Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Cabinet
Wednesday, 19th December, 2012 7.00 pm

Venue: Town Hall Watford

Contact: Pat Thornton  Email: legalanddemocratic@watford.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

48.

Apologies for Absence

    • 0

    Minutes:

    There were no apologies for absence

     

49.

Disclosure of Interest (if any)

    • 0

    Minutes:

    There were no disclosures of interest.

     

50.

Minutes of previous meeting

    • 0

    To sign the minutes of the meeting held on 3 December 2012

    Minutes:

    The minutes of the meeting held on 3rd December 2012 were submitted and

    signed.

     

51.

To decide on proceeding to the best and final offer stage in the procurement of parks and open spaces, street cleansing and waste and re-cycling pdf icon PDF 76 KB

    Report of the Executive Director

    Minutes:

    The Mayor had agreed that this report could be issued late to enable staff to be informed of the content before the report was made public

     

    Cabinet received a report setting out progress to date on the procurement of the provision of Parks and Open Spaces, Street Cleansing and Waste and Recycling services. It set out the evaluation process used to assess bids and recommended which companies should be taken through to the final stage of dialogue. The Part B report elsewhere on the agenda covered the tender evaluation including financial information.

     

    The Executive Director presented the report and outlined the process followed and progress to date. She explained the background to the decision to look at a re-design of the service and the need for the Council to make significant savings. As part of the process an assessment had also been made of how much direct revenue costs could be saved by re-designing the current service. This had been used as a benchmark against which to judge external bids. Evaluation against specified criteria had been carried out by an evaluation team followed by a complete overview carried out at a moderation meeting involving the Portfolio Holder. Details of the evaluation criteria were contained in the report. The Executive Director stressed that quality of service was key.

     

    She commented that whilst a number of improved points were available in terms of the outside bidders e.g. carbon reduction, training, dedicated flat collections and more Green Flag opportunities; there were still a number of questions to be answered particularly around service delivery issues. She said that figures could change at Best and Final Offer stage.

     

    With regard to the in-house benchmarking, she said that a very good job had been done and significant savings identified. One of the most complex issues, however, related to support service charges. It was important to do a fair comparison and to ensure that these charges were factored in.

     

    She explained that all bidders had been asked to submit two bids, each dependent on whether or not the Council was successful in its bid to DCLG for funding to continue weekly residual waste collections and enhance re-cycling collections. The Council had been notified on 22nd November that it had been successful; hence the only bids which had been evaluated were those which included the DCLG funding.

     

    She expressed her thanks to the Project Team, specifically the Section Heads of Waste & Re-cycling, Street Cleansing and Parks & Open Spaces.

     

    The Mayor thanked the Executive Director for her comprehensive presentation of the report. She said that Cabinet had approached the whole process with an open mind and was aware that, whilst in some authorities outsourcing had been very successful, in others it had not. She said that she was still not 100% convinced that outsourcing was the right option and was therefore moving two additional recommendations to those contained in the report:

     

    2.3             Agree that at the report back in March 2013 there would need to be significant savings  ...  view the full minutes text for item 51.

52.

To note the options for the Council's new structure and approve the Corporate priorities as a basis for service business plans pdf icon PDF 75 KB

    Report of the Managing Director

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Cabinet received a report setting out the Council’s revised corporate priorities, taking account of the Mayor’s policy objectives, the changing role of local authorities and national policy drivers. The proposals were aligned with the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the report set out the two options for a new organisational structure dependent on Cabinet’s decision on the outsourcing or retention in-house of front line services.

     

    The Managing Director introduced the report. He explained the importance of delivering the savings target and looking at more efficient ways of delivering services. He added that as no decision had been made tonight on service redesign a decision on whether to implement structure A or B would be made when the final report came back to Cabinet in March.

     

    The Mayor commented that the new corporate priorities clearly demonstrated what the Council wanted to achieve and how Watford could become a better place to live. All district councils were feeling the financial squeeze and there was a need to be clear about roles and priorities.

     

    The Portfolio Holder for Finance & Shared Services commented on the need to keep all Members up to date on the challenges facing the Council through an appropriate programme of training and development. He also referred to Appendix 5 of the report relating to the Revenues & Benefits Service which, he commented, clearly illustrated the level of uncertainty and the difficulty of knowing what would be required in the future.

     

    The Portfolio Holder for Planning, Legal & Property re-iterated the points made by Councillor Watkin. It was important to generate growth and work towards getting the economy moving. Whilst this was key to the country as a whole, local councils had a key role to play in leading the way. He referred to the various projects currently being undertaken and the Council’s commitment to laying firm foundations for the future.

     

    RESOLVED:

     

    that Cabinet

     

    1. approves the outline corporate priorities which will be developed further before a final version is reported to Cabinet in February/March 2013.

     

    1. approves structure A or B (dependent on the final decision taken on service redesign in March 2013) for further development and formal consultation with staff & trade unions.

     

    1. approves the implementation timetable for either structure including the process to manage redeployment procedures and redundancies where necessary which will also be subject to formal consultation with staff affected and unions.

     

    1. approves the outline corporate priorities for development into a new corporate plan 2013-17, aligned with the MTFS.

53.

Exclusion of press & Public

    • 0

    THE CHAIR TO MOVE: that, under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business as it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during consideration of the item there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Section 100(1) of the Act for the reasons stated below in terms of Schedule 12A.

     

    NOTE: if approved, the Chair will ask members of the press and public to leave the meeting at this point.

    Minutes:

    RESOLVED:

     

       that, under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business as it was likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during consideration of the item there would have been disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Section 100(1) of the Act for the reasons stated in the reports.

     

54.

To decide on proceeding to the best and final offer stage in the procurement of parks and open spaces, street cleansing and waste and re-cycling

    Report of the Executive Director

     

    (Paragraph 3 Schedule 12A)

    Minutes:

    Cabinet received a report which accompanied the Part A report on the possible outsourcing of Parks and Open Spaces, Street Cleansing and Waste and Recycling Services. It provided details of the bids and the evaluation, which due to commercial sensitivity were required to be kept confidential at this point in the evaluation process.

     

    The Executive Director introduced the report and answered a number of questions from Cabinet and non Cabinet Members present at the meeting.

     

    RESOLVED

     

    that the resolutions passed at Minute No 51 be endorsed.

     

 

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