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Minutes of a Meeting of the Overview Committee held in Committee ...

Minutes of a Meeting of the Overview Committee held in Committee ...

Overview Committee 10.03.2010 The Exempt Minutes of the Meeting held on 20 th January 2010, were confirmed and signed as a correct record. 69. ACTIONS: All actions were confirmed complete or in hand. 70. CHAIRMAN'S UPDATE: Members were reminded that Morgan Toner, Scrutiny Officer at North East Lincolnshire Council had observed the Overview Committee Meeting held on 9 th December 2009 and later provided feedback. The Chairman informed Members that an opportunity had arisen for Overview and Scrutiny Members to observe a future Meeting at North East Lincolnshire Council. The next Meeting was scheduled for 6.30pm on 6 th April 2010 at Grimsby Town Hall. The Chairman advised that whilst she was unable to attend at that time, anyone wishing to observe should contact Mitch Tipper, Scrutiny Officer. Alternatively, the visit could be deferred until future Meeting dates were known. All Members of Overview, Scrutiny and Audit would shortly be receiving a draft protocol on the attendance of Portfolio Holders at Overview and Scrutiny Meetings. The Chairman requested that Members’ comments be forwarded to the Business Manager, Policy and Chief Executive’s Office, by the deadline stated. At the Council Meeting held on 3 rd March 2010, two scrutiny topics had been suggested, i.e. Disabled Facilities Grants (DFGs) and Outside Bodies. The Chairman anticipated these Topic Suggestion Forms would be presented to the next Meeting of Overview Committee. Members noted that the Capital Programme would be an Agenda item at the next Meeting of Overview and a Member Debate on this issue would take place prior to that Meeting. In relation to DFGs, a Member expressed serious concerns with regard to customer relations. The Chief Executive advised that should the scrutiny topic be supported, Members would have the opportunity to explore the future delivery of the service and look at how customer relationships are managed. Reference was made to the report presented to Council on 3 rd March 2010 relating to proposed constitutional changes and a Member stated that it was important all Members were given the opportunity to speak at Planning Committee Meetings, not just Ward Members. The Chief Executive advised that Members could comment on this issue through the Member Support Group or via Group Leaders to the Portfolio Holder for Organisational Improvement. OC 62

71. REPORT BACK FROM TASK AND FINISH GROUPS: Overview Committee 10.03.2010 (a) Merged Services: Councillor D. Simpson provided a verbal update from the Merged Services Task and Finish Group. Reference was made to a Briefing Note from Allison Burton, which included an updated timetable, identified key decision points and ‘work in progress’ on services. Members were advised that decisions relating to the company status and service outcomes would be taken at April and July Council Meetings, with the final business case presented to Council at the end of July. All Members were encouraged to engage in the process, however, clarification was sought as to the mechanisms in place for Members unable to attend Task and Finish Meetings or Debates to input their comments. Concerns had been expressed with regard to IT, in particular compatibility of systems. In addition, Members of the Task and Finish Group were keen to see what the future management structure might look like, once the Merged Services Company had been formed. Receipt of this information had been requested prior to the Council Meeting in July. Furthermore, an update had been requested with regard to the budget, future governance and whether there would be an opportunity to review Portfolio Holder arrangements. The Chief Executive advised Members that the number of Portfolio Holders was agreed annually at Council and the Leader was responsible for appointing up to the maximum number permitted and identifying their roles. The Chairman confirmed the next Meeting of the Task and Finish Group would take place at 11.00am on the 23 rd March 2010. Further debates had also been scheduled and these dates would be circulated to all Members and included in the next edition of the Members’ Point Brief. The Chief Executive informed Members that a question and answer session would be held prior to the Council Meeting on 21 st April 2010. Members were advised that the Chief Executive and the Programme Director, Merged Services Project, would be happy to hold ‘one-to-one’ briefing sessions for any Member unable to attend the above mentioned opportunities, should they wish. In addition, reference was made to a joint Meeting to be held on 22 nd April 2010 between Members of East Lindsey District Council and South Holland District Council at Boston. With regard to the future management structure of the organisation, the Chief Executive anticipated further opportunities to share or expand services would be explored outside of the merged services programme. Members noted that the Programme Director, Merged Services Project, was in the process of compiling a list of answers to previously raised questions, in order to avoid possible duplication at future debates. OC 63

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