Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Wednesday, 2nd December, 2015 7.00 pm

Venue: Peel Room - Elizabethan Suite - Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Leigh Webb  Democratic Services

No. Item



Members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee are asked to consider whether they have an interest in any matters on the agenda and, if so, to formally declare that interest.


There were no declarations of interest



MINUTES pdf icon PDF 50 KB

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the last meeting held on 13 October 2015.


It was agreed:


That the Minutes of the meeting, held on 13 October 2015, be agreed as a correct record.



A period of 30 minutes has been set aside for members of the public to ask questions on matters considered at the last meeting and set out in the minutes or on the agenda for tonight’s meeting.


There were no members of the public present to ask questions under this item



A report from the Cabinet Member for Environment is attached.

Additional documents:


Councillor Isherwood, Cabinet Member for Environment, submitted a report setting out performance information in respect of rates of recycling following the move to 3 weekly residual waste collections.


Information was set out relating to:


·         Tonnages collected for each bin type

·         Rates of Fly Tipping

·         Recycling Rates


The Cabinet Member reported that the move to 3 weekly residual collections had been successful in improving recycling rates and the hoped for savings in avoided waste disposal costs had been achieved.


Questions and comments were invited from Members of the Committee and the following issues were raised:


·         With regard to the issue of fly tipping, the Cabinet Member acknowledged the slight increase in the figures and stated that the rate had risen predominately as a result of increased commercial waste. It was reported that a strategy was being developed to tackle this issue.


·         In response to a question on how to further improve recycling rates, the Cabinet Member stressed the importance of encouraging the re-use of items.


·         Councillor O’Brien highlighted the amount of non recyclable packaging used by supermarkets. The Cabinet Member acknowledged there was little demand for low grade plastics and explained that Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority were highlighting the issue of packaging to Government.  


·         In response to a question from the Chair, Councillor Gartside, the Assistant Director (Operations) undertook to distribute information relating to the tonnages of waste delivered to Household Recycling Centres in the Borough when received.


·         With regard to the issue of fly tipping, Members of the Committee stressed the importance of robust enforcement and prosecutions where necessary. 


It was agreed:


That the update be noted.



Corporate Financial Monitoring Report - April to September 2015 pdf icon PDF 191 KB

A report from the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing is attached


Additional documents:


The Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing submitted a report informing Members of the Council’s financial position for the period April to September 2015 and projections for the estimated outturn at the end of 2015/16. The report also provided Prudential Indicators in accordance with CIPFA’s Prudential Code.


Questions and comments were invited and the following issues were raised:


·         In response to a question from Councillor Briggs it was reported that pressure had been received on the Integrated Community Equipment Services budget as a result a new contract with Pennine Care.


·         The Interim Executive Director of Resources explained that the shortfall in parking income was largely a result of increased avoidance and reported that work was ongoing NSL to devise a strategic approach to the issue

·         In response to a question from Councillor Hankey concerning income from property, the Deputy Leader explained that both the Estates Strategy and the Investment Acquisition Strategy were being implemented to ensure underperforming assets were being disposed of.


·         The Chair, Councillor Gartside, raised the issue of children’s social care demand pressures. The Deputy Leader explained the initiatives in place to reduce the projected overspend but highlighted the prescriptive statutory responsibilities and difficulties in predicting the demand for services for young people with complex needs.



It was agreed:


That the report be noted.



Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider passing the appropriate resolution under Section 100 (A)(4), Schedule 12(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, that the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the reason that the following business involves the disclosure of exempt information as detailed against the item.


Delegated decision:


That in accordance with Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972,  the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items of business as it involves the likely disclosure of information  relating to the business affairs of the Authority



A report from the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing is attached


The Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance and Housing submitted a report providing an update of the progress made following in-house and independent reviews of the service undertaken by Price Waterhouse Cooper. The report set out details of the work undertaken to address the following recommendations arising from the reviews:


·         The Council should look to review margins and simplify the pricing structure, and consider removing the higher charges for the use of external caterers which appears to inhibit demand from local ethnic minorities.

·         Consideration should be given to rationalising the catering service to the Elizabethan Suite only, and provide access to the catering facilities at the other venues as part of the hire charge.

·         Budgets should be reviewed on a bottom-up basis and more realistic sales targets should be set.

·         A review of marketing and sales should consider the option to outsource this function to a specialist provider on a commission basis.

·         Work should be undertaken by the Council to explore the options for capital investment in the facilities to improve the quality of the service on offer.

·         Set up a Civics Management Group.

·         The Council should reconsider the long-term options for the management and operational running of the Civic Halls.

·         Explore the opportunity to integrate Venues Management across similar leisure and cultural areas to increase opportunities to widen the scope of activities taking place in venues.

·         The ultimate aim is to reduce the financial subsidy required and improve community value.


During discussion of this item, the Deputy Leader updated the Committee in respect of the planned closure of Radcliffe Civic Suite and stressed that there was a role for Civic venues but acknowledged that they need to be commercially viable.  


It was agreed:


That a further report be presented to this Committee in 12 months