Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall, Watford

Contact: Sandra Hancock  Email:

No. Item


Apologies for Absence/Committee Membership


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Dhindsa.


Disclosure of interests (if any)


There were no disclosures of interest.



The minutes of the meeting held on 21 March 2019 to be submitted and signed.


The minutes of the meeting held on 21 March 2019 were submitted and signed.


West Hertfordshire Hospitals Redevelopment Update

    Representatives from West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust and Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group to provide an update on the hospital redevelopment plans.


    Esther Moors and Tim Duggleby from West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust attended the meeting to provide councillors with a presentation ‘Future of hospital services in west Hertfordshire – Emerging preferred way forward’.


    The scrutiny committee was advised that the full version of the presentation, which had been given at a public meeting on 13 June 2019, was available on the trust’s website. 


    Tim Duggleby explained that the trust had started with a long list of options which had now been narrowed down to four.  All options kept emergency care at Watford General Hospital and the options set out options for the other sites including a new hospital to provide planned care. 


    Esther Moors advised that discussions had taken place with an advisory stakeholder panel, involving clinicians, local representatives and partner organisations who had considered the qualitative merits of each option.  Option one had scored the highest with options four and three close behind.  The presentation included the financial calculations for each option and measure of value for money, for which option four scored highest, but again the differences between options were relatively limited.  An equalities analysis had been carried out, and a more detailed analysis would be undertaken on the preferred option.


    Esther Moors set out the next steps that would be carried out.  She reported that the meeting held on 6 June was available to view online.  The final decision on the preferred option would be made on 11 July.  Following this it would be submitted to regulators for consideration as part of the next Comprehensive Spending Review.


    Following a question from the Chair, Tim Duggleby responded that a brand new hospital would cost in excess of £700 million.  The trust needed to make a decision on an affordable alternative. 


    Esther Moors added that it was recognised that the trust’s hospitals needed investment.  However this was the same as other hospitals across the country.  Regulators would consider the amount of funding available and the schemes that were requesting support.  The business case would articulate the reasons the trust needed to carry out works. 


    Tim Duggleby commented that there was an initial filter mechanism that the trust needed to get through before it would be considered for funding.  The team was doing everything it could to try to ensure the scheme progressed through the filters.  The primary funding opportunity was from the NHS as PPFI had been removed as an option.  Potential capital from land sales of St Albans City Hospital and Hemel Hempstead General Hospital could possibly achieve between £30 and £40 million, approximately 10% of the current project. 


    Following reference to bringing all services to one site, Esther Moors advised that whilst there were some advantages to this, there were also advantages in maintaining separation between planned care and emergency care; the NHS Long Term Plan’s view was that emergency and planned care should be on different sites.  Tim Duggleby added that there would always be some cases that needed to have surgery at Watford General Hospital  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.


End of Q4 2018.19 KPI report pdf icon PDF 2 MB

    Report of the Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications


    The scrutiny committee received a report of the Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications setting out the results for the key performance indicators as at the end of 2018/19. 


    The Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications highlighted some of the areas within the report.  An analysis of performance trends had also been included.


    The Chair said that she wished to congratulate the Head of Housing and Portfolio Holder responsible for Housing for all the work they had done and their passion for this area of work.


    Following a short discussion about HR and sickness levels it was agreed that the service would be asked to come to a future meeting.  Further discussion took place when the scrutiny committee reviewed its work programme.


    There was some concern about the percentage of those indicators showing a declining trend.  The Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications responded that some of the indicators were marginally below results from previous years.  It was considered the trends highlighted how the council was working as a whole.


    The report was considered to be clear and easy to read.  However, it was requested that future reports should indicate those services that were provided in-house and those that were delivered by another provider.


    In response to a question about setting targets, the Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications explained that the Group Head of a service set the targets in discussions with the relevant portfolio holder.  She acknowledged that the council could probably do more to challenge itself when setting targets where performance had been consistently good.


    The Chair noted the results for graffiti and the other environmental cleanliness targets.  She felt this needed further review.  Further discussion would take place during the work programme item.


    The Chair asked the scrutiny committee how it wished to review performance data at future meetings.  She suggested that councillors could take responsibility for a particular section of the performance report and find out more about the results.  It was agreed that the report should be circulated to the scrutiny committee as soon as practicable to enable this to take place.


    The Group Head of Corporate Strategy and Communications advised that through Watford 2020 the council was in the process of procuring a new business intelligence partner.  This would enable the council to have real-time information about its performance.




    1.      that the end of Quarter 4 2018/19 Key Performance Indicator report be noted.


    2.      that the scrutiny committee continues to receive a quarterly report on the council’s key performance indicators.


Executive Decision Progress Report pdf icon PDF 424 KB

    The Scrutiny Committee is asked to review the latest edition of the Executive Decision Progress Report and consider whether any further information is required.



    The Scrutiny Committee received the final edition of the Executive Decision Progress Report for 2018/19.  It was agreed the report would continue in the current format for 2019/20.




    that the Executive Decision Progress report continues in its present format for 2019/20.


Hertfordshire County Council's Health Scrutiny Committee

    Councillor Grimston has been appointed as the Council’s representative to the County Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee.  The scrutiny committee’s first meeting for 2019/20 is due to take place on Thursday 11 July 2019 at County Hall.


    It was noted that Councillor Grimston had been appointed as the council’s representative to the Hertfordshire County Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee and would be providing an update at future meetings.  The first meeting of Health Scrutiny Committee was scheduled for Thursday 11 July at County Hall.


Work Programme pdf icon PDF 406 KB

    The scrutiny committee is asked to review the current version of the work programme and consider any additional areas councillors wish to scrutinise.


    The scrutiny committee received the first draft of its work programme.  Councillors discussed topics they would like included at future meetings, some had been raised during the discussion on the end of year performance report.


    The Senior Democratic Services Officer advised that the Head of Leisure and Environmental Services had provided details of items he would like included in the scrutiny committee’s work programme for 2019/20.  It was agreed the Senior Democratic Services Officer would speak to the Head of Leisure and Environmental Services to confirm the exact date the HQ Theatre annual report would be presented to members.


    It was agreed the following items would be added to the work programme –


    26 September 2019


    ·             End of year report on the Small Grants Fund, plus three-year review of the last voluntary sector commissioning framework 2016-2019


    24 October 2019


    ·             End of year report on the voluntary sector framework, plus three-year review of the last voluntary sector commissioning framework 2016-2019


    28 November 2019


    ·             End of Year 1 new Leisure Contract with SLM, June 2018-May 2019

    ·             Human Resources – sickness absence and return to work interviews, including the latest performance data


    19 December 2019


    ·             End of Year 6 Waste, Streets and Parks contract with Veolia, June 2018-May 2019, with particular reference to the performance information on improved street and environmental cleanliness (levels of litter, detritus, graffiti and fly posting)




    that the work programme be updated to reflect the items discussed.


Dates of Next Meetings

·             Tuesday 23 July 2019

·             Thursday 26 September 2019

·             Thursday 24 October 2019


          Thursday 23 July 2019

          Thursday 26 September 2019

          Thursday 24 October 2019


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