Agenda

Review of blue badge process, Wellbeing and Finance Overview and Scrutiny Panel - Wednesday, 21 April 2021 2.30 pm

Venue: Zoom Meeting. View directions

Contact: Email: committee@bracknell-forest.gov.uk 

Link: This meeting will be held online

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for absence

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

2.

Declarations of Interest and Party Whip

Members are asked to declare any disclosable pecuniary or affected interests and the nature of that interest, 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. 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.

3.

Evidence from Ollie Sirrell, Bracknell News local democracy reporter

4.

Evidence from Bracknell Forest Council adult social care officers

Melanie O’Rourke, Assistant Director: Adult Social Care

 

Gavin Austin, Assistant Community Services Manager - Occupational Therapy

 

 

Evidence pack

The following items form the evidence pack for this review which is part of the Overview and Scrutiny work programme: Overview and scrutiny work programme | Bracknell Forest Council (bracknell-forest.gov.uk) .

 

The review will take place over a series of meetings. Some meetings will be open to the public and others will be closed. This will be determined by the nature of the session and the sensitivity of the information being shared. The priority will always be the effectiveness of the review. The Panel may produce interim reports as well as a final report capturing good practice, learning points and recommendations.

 

5.

Scope of the review pdf icon PDF 198 KB

Describes the background to and the scope of this review into blue badge applications.

6.

Schedule of the review pdf icon PDF 231 KB

Provides an overview of the approach for this review.

7.

Blue Badge scheme local authority guidance (England)

Guidance from central Government to help local authorities put in place administration, assessment and enforcement practices that are fair, effective and efficient:

Blue Badge scheme local authority guidance (England) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

 

 

8.

Exert from Blue Badge scheme local authority guidance pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Section 4 – Determining the eligibility of individual applicants - is particularly relevant and is included here.

 

9.

Local authority guidance sent to applicants (exerts) pdf icon PDF 567 KB

This document contains further exerts from the central Government guidance and is sent out with refusal decision letters. The letter makes reference to the relevant parts of the guidance to explain the basis for the refusal.

 

10.

Councillor briefing on non-visible disabilities pdf icon PDF 152 KB

This briefing note was provided to councillors in February 2020 to provide an update on the new guidance within Bracknell Forest.

11.

Applications

Guidance from Citizens Advice about the applications process:

 

Applying for a Blue Badge - Citizens Advice

 

and what to do if you have been refused:

 

If you've been refused a Blue Badge - Citizens Advice

 

 

Links to the Bracknell Forest Council application forms:

 

Individual blue badge application - physical disabilities (bracknell-forest.gov.uk)

 

Individual blue badge application - non visible conditions (bracknell-forest.gov.uk)

 

12.

Press articles

Bracknell News article on apparent disparity in application success in Bracknell Forest:

Blue Badge disparity: Bracknell Forest has one of UK's highest rates | Bracknell News

 

Source data for disparity article:

Blue badges - for sharing from the BBC Shared Data Unit - Google Sheets

 

 

Bracknell news story on Wokingham council improvements to blue badge application system:

"You spoke and we have listened" - Wokingham council improves disabled blue badge system following complaints | Bracknell News

 

Wokingham Council article on the improvements:

You spoke, we listened – a quicker and easier online blue badge process launched - Wokingham Borough News Centre

 

13.

Further reading

In 2019, Haringey Council carried out a scrutiny review into blue badges and supporting better access to parking for disabled people:

 

RECOMMENDATIONS (haringey.gov.uk)

 

The review went beyond the scope of this review but, in addition to the recommendations, the following sections may be relevant:

 

4. Applying for and renewing a Blue Badge (pgs 18 – 23)

 

6. Correspondence and Communication (pg 29)

 

7. Assessments for discretionary Blue badge applications (pgs 33 – 36)