Agenda and minutes

Budget and Performance Panel
Tuesday, 23rd February 2016 6.10 p.m.

Venue: Lancaster Town Hall

Contact: Sarah Moorghen, Democratic Services - telephone 01524 582132 or email  smoorghen@lancaster.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

The Panel noted with sadness the death of Councillors George Askew and Richard Newman-Thompson.  Prior to the commencement of the meeting, the Panel stood for one minute’s silence, in their memory.

 

36.

Minutes

Minutes of the Meeting held on 26th January 2016 (previously circulated). 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 26th January 2016 were signed as a correct record.

37.

Items of Urgent Business authorised by the Chairman

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

38.

Declaration of Interests

To receive declarations by Members of interests in respect of items on this Agenda. 

Members are reminded that, in accordance with the Localism Act 2011, they are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests which have not already been declared in the Council’s Register of Interests. (It is a criminal offence not to declare a disclosable pecuniary interest either in the Register or at the meeting). 

Whilst not a legal requirement, in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 10 and in the interests of clarity and transparency, Members should declare any disclosable pecuniary interests which they have already declared in the Register, at this point in the meeting. 

In accordance with Part B Section 2 of the Code Of Conduct, Members are required to declare the existence and nature of any other interests as defined in paragraphs 8(1) or 9(2) of the Code of Conduct. 

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

39.

Treasury Management Strategy pdf icon PDF 221 KB

Report of the Chief Officer (Resources).

 

The City Council’s Treasury Adviser will give a presentation to the Panel.

 

Report to follow.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Mr Richard Dunlop, Director of Capita Asset Services and the City Council’s Treasury Management Advisor, gave a presentation on Treasury Management covering Member involvement, the regulatory structures of treasury management, an overview of the treasury strategy including borrowing, the current economic background and investment considerations.

 

The Chief Officer (Resources) also introduced a report that sought the Panel’s views regarding the proposed treasury management framework for 2016/17.

 

Members asked Mr Dunlop a number of questions regarding paying off debts, risk of investment and possible default, the possibility of using investment cash for internal borrowing, Government bailout of Banks, lending to other local authorities, reserves, the investment with Birmingham City Council and repayments.

 

Resolved:

 

(1)    That Mr Dunlop be thanked for his presentation to the Panel.

 

(2)    That the report be noted.

 

40.

Presentation on Salt Ayre Development Proposals pdf icon PDF 791 KB

Presentation by the Chief Officer (Health and Housing) and Sport and Leisure Manager.

 

The Cabinet report of the 19th January 2016 - Salt Ayre Sports Centre Development Project is attached for background information.

 

Councillor Darren Clifford, Cabinet Members for Leisure, Culture & Tourism and Climate Change has been invited to attend the meeting for this item.

Minutes:

The Chief Officer (Health and Housing), the Sport and Leisure Manager and the Financial Services Manager gave a presentation on the Salt Ayre Sports Centre Development Project. The presentation covered the journey, procurement, business case, development advantages and the transformation of facilities.

 

Members were advised that the proposed project would include a 2-3 year redevelopment of the centre at the cost of £5million. The redevelopment would be completed in phases including;

 

Phase 1 a– reception, café, main hall, steam room, VerTGo Adventure and Adventure Play, high ropes tower,

Phase –1b - Projectile Hall, Fitness Studio and Spin Room,  BMX track, outdoor fitness training facilities.

Phase 2 - Building extension for a new Spa, community facilities, and provision for rehabilitation classes.

 

The Panel was informed of the costs of not developing Salt Ayre Sports Centre which would include £400K in Property related cost, £150K to repair the sports hall floor, £350K resulting from a 25% reduction in income and £60K decrease in income from the Sports Hall. There would also be £1m worth of staff redundancies if the centre closed.

 

Members asked a number of questions regarding facilities for those who cannot exercise in the traditional way, the climbing wall and BMX track, the profitability of gyms, management and staffing, the value of the site for development, income projections and pricing structures.

 

Resolved:

 

(1)    That Officers be thanked for the presentation and the contents be noted.

 

(2)    That additional information to support the business case for the development of Salt Ayre Sports Centre be requested.

 

 

 

 

 

41.

ICT - Bring Your Own Device pdf icon PDF 447 KB

Report of the Chief Officer (Resources).

 

Report to follow.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chief Officer (Resources) and the ICT Manager presented a report on Bring Your Own Device (BYOD).

 

It was reported that, at its meeting held on the 15th July 2015, Council resolved:

 

“to improve the ICT (emails and intranet etc…) service offered to Councillors and reduce costs this Council is to investigate a form of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) with a platform-independent remote access solution for this communication such as that used in many neighbouring councils, such as Fylde, Lancashire County Council, South Lakes and Cumbria.”

 

The aim was to improve the usability to Councillors, reduce costs, improve efficiency and aim towards the aspiration of a paperless Council.

 

Members were advised that the report only considered BYOD for Councillors not staff and had been approached with a view to money saving by minimising spending and utilising the licences already purchased.

 

Four potential options were presented to Members:

 

1.    Stay with current position.

2.    Have a BYOD policy that allows councillors to use their own smart phones and /or tablets for council business.

3.    Have a BYOD policy that allows councillors to use their own smart phones and/or tablets and/or tables and/or PCs/laptops for council business.

4.    Have a BYOD policy that allows councillors to use their own smart phones and/or tablets and/or PCs/laptops for council business, using Microsoft Office 365.

 

It was noted that the Council did not currently have a BYOD Policy and so any move to such a policy would need to be put in place, together with training and terms of agreement. Members were advised that Officers would be preparing a report on this matter to Cabinet early in the new financial year, assuming that the Budget item on Digital Workplace was approved at Budget Council on 2nd March 2016.

 

Members asked a number of questions regarding implementation time scales, Microsoft Office 365 systems and compatible devices, security and the potential cost savings of becoming paperless.

 

Resolved:

 

(1)    That the report be noted.

 

(2)    That the Panel supports option 4 as set out above.

 

 

 

 

42.

Voluntary, Community and Faith Sector Commissioning (VCFS) – Review of Activity pdf icon PDF 719 KB

Report of the Chief Officer (Governance).

 

Councillor Margaret Pattison, Cabinet Member for Markets, Voluntary Sector, Older People and ICT has been invited to attend the meeting for this item.

 

Minutes:

The Organisational Development Manager presented a report on Voluntary, Community and Faith Sector Commissioning (VCFS) Review of Activities.

 

The report provided the Panel with details of the activities and performance of  Voluntary, Community and Faith Sector partners in line with  measures in the current commissioned contracts .

 

Members were advised that, in challenging circumstances, VCFS partners had performed reasonably well. The Panel was informed that partners had identified a number of themes that had impacted on people’s lives, with increased numbers of people finding themselves in difficult circumstances and needing to access the services provided by VCFS partners for a widening range of inter-related needs.

 

Members asked a number of questions in relation to the Community Advice Network and LESS, the 3 year budget forecasting, review of existing commissioned contracts and the gaps in some of the responses from partners.

 

Resolved:

 

That the report be noted.

 

43.

Review of Business Travel pdf icon PDF 672 KB

Report of the Chief Officer (Environment).

Minutes:

It was agreed by the Panel that this item be deferred to the next meeting.

44.

Corporate Financial Monitoring Quarter 3 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 191 KB

Report of the Chief Officer (Resources).

 

Councillor Eileen Blamire, Leader of the Council and Councillor Richard Newman-Thompson, Cabinet Member for Finance and Revenues and Benefits have been invited to attend the meeting for this item.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Financial Services Manager introduced a report to present the Corporate Financial Monitoring 2015/16 Quarter 3.

 

The report provided a snapshot of the corporate financial position of the Council at the end of December.

 

The Panel requested a report on Council owned commercial properties.

 

Members asked a number of questions regarding business rate retention, commercial buildings and vacant space.

 

Resolved:

 

(1)  That the report be noted.

 

(2)  That a report be requested on Council owned commercial buildings.

45.

Work Programme Report pdf icon PDF 195 KB

Report of Chief Officer (Governance). 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members were requested to consider the Committee’s Work Programme.

 

Members noted that the Association of Public Service Excellence (APSE) Report and Action Plan, arising from the review of Environmental Services, Repairs and Maintenance which had been requested at the meeting of the Panel on December 15th 2015, would be reported to the Panel at its meeting on 12th July 2016 and that a Member Briefing be provided if possible, in March 2016 with all Members of the Council invited to attend

 

The Panel also agreed to request a report on Council owned commercial properties to be included in the Work Programme.

 

Members also noted that the Review of Business Travel had been deferred to the next meeting of the Panel.

 

The Panel also agreed to request a report on the Litter Enforcement Service, subject to this proposal being agreed at the Budget Council meeting on 2nd March 2016.

 

Resolved:

 

(1)    That the Work Programme, detailed in Appendix A to the report, be noted.

 

(2)    That with regard to the APSE Report and Action Plan, this item to remain on the Work Programme and a report be provided to the 12th July 2016 meeting and that a Member Briefing be provided if possible in March 2016 with all Members of the Council be invited to attend.

 

(3)    That, in accordance with minute 44, it be noted that a report on commercial properties will be added to the Panel’s Work Programme.

 

(4)    That the Review of Business Travel be included on the Work Programme for the 12th July 2016 meeting.

 

(5)    That a report on the Litter Enforcement Service be included on the Panel’s Work Programme, subject to being agreed at the Budget Council meeting.