Agenda and draft minutes

Cabinet - Wednesday 20th October 2021 10:00am

Venue: Oak Room, County Buildings, Stafford

Contact: Mike Bradbury  Email: michael.bradbury@staffordshire.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

46.

Declarations of Interest in accordance with Standing Order 16

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The following Member declared an interest in accordance with Standing Order 16.5:-

 

Member

Minute Nos.

Interest

Reason

Mark Deaville

57

Personal

Director of Nexxus

 

47.

Decision notice of the meeting held on 15 September 2021 pdf icon PDF 346 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the notes of the meeting held on 15 September 2021 be approved.

48.

Leader's Update

Oral report of the Leader of the Council

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the oral report of the Leader of the Council giving an update on a range of issues including the UN Climate Change Summit, COP26 and Council’s pledge to become carbon neutral by 2050; how we can all do our bit to help make Staffordshire sustainable; national shortages in social care staff and the Council’s new campaign to show the value and opportunities that come with a career in care; the need to do our bit to protect the most vulnerable this winter including the need for people to get their covid jab or booster and book a flu jab as soon as possible; the opening of the final section of the Lichfield Southern Bypass;  and progress on other major schemes including the forthcoming opening of the Stafford Western Access Road and extensions of i54 South Staffordshire and Redhill business park in Stafford, be noted.

49.

Minutes of the meeting of the Property Sub-Committee held on 6 October 2021 pdf icon PDF 211 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the minutes of the meeting of the Property Sub-Committee held on 6 October 2021 be received.</AI3>

50.

Update from COVID-19 Member Led Local Outbreak Control Board pdf icon PDF 241 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Reasons for the Decision – To consider an update from the COVID-19 Member led Local Outbreak Control Board including:

 

·       The number of new cases of Covid in Staffordshire remaining high, about 50% above the England average with nearly half of all new cases being in 5-18 year olds.

 

·       Schools were experiencing large outbreaks which had been substantially disrupting education as large numbers of pupils and teachers were off sick. The Council was providing schools with advice about measures they could implement at their discretion to prevent and manage outbreaks and reduce the impact on education and the wider economy.

 

·       Vaccination was limiting the number of hospitalisations and deaths from Covid. However, the NHS and social care were experiencing considerable pressure from Covid and other conditions.

 

·       The need for people to exercise personal responsibility and continue to take sensible precautions to prevent the spread of infection.

 

·       Progress with Covid vaccination had slowed. More than 1.3 million doses had now been administered. In adults over 50 more than 90% had received two doses and a booster vaccination programme had now commenced. In younger adults uptake of two doses was lower. A programme of vaccination of 12-15 year olds in schools had started, and vaccination of 16 and 17 year olds was ongoing.

 

Decision – That the report be received.

51.

Staffordshire Means Back to Business - Oral Update

Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economy and Skills

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the oral report of the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economy and Skills giving an update on “Staffordshire Means Back to Business” activity including the following matters be noted:

 

  • The challenges facing the economy in relation to supply chain, energy and labour shortages.

 

  • The claimant count in Staffordshire saw a further decrease between August and September.  This rate of decrease is a higher proportional decline than seen regionally and just below the decline seen nationally.Encouragingly for the sixth month in a row Staffordshire has seen a decrease in the youth claimant count with a decline of 80 over the last month.

 

  • Staffordshire saw vacancies increase by 10% between August and September, equivalent to over 2,600 more job vacancies, this was higher than the increase of 6% seen nationally.  

 

  • Together with our District and Borough partners our Staffordshire Means Back to Business Programme continues to deliver:

 

- We are now supporting 209 apprenticeships

- We have approved grants to support 231 companies with free training enabling them to work in a post Covid competitive environment

- Nearly 300 people have benefitted from our business start up programme.

 

52.

Adult Learning Disability 2022 Community Offer: Update on Learning Disability Residential Services Directly Provided by Staffordshire County Council pdf icon PDF 266 KB

Cabinet Member for Health and Care

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“We want to ensure that people who need care can access it, and that our services are fit for the future. By refurbishing Hawthorn House, we will make sure that adults with profound and multiple learning disabilities can be cared for in an environment that best suits their needs, and in line with the Care Quality Commission’s Right Support, Right Care, Right Culture ethos.

 

These proposals have been welcomed by parents and carers of the current residents, and will allow them to continue to live together, whilst giving them the care their require.”

 

Julia Jessel, Cabinet Member for Health and Care

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider proposals to extend and refurbish the Hawthorn House lower building to accommodate up to 15 residents, to ensure that adults with profound and multiple learning disabilities can be cared for in an environment that best suits their needs.

 

Decision – (a) That the extension and refurbishment of Hawthorn House lower building to accommodate up to 15 residents, as detailed in the report, be approved.

 

(b) That the disposal of the Hawthorn House upper building, once the new lower building development is complete, be approved.

 

(c) That authority be delegated to thee Director for Health and Care to procure and award contracts for the construction works.

53.

Climate Change Annual Report and Climate Change Action Plan 2 pdf icon PDF 255 KB

Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

“We have made significant steps over the last year to set us in the right direction to achieve our net zero target.

 

Now we are stepping up to advance this work by setting out a broad range of actions we are confident we can achieve over the next four years. It is crucial that this is a collective effort with our residents, schools, businesses and district and borough council partners.

 

Since we declared a climate change emergency, we have demonstrated our commitment and drive to improve our environment. We understand that huge challenges lie ahead but are confident we can overcome these and deliver for our communities”.

 

Simon Tagg, Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider  feedback from the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee where Members commented on the Council’s first Climate Change Annual Report; and to  seek approval of the Climate Change Action Plan 2 (CCAP 2) which contains specific actions to be undertaken by the Council prior to 2025 which will assist in our journey to become net carbon zero by 2050.

 

Decision (a) That the Council’s Climate Change 2021 Annual Report, which records the positive progress that has been made on our target to become net carbon zero by 2050, be noted.

 

(b) That the comments of the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee, at paragraphs 13 to 16 of the report, when they considered both the 2021 Annual Report and the draft Climate Change Action Plan 2, be noted.

 

(c) That the Climate Change Action Plan 2 (CCAP 2), which lists our key climate change mitigating actions over the next 4 years, be approved.

54.

Formal Report of the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman pdf icon PDF 211 KB

Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“We are committed to supporting post-16 students who are from low-income families and those with an Education, Health and Care Plan who require specialist assistance due to a learning difficulty or disability.

 

Having worked with the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman on this case we have apologised to the family and put right our mistake and we have reviewed how we assess post-16 transport applications for students with Special Educational Needs”.

 

Jonathan Price, Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider a Formal Report by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman in relation to Post 16 travel for a SEND child.

 

Decision (a) That the contents of the Formal Report from the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) in relation to Post -16 transport for a SEND child, be noted.

 

(b) That the finding of “Report issued: upheld; maladministration and injustice” be noted and the recommendations made as part of the investigation report be implemented.

55.

Impact of COVID-19 on SCC Communities, Economy and Organisation and Recovery Progress - Update October 2021 and Way Forward pdf icon PDF 592 KB

Leader of the Council

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“Since the easing of restrictions, it has been fantastic to see our schools, our businesses and our hospitality and our leisure sectors once again fully reopening their doors.

 

While Covid and its legacy will be with us for some time. we must look forward to rebuilding our economy, ensuring that our children get the schooling they need and that people can once again aspire to happy, healthier and rewarding lives.

 

As a county council, we remain at the forefront of managing Covid and also managing the impact it has had own our services and the communities we serve.

 

The pandemic has shown Staffordshire’s strengths: Our resilience, our determination and our compassions. It is also opened up new ways of smarter working which will be invaluable as we go forward with our lives”.

 

Alan White, Leader of the Council

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider the high-level priorities which have been identified for recovery from the impact of Covid-19 across the County Council and the continued progress against these; together with the on-going approach to the leadership, influencing and monitoring of the recovery process moving forwards.

 

Decision – (a) That the impact of Covid-19 on Staffordshire since October 2020 be noted.

 

(b) That the progress being made towards resetting the Corporate Strategy be noted.

 

(c) That the progress made towards delivering the high-level priorities and plans from each recovery area be noted.

 

(d) That the County Council’s approach to the leadership, influencing and monitoring of the Recovery process moving forward, be endorsed.

56.

Integrated Performance Report - Quarter 2 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

“Dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic remains our focus and we continue to do what is required to control the spread of the virus and keep people safe.

 

COVID-19 is still very much with us and over Quarter 2 we have seen a steady increase in the number of cases. The impact that COVID-19 can have on lives and potentially on livelihoods is still very real. The vaccine has been a game changer and in Staffordshire 82% of adults have had both vaccines. Maximising vaccine uptake amongst those eligible, including booster doses and extending vaccine roll out to children aged 12 to 15, will all help to reduce the spread. As we approach autumn and then winter, we need to continue to keep people safe, keep the economy moving and reduce the pressures on our hospitals.

 

We still face capacity issues and challenges in adult social care but in September, we had the long-awaited announcement from Government on how this will be funded. While many people will welcome the cap of £86,000 on people’s contribution to their own care when they are elderly, the introduction of a 1.25% health and care levy on working people will be a difficult pill for many to swallow. In the short term the money will go into the NHS to clear the backlog of appointments and operations and will increase the county council’s costs. So, we need to see more detail of how these proposals will work in practice.

 

We will continue to support those who need us most, including the care sector and vulnerable families, children and communities. We continue to provide advice and support for businesses, as we work to get our economy back on track. We have plans in place to ensure we bounce back stronger and generate new opportunities for better jobs, improved lives, and a greener county for everyone.”.

 

Alan White, Leader of the Council

 

“Coping with the COVID-19 pandemic continues to put extra pressures on our finances, but we continue to manage them effectively and are doing what is needed and spending what is required.

 

We have used the extra funding and grants from Government to help support the additional pressures of continuing to provide vital services while protecting our residents. All council departments continue to deliver against their recovery priorities, whilst progressing with activities in the organisation’s Delivery Plan.

 

The latest revenue forecast outturn shows a forecast saving of £1.992m (0.4%). This is compared to the previous forecast of a saving of £8.119m (1.5%) at Quarter 1.

 

Like many local authorities, we still face financial challenges including in adult social care and in children’s social services. We have had the announcement from Government on the long-term funding of adult social care, which was good to see, but we do need to see more details of how this will work in practice.

 

We will continue to keep our finances in as strong a position as possible and to ensure that we provide good value for money for local tax-payers.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 56.

57.

Nexxus Trading Services Limited - Annual Report 2020/2021 pdf icon PDF 265 KB

Cabinet Member for Commercial Matters

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“Nexxus Care was established to provide care for Staffordshire people when no other provider is available. However, independent companies nationally are facing challenges with rising demand, increased costs and difficulties recruiting and retaining staff and the Council has struggled in some areas of the county to find care providers who offer good quality services at an affordable price.

 

Nexxus Care has also supported the Covid pandemic response by providing a lateral flow device testing service.”

 

Mark Deaville, Cabinet Member for Commercial Matters

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider an update on the activities and Performance of Nexxus during 2020/2021.

 

Decision – That the Nexxus Care Annual Report 2020/2021 be noted.

58.

Supplementary Capital Programme for Schools 2021/2022 pdf icon PDF 298 KB

Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“It is essential that children and young people in the county have access to a good, local school.

 

Our capital programme for the next year is designed to ensure we make the most of the funding we have, and work with schools to improve school infrastructure. This way, we can ensure the county’s children are learning in the best environment possible.

 

Added to this, the extra funding from government means we can really make an impact in terms of making schools more sustainable and contribute to the reduction in our carbon footprint”.

 

Jonathan Price, Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

 

Reasons for the Decision To consider the Capital Programme for Schools Phase 2 for 2021/22 which provides an increased amount of Central Government funding for the upkeep of the Council’s maintained schools.

 

Decision – That the Schools Capital Programme Phase 2 2021/22 investment proposal, as set out in the report and supporting

Appendices, be approved

 

(b) That the Assistant Director for Commercial and Assets monitors progress and makes any necessary in-year alterations in agreement with the Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND).

59.

Branston Locks Primary - Proposed 2FE and Associated S106 Contributions (Wave School) pdf icon PDF 277 KB

Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“Staffordshire’s school building programme has successfully secured new school places for thousands of school children over the past few years and ensured our school landscape can cope with the increased demand for places brought about by new housing developments.

 

This latest primary school at Branston Road will be built on behalf of the Department for Education and will eventually be able to accommodate more than 400 pupils. This will ensure there are plenty of school places to cope with increasing demand in the years to come, and parents will still have the opportunity to send their child to a good, local school”.

 

Jonathan Price, Cabinet Member for Education (and SEND)

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider the acquisition of land and the development of a 2-form entry primary school at Branston Road, Burton on Trent to be known as Branston Locks Primary School under the Department for Education’s wave programme.

 

Decision – (a) That the completion of a Transfer of the school land at Branston Locks to Staffordshire County Council in accordance with the terms of the section 106 agreement dated the 14th April 2015 between Nurton Developments (Quintus) Limited (1) Staffordshire County Council (2) East Staffordshire Borough Council (3) Lloyds Bank PLC (4) (‘the Section 106 Agreement’), be approved.

 

(b) That the completion of a Capital Contribution Letter with the Secretary of State for Education, or such other party as they shall so direct, for the payment of £6,400,000 of the primary school contribution received by Staffordshire County Council under the terms of the Section 106 Agreement, be approved.

 

(c) That the completion of an Agreement for Lease and Lease with the  Secretary of State for Education, or such other party as they shall so  direct, to enable the construction of the 2 form entry primary school and  thereafter the use of the primary school for up to 125 years, be approved.

 

(d) That permission be delegated to the Assistant Director for Commercial and Assets to agree the final terms of the Transfer, Capital Contribution Letter, Agreement for Lease and Heads of Terms.

60.

Staffordshire Bus Strategy - Bus Service Improvement Plan pdf icon PDF 395 KB

Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“This is an opportunity to bid for funding over a fixed period to support local bus operators in making their services more attractive.

 

Working with operators, and listening to bus users, this is an opportunity to modernise bus fleets, improve stops and incorporate real-time information, as well as using technology to make tickets and payment so much easier.

 

A reliable, comfortable bus service can support town centres, give students more choice and help people get to work”.

 

David Williams, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider the approval of the key elements of the Staffordshire Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) which has been developed in partnership with the public bus providers operating in Staffordshire. 

 

Decision – (a) That the comments and suggestions of the Prosperous Overview and Scrutiny Committee when they reviewed the emerging priorities of the BSIP at their meeting held on the 16 September 2021, be noted.

 

(b) That the key issues highlighted by the BSIP public engagement exercise be noted.

 

(c) That the key asks of Staffordshire Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) as outlined in the report be approved and that the Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport be authorised to finalise the required documentation and make any final minor changes prior to the 31 October 2021 deadline.

 

(d) That the Director of Economy, Infrastructure and Skills be authorised to submit the final BSIP to the Department of Transport by the deadline of the 31 October 2021.

61.

Household Support Fund pdf icon PDF 326 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Note by Clerk: The Chairman agreed to add this matter to the agenda as an urgent item of business.  In addition, in accordance with The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2000) (Regulation 16), the Leader of the Council has sought the approval of the Chairman of the Prosperous Overview and Scrutiny Committee for the Key Decision to be taken.

 

“For the last 12 months we have been supporting thousands of children – and their families – though school holidays with either the distribution of eVouchers to parents and carers, or the provision of food and activities across the county.

 

Now this new funding of approximately £5.5 million will help many more households most in need with food, energy and water bills, through the Christmas, Easter and February school holidays.”

 

Mark Sutton, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider the proposed expenditure and delivery arrangements for the Household Support Fund in Staffordshire which is required to be fully spent by 31st March 2022.

 

Decision – (a) That the anticipated receipt of £5,506,547.99 from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), in relation to the Household Support Fund (HSF) be acknowledged.

 

(b) That the proposals for the usage of the HSF be approved.

 

(c) That authority be delegated to the Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, in consultation with the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities, to decide the eligibility criteria for distribution of the HSF in Staffordshire, and to take all other subsequent decisions to ensure that this support gets to those who need it as quickly as possible.

 

(d) That it be acknowledged that the delegation to the Cabinet Member for Children and Young People includes authorising the County Council to enter required contractual arrangements with Partners and Providers where required to deliver the HSF in Staffordshire.

62.

Decisions taken by Cabinet Members under Delegated Powers pdf icon PDF 186 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the following decisions taken by Cabinet Members under delegated powers be noted:

 

Cabinet Member

Decision

Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture

In approvinga variation to the agreement to manage and deliver Shenstone Community Managed Library, replacing the existing contracting term (5-year with an option to extend for a 5-year period) with a 10-year term commencing in March 2022.

 

 

63.

Forward Plan of Key Decisions pdf icon PDF 158 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Forward Plan of Key Decisions for the period 17 November 2021 to 16 March 2022, which detailed the following issues, was approved:

 

Subject Matter

Contact

Treasury Management Half Yearly Report 2021/22

Name: Rob Salmon

Tel: (01785) 276354

The Future of Replacement Care Services (Learning Disabilities)

Name: Andrew Jepps

Tel: (01785) 278557

Grant Award Expenditure - Green Homes Grant

Name: Dr Richard Harling

Tel: (01785) 278700

Burton Town Deal - River Trent Cycle / Footbridge Update

Name: Wayne Mortiboys

Tel: (01785) 276578

VCSE Capacity Building Recommission

Name: Kerry Dove

Tel: 07855 679112

Integrated Service Model for In-House Day Opportunities and Respite

Name: Kelly Gray

Tel: 07815 999002

IA2609 Framework for Responsive Property Maintenance and Day Works

Name: Ian Turner

Tel: (01785) 277228

Burton Town Deal - Proposed Library Move

Name: Wayne Mortiboys

Tel: (01785) 276578

Diversity and Inclusion - Principles, Objectives and Action Plan

Name: Kerry Dove

Tel: 07855 679112

Proposed Relocation and Expansion of St Leonard's Primary School, Stafford

Name: Tim Moss

Tel: (01785) 277963

Chatterley Valley West - Project Update

Name: Anthony Hodge

Tel: (01785) 277204

Strategic Plan and Medium Term Financial Strategy 2022 - 2027

Name: Rachel Spain

Tel: (01785) 854455

Business Case for Care Home Developments

Name: Helen Trousdale

Tel: (01785) 277008

Integrated Performance Report - Quarter 3 2021/22

Name: Kerry Dove/ Rob Salmon

Tel: (01785) 276354

Entrust Service Delivery Agreement

Name: Ian Turner

Tel: (01785) 277228

 

 

64.

Exclusion of the Public

The Chairman to move:-

 

“That the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business which involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of Local Government Act 1972 indicated below”.

 

 

PART TWO

(All reports in this section are exempt)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decision – That the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business which involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of Local Government Act 1972 indicated below.

 

PART TWO

 

65.

Dry Mixed Recycling Treatment - April 2022

(Exemption paragraph 3)

 

Cabinet Member for Environment, Infrastructure and Climate Change

Minutes:

(Exclusion paragraph 3)

 

Reasons for the Decision – To proposals for a change in the collection arrangements for Dry Mixed Recyclate post-April 2022.

 

Decision That the recommendations contained in the report be agreed.

66.

Highways Contract Award - Pets at Home, Redhill, Stafford

(Exemption paragraph 3)

 

Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport

Minutes:

(Exemption paragraph 3)

 

Reasons for the Decision – To consider the award of a Highways Construction Contract Award associated with the Pets at Home development at Redhill, Stafford.

 

Decision – That the recommendations contained in the report be agreed.