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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Rooms A and B, Civic Offices, Elstree Way, Borehamwood

Contact: Democratic Services  020 8207 7550

Items
No. Item

555.

Membership

To receive details of any changes in membership of this Committee notified since the agenda was printed.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Lambert had replaced Councillor Davis as a Member of the Committee.

 

556.

Communications and apologies

(a)       Communications (if any) relating to business on the agenda.

 

(b)       Apologies for absence.

 

(c)        To receive presentations (if any) made in pursuance of a petition in accordance with the Council’s Constitution.

 

No presentation shall exceed five minutes and consideration of the subject matter will normally take place at the next ordinary scheduled meeting of the Committee and not at this meeting.

 

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Davis and Goldstein.

557.

Declarations of Interest

Members are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests they or their spouse/partner have in any matter which is to be considered at this meeting.  Members must also declare any other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests they have in any matter to be considered at this meeting. The responsibility for declaring an interest rests solely with the member concerned.

 

Members must clearly state to the meeting the existence and nature of any disclosable pecuniary interest, other pecuniary interest or non‑pecuniary interest and the agenda item(s) to which it/they apply.

 

Disclosable Pecuniary Interests are prescribed by the Relevant Authorities (Disclosable Pecuniary Interests) Regulations 2012 as follows;

 

Employment, office, trade, profession or vocation

Any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.

 

 

 

Sponsorship

Any payment or provision of any other financial benefit (other than from the relevant authority) made or provided within the relevant period in respect of any expenses incurred by a member in carrying out duties as a member, or towards your election expenses. This includes any payment or financial benefit from a trade union within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.

 

 

Contracts

Any contract which is made between the relevant person (or a body in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest) and the relevant authority— (a) under which goods or services are to be provided or works are to be executed; and (b) which has not been fully discharged.

 

 

Land

Any beneficial interest in land which is within the area of the relevant authority.

 

 

Licences

Any licence (alone or jointly with others) to occupy land in the area of the relevant authority for a month or longer.

 

Corporate tenancies

Any tenancy where (to the member’s knowledge) - (a) the landlord is the relevant authority; and (b) the tenant is a body in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest.

 

 

Securities

Any beneficial interest in securities of a body where - (a) that body (to the member’s knowledge) has a place of business or land in the area of the relevant authority; and (b) either (i) the total nominal value of the securities exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body; or
(ii) if the share capital of that body is of more than one class, the total nominal value of the shares of any one class in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest exceeds one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that class.

 

In cases of disclosable pecuniary interest, Members must withdraw from the meeting room while the matter is being considered.

 

 

Minutes:

No Members had an interest to declare in any of the items of business on the agenda.

558.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 124 KB

To confirm and sign the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 12 February 2019.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 12 February 2019 were approved and signed as a correct record.

 

Minute 457, Pay Policy Statement, bullet point 2 (Paragraph 1.5) – Noted that this would be discussed in Part 2 of this Personnel Committee Meeting.

559.

Workforce Plan 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 176 KB

The report provides an update on the Workforce Plan for 2019 to 2020.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members noted the presentation of this report to the Local Joint Committee and its discussion as set out below:

 

          The Head of HR and Customer Services reported that the Sickness Absence Policy had been reviewed and it had been decided that the wording of the policy needed to be clearer. The revised Sickness Absence Policy had gone to the Chief Officers Board and Senior Management team and the next stage would be to consult with staff.

 

          At the end of Quarter 4 (2018/19), short-term sickness absence came well within target (3.03 days per employee against a target of 3.5 days) During Quarter 4, 44 employees had been awarded a zero sickness absence award. The policy would be reviewed to provide recognition for staff who had achieved two consecutive years of zero sickness absence.

 

          The Standby Policy had been reviewed by Chief Officers and would be looked at by Heads of Service next week. The revised policy would be available at the next meeting of the Local Joint Committee in July 2019. Councillors raised concerns that there was not any guidance on contacting staff outside of working hours after a recent incident flagged this up. The Head of HR and Customer Services would discuss this with Customer Services and review the current decision tree.

 

          The Head of HR and Customer Services reported that there was currently three staff members employed in higher level apprenticeships. One apprenticeship was with Engineering and Asset Management and the other two with Street Scene. The Apprenticeship Levy would be utilised with maximum efficiency by funding higher level apprenticeships.

 

          Councillors enquired about the possibility of agile working for employees. The Head of HR and Customer Services confirmed that it had been agreed by Chief Officers to run an agile working pilot in the Planning Department. This would begin as soon as necessary technical equipment was in place.

 

          The staff representative reported that the Level 2 safeguarding training for Housing staff had been positively received.

 

          Four posts had been successfully filled in the Planning Department. Two were filled internally and two by external candidates.

 

          The Committee congratulated Officers on the positive outcomes achieved and remarked on the Council’s positive commitment to staff.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1.         the feedback from this Committee and other stakeholders on progress of the Workforce Plan 2019-2020 be noted.

 

2.         the updates to the Workforce Plan 2019-2020 set out in Appendix A, subject to consideration of feedback from consultation with staff and other stakeholders be approved.

 

(Action:  Head of HR and Customer Services)

 

560.

Update on Items Considered at Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 99 KB

To be noted.

Minutes:

Members noted the presentation of this report to the Local Joint Committee and its discussion as set out below:

 

a)    Pay rates for agency staff

 

The Council employed agency staff for a variety of different roles and ensured it complied with the Agency Workers Regulations (AWR). The regulations gave agency workers the same pay and conditions as permanent staff after completion of a 12 week qualifying period.

The figures quoted in the report did not include this year’s 2% pay rise.

 

b)    Reporting of abuse by waste operatives

 

There was a process in place for incidents of abuse to be reported and staff were encouraged to use it. All incidents were followed up and if necessary referred to the police. Notices to warn members of the public against abusing staff were put on all vehicles. Cameras were also installed. It was decided that body cameras would not be practical.

 

Councillors were concerned that filling in paperwork would be a barrier to reporting abuse and suggested having a phone line. The HR advisor explained that staff received support when filling in the forms as well as being allocated time to do so. Drivers had mobile phones with them at all times and an area officer was always available to respond to incidents. The Council was considering a new service for interpreting which would be helpful for service users and staff who do not speak English as a first language.

 

c)    Sharps bins in the Civic Offices reception

 

The Council had two Sharps bins available for staff. One was located in the First Aid room in the basement area and the other one was in the depot. The First Aid room was kept locked. First Aiders and HR had a key. Councillors asked if it was possible to have a swipe put on the door to allow the Sharps bin to be available to staff who required access to it. The HR advisor said that she would look into this. Councillors requested that Members were made aware of the location of the Sharps bins.

 

RESOLVED that the update on items considered at the previous meeting of this Committee be noted.

 

(Action:  HR Adviser)

 

561.

Any other non-confidential business which the Chairman considers urgent

In accordance with S100B(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, amended by the Access to Information Act of 1985, no urgent business may be raised unless it has been approved by the Chairman.  The item and reason for urgency must be announced at the start of the meeting.

 

Minutes:

There was none.

562.

Date of next meeting

The next meeting of the Committee is scheduled to take place on 10 July 2019 at the conclusion of the Local Joint Committee Meeting.

 

Minutes:

Noted that the next meeting of the Committee was scheduled to take place on 10 July 2019 at the Civic Offices, Elstree Way, Borehamwood.

563.

Exclusion of public

Recommendation that under S100A(4) Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I, Schedule 12A to the said Act:-

 

Part II Agenda Item                                                   Paragraphs in Schedule 12A

 

1.    Minutes of the LJC meeting held on           1, 2 and 4
12 February 2019

2.    Pay Policy Statement - Amendment of        1, 2 and 4
Paragraph 1.5

3.    Sickness Absence Management                 1, 2 and 4

Minutes:

RESOLVED that, under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I, Schedule 12A to the said Act:-

 

Part II Agenda Item                                      Paragraphs in Schedule 12A

 

1.     Minutes of the LJC Meeting held on                     1, 2 and 4

12  February  2019       

 

2.    Pay Policy Statement – Amendment to                1, 2 and 4

       Paragraph 1.5

 

3.    Sickness Absence Management                           1, 2 and 4

564.

Minutes of Local Joint Committee - 12 February 2019

To note the minutes of the meeting of the Local Joint Committee held on 12 February 2018.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the Local Joint Committee meeting held on 12 February 2019 were noted.

565.

Pay Policy Statement - Amendment to Paragraph 1.5

Minutes:

Following the discussion at the meeting of the Local Joint Committee held on 12 February 2019, the HR Advisor reported that the Head of Legal and Democratic Services had reviewed the wording of Paragraph 1.5 of the Pay Policy Statement and found the reference to the panel confusing and misleading. As the convening of the panel was referenced in the Constitution, it was decided that it should be removed from Paragraph 1.5 of the Pay Policy Statement.

The Committee decided that they would like to discuss this further and requested that the Head of Legal and Democratic Services attend the next meeting to be held on 10 July 2019.

 

(Action: HR Advisor)

566.

Sickness Absence Management

Report of Officers.

Minutes:

Members noted the presentation of this report to the Local Joint Committee and its discussion as set out below:

 

The report provided details of sickness absence levels in the Council during 2018/19 and Quarter 4 of 2018/19, highlighted the outturns for March 2019 and explained the actions being taken to improve sickness absence levels.

 

The Head of HR and Customer Services reported in addition to the short term sickness absence being well within target, that there was also a reduction in long-term absence compared with the previous year. Total sickness absence for the rolling year at the end of March 2019 had reduced to 7.31.

 

The Committee was also referred to details of the health and wellbeing initiatives that had and were being organised, including free gym membership, the Cycle to Work Scheme, investment in a table tennis table for the roof garden, lunchtime yoga classes, onsite massage therapy and a walking club to encourage staff to take proper breaks.

HR were working with First Care, the absence reporting service, to implement sickness trigger management. The Sickness Absence Management Policy had been revised and the draft policy had been circulated to the senior management team for consultation.

 

The Committee congratulated HR on achieving low sickness levels and felt that 44 members of staff with zero sickness absence attendance was exceptional and worth highlighting.

 

RESOLVED that the analysis of sickness absence levels and the absence management actions taken, be noted.