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Agenda and minutes

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No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received form Councillors D Cook and J Wade.


Appointment of Vice-Chair


RESOLVED that Councillor Daniel Cook be elected as Vice-Chair


(Moved by Councillor S Goodall and seconded by Councillor C Cooke)


Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 155 KB


The minutes of the meeting held on 10 March 2022 were approved as a correct record


(Moved by Councillor T Jay and seconded by Councillor S Goodall)


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of Members’ interests (personal and/or personal and prejudicial) in any matters which are to be considered at this meeting.


When Members are declaring a personal interest or personal and prejudicial interest in respect of which they have dispensation, they should specify the nature of such interest.  Members should leave the room if they have a personal and prejudicial interest in respect of which they do not have a dispensation. 




There were no declarations of interest.


Chair's Update


There was no further update from the Chair which was not otherwise covered on the agenda.


Responses to Reports of the Corporate Scrutiny Committee


There were no responses to report as yet.  The March Corporate Scrutiny Committee had considered an update on Solway and the Chair reported that this item was due for consideration by Cabinet later this month.


Consideration of Matters referred to the Corporate Scrutiny Committee from Cabinet / Council


No matters had been referred.


Forward Plan

(Discussion item – link to Forward Plan is attached)




Ho further items were identified form the Forward Plan for this Committee’s consideration.


Quarter four 2021/22 Performance Report pdf icon PDF 64 KB

(Report of the Leader of the Council)

Additional documents:


The Committee received the Leader of the Council’s Quarter four 2021/22 Performance Report which provided the Corporate Scrutiny Committee with a performance update and financial Healthcheck, prior to the report being presented to Cabinet.  The Chair welcomed the Leader of the Council to the meeting.


The Committee commented and sought clarifications in the following areas:

1.    The Committee requested that further consideration be given to the level of details shown in some of the graphs regarding council tax current year collection such that any trends could be more easily identified.

2.    The project highlight report for Net Zero Carbon shows a due date of 2050, details of further milestones and relevant dates were requested.  The Leader reported that a baseline report from appointed consultants was expected over the next two months which would assist in providing details of areas of focus, areas where the council can influence / control and enable comparisons with other local authorities, noting that the council had retained housing stock which contributed to the net zero carbon base.

3.    The Committee considered that an alternate colour coding for items which were completed and in the past to be used, to differentiate from item which were coded as currently green.

4.    Further clarification on the front facing reception for residents was requested to assist residents in accessing services.   The Committee reiterated the importance of a front desk for residents.  The Leader reaffirmed the commitment to provide a front desk and confirmed that he would provide a further written update to the Committee with further details on the planned front facing reception and when that was expected following an upcoming Recovery & Reset Board meeting.

5.    In terms of universal credit and the numbers of residents now on this system, the Committee sought clarification on whether this remained an area which potentially impacted the council’s revenues, in terms of council tax or council rent arrears, where the Leader confirmed that the collection rates had remained consistent year on year.


RESOLVED to endorse the report, noting the comments raised by the Committee.


(Moved by Councillor S Goodall and seconded by Councillor C Cooke)


The Committee further considered that it would be appropriate to review the Quarterly Performance Report’s content to ensure that it remained aligned to the Council’s recently approved new Corporate Plan 2022-2025.  The working group would report back to this Committee on its findings.





Asset Management Strategy

(To receive a verbal update form the Assistant Director, Assets)


The Assistant Director, Assets attended the meeting to provide a verbal update on the Asset Management Strategy, following his Report to the Committee in March 2022, which covered the following areas:

1.    Revaluation of all built assets was completed.

2.    Structural surveys of high risk buildings completed

3.    All fire safety surveys completed

4.    The draft Asset Management Strategy remained under review

5.    The restructure within the Asset Management team was underway to provide additional resource and to facilitate activities to generate income for the council.

6.    The Asset Management strategy was expected to be ready to be presented to Cabinet in October / November 2022

7.    Once the strategy was approved, there would be a process to categorise the properties as red, amber or green, with actions plans developed as a consequence, and it was expected that the implementation would take 3-5 years.


The Committee commented and sought clarifications in the following areas:

1.    Whether there were disposals and /or acquisitions policies and how they operated, where it was confirmed that there was a disposal strategy however, there was not an overarching acquisitions policy as any acquisition would generally be aligned to a specific project.

2.    Whether there was a properties at risk register, where the Assistant Director reported that the work currently being undertaken would identify those properties and the reasons for being categorised as “red”, whether on the grounds of costs, condition, income or otherwise which would inform the action plan for those properties.  It was further reported that properties were held for different purposes; as heritage properties, investment properties and operational properties, and that these purposes would also feed into any action plan, although properties could be redesignated / repurposed if required.

3.    The timeframes for any action plans where the Committee sought assurance that timescales would be set.  The Assistant Director reported that timeframes and budgets would need to be determined as part of each asset’s action plan.

4.    How the net zero carbon targets would be addressed in the Asset Management Strategy, where the Assistant Director reported that this would be a factor in the costings, and how we considered our liabilities, and it was expected that in terms of housing stock there would be higher standards which could impact on costs.

5.    Whether the Assets team was resourced to deliver the work anticipated, where the Assistant Director reported that the team had restructured to complete these activities and to release qualified staff to carry out income generating activities.


The Committee thanked the Assistant Director for his attendance.  The Assistant Director and the Leader of the Council left the meeting.


Corporate Scrutiny Work Plan 2022-2023 pdf icon PDF 55 KB

(Discussion item)


The Committee considered it’s work plan for the year and updated it as follows:


Corporate Scrutiny Work Plan

Work Plan





28 July 2022

Street Market Update

November 2021

16 August 2022

Quarter 1 2022/23 Performance Report


6 October 2022

Draft Asset Management Strategy

June 2022

17 November 2022

Quarter 2 2022/23 Performance Report


17 November 2022

Joint Waste contract update

June 2021

8 February 2022

Quarter 3 2022/23 Performance Report


Dates to be agreed


Update on corporate prioritisation

August 2020

Bi-annual updates (March & September)

Solway Trading Company Update

December 2019


Gungate Masterplan

January 2020


Reset & Recovery Workstreams

November 2021


Staffordshire Leaders Board

February 2022







Working Groups

TBC – which meeting Working Group to report back to

Review of Quarterly Performance Report to align with new Corporate Plan 2022-2025


Members: Cllr T Jay, S Goodall, C Cooke

June 2022





Upcoming Corporate Scrutiny Committee Meetings

Meeting dates:

28 July 2022

16 August 2022

6 October 2022

17 November 2022

8 December 2022

8 February 2023

9 March 2023