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Agenda and minutes

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

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Items
No. Item

281.

Membership

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

 

Minutes:

The Chair announced that Councillor Swerling had replaced Councillor Susman as a Member of the Committee.

 

282.

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 had been received from Councillor Susman.

 

283.

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 Member had an interest to declare in any of the items of business on the agenda.

284.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To confirm and sign the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 5 September 2019.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 5 September 2019 were approved and signed as a correct record.

285.

Progress Update on the Workforce Plan 2019-20 (PER/19/20) pdf icon PDF 90 KB

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

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report on the progress to date and proposed amendments to the Workforce Plan 2019/20.

 

Members noted that two significant new outcomes had been added to the Workforce Plan 2019/20 to reflect organisational priorities which had emerged since the plan was agreed.

 

These were highlighted in the report as HR5 - Assist the Council with organisational change proposals, including a senior management restructure; and HR6 - Develop and implement a workforce development plan for Planning and Economic Development to support the Planning Peer Review Action Plan. 

 

Members recognised that these were both major pieces of work and that there may be a knock on effect on some of the other actions in the plan resulting in the rescheduling of some deadlines to accommodate the new work.

 

Officers, in response to a question from a Member, advised that work to develop the incorporation of LGBTQ into the Plan was likely to take place in the last quarter of the current Municipal Year or the first quarter of next year.  Meanwhile, the Council would make initial contact with a range of relevant organisations to obtain their policies and strategies to address the gap identified within the Plan.

 

The Committee briefly discussed the benefits, effectiveness, budgets and appropriateness of Team Building events, which would preferably be held away from the Council offices.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1.    feedback from the Local Joint Committee and other stakeholders on the progress of the Workforce Plan 2019-2020 be noted and incorporated into the Plan;

 

2.    the updates to the Workforce Plan 2019-2020 as set out in Appendix A, which contained feedback from consultation with staff and other stakeholders be noted;

 

3.    the Quarter Two Health and Safety Monitoring Report attached as Appendix B to the report be noted;

 

4.    Officers make initial contact with a range the relevant organisations to obtain information on their policies and strategies in regards to LGBTQ; and

 

5.    further consideration be given to the benefits and effectiveness of Team Building events where practical and appropriate and the possible, be held away from the Council offices.

 

286.

Wellbeing Policy (PER/19/18) pdf icon PDF 99 KB

The report recommends the approval of the new Wellbeing Policy.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the Wellbeing Policy, a new policy which had been introduced to support Hertsmere’s community wide Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2018-2022, from an employer perspective, applying the values the Council promoted to our residents, in the workplace.  The purpose of the policy was to bring together and highlight the many staff wellbeing initiatives already in place and to further develop and promote a wellbeing culture ensuring a consistent approach across the Council.

 

RESOLVED that the new Wellbeing Policy, attached as Appendix A to the report, be welcomed and approved.

 

287.

Agile Working Pilot (PER/19/21) pdf icon PDF 81 KB

The report recommends a protocol for the agile working pilot in the Planning department.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the proposed protocol for the Agile Working Pilot in the Planning Department, which had been agreed by Council and noted that the pilot had already commenced. 

 

Members noted that there was a major recruitment and retention issue within the Planning Department, with the majority of leavers citing the lack of flexible working as a factor in their reason for leaving.  It was also noted that one or two days working from home on a flexible arrangement was now considered to be an industry standard, particularly in regards to Planning.

 

The main purpose of the pilot, which would last approximately six months, was to

 

·         Test out new ways of working with a view to implementing the arrangements in the long term.

·         Consider potentially extending it across the whole Council. 

·         To review flexibility of agile working and the impact on the organisation and within departments and teams.

·         To ensure that the IT systems and equipment to allow remote working were sufficient and robust.

 

During the discussion which ensued the following comments and views of Members were expressed

 

Members also noted that whilst the pilot had started and was going well, there remained some resistance to its implementation from certain areas, which stated that where possible it shouldn’t be a given for mangers and only by exception.  This may result in the Council loosing managers to other organisations and local authorities where this arrangement was offered.  If there was a recruitment and retention then an agile working policy was needed to try to address this and to ensure that the Council remained an employer of choice within the sector.  The question was asked whether this was an indication of a lack of trust by managers.  Flexibility in terms of the pattern and number of days needed to be monitored and managed, as did the output of staff who were able to work from home.

 

Concerns were also expressed in regards to paragraph 3.2 which identified the principles around remote working and working from home. 

 

Members recognised that not all jobs would be suitable for homeworking and that the protocol identified the criteria that would make a job suitable for homeworking and that roles must be considered in the context of the team and that office and telephone cover must continue to be maintained.  It was also recognised that employees must also meet a range of criteria before it was agreed that they could work from home. 

 

At the conclusion of the detailed discussion which ensued, Members wholly supported the benefits of the implementation of agile working across the Council and in particular the Planning Department.  However, expressed the view that the proposed limitations on managers may be detrimental to the organisation and surely raised the question of the level of trust of managers.  The approach should be standard practice across the organisation and would need to be a practice which would need monitoring and managing.

 

The Committee proposed and agreed that the results of the implementation of the Agile Working  ...  view the full minutes text for item 287.

288.

Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To consider the Committee’s ATTACHED work programme.

 

Minutes:

Members noted the Work Programme and that the following items be ADDED

 

Progress Update on Workforce Plan 2019-20 – the work undertaken on the integration of LGBTQ into the Workforce Plan.

 

Agile Working Policy – a review of the impact of the implementation of the Policy across the Council.

289.

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.

 

290.

Date of next meeting

The next meeting of the Committee is scheduled to take place at 7.00pm on 3 December 2019.

 

Minutes:

Noted that the next meeting of the Committee was scheduled to take place on 3 December 2019 at the Civic Offices, Elstree Way, Borehamwood.

291.

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

17 July 2019

 

2.    Sickness Absence Management                       1, 2 and 4

 

3.    Proposals for Organisational Change              1, 2 and 4

Minutes:

RESOLVED 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 involved 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

17 July 2019

 

2.     Sickness Absence Management                   1, 2 and 4

 

3.     Proposals for Organisational Change          1 and 2

 

292.

Minutes of Local Joint Committee 17 July 2019

To note the minutes of the meeting of the Local Joint Committee held on 17 July 2019.

Minutes:

The minutes of the Local Joint Committee meeting held on 17 July 2019 were noted.

 

293.

Sickness Absence Management (PER/19/19)

Report of Officers.

Minutes:

Members noted the report which set out details of levels of Sickness Absence during the rolling year.  It also highlighted the outturns for September 2019 and the actions being taken to improve sickness absence levels. 

 

RESOLVED that the analysis of sickness absence levels for the outturns for September 2019 and the absence management actions being taken, be noted.

 

294.

Proposals for Organisational Change (PER/19/23)

Report of Officers.

 

Minutes:

The Committee received an update on the consultation received from the East of England Local Government Association (EELGA) regarding Organisational Change.

 

RESOVLED that:

 

1.    the EELGA Pay Report 2019 attached at Appendix A of the report be noted;

 

2.    the EELGA proposals for the Managing Director’s job description and salary scale as set out in Appendix A in the report, be recommended to full Council for approval;

 

3.    the remuneration for the Interim Managing Director be fixed at the starting point of the Managing Director’s salary scale with effect from 19 September 2019 and for the duration of the interim management arrangements be recommended to full Council for approval;

 

4.    an allowance for acting up be paid to the Interim Managing Director in accordance with the Council’s Acting Up Policy and advice received from EELGA be recommended to full Council for approval;

 

5.    the process for a permanent appointment to the post of Managing Director set out in paragraph 9.1 of the report be recommended to full Council for approval;

 

6.    further consultation take place with the relevant stakeholders on the proposed outline senior management structure set out in Appendix B be agreed; and

 

7.    a report be brought to a future Personnel Committee meeting with feedback from the further consultation and informed proposals for a revised structure and implementation process to be recommended to full Council be agreed.