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Offline Francoise De Lampe

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Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« on: May 18, 2010, 04:50:31 PM »


Francoise has heard from Swindon Lamplighter 'Olde Oake' who tells her that this years Cabinet positions within Swindon Borough Council will probably be as follows:


Leader of the Council:  Councillor Roderick Bluh

Ward: Dorcan

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Cabinet
Local, National, Regional and External Relations
Emergency Planning
Swindon Strategic Partnership
Local Area Agreement
Community Strategy
Corporate Governance Issues
Law and Democratic Services
Communications Services (including Graphics)
Equalities & Social Inclusion



Deputy Leader of of the Council:  Councillor Garry Perkins

Ward: Shaw and Nine Elms

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Economic Development
Regeneration
Arts and Culture
Museums, including Steam

 

Cabinet Member for Sustainability, Strategic Planning, Property and Transport: Councillor Peter Greenhalgh

Ward: Freshbrook and Grange Park

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Strategic Property
Strategic Spatial Planning and Development Framework Planning
Traffic and Transport Forward Planning (including Local Transport Plan)
Design of Highway
Forward Planning and Development Control
Local Land Charges
Sustainability
Public Transport (including Concessionary Fares, Specialist Transport, Council Transport and Fleet Management)
Implementation of Local Transport Plan




Cabinet Member for Leisure and Corporate Services: Councillor Fionuala Foley

Ward: Old Town and Lawns

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Lead Member for Reducing Domestic Violence
Libraries
Engineering
Sports Development
Recreation Services
Leisure and sports centres
Human Resources, Personnel & Trades Union Relations (including Staff Nursery)
Member Development.
Information Technology
Capita Contract Overview
Leading on Councillor Development.
Property Management, including
Building Services
Building Cleaning
Catering & Security Services
Control Room Operations
Customer Services




Cabinet Member for Finance: Councillor Mark Edwards

Ward: St. Margaret

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Financial Management (Revenue and Capital Programme)
Internal Audit
Revenue and Benefits Services
Procurement
Value for Money
External Contract Monitoring
Student Support
Resources Management Overview
Preparing Future Year’s Budget and Medium Term Financial Plan
Project Management.

 

Cabinet Member for Housing, Community and Partnerships: Councillor Brian Mattock

Ward: Old Town and Lawns

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Lead Member for Connecting People, Connecting Places
Lead Member of Locality Directors
Lead Member for Rural Affairs
Swindon Strategic Partnership
Community Safety Partnership
Neighbourhood Wardens
Environmental and Public Protection Services
Gypsies, travellers and unauthorised encampments
Delivering joined-up services to support Connecting People, Connecting Places
Community Development, Grants and Resources
Services to the Community and Voluntary Sector
Swindon Community Compact
Community Engagement Strategies
Supporting People / Supporting People Partnership Board
Parish and Town Councils/Community Council Engagement Strategies
Cluster Forums
Community Buildings.
Housing Enabling and Strategic Services
Estate and Tenancy Management
Allocations and Advice Services
Homelessness
Empty Homes
Homeline Services
Sheltered Accommodation
Housing Right to Buy/Sales Services
Private Sector Housing Renovation Grants
Repair and Improvements to Council Housing Stock




Cabinet Member for Children’s Services:  Councillor David Renard

Ward: Haydon Wick

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Children and Family Services
Fostering and Adoption Services
Youth Services
Education and Schools
Children and Young People’s Partnership Board and Children’s Trust
Early Years Development
Lifelong Learning
Play Services
Plas Pencelli Outdoor Recreation Centre
Music Services
Playgrounds, including those that are not presently utilised.
Youth Offending Team




Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care: Councillor Peter Mallinson

Ward: Walcot

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Public Health
Reducing Drugs, Alcohol and Substance Abuse
Older People’s Services
Adult Services
Services for People with Disabilities
Community Mental Health Services
Enterprise Works/Energy 2
Close working with the Care Quality Commission
Enhancing links between the Council and partner organisations in the Health Services.




Cabinet Member for Streetscene: Councillor Keith Williams

Ward: Shaw and Nine Elms

Specific Responsibility for Lydiard Park Project
StreetSmart
Street Lighting
Cemeteries & Crematoria.
Environmental Issues Landscape & Countryside (including Community Forest) Building &
Highways & Maintenance Works
Waste Disposal, Waste Minimisation
Recycling
Refuse Collection – Domestic & Trade
Street Cleaning, Public Toilets
Ground & Tree Maintenance and open spaces
Parks
Graffiti
Abandoned Vehicles
Parking Services



Cabinet Member for Policy and Performance: Councillor Dale Heenan

Ward: Covingham and Nythe

Portfolio Responsibilities:
Policy Development
Performance Measurement and Reporting
Annual Delivery Plan monitoring of implementation
50 Promises and their successors
   


Franscoise awaits news of the committee appointments.  There are several unconfirmed rumours but Franscoise believes the consensus of opinion is that he situation is 'politically fluid'.

 



Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2010, 05:23:32 PM »


Oh dear....No Nick Martin, that Scotches one rumour that his Mate Garry was getting him onto cabinet   ;D  Now we'll have to see if Nick Martin has moved up or down in the 'Chairs' ranking, whether he'll remain president of the Swindon Tories or even be re-selected to stand in Shaw and Nine Elms next time round.

Looks like a 'Rodiwick Green' cabinet to me, mostly full of yes men and Baa Baa Black Sheeps but, the Rodigarch will need to sleep with a bread-board between his shoulderblades now that Peter Mallinson has a seat at the top table.

Justin Tomlinson MP has a man on the board in the shape of Dale Heenan, be interesting to see what 'Policy Development, Performance Measurement and Reporting' looks like in practice.

Kind of expected to see a Lib Dem on the board somewhere, but it occurs to me that #swindontorys are almost Lib Dems now anyway!

   

Offline Bogomil

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2010, 06:27:49 PM »
 No return for Mike Bawden and with his old nemesis still in cabinet….

One also wonders what happened to the legal action he was seeking against one of his own Tory group members?

http://www.komadori.me.uk/2010/02/bawden-turns-legal-on-fellow-tory.html

Could yet be an exciting year ahead in the corridors of Swindon Borough Council.

Offline ZPW

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2010, 06:53:07 PM »
Keith-bin-in?

Offline Muggins

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2010, 02:41:27 PM »
Looks like they may have had  shuffle around of what comes under each of the portfolios too.  Not a bad move as far as I can see to have housing and community development etc., lumped together. 

I've not had a problem with Brian Mattock standing and hearing what's being said to him, time will tell if he takes notice.  To be fair he did do something about that Community Asset Transfer Policy* at least he got the one they were planning stopped, but since then it seems to have stalled. Possibly thorugh staff illness.

*important to local community groups who manage SBC owned buildings etc.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Bogomil

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2010, 03:57:03 PM »
Brian Mattock – Former Director of Housing at SBC now cabinet member for it, maybe a good move.

Peter Mallinson - will he rein in the overspend in Adult services and if so HOW and WHERE will the hatchet fall. (grapevine says MB replacing PM as Health scrutiny chair)

Offline Bobby Bingo

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2010, 04:02:43 PM »
Heenan doing the review of the 50 promises etc. That should be interesting because he rarely keeps his own.
Who will now get Chair of Planning.
 ?
Give it to Bawden and we MAY get some progress on the Locarno promise he made 6 years ago.
Bobby

Offline Muggins

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2010, 06:25:17 PM »
Locarno is progressing,  I've seen the plans somewhere, the impression was that all things are positive.  Whoops, just checked and it seems to have dropped off the Agenda. 

Perhaps it has reached that secret negotiating stage, secret to us anyway - market forces and all that. If it has that means it's getting closer.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)

Offline Mart

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2010, 08:25:56 PM »
Not sure if my attention span will cope with this, but I'll make a start. Some extremely iffy language. I particularly enjoyed 5a.

Promise 1

We will establish a 'First Stop Shop' in the town centre that gives advice and information about all council services.

Progress

Achieved.

Promise 2

We will establish a new contact centre so that all residents can telephone us for information about council services day or night, seven days a week with 95% of telephone calls answered within six rings.

Progress

Achieved.

Promise 3A

So that local people have access to wideranging advice and support, a flagship independent multiagency advice centre will be developed.

Progress

Withdrawn.

Promise 3B

We will develop the use of the old Railway Museum.

Progress

The internal works to the Platform are progressing well as planned.

A raised floor has been constructed in the main hall and work has started on the reconfiguration of the downstairs area for office space, interview rooms, a café and toilet facilities. Electrical and mechanical work is in progress to improve the electrical and heating systems in the building. A railway carriage was successfully placed within the building on 4 October to host a range of positive activites to be determined by young people. 

A Business Plan for Children’s Services including activities for the Platform has been produced along with a range of activities to open the Platform later this year. A management team have been appointed to run the facility. The project remains on target to be handed over to Children's Services on 30 October 2009.

Promise 4

We will make sure that our Housing Benefits service is rated as excellent. By working with claimants more efficiently, new housing benefit claims and notifications of change of circumstances will be processed and completed ahead of Government targets.

Progress

This promise focused on the need to significantly improve the Benefits Service, which at the time the Promise was made, was not meeting the Department for Work and Pensions Performance Standard minimum targets. The service improvements delivered resulted in the service gaining recognition as a '4 star' excellent service in 2006-07 and 2007-08 as assessed under the CPA scheme 2005-09.

Current Government guidelines no longer set specified targets to measure Benefits performance. By conducting benchmarking exercises and using these as a comparison the Benefit Service are able to measure how they are performing against other local authorities. Work is being undertaken to gather this data.

In addition to this we are benchmarking to learn best practice and polices to drive service improvement. Site visits and teleconferences with various local authorities have taken place.

Local targets have been set to achieve clearance of backlogs which was achieved ahead of schedule in July. Performance targets for processing new claims and change of circumstances are set monthly and performance is being met ahead of target. 

A range of stakeholder groups are in place and held regularly to help shape service improvements. These include working private landlords, housing associations, the Housing Department, Citizens Advice Bureau amd Wiltshire Law Centre. Work is ongoing to introduce a customer panel and conduct a survey through the One Stop Shop.

Promise 5A

We will buy goods and services more efficiently to help us to save money.

Progress

Achieved.

Promise 5B

Through good financial management, we will make savings of £11 million across the Council.

Progress

Achieved.

Promise 5C

We will collect 98% of council tax in year.

Progress

In year Council Tax collection in both 2006-07 and 2007-08 reached 98%, but in 2008-09 the collection rate achieved fell slightly to 97.8%. The economic downtown has affected our ability to achieve a higher collection rate. Benchmarking with other local authorities showed that most also showed a small decline in 2008-09.

As at end September 2009 the collection rate for 2009-10 had reached  48.24%, which is 0.23% lower than 2008/9. This may have been affected by the fact that no payments were taken between 29 and 31 August, as these were non working days. Planned work to improve the collection rate includes the referral of court orders to bailiffs.

Promise 6

Your Council will be recognised under the national standard as one of the best in the country for its approach to equalities.

Progress

Significant work has been carried out in revising the Council's Equal Opportunities Policy and Equality Schemes and in developing a new Equality and Diversity Vision and Strategy for SBC. The target for implementation for this piece of work is April 2010. This will form the basis for the development of a shared diversity vision for Swindon in which statutory partners and communities are able to work.

We are continuing to evaluate all our policies and working practices to ensure that we do not adversely effect any equality group. This process has achieved some notable success with recognition by external inspections (e.g. the Care Quality Commission Independence, Wellbeing and Choice Inspection in December 2008), and areas for change have been usefully identified (e.g. recruitment of male care assistants).

In order to achieve Promise 6, we need to complete this process for all new policy, significant projects and developments, and show clear consideration in decision making. The revised policy base will set out the Council's commitment to achieving the Equality Framework for Local Government as the measure of achievement for this promise.

Promise 7

We will reduce sickness absence from the current level of an average of 9.27 days per employee each year to 7.5 days per employee.

Progress

The number of days sickness absence per full time equivalent employee figure is currently being audited and the final figure for 2008-09 will be available very shortly. The data is now allowing the production of detailed, accurate reports for managers and they receive these once a month so that they can monitor and manage departmental progress. Departmental management teams will have sickness absence as a standing item and directors will have to show their group directors that sickness is being dealt with in their areas including highlighting any actions that have been taken.

The Central HR attendance officer role to support managers has been extended to April 2010 and the Sickness Absence Policy has been amended to remove management discretion upon whether or not staff needed to attend sickness monitoring meetings when they met sickness triggers.

Sickness Absence Clinics in directorates have taken place to discuss business practices and identify improvement in the management of sickness specific to business areas. Senior Support on sickness sessions have taken place with directors to identify issues in business areas and develop internal department support for improvement in management of sickness.

Promise 8

We will respond to 100% of customer complaints within 10 working days. Councillors will review complaints received about Council services so that they are more aware of areas that need improvement.


Progress


Over the last six months, performance for responding to complaints within 10 days was: March 91%, April 93%, May 86%, June 90%, July 95%, August 92%.

All services, excluding Adult Social Care, now manage and track customer feedback using the Council's customer relationship management system, Lagan, which has moved from ProActive. Services were transferred to Lagan in four phases: the first phase going live at the end of April 2009 and the final phase at the end of August 2009. Lagan training was provided to all affected staff together with training on how to manage complaints effectively.


We have introduced procedures to chase up complaints on the fifth and eighth day after receiving them to ensure all customers receive a response within our target of 10 days. Further effort is required to ensure all customers receive a response to their complaint within the target. We are introducing improved monthly reporting to senior managers and councillors in October. This will raise awareness and is expected to lead to further improvements.

Promise 9

We will improve our website (www.swindon.gov.uk) to provide comprehensive Internet access to Council services. By the end of 2005 all council forms will be available for download on the Website. By the end of 2006 you will be able to be complete those forms online.

Progress

Achieved.

Promise 10

By 2006 we will establish a forum for young people to voice their opinion so that we can prioritise their needs.

Progress

Achieved.


Promise 11

We will invest an average of £250,000 per year to make council buildings accessible to all. This figure does not include schools, which are addressed separately.

Progress

Access improvements are prioritised through carrying out a rolling programme of access audits which take into account key barriers to accessing and using a building. These include entrances, toilet provision, lighting and movement within a building. An annual programme of works is compiled based on the access audits and also whether other works are being carried out to a building, meaning access improvements can be carried out more efficiently as part of a wider programme of works.


Works carried out in 2008-09 included providing disabled toilets at Whitworth Road cemetery, improving the disabled parking bays at the Link, ramp replacement at an elderly people's home and improving the entrance to the gym at the Oasis. Works programmed for the current year include improvements at John Moulton Hall in Penhill, Upper Stratton Library and the Arts Centre, and replacing a platform lift at Lawn Community Centre.


Promise 12

We will keep residents informed about Council services through the council newspaper ‘Swindon News’ which will be delivered six times a year to every home in the Borough. We will hold regular public meetings, consultations and introduce 'suggestion boxes' around the  borough to encourage you to feedback on our performance.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 13

We will continue to provide quality housing to those who need it and, by 2008, we will ensure that all of Swindon’s council house tenants who want it will have central heating and double-glazing (subject to listed buildings  consent). All council owned houses will exceed the Government’s standard for decent homes. Through good estate management we will ensure that all tenants fulfil their responsibility to maintain their homes and gardens to a good standard.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 14A

We must attract and retain high quality staff. The Council will be a leading employer with a modern and flexible workforce that can adapt to changing priorities and deliver results.


Progress


Part of this promise was achieved when Investors in People (IiP) recognition for the whole organisation was achieved. Work on continuing to ensure that Swindon Borough Council is viewed as an Employer of Choice continues through delivery of the agreed HR Strategy - A Great Place to Work. Key focus over the last six months has included: ensuring that our values and behaviours framework is implemented through our appraisal process and council-wide projects; continued development and training on ensuring that we manage our contracts as effectively as possible; continued success of our recently launched apprenticeship scheme, with over 22 apprentices recruited; further benefits launched through our staff benefits scheme; and additional staff supporting Equalities and IiP.


Promise 14B

The Council and all its services will be accredited under the Investors in People Standard by 2006.

Progress

Achieved.


Promise 15

By 2006-07 we will allocate at least 75% of the grant aid budget through three-year agreements and service level agreements with the voluntary and community sector and monitor the outcomes to make sure they achieve the aims of the Community Strategy. We will explore with community and voluntary groups options for other sources of funding.


Progress

Achieved.

Promise 16

We will have a new Central Library by 2008 and an effective local library service with flexible opening hours.


Progress

Achieved.



Promise 17

Pupils need a high quality environment to learn. All existing unsuitable temporary buildings in our schools will be replaced.


Progress


This promise is now 97% complete, with the majority of building projects being completed over the summer holiday period 2009. There is now only one unsuitable temporary classroom remaining, which is at Sevenfields Primary School. There is currently a major building project at this school which is on track to complete by December 2009, after which point the remaining temporary classroom will be removed from site and Promise 17 will therefore be complete.


Promise 18

We welcome Bath University’s proposals to build a new and exciting University in Swindon. If the Public Inquiry recommends building the University adjacent to the hospital at Commonhead, we will ensure that the special character of Coate Water is protected.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 19

We will work, with our partners, to complete the restoration of Lydiard Park and enhance its facilities.
Progress

The project will be completed in December 2009.

A final monitoring meeting with the Heritage Lottery Fund was held on 7 September 2009 and a revised 10-year Management, Maintenance and Business Plan was submitted at the end of September 2009. The final budget position will be submitted at the end of November 2009 in readiness for sign-off at the end of December 2009.

Promise 20A

Our secondary schools will ensure that over 86% of young people achieve 5 A* to G GCSEs in 2006.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 20B

Our primary schools will ensure that 80% or more of our children achieve Level 4 at Key Stage 2 in English and maths in 2006.


Progress


Achieved.


Promise 21

We will introduce a Sports Council in 2006 that works with local, regional and national sports organisations to establish Swindon as a centre of sports excellence.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 22

We will revitalise our sports and leisure facilities in particular bring forward plans to replace or modernise the Oasis and Link centre.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 23

We will continue our commitment to the 30-year vision for the Great Western Community Forest, continuing with partners to deliver a woodland framework for Swindon. In Shaw Community Forest, landscape restoration will continue and the first phase will be available for community use during 2005 with later phases completed for use during 2008.


Progress


Phases 1 and 2 of the restoration of Shaw Park Forest are complete, with 80,000 trees planted, much of the site restored and available for public use.

Completion of Phase 3 is very much dependent on external market forces, in particular the housing market, as the fill required for capping the tip is a bi-product of development. We are still on target to make the area available for public use, by way of a peripheral footpath planned for 1 November 2009.




Promise 24

We will provide an enhanced youth service that is responsive to young people. By 2006, at least 25% of young people will be in contact with the service and Ofsted inspectors will judge it ‘good’ by 2008.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 25

We value the importance of our rural environment and will improve access to the countryside by ensuring that 90% of rural footpaths and cycle ways reach the Government standard of ‘easy to use’.


Progress


A Rights of Way Improvement Plan has been developed and schemes have been identified and programmed accordingly to ensure delivery of the Promise. We are due to commence the final phase of the Watery Lane project (which connects Castle Eaton with Hannington Wick) shortly; Environment Agency approval has been obtained and an order has now been raised for these works. 


A programme of replacement signage has been developed and signage for Blunsdon, Hannington, Highworth and Bishopstone has now been delivered and is ready to be erected. 


Work on updating the Rights of Way web page is still ongoing and we are awaiting confirmation from ICT to upload the first pages of the digitised definitive map.


The half-year indicator for routes that are easy to use was 95.9% (this figure will be adjusted by the final year survey figure due to be taken in November 2009) and we are therefore on target to meet this promise.




Promise 26

We will find a permanent home in the town centre for Swindon Dance as part of the regeneration process.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 27

We will find a new home to exhibit Swindon’s modern art collection, and will rehouse our museum collections.


Progress


Barker Langham Consultancy have been commissioned to undertake a feasibility report looking at options for storage of the museum and art collections. This report is now under consideration by senior officers, the Lead Member and Leader.




Promise 28

We will open seven new, state of the art schools in the north of the borough.


Progress

Achieved.

Promise 29

The number of looked after children needing care will be reduced by 10% over five years and the number of looked after children placed out of the borough reduced by 15% per year. This will allow us to invest in services for families, preventing the need for children to come into the care of the council.


Progress


Having reduced the number of children in care to 221 (target 220) in March 2008 from over 263, it has now risen to 259. The main reason for this is the reaction to the Baby P circumstances that has created additional concerns for workers and has significantly increased numbers in care nationally. The target for out-of-borough placements for 2009-10 is 32, with a position at the end of July 2009 of 58. Our use of Independent Fostering Agency placements is however now showing a decline as our in-house service has been able to absorb a lot of the recent pressure. An analysis has been completed of every case of a child coming into care since December.

We are strengthening the Intensive Adolescent Support Service and implementing the new Intensive Intervention Project in order to reduce the number of children entering care and going out of borough. The Family Placement Team continues to work to increase availability of in-house foster placements. Provision for disabled children has been under review and Government funding for short breaks in 2009-10 is being used to increase places with existing providers for short term breaks, with funding in 2010-11 being used to commission extra services.




Promise 30

We will reduce the number of adults requiring long term institutional care by 20% over five years, releasing resources to invest in home support.


Progress


The number of domiciliary care hours continue to increase with the number of adults in long-term residential care reducing. Maple Court has now opened, providing 49 additional flats for community living with nominations continuing. Moredon Road has commenced providing accommodation (tenancy agreements) for three adults with a learning disability. Nominations are under way for William Robins Court for adults with a learning disability. All nominations are now processed for Wichelstowe and we are awaiting a completion date from the developers.




Promise 31

We will increase the range and choice of support for carers at home by increasing the amount of respite care and increasing the number of carers’ assessments by 100%.


Progress


There are now a Carers' Development Officer and a Carers' Support Care Manager in post. The Carers Strategy has been refreshed and priorities set for 2010. Swindon is a demonstrator site for better NHS support for carers and a planned development of holistic carer pathways project was started in September 2009.




Promise 32

We will promote greater independence and increased choice for disabled people, regardless of age, in a number of ways. For example we will commission an additional five extra care sheltered housing schemes, increase the number of direct payments and introduce purchase cards. We will also increase the use of “smart technology” to enable people to be safer in their homes.


Progress


We are currently developing the data set to support the Resource Allocation Statement which supports funding for self-directed support. Our number of direct payments has improved to 272 people.

Personal budgets pilots are due to commence in the North West Community Team in October. Extra care housing has been provided in four out of five locations and a project established to integrate Homeline, Telecare, and Telehealth to maximise the benefit of assistive technology.




Promise 33

We’ll help our most vulnerable, looked after young people to achieve an appropriate qualification, paying particular attention to literacy and numeracy and vocational skills to help their future prospects.


Progress


Promise 34

We will increase the number of supported housing schemes for people with learning disabilities by a minimum of one scheme per year.


Progress

Education results for children and young people in care have shown a significant improvement over the last five years. This year many pupils exceeded their predictions.

At Key Stage 2 there has once again been an increase in the number of pupils achieving the expected two or more levels of progress in English and science - with a rise of 23% in English and 49% in science. Maths results have remained static but it is worth noting that this year’s cohort contained three pupils with a statement of special educational needs.

99% of children in care have a high quality Personal Education Plan (PEP) which is used to identify extra support. The Personal Education Allowance (PEA) of £500 is allocated through the PEP Action Plan and this is used to support young people in achieving their agreed targets, e.g. by paying for extra tuition and participation in activities to raise self-esteem.

After-school study sessions and holiday clubs have increased and the numbers participating in these has also grown. The Reach Higher scheme to encourage children in care to access higher education has resulted in two young people participating in the Exeter University summer school this year

Promise 35

Working alongside the New Swindon Company, the town centre will be regenerated into a vibrant heart of the town and borough. It will include a new library, unique shopping environment with a market square, and new leisure, commercial and residential facilities.


Progress

The regeneration of Canal Walk public realm started in August 2009 and is due for completion in March 2010.

Regent Street has funding allocated and will begin immediately following Canal Walk.

Funding for the Station Forecourt has been secured and concept designs are progressing in partnership with Network Rail and First Great Western.

The redevelopment of BHS at The Parade was granted planning permission on 2 July 2009 and is due to start on site in January 2010 with construction lasting 18 months.

Muse propose to submit a full planning application for Plot N (Old Police Station site) in October 2009 with an outline for the remainder of the site in early 2010. The first phase involves the relocation of the Primary Care Trust from Carfax Street, a multi storey car park and sheltered accommodation which is being part-funded by the Homes and Communities Agency Housing Grant.

Negotiations with the developers at Regent Circus are ongoing to ensure the highest quality of development at this key gateway location.

In addition to long term projects, a series of shorter term measures to lessen the impact of the recession on the Town Centre are being considered to improve footfall and visitor experience.

The Council terminated the development agreement with Modus on 3 August 2009. We also reversed our resolution to use our Compulsory Purchase powers to facilitate the development. Discussions about our new approach to this area are ongoing.




Promise 36

By 2006, we will publish Swindon Design Codes that will ensure a high quality of development. They will incorporate the very best practice and guide all new developments so that we have control of the future look and feel of the borough. This will include guidelines for shop frontages.


Progress

Achieved.





Promise 37

No significant new developments will be approved before the full transport implications are fully evaluated and plans for funding and implementation of any transport schemes are in place.


Progress

Achieved.





Promise 38

We will complete the ‘Streets for Living’ project in the Central area of the Town, creating a place that improves quality of life for all.


Progress

Achieved.





Promise 39

We will re-develop a range of other sites including Old Town Square, Cavendish Square, Sussex Square and Braydon Court.


Progress

Cavendish Square: it is anticipated that all of the housing will be completed by the end of November and tenants are being sought for the final phase of the commercial development.

Braydon Court: the building works have progressed on schedule and it is anticipated that phase one will be completed in October, with the new Post Office opening late October/early November.

Marlowe Avenue: the revised planning application has been submitted, and it is hoped to make a start on site by the end of this calendar year.

We are in discussion with partners about the scheme at Sussex Square and work is continuing with the developer of the Locarno site in Old Town to produce a scheme which is financially viable.






Promise 40

All 1500 homes completed in the first phase of the Southern Development Area will meet the Building Research Establishment’s eco-homes ‘very good’ standard.


Progress

Achieved.






Promise 41

Significant capital investment in highway maintenance will see us improve the condition of roads and footways and reduce the backlog of repairs. We will publish annually a rolling schedule of improvement.


Progress

There has been good progress in promoting and procuring the backlog maintenance works annual programme for 2009-10. We are on target to complete the annual programme to budget before the end of the current financial year.

We are likely to achieve approximately 10-12% reduction in sites from the Highway Maintenance Priority (Backlog) List over the duration of the promise 2006-10.

The publication of the rolling programme of completed and proposed sites on the SBC website is likely to be part of the current push to provide greater public awareness of the promise and the work of the Council to achieve this.






Promise 42

We will create opportunities for low cost home ownership by building an average of 300 affordable homes each year. Priority will be given to Swindon’s key workers and local residents and we will also encourage shared equity schemes.


Progress

364 further affordable homes are required by March 2010 to meet the average of 300 affordable homes per year. There are 524 affordable homes due for completion in the development schedule by this date. A significant proportion of these homes are on large sites such as Wichelstowe and can be subject to factors outside the Council's control in the current housing climate. However, the majority of these homes have started on-site and as such, would be expected to deliver by March 2010.


Delays in major projects continue to be an issue. The affordable housing which is contained on S106 sites can be difficult to drive forward in the current market should the overall site economics not work. Developers continue to challenge the Council's 30% target and preferred tenure split and this can threaten delivery if they are successful in this approach. Close working between Housing and Planning continues to ensure that the Council's position is defended. The Council is also active in the general housing market with registered social landlord partners looking at opportunities to purchase surplus stock on new developments for use as affordable housing subject to sustainability constraints and funding availability.






Promise 43

We will work with bus companies to increase the frequency and hours of operation. We will also work with parish councils to develop good rural transport links and increase overall the number of bus journeys by 13% by 2006 and a further 20% in the following five years.


Progress

During 2008-09 bus patronage grew to 14.09 million, an 8.6% increase on the previous year. The figure has exceeded the Local Transport Plan target for 2010-11 of 13.10 million passengers. Since 2004, growth has been 31.5% compared to the combined 33% set for the two periods of the promise statement. We are on track to meet the promise.

A programme to make bus stops more accessible has been put in place and a new bus map is being designed to encourage further access.

A Kickstart bid was submitted to Government in July to provide additional or new journeys in the rural areas of the Borough not served by conventional buses. Although a limited service its aim is to influence commuters and young people to change their travel habits.

Thamesdown Transport Service 12, a peak-time commuter service for North Swindon replaced the Groundwell Park and Ride mothballed in June.






Promise 44

We will complete the Swindon Urban Cycle Network and introduce secure parking facilities for cycles at key points.


Progress


This promise needs to be radically reassessed as part of the Council's Transport Strategy, which identified that the Council needed to review its approach to cycling and develop a revised strategy. Whilst unlikely to be completed in its current form, the promise has, nonetheless, been substantially achieved in line with user requirements.


The Swindon Cycle Network is extensive, although missing some key links. A number of projects have been identified with cycle groups to complete key strategic gaps in the network. Design work is underway on a secure bike parking facility at Brunel North Car Park. On this basis the promise cannot be completed as defined and is therefore 'Red', but work on a new strategy and on key projects will continue.

Promise 45

We will make sure that schools will be at the heart of each community delivering a range of services to meet the community’s needs. An extra 210 childcare places will be provided and we’ll provide even more support for families to help them maintain their independence.


Progress

Achieved.


Promise 46

We will remove all racist or obscene graffiti within one working day of it being reported.


Progress


The promise is being consistently met and this type of graffiti is tackled with priority.




Promise 47

We will work with our partners towards reducing crime by 17.5%, focusing in particular on the town’s crime hotspots by installing additional fixed and mobile CCTV cameras.


Progress

There are four elements to this promise and three of them are being met well.

We are continuing to work well with partners, and have been shortlisted for a number of awards for our partnership working to reduce crime.

Hotspot analysis continues to play an important role in such partnership working, and has enabled agencies to deliver reductions in anti-social behaviour and particular crime types.

On CCTV development, legal issues regarding capital, property and image copyright have been resolved, clearing the way for further development towards a single control room in line with the Cabinet decision.

Crime continues to reduce, although not at the level stated in the promise.



Promise 48

We will remove all abandoned cars on council land or a public highway within 48 hours of being reported.


Progress


This promise is consistently being achieved. The current high scrap prices, producer responsibility for the disposal of vehicles, and the Scrappage scheme are reducing numbers of abandoned vehicles.





Promise 49

We will recycle, compost or treat more than 50% of household waste and, where practical, we will provide kerbside recycling collection for all our residents.


Progress

Quarter 1 outturn has shown that we are at 48.5% against a target of 50%, an improvement of 3% against the first quarter last year.

Mixed plastics were introduced in July and increased garden waste tonnage over the summer months should move us closer towards 50% from our 44.89% outturn last year.

We continue to push towards 50%, however the last couple of percentage points will be the most difficult to achieve.





Promise 50A

Through better safety initiatives on the roads we control, we will reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on the roads by 40%.


Progress

We are continuing to closely monitor all Killed and Seriously Injured (KSI) figures against the target figure of 57 for the 12 months leading up to 31 December 2009.

Whilst Swindon has one of the best records in the south-west, data for the first six months of 2009 unfortunately report 41 KSIs recorded. This suggests that despite our relatively good performance, the target may not be achieved.

We are not complacent about this and work on the Strategic Plan for Accident Reduction (SPAR) report is progressing ready for report to Cabinet in November 2009. Discussions with the Road Safety Partnership are on-going and we have the potential to provide a new model for other road safety partnerships. As well as this we are working closely with partners to develop and implement a number of educational campaigns and safety schemes to address accident blackspots and it is hoped some of these schemes will be implemented by the end of December 2009.




Promise 50B

Through better safety initiatives on the roads we control, we will reduce the number  the number of children killed or seriously injured by 50%.


Progress

The targeted reduction in the number of children killed or seriously injured was achieved prior to the required date, allowing resources to be concentrated on managing adult KSI's and maintaining the reduction in Child KSI's.

A new initiative is underway for School Safety Zones as a pilot involving five schools, in addition to safety schemes.

The benefit of regular monitoring of accidents was identified and we are working with partners to help understand the underlying issues.

Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Bobby Bingo

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2010, 09:17:35 AM »
Well done Mart. I tip my hat to you.
Cllr. Heenan certainly has his work cut out to complete this lot by the end of 2010.
I can remember one of the lessons in "The Essentials of Professional Management"
Always endevour to set a target, but one that means hard work and dedication to achieve.
NEVER SET AN UNACHIEVALE TARGET. It demoralises the employee.
One thing we should be asking for is a monthly update against these targets.
Bobby

Offline Tea Boy

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2010, 09:46:53 AM »
Promise 18

We welcome Bath University’s proposals to build a new and exciting University in Swindon. If the Public Inquiry recommends building the University adjacent to the hospital at Commonhead, we will ensure that the special character of Coate Water is protected.


Progress

Achieved.



???????????????


Is that more like fallen through  and rejected......... its stretching the point to just put... 'Achieved'
Gardening tips: Always remember its brown side down, green side up.  If its knocking now it'll only go bang later

Offline Tea Boy

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2010, 09:51:51 AM »
Promise 14A

We must attract and retain high quality staff. The Council will be a leading employer with a modern and flexible workforce that can adapt to changing priorities and deliver results.


Progress


Part of this promise was achieved when Investors in People (IiP) recognition for the whole organisation was achieved. Work on continuing to ensure that Swindon Borough Council is viewed as an Employer of Choice continues through delivery of the agreed HR Strategy - A Great Place to Work. Key focus over the last six months has included: ensuring that our values and behaviours framework is implemented through our appraisal process and council-wide projects; continued development and training on ensuring that we manage our contracts as effectively as possible; continued success of our recently launched apprenticeship scheme, with over 22 apprentices recruited; further benefits launched through our staff benefits scheme; and additional staff supporting Equalities and IiP.

...........


And cut thier wages at the first possible instance....

... sorry but ask anyone working for SBC or SCS or Crapita at the moment and ask them whether they think SBC is a 'great place to work'?


I'll leave you to guess the reply. :censored:


Some one might want to ask why no employee has seen an employee satisfaction questionaire this year (after years of being told we had to complete them)..?  Who's afraid of getting the wrong answers??
Gardening tips: Always remember its brown side down, green side up.  If its knocking now it'll only go bang later

Offline Tea Boy

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2010, 09:57:15 AM »
Promise 12

We will keep residents informed about Council services through the council newspaper ‘Swindon News’ which will be delivered six times a year to every home in the Borough. We will hold regular public meetings, consultations and introduce 'suggestion boxes' around the  borough to encourage you to feedback on our performance.


Progress

Achieved.


Where are these suggestion boxes????? has any one seen one?
Gardening tips: Always remember its brown side down, green side up.  If its knocking now it'll only go bang later

Offline Tea Boy

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2010, 10:00:12 AM »
Promise 3A

So that local people have access to wideranging advice and support, a flagship independent multiagency advice centre will be developed.

Progress

Withdrawn.


Why? so quick to explain if they are 'getting there' but not to explain a completely abandoned project?
Gardening tips: Always remember its brown side down, green side up.  If its knocking now it'll only go bang later

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2010, 10:26:23 AM »
Well T Boy I don't even know of the existance of The Swindon News because I have never even seen a copy!!

Maybe because the Tories feel so secure in Shaw and Nine Elms they do not feel inclined to bother with us with a copy?

And as for the promises I ground my way through them and just thought it was a very loose use of words which were just published to keep the indians quiet.  I am really starting to lose whatever reamaining faith I had in politicians rapidly.
All my posts are my own opinion and do not represent any political organization or group

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2010, 11:22:53 AM »
Promise 12

We will keep residents informed about Council services through the council newspaper ‘Swindon News’ which will be delivered six times a year to every home in the Borough. We will hold regular public meetings, consultations and introduce 'suggestion boxes' around the  borough to encourage you to feedback on our performance.


Progress

Achieved.


Where are these suggestion boxes????? has any one seen one?


Only the one they call 'Talkswindon'  ;D

Offline Chris Watts

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #16 on: May 20, 2010, 12:52:15 PM »

Deputy Leader of of the Council:  Councillor Garry Perkins

Ward: Shaw and Nine Elms

Portfolio Responsibilities:

Economic Development
Regeneration

Arts and Culture
Museums, including Steam


Surely being a director on the board of digital city and having Economic Development and Regeneration in your portfolio is a conflict of interest.  :o

Keep in mind that the delegate power for the loan was under the auspice of town center regeneration.

Quote from Cllr Perkins at the special cabinet meeting when challenged on using regeneration as the vehicle for the loan.
"WiFi is regeneration. We are removing copper and replacing it with wireless technology..."

What next? The MD of Digital City being the Chair of the council funded SSEP, and on the board of the SSP (chaired by Rod Bluh), and until recently on the board of SCS.

To quote Hansard "Cosy" ::)

Small Print: Member of the Labour Party. GMB Accompanying Rep. IT consultant on sabatical.  Postings may contain political bias. If you have an adverse reaction please desist from reading. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Offline Richard Symonds

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #17 on: May 20, 2010, 03:24:35 PM »
Is this another one for the District Auditor I wonder?
All my posts are my own opinion and do not represent any political organization or group

Offline Bobby Bingo

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Re: Lamplighters #18: 2010 Cabinet Appointments
« Reply #18 on: May 20, 2010, 03:28:20 PM »
I noticed that Tricky Rikki helped to sponsor the recent golf tournament for CALM. He was listed as the C.E. of Digital City.
Did he use our money?
Bobby