Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Commission - Thursday, 11 May 2017 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Fourth Floor, Easthampstead House, Bracknell. View directions

Contact: Hannah Stevenson  01344 352308

Note No. Item



Apologies for Absence/Substitute Members

To receive apologies for absence and to note the attendance of any substitute members.


Apologies were received from Councillors Brossard, Phillips and Mr Robin Briscoe.


Councillor Peacey was acting as a substitute for Councillor Brossard.


Councillor Mrs Mattick was acting as a substitute for Councillor Phillips.




Minutes and Matters Arising pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 26 January 2017.


RESOLVED that the minutes of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on the 26 January 2017 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.






Declarations of Interest and Party Whip


Members are asked to declare any disclosable pecuniary or affected interests including the existence and nature of the Party Whip, in respect of any matter to be considered at this meeting.


Any Member with a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in a matter should withdraw from the meeting when the matter is under consideration and should notify the Democratic Services Officer in attendance that they are withdrawing as they have such an interest. If the Disclosable Pecuniary Interest is not entered on the register of Members interests the Monitoring Officer must be notified of the interest within 28 days.


Any Member with an affected Interest in a matter must disclose the interest to the meeting and must not participate in discussion of the matter or vote on the matter unless granted a dispensation by the Monitoring officer or by the Governance and Audit Committee.  There is no requirement to withdraw from the meeting when the interest is only an affected interest, but the Monitoring Officer should be notified of the interest, if not previously notified of it, within 28 days of the meeting.


Councillor Mrs Birch declared a personal interest as the spouse of the Executive Member for Adult Services, Health and Housing.


Councillor Mrs McCracken declared a personal interest as the spouse of the Executive Member for Culture, Corporate Services and Public Protection.




Urgent Items of Business

Any other items which, pursuant to Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, the Chairman decides are urgent.


There were no urgent items of business.



Public Participation

To receive submissions from members of the public which have been submitted in advance in accordance with the Council’s Public Participation Scheme for Overview and Scrutiny.


There were no submissions from the public in accordance with the Council’s Public Participation Scheme for Overview and Scrutiny. 


Residents' Survey pdf icon PDF 347 KB

To consider the results of the 2017 Residents’ Survey.




Additional documents:


The Commission received a report and presentation briefing them on the Residents’ Survey results 2017 and communication plan.


The Resident’s Survey was undertaken by QA Research in January and February 2017; the report updated members on the outcomes, trends and areas of interest. The 2017 results were fairly static, which was typical of tracking surveys as it was unusual to see significant changes year on year.

The biggest change since the 2014 Residents Survey was the change from a postal survey to telephone survey. 1801 surveys were completed with 1,501 via telephone and 294 face-to-face. QA Research had analysed the responses and were able to generate the findings of different demographic and wards. The results had been  analysed at ward level and would be sent to members to use.

Of the findings within the survey:

  • 90% of residents were satisfied that Bracknell Forest was a good place to live, with greenspaces, council run sports and leisure facilities and highways amongst the reasons why. It was the first time that highways had been listed in this category.
  • 96% of residents said that there was strong community cohesion, this was an upwards trend and a really positive outcome.
  • 20% of residents currently participated in regular volunteering which was at the same level as 2014. This was against the national trend which showed volunteer levels as decreasing.
  • 19% felt there could be improvements or changes to road maintenance and infrastructure.
  • 12% thought there could be improvements or change mechanisms for communicating with residents and acting on their concerns.
  • Frequently used services had the highest levels of satisfaction with many residents not forming an opinion on services that were not often used. This did not tally with specific service user surveys.
  • Only 9% continued to feel that they were ‘not well informed at all’.
  • The demand for online and social media outstripped the current usage.
  • Popularity for email as a method of communication outstripped its current usage. 32% preferred email communication vs. 10% who actually used email communication.
  • Connectivity across the Borough had increased since 2014.


The findings of the survey would be taken to all Departmental Management Teams and would feed into service plans and the transformation programme. The findings would also be shared with the Parish and Town Councils’ Liaison Group on the 19 July.

In response to the Members’ questions, the following points were made:


  • The questions within the survey were open questions which did not prompt answers and allowed residents to respond specifically to the questions.
  • The survey asked how often specific facilities such as South Hill Park, were used. Specific information in respect of the arts and culture aspects of the Residents’ Survey was sought.
  • The voluntary service target had been benchmarked across the Country.
  • Some of the indicators were in line with the previous national Place Survey. However national benchmarking was proving harder with many local authorities moving away from undertaking resident surveys.
  • 58% of Hanworth residents appreciated South Hill Park.
  • Over the past years a number of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53.


Transformation Programme

To receive a presentation providing a progress update in respect of the Transformation Programme.


The Commission received a presentation updating them on the progress of the Transformation Programme.

The first year of the Transformation Programme had been completed and the Programme was now two months into year two.

The key headlines from the presentation were:

  • Good progress had been made with service reviews.
  • There had been successful public engagement held particularly for the Leisure and Library reviews.
  • The proposals from the plan phase had been approved by the Executive.
  • The 2017/18 budget reflected the work that had been done on the reviews, with the funds having been taken out of the budget.
  • Time was being taken to review services and investigate different ways and approaches to deliver services to inform budget reductions.
  • Both the Adult and Children’s Services programmes were re-focussed and the direction of travel reviewed.
  • The Adult Social Care programme was in the delivery phase, a Gateway Review had been held earlier in the year.
  • The Children, Young People and Learning programmes were currently on pause due to the Ofsted inspection.
  • The Citizen and Customer Contact Project along with the ICT Strategy were enabling projects which would underpin the savings from the other transformation programmes.
  • The biggest challenge was internal capacity across the Council to both maintain day to day services and deliver the transformation programme.
  • IESE and Activist advice had been invaluable and they would continue to be used throughout year two of the programme.
  • Mike Allen who was previously CEO at Age UK, had been appointed as the new volunteer co-ordinator. Twenty eight people had already come forward offering to volunteer before the communications campaign had started. Members would be asked to help, support and promote the volunteer communications campaign.
  • A four week consultation had been held for library staff, with eight staff directly affected.
  • The Executive decision had been made on 9 May to endorse the new blueprint for customer experience.
  • The FACE resource allocation system (RAS) for Adult Social Care had been launched on time without any major issues in April.
  • The preferred provider had been agreed for the digital marketplace product review.
  • The Director of Children, Young People and Learning had been reviewing and repackaging the Service Level Agreements.
  • The findings from the Ofsted inspection would be used to move the Children, Young People and Learning’s transformation programmes forward.
  • The design for the new council chamber in Time Square had been agreed.
  • With all staff moving to the Time Square office, staff would need to adjust to a new culture change with there being a 5:3 ratio of staff to desks which would allow for more agile working.
  • The core Communications and Marketing team were now focussing on four areas; transformation, behavioural change programme, major political priorities and emergencies, with routine PR working being devolved to departments.
  • In year 2 there would be three new reviews; children’s services, planning and building control, and parks and countryside. With the analyse phase Gateway review for the parks and countryside review taking place in July and the children’s services and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 54.


Quarterly Service Reports (QSRs) 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 663 KB

To consider the latest trends, priorities and pressures in terms of departmental performance as reported in the QSRs for the third quarter of 2016/17 (October to December 2016) relating to:


·         The Chief Executive’s Office

·         The Corporate Services Department


The Chairman has asked that any detailed or procedural questions arising from the Quarterly Service Reports should be referred to either the Assistant Chief Executive or Director of Corporate Services in advance.  Except in cases of urgency, only issues of strategic importance or of wider implications should be raised at the meeting.






















Additional documents:


The Commission noted the Quarterly Service Reports for the third quarter of 2016/17 (October  to December 2016) relating to the Chief Executive’s Office and the Corporate Services Department.




Executive Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 106 KB

Scheduled Executive Key and Non-Key Decisions of a corporate nature are attached for consideration.

Additional documents:


The Commission noted the forthcoming items on the Executive forward plan of a corporate nature,




Submission to the House of Commons’ Communities and Local Government Select Committee pdf icon PDF 261 KB

To note the Council’s submission to the House of Commons’ Communities and Local Government Select Committee concerning the Committee’s inquiry into Overview and Scrutiny in local government.

Additional documents:


The Commission noted the Council’s submission to the House of Commons’ Communities and Local Government Select Committee regarding the Committee’s inquiry into Overview and Scrutiny in local government.


Work Programme and Panel Activity Update pdf icon PDF 338 KB

To note the progress against the Overview and Scrutiny work programme for 2016-17, and the reports from Overview and Scrutiny Panel Chairmen on each Panel’s progress against the work programme.


The Commission noted progress against the Overview and Scrutiny work programme for 2016-17.


Date of the next meeting


The date of the next Overview and Scrutiny Commission was 6 July 2017.