Agenda a Chofnodion

Lleoliad: Siambr y Cyngor, Y Pafiliynau, Parc Hen Lofa'r Cambrian, Cwm Clydach, Tonypandy CF40 2XX

Cyswllt: Sarah Handy- Graduate Scrutiny Officer  01443 424099

Rhif eitem




The Vice Chair welcomed Members to the meeting of the Finance and Performance Scrutiny Committee and thanked everyone for attending.


Datgan Buddiant

Derbyn datganiadau o fuddiannau personol gan Aelodau, yn unol â gofynion y Cod Ymddygiad.




1.    Mae gofyn i Aelodau ddatgan rhif a phwnc yr agendwm mae eu buddiant yn ymwneud ag ef a mynegi natur y buddiant personol hwnnw; a

2.   Lle bo Aelodau'n ymneilltuo o'r cyfarfod o ganlyniad i ddatgelu buddiant sy'n rhagfarnu, rhaid iddyn nhw roi gwybod i'r Cadeirydd pan fyddan nhw'n gadael.




In accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct, there were no declarations made pertaining to the agenda.





Apologies of absence were received from County Borough Councillors M. Powell, M. Diamond, A. Davies-Jones, G. Holmes, W. Lewis, S. Rees-Owen, A. Fox and T. Williams.


Cofnodion pdf icon PDF 92 KB

Derbyn cofnodion o gyfarfod blaenorol y Pwyllgor Craffu – Cyllid a Chyflawniad a gafodd ei gynnal ar 4 Tachwedd 2019.



It was RESOLVED to approve the minutes of the 4th of November 2019 as an accurate reflection of the meeting, subject to the following amendments:-


·         Item 24, page 7 to be amended as follows; “Councillor Thomas commented that the greater proportion of areas in the Cynon Valley are not being charged CIL”.


Dolenni Ymgynghori

Gwybodaeth mewn perthynas ag ymgynghoriadau perthnasol i'w ystyried gan y Pwyllgor.




The Vice Chair referenced the consultation links, which were available through the ‘RCT Scrutiny’ website.  The Vice Chair reminded Members that Information is provided in respect of relevant consultations for consideration by the Committee, which are circulated on a monthly basis by the Graduate Scrutiny Research Officer.




Ymgysylltu – Y Pwyllgor Craffu a'r Cabinet pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Derbyn Cynghorydd y Fwrdeistref Sirol R. Bevan (Aelod o'r Cabinet ar faterion Menter, Datblygu, a Thai), i roi trosolwg i Aelodau'r Pwyllgor Craffu o'r gwaith sy'n rhan o bortffolio'r Aelod o'r Cabinet. (Mae adroddiad, i gael ei drafod gan Aelodau, wedi'i atodi i fynd gyda'r eitem yma.)




The Director of Prosperity and Development, in conjunction with Councillor R. Bevan (Cabinet Member for Enterprise Development & Housing), provided an overview of the portfolio responsibilities of the Cabinet Member to include Town Centres, Planning and Housing.


The Cabinet Member reminded Members that the focus has been to develop and promote the County Borough in order to encourage economic growth. The Cabinet Member emphasised that the department is evolving in respect of tourism and stressed the importance of advancing the opportunities coming forward.


Discussions ensued and Councillor Bradwick referred Members to page 19 of the report and praised the redevelopment work of the former Boot and Black Lion Hotels. However, the Member also noted that more community engagement should be done in respect of local letting policies. The Cabinet Member confirmed that there will indeed be a local letting policy and that the Council are in the process of looking at the impact on the community as a whole. In respect of the Boot Hotel, Councillor Bradwick noted his disappointment in the lack of retail development in the downstairs area of the building and commented that further detailed design development is required to bring the historic building back into full use.


Councillor Cullwick referred the Committee to page 20 of the report, paragraph 6,4.3, and praised the Porth Town Centre Regeneration Strategy. The Member queried whether the Strategy would force owners of derelict buildings to bring the buildings back into use. The Member felt that the regeneration of derelict buildings would help to make Porth more attractive to visitors. The Director of Prosperity and Development agreed and informed Members that there are a range of initiatives that the Council can offer to owners of derelict buildings, such as grants, acquiring the building or the use of a compulsory purchase order. The Cabinet Member emphasised that the Council is extremely focused on town centre regeneration and noted that generally, the loss of town centre banking has led to a drop in footfall. The Cabinet Member advised Members that further initiatives include the possibility of community banking or the possibility of several different banks operating out of one facility.


Discussions continued in respect of the regeneration of town centres and Councillor Cullwick queried whether there were any plans to increase the footfall in Tonypandy. The Member felt that despite recent initiatives to develop the town centre, the footfall has continued to decline. The Cabinet Member advised Members that key development proposals are in place and will be brought forward, however, the Cabinet Member emphasised that due to its confidential and sensitive nature, further details could not be disclosed at this point.


Councillor Yeo referred the Committee to page 22 of the report and queried when the formal revision of the LDP will be adopted. The Director of Prosperity and Development informed Members that the formal revision process of the LDP is due to finish in early 2022 and that in the meantime, the Service will continue to collate further evidence  ...  view the full Cofnodion text for item 35.


Strategaeth Ddigidol pdf icon PDF 47 KB

Cynnydd a'r Camau Nesaf



With the aid of a Power Point Presentation, the Service Director- ICT & Digital Services, provided Members with an overview of the Council’s Digital Strategy 2017-20, the progress of its associated work programme and consideration of its future direction.


The Service Director reminded Members of the requirement to bring forward a new Digital Strategy for 2020-24, aligned with the new Corporate Plan. Members were advised that it is an opportunity for the Finance and Performance Scrutiny Committee to assess and review the progress made against the current strategy and to provide feedback on any areas of priority or refocus, which can be considered as part of the development of a new strategy. 


The Service Director informed Members that the Committee would have opportunity to pre-scrutinise the Draft Digital Strategy in January 2020 and the Committee’s feedback would be included in the Draft Strategy to be presented to Cabinet in February 2020.


Following the update, the Service Director sought feedback from the Committee and the views of Members are noted below.


Councillor Bradwick sought clarification on a number of issues, which are listed below in numerical order:-


1.    He began by seeking clarification on the number of staff using the agile working policy;

2.    Councillor Bradwick praised the roll out of the Mod Gov App, however, he queried whether members from outside bodies, such as the Fire Service, could also have use of the application;

3.    In respect of Apps, Councillor Bradwick queried whether an app could be produced for Members use only;

4.    In respect of the Customer Relationship Management System (CRM), it was noted that some departments are slower than others when responding to customer complaints;

5.    In respect of mileage claims, Councillor Bradwick sought clarification as to why this cannot be done online; and,

6.    In respect of waste collections of bulky items, Councillor Bradwick questioned why residents cannot make changes to waste collection requests online.


The Service Director informed Members that there are approximately 13,000 staff members using the Council’s agile working policy and that this is likely to increase. In respect of outside bodies using the Mod Gov App, the Service Director confirmed that it is possible for outside bodies to be included on the App, however, the contract is between Mod Gov and the user and as such it is preferable to create a direct contractual link between the user and Mod Gov. In respect of a Members App, the Service Director confirmed that this is currently being developed and is something that the Council could use to offer a range of services to its Elected Members. With regard to the CRM, the Service Director confirmed that the procurement of a modernised CRM will increase its customer care. Additionally, in relation to online waste collection services, the Service Director confirmed that he will raise this point with the Group Director, Prosperity Development & Frontline Services. In respect of online mileage claims, the Service Director informed Members that the Council is in the process of procuring a new  ...  view the full Cofnodion text for item 36.


Adroddiad y Cyfarwyddwr Gwasanaethau Cyllid a Digidol pdf icon PDF 4 MB

Trafod Adroddiad Cyflawniad y Cyngor ar gyfer yr Ail Chwarter (2019/20).



The Service Director- Performance & Improvement provided Members with the Quarter 2 Council Performance Report (to 30th September 2019).


Members were asked to scrutinise the Council’s financial and operational performance position as at the 30th September 2019 and to consider whether they wish to scrutinise in greater depth any matters contained in the report.


The Service Director referred Members to Appendix 1 of the report, which contains the Council’s Quarter 2 Performance Report that was presented to Cabinet on the 21st of November 2019. Members were informed that the report contains revenue and capital budget performance; treasury Management prudential indicators; Organisational Health information including staff turnover, sickness and Council strategic risks; Corporate Plan priority action plan updates; other national measures; and target setting.


Members were asked to note that 12 Corporate Plan performance measures were ‘Not on target’. In addition, 16 national measures do not form part of the Council’s Corporate Plan and are therefore excluded from the Council’s analysis. The Service Director informed Members that as at Quarter 2, one national measure was ‘Not on Target’, seven were ‘On Target’, and seven were ‘Within 5% of target’.


Committee Members were informed that the Quarter 2 report comprises;


Ø  Executive Summary

Ø  Revenue Monitoring

Ø  Capital Monitoring

Ø  Organisational Health

Ø  Corporate Plan/ Other National Measures


In respect of ‘Organisational Health’, and specifically sickness absence levels showing an improved position compared to 30th September 2018 and 31st March 2019. He added that on-going attention will be afforded to this area to support staff health and well-being. Members were reminded that there continues to be a focus in organisational health related areas, for example, IT infrastructure and invest to save energy efficiencies schemes, with this work being supported through existing resources.


Committee Members were referred to the ‘Executive Summary’ and discussions ensued.


In respect of ‘Adult Services’, Members were informed that the service faced an increase demand during the winter months, which resulted in an overspend of £0.285M.


The Service Director then referred Members to Section 3 of the report and the Council’s Capital Programme. Members were advised in respect of the key capital variances at Quarter 2, which includes a re-profiling of a number of projects to reflect changes in the total cost of schemes and revised delivery timescales and the various grant approvals that were introduced into the Capital Programme.


In respect of the Council’s strategic risks, Members were informed that there have been no changes to the Strategic Risk Register between quarters 1 and 2. The Service Director assured Members that all strategic risks will continue to be reviewed on an on-going basis and, where appropriate, revisions will be made to the Risk Register.


Committee Members were then referred to Section 5 of the Corporate Plan. It was noted that good progress continues to be made on a number of town centre developments, such as the Porth Town Centre Strategy and the opening of the Community Hub in Mountain Ash in June 2019.


Members  ...  view the full Cofnodion text for item 37.


Cyflwyniad – Ymgynghoriad ar Gyllideb 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 113 KB

Derbyn cyflwyniad mewn perthynas â'r ymgynghoriad ar gyllideb 2020/21. 




With the aid of a PowerPoint presentation, the Service Director – Finance & Improvement Services provided Members with an overview of the 2020/21 Revenue Budget Strategy Consultation and updated Committee on the following areas:


·      General approach for 2019/20

·      Consultation

o  Budget

o  Simulator

o  Corporate Plan

o  Council Tax Reduction Scheme

·      Budget Setting Timetable


Following the update, the Service Director indicated that the overview intended to assist Members in formulating their responses to a number of questions to be posed to the Committee, in line with its Terms of Reference and as a consultee as part of the 2020/21 Revenue Budget Strategy Consultation process. The Director added that the feedback provided by Members would be presented to Cabinet alongside the feedback from all other consultees as part of Cabinet agreeing a proposed Budget Strategy for 2020/21.


The Service Director sought feedback from the Committee on a number of areas and the views of Members are noted below.


With regard to Question 1, Members agreed on a less than 3% increase tohelp support the continuation of service provision in the context of rising cost pressures and demand for specific services. However, a Member also fed back that this was difficult to measure against CPI and that ideally, there should not be any increase at all.

In respect of Question 2, the Voting Elected Parent/ Governor Representative raised his concern that other school costs would not receive the same increase in resources. Another Member commented that resources should also be provided to cover an increase in pay for support staff. It was also felt that the same question should be provided as part of the consultation process for Community and Children’s Services and not just in education. Overall, Committee Members agreed that the Council should provide sufficient resources to fully cover increased pay costs in schools throughout RCT.


Discussions ensued and in respect of Question 3, the following points were noted:-


·         A number of Members fed back that fees and charges in respect of Free School Meals should be frozen, whilst all other areas should be increased by 1.5%. However, Members also noted that the assumption cannot be to increase fees and charges every year;

·         Another Member cautioned against increasing the charges for Town Centre Car Parking and it was fed back that there should be no increase to the cost of a resident car parking permit;

·         A Member also cautioned against increasing the fees for Meals on Wheels and noted that the Council needs to encourage more residents to use this service;

·         A Member noted his disappointment that in respect of tourist attractions, the Council charge less fees than other Councils.

In respect of Free School Meals, a Member sought clarification as to how many meals the Council is currently providing. The Service Director answered a number of queries and began by noting that Car Parking Charges vary across the County Borough. In respect of Free School Meals, the Service Director informed Members that following the roll out of Universal Credit,  ...  view the full Cofnodion text for item 38.


Chair's closing remarks


The Vice Chair thanked everyone for attending and wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.