oversight for buildings in scope.  It was confirmed that there would be no further buildings in scope as a result of the proposed changes to encompass buildings of 11 metres or higher to ensure building safety.

·         It was confirmed that the Accountable Person, as referred to on page 12 of the agenda pack, was the Chief Executive / lead officer of an organisation.  Whereas the Responsible Person was the building safety manager who provided assurance over compliance.

·         It was also confirmed that in anticipation of the Building Safety Bill, a meeting was held with Tenancy regarding the development of Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans (PEEPs).  In response to a question, it was noted that the frequency of which the plans would be reviewed was yet to be determined.  However, a process for reviewing these plans would be reviewed, as it was important these remained as up-to-date as possible. It was commented that it was easier to manage those plans within sheltered accommodation schemes, as support staff / wardens were better able to maintain the plans.  It was also advised that the way in which PEEPs could be accessed by the relevant agencies, such as Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue services was currently being explored.  The Committee expressed a wish for this information to be accessible electronically, perhaps via Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue’s Mobile Data Terminals.  It was advised that none of the other district councils were effected by the requirement of PEEPs, as they did not have any high-rise buildings which met the threshold. 

·         The Housing Repair Service had achieved BM Trada accreditation for fire door installation.  Combined with the recruitment of a window and door compliance team leader and an increase in the number of joiners, this had allowed for an accredited maintenance and installation process of fire doors.  This had improved the replacement and repair of fire doors identified during  ...  view the full minutes text for item 52.


One Council - Creating Value Processes pdf icon PDF 387 KB


Simon Walters, Director for Communities and Environment:


a)    presented a report to Performance Scrutiny Committee with an overview of the ‘One Council’ programme of work and the early successes achieved;


b)    highlighted that ‘Creating Value Processes’ had delivered a number of projects since its inception, which included:


-       The design and launch of a new intranet accessible to all staff, with a strong focus on our corporate values. This had been the platform enabling the new ‘in-brief’ comm’s videos.

-       Created multiple e-forms for internal admin processes that were automated, removing annual processing where possible.

-       Launched a new online e-learning package for basic digital skills which was available to all staff.

-       Partnered with Microsoft to create a bespoke training programme for low code development (i.e., equipping our own staff with the skills to develop automated processes rather than ‘buy in’)

-       Moved to online first culture for meetings, including implementation of devices in committee rooms to enable people to ‘dial in’ to meetings, helping to contribute to reduced Co2 emissions and support home working.

-       Transferred the City Council to a new website offering increased functionality.

-       Evaluated the telephone calls into the contact centre to identify those services that caused the highest volume of calls and developing work streams to reduce that number.

-       Delivered accessibility guidance and training to make sure all the material we produced was easily understood and readable by a wide range of audiences. This resulted in our website becoming one of the most accessible local authority sites as evaluated by the Society for Innovation, Technology and Modernisation (within top 30 of websites in mid-2021).

-       Created a new website (microsite) for the visitor information service with its own look and feel.

-       Developed a suite of new user friendly and accessible housing correspondence, which had reduced the number of people calling the contact centre with queries.

-       Made tweaks to council tax bills to aid clarity for the customer and reduce queries into the contact centre.

-       Housing tenancy services – created a new tenant sign up process to make it smoother and easier for new tenants and staff.

-       Streamlined the customer journey between UC team, Tenancy Services and Welfare Advice so claimants were easily transferred between the various functions and ensured they had access to the funds they were entitled to.


c)    explained that current activity was focussed on:


-          Developing an innovative national ‘on line’ Housing repairs reporting tool, which would ultimately enable tenants to identify and book faults/appointments via our website.

-          Developing a range of ‘on line’ forms for Community services - ‘on line’ forms for Missed bins, New bins, Clinical waste, Bulky goods. All designed to enable residents to report issues 24/7 and take pressure off the contact centre.

-          Extensive work to replace key aging IT systems.

-          Continuing redesign of a whole range of corporate forms and automated processes ranging from annual leave to order requisitions.

-          Automated customer satisfaction - assessing a new  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53.


Work Programme for 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 110 KB

Additional documents:


Cheryl Evans, Democratic Services and Elections Manager:


a)    presented the draft work programme for the remainder of the municipal year 2021/22, as detailed at Appendix A of the report;


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; and


d)    requested any relevant comments or changes to the proposed work programme for 2022.


RESOLVED that the work programme 2020/21 be noted, subject to the inclusion of a report on the One Council Programme in three months.