Agenda and draft minutes

Community Leadership Scrutiny Committee - Wednesday, 16th December 2020 6.00 pm

Venue: Virtual Meeting

No. Item


Confirmation of Minutes - 16 November 2020 pdf icon PDF 158 KB


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 16 November 2020 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.


No declarations of interest were received.


Scrutiny Review - Impact on Businesses and Employment during the Covid-19 Pandemic

1)    To understand the impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had on businesses, identifying support already provided, whether there are any gaps and how the City Council can provide additional support.


2)    To understand the impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had on individuals from the perspective of jobs and employment and whether the City Council can provide additional support.


Jane Loffhagen, Chair of the Community Leadership Scrutiny Committee, opened the meeting and provided the Committee with a brief introduction of the topic for review which was the impact on businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic.


The Chair explained that the purpose of the review was to understand the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and how it had affected businesses, whilst also identifying support already being provided and whether there were any gaps of which the City of Lincoln Council could provide further support. Not only would the review look at businesses, it would also look at how the pandemic had affected individuals from the perspective of jobs and employment.


She introduced Derek Ward, Director of Public Health at Lincolnshire County Council, who had been invited to provide a background on how the city of Lincoln was coping with Covid-19 since Lincoln had been put into Tier 3.


Derek Ward - Director of Public Health (Lincolnshire County Council)

For the most up to date guidance and information relating to Covid-19, the tier system and other restrictions, please visit


Derek Ward, Director of Public Health, briefly explained the current situation in the city with regards to Covid-19 including the current testing regime. He explained the following:


·         The rates peaked in mid-November in Lincolnshire and lockdown had helped bring the peak down. It was starting to flatten out throughout the county but this needed to continue in order for it to keep reducing.


·         It was mainly outbreaks in care homes, Lincoln County Hospital and the prison that were causing the rates to rocket.


·         Over the past month it was identified that students weren’t the reason for the increase of cases in Lincoln and they had been doing a great job in getting tested. The University were also carrying out asymptomatic tests on students before they returned home.


·         There were three core ways to help lower the spread of the virus:

-       Vaccines

-       Improving the testing system

-       Test and Trace


Mr Ward welcomed any questions or comments from the Committee.


Question: Since the vaccine had been rolled out, how many Lincoln residents have had the virus?


Response: The vaccine programme was controlled by the NHS so only they could provide the statistics. The vaccine in general was going well, the Pfizer vaccine which was the current vaccine in circulation had to be frozen at -70C before being used. It would also shortly be rolled out in care homes but officers were waiting for further information on that.


Question: Was the hospital coping with the amount of cases they were receiving?


Response: The hospital had struggled. A test had to be taken on entry and a few days after an individual had been admitted. The hospital didn’t discharge people from the hospital to a care home and there were discharge for patients whilst they were waiting for test results. A third of people with the virus had showed no symptoms, so that was the main issue that needed to be tackled.


Question: Were the staff at care homes trained to deal with outbreaks?


Response: Staff had been on prevention training for the past couple of years originally to deal with flu outbreaks. They were fully kitted in PPE and had access to testing, staff were tested every week and residents were tested every 28 days but soon that would become a regular occurrence.


Question: In relation to the government making changes to the Test and Trace, how would it help?


Response: Not all the details about this had been received yet so unfortunately an update couldn’t be given.


Question: What was the lateral flow test?


Response: There were 3 types of test, two that would tell you if you tested positive and one antibody test. The PCR test which was the one carried out at Lincolnshire Showground and at the University took 24-72 hours to show a result. The Lateral Flow test was similar to a pregnancy test, if the test was positive, two lines would show and it would take approximately 20-25 minutes to get a result. This test  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.


Supporting Business - Conclusions and Next Steps


After liaising with Justin Brown, Assistant Director for Growth at Lincolnshire County Council, he agreed to attend the meeting in January to provide an update on how Covid-19 had affected growth and economy.


Supporting Individuals - Next Steps


The Committee was given the opportunity to suggest anyone that it felt would be able to provide effective information for evidence gathering in the next stage of the review, these were:


·         Lynsey Collinson and Kate Edgar (Development Plus) – February 2021

·         Graham Metcalfe (DWP) – February 2021


Work Programme 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 201 KB