Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Main Committee Room, Council Offices, Brympton Way, Yeovil. View directions

Contact: Becky Sanders,Case Services Officer (Support Services) - 01935 462596  Email:

No. Item



To approve as a correct record the minutes of the previous meeting held on 4 June 2019.


The draft minutes can be viewed at:


The minutes of the meeting held on 4 June 2019 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Apologies for absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Nicola Clark, Brian Hamilton, Mike Lock, Crispin Raikes, Mike Stanton and Rob Stickland.


Declarations of Interest

In accordance with the Council's current Code of Conduct (as amended 26 February 2015), which includes all the provisions relating to Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI), personal and prejudicial interests, Members are asked to declare any DPI and also any personal interests (and whether or not such personal interests are also "prejudicial") in relation to any matter on the Agenda for this meeting.


Councillor Sue Osborne declared an interest in District Executive Agenda Item 6 – Allowenshay Private Water Supply, as Allowenshay was located within her ward.


Public question time


There were no members of the public present at the meeting.


Issues arising from previous meetings

This is an opportunity for Members to question the progress on issues arising from previous meetings.  However, this does not allow for the re-opening of a debate on any item not forming part of this agenda.


There were no issues raised from previous meetings.



Chairman's Announcements


The Chairman reminded members that there was a display in the Council Chamber of ideas generated by school children in connection with tackling climate change.


The Chairman noted that members had received an email from the Scrutiny Specialist inviting members to join the Task and Finish Review of Council Tax Support Scheme.  The Scrutiny Specialist confirmed that she would contact those members interested in joining with a date for the first meeting. 


Members were informed of the response received from the Customer Focussed Team Manager in relation to the concerns and queries raised by the member of the public at the previous meeting.


Members were encouraged to attend the Listening and Questioning Skills Training scheduled to take place on 15 July and 22 July. 



Reports to be considered by District Executive on 4 July 2019 pdf icon PDF 60 KB


Members considered the reports within the District Executive agenda for 4 July 2019 and made comments as detailed below.  Responses to questions were provided at Scrutiny Committee by the relevant officers or Portfolio Holder with the exception of the questions highlighted in bold


Allowenshay Private Water Supply (Agenda Item 6)


     Clarification was sought as to whether the one-off capital grant would also include the infrastructure for providing mains water to Dinnington and Hinton St George as referred to in the purpose of the report.

     In relation to recommendation c that a further request may come forward from other residents, members questioned how this would be funded?  Members also raised concerns that this could prompt requests from other residents in South Somerset who also would like improvements to private water supplies that have not been budgeted for.


Revenue Budget Outturn Report for 2018/19 (Agenda Item 7)


     A member queried why the income target for car parking had been increased from 2018/19 given the evidence base showed a decrease in car park spend in previous years?

     A member asked if any consideration had been given to outsourcing Building Control given that the income from building control application fees was decreasing due to competition from approved inspectors.


Capital Budget Outturn Report for 2018/19 (Agenda Item 8)


No comments or questions were raised.


SSDC Transformation Programme – Progress report (Agenda Item 9)


With the aid of a powerpoint presentation, the Director - Strategy and Support Services gave a brief overview of Transformation in advance of Scrutiny Committee considering the progress report.  


     Members queried when completion of the Transformation Programme would be expected?

     Members requested how the £494,990 in 2019/20 and £240,230 in 2020/21 would be allocated and sought reassurance how services would be maintained and pressure on staff reduced. 

     Members sought clarification on the types of additional staffing for example would the money be used for overtime, agency staff etc.

     Members asked whether the funding requested for additional resources in the Transformation Programme Progress report included money to cover the over spend for additional staff as detailed in the revenue budget outturn report?

     Has there been an increase in staff turnover post January?

     A member suggested that it would be useful to receive the minutes from the Transformation Board.

     Members requested ongoing monitoring of the progress and outcome as a direct result of the additional resources.

     Members requested an explanation as to why the additional resources were not impacting on the net annual savings figure.


The Committee supported the recommendations of the report to quickly address the issues identified and to minimise impact on service delivery.

In response to the queries and comments raised, members were informed of the following:


     The Transformation Programme would come to an end towards the end of the year with a view to becoming business as usual, in that new processes can be created and systems changed to move in a more agile way.  Continuous improvement  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.


Review of Quarterly Performance Monitoring pdf icon PDF 63 KB


The Lead Specialist People, Performance and Change gave a brief presentation on the new Key Performance Indicators, aligned to the Council Plan Annual Action Plan.  She presented the new style performance reports and explained that they could be revised through the year based on member’s feedback.  She also explained that there would be monitoring of the delivery plans.


Members made the following comments:


·         Members asked for a measure to capture the percentage of planning applications that have been given an extension and a break down by the reason for the extension.

·         The current planning measures does not provide enough information with regard to planning validation.

·         Members requested the Planning Appeals be moved from Protecting Core Services to Environment so that all planning related indicators could be together.

·         Members asked for access to the operational indicators such as fly tipping on the Members Portal.

·         Members would need continuity in terms of data captured in order to make comparisons over the longer term.


The Chairman thanked the Lead Specialist People, Performance and Change for her presentation.


Review of Work Practices, Reflecting on Scrutiny Committee Members Training, and Statutory Guidance on Overview and Scrutiny in Local & Combined Authorities pdf icon PDF 56 KB


The Scrutiny Specialist gave a brief refresher from the key learning points from the training delivered in May and asked Committee members to consider proposals for working practices and work programme items that had been compiled at a meeting of the Scrutiny Chairs as agreed at the previous meeting.


It was agreed that a copy of the presentation slides would be circulated to all members.  Items for the Scrutiny Work programme would be considered at the next meeting.


Scrutiny Work Programme pdf icon PDF 54 KB


The Chairman noted that following a meeting with the Chair and Vice Chairs, it had been suggested that a rolling programme of a maximum of three Task and Finish Groups would be manageable for the Committee to work on.


Members noted the current Task and Finish Groups as follows and that suggested dates for meetings would be circulated in due course:


·         Review of Council Tax Support Scheme

·         Environment Strategy


It was agreed to review suggestions for future work items at the next meeting.


Members noted that a request had been received for a second member to join the County-wide Joint Scrutiny of the Climate Change Strategy.  It was agreed that Cllr. Paul Maxwell would join Cllr. Gerard Tucker as a member on the Group.


During a short discussion about meeting arrangements, members felt that attendance at meetings should be monitored and the committee meeting start time be reviewed again in September. 


Date of next meeting pdf icon PDF 28 KB


Member noted that the next meeting of the Scrutiny Committee would be held on Tuesday 30th July 2019 at 1.30pm in Council Chamber B, Brympton Way, Yeovil.