Agenda and minutes

Performance and Overview Committee
Wednesday, 1st March, 2017 10.00 am

Venue: Lecture Theatre - Fire Service HQ, Winsford, Cheshire. View directions

Contact: Joanne Smith 

Items
No. Item

1.

PROCEDURAL MATTERS

1A

Record of Meeting

Members are reminded that this meeting will be audio-recorded.

Minutes:

Members were reminded that the meeting would be audio-recorded.

1B

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillors H Deynem, P Harris, L Morgan, M Simon and independent (non-elected) member A Ruddy.

 

In Councillor Harris’s absence Councillor Mercer took the chair for the meeting.

1C

Declaration of Members' Interests

Members are reminded that the Members’ Code of Conduct requires the disclosure of Statutory Disclosable Pecuniary Interests, Non-Statutory Disclosable Pecuniary Interests and Disclosable Non-Pecuniary Interests.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of Members’ interests.

1D

Minutes of the Performance and Overview Committee pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Performance and Overview Committee held on 16 November 2016.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the minutes of the meeting of the Performance and Overview Committee held on Wednesday 16th November 2016 be confirmed as a correct record.

1E

Minutes of Policy Committee

The meeting of the Policy Committee scheduled for 25 January 2017 was cancelled.

Minutes:

The meeting of the Policy Committee scheduled for 25th January 2017 was cancelled.

2.

2016-17 Quarter 3 Review - Financial pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Finance introduced the report and drew Members’ attention to Appendix 1 to the report which showed the estimated outturn position of the Authority compared to the revised budget.  She provided Members with further information on the variances in certain departments, including an underspend in Service Delivery pay budgets which was partly offset by the costs of a pilot on call support officer and payments relating to the On Call Attendance Reward Scheme (OCARS) and estimated underspends in Prevention and Protection as a result of continuing staff vacancies. An overspend on Property Management was due to funds being earmarked for fire safety requirements in the Authority’s properties.

 

The Head of Finance explained that the overall anticipated underspend at Quarter 3 was £505k.  This was in addition to anticipated underspends of £119k at Quarter 1 and £192k at Mid Year Review, as previously reported to Members. 

 

The Head of Finance referred Members to Appendix 2 to the report which provided an update on the Authority’s expected outturn on the capital programme for 2016-17.  She informed Members of a projected overspend of £761k on the Emergency Response Programme.  Reasons for this projected overspend included omissions/re-measurement, unforeseen issues and costs, scope changes and additions to the stations at Alsager, Lymm, Penketh and Powey Lane.  Additional overspend was also anticipated due to the fit out costs for the Safety Centre at Lymm.  Overall, the anticipated outturn on the capital programme showed only a slight overspend (£207k) and the build programme remained within the Member approved contingency.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the 2016-17 Quarter 3 financial position and anticipated financial outturn be noted.

3.

2016-17 Quarter 3 Review - Performance pdf icon PDF 50 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Protection and Organisational Performance introduced the report which provided Members with an update on the Quarter 3 (Q3) review of performance for each of the Service’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to Members. 

 

He referred Members to the Corporate Performance Scorecard, attached as Appendix 1 to the report, which reflected the Q3 position against targets set and the year on year direction of the travel for the Service’s KPIs.  Officers expanded on each of the KPIs, providing further context particularly where targets set had not been achieved. These included the number of recorded deaths and injuries in primary fires, which had risen but remained at a low level and with the overall five year direction of travel being positive. 

 

The Head of Service Delivery provided further detail concerning the Service’s current performance for on call availability, informing Members that performance had improved since Quarter 2.  He highlighted the significant performance differences between the different on call shift systems with the combined availability of nucleus and primary on call appliances averaging 78.3% throughout Q3, compared to secondary on call appliances which averaged 44.03% availability.  He informed Members that the availability of the appliances as small incident units (SIUs) was not reflected in this data and, if added, would likely increase performance figures by approximately 10%.  The data was not currently included on SIUs as they cannot attend all incidents.  He referred Members to Item 5 on the agenda, the Internal Audit Progress Report, which indicated that the review of on call availability received significant assurance from Mersey Internal Audit Agency due to continuing improvements in on call availability.  Members were also informed that the Service was pursuing a partnership with Howdens Joinery Group PLC to bolster on call cover within Cheshire.

 

The Chair queried what type of incidents an SIU could not attend.  The Head of Service Delivery advised that SIUs could not attend incidents requiring breathing apparatus, but could attend most other incidents.

 

The Deputy Chief Fire Officer referred Members back to the statistics on the number of deaths in primary fires and informed Members that there had been a national increase in deaths related to mental health.  He informed Members that the Service were leading on work involving mental health awareness and how fire services could assist both locally and nationally.  He also advised Members of prevention work focusing on the implementation of a national burns strategy. 

 

A Member queried whether the spike in mental health incidents related to any particular age groups.  The Deputy Chief Fire Officer informed Members that the age group was relatively broad but that there had been a spike in incidents involving males with mental health problems.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the 2016-17 Quarter 3 Review of Performance be noted.

4.

2016-17 Quarter 3 Review - Integrated Risk Management Plan Programmes and Projects pdf icon PDF 49 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services provided Members with an update on the Service’s 2016-17 Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP 13) programmes and projects.  Progress on delivery of the IRMP programmes and projects was reported to Members in the form of a ‘health report’, attached as Appendix 1 to the report.

 

He informed Members of the progress made in respect of the Blue Light Collaboration Programme and explained that the current status of the Programme was amber.  This was due to delays in the delivery of the Multi Force Shared Service (MFSS) arrangement and timescales associated with effecting changes to the Clemonds Hey site had been extended due to complications associated with the PFI.

 

Officers also provided updates on several other programmes and projects within the health report, including the firefighter apprenticeship scheme, sprinkler campaign, Emergency Response Programmes 1 and 2, Safe and Well, and the Emergency Services Mobile Communication Programme.

 

A Member asked for further information on the delays to the MFSS project within the Blue Light Collaboration Programme.  The Head of Legal and Democratic Services informed Members that delays were due to outstanding decisions that needed to be made by existing MFSS partners to enable the programme to begin in earnest.

 

A Member queried whether the current issue at Penketh station concerning the landline not being connected to the admin hub or station was affecting the running of the station.  The Head of Legal and Democratic Services confirmed that it was not as there ware adequate communications available.

 

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services concluded by referring to the risk log within the health report.  He informed Members that the risk of failing to recruit sufficient numbers of Safety Central volunteers had been mitigated as the apprentices would be operating as volunteers as part of their training.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the 2016-17 Quarter 3 Review of IRMP Programmes and Projects be noted.

 

5.

2016-17 Quarter 3 Internal Audit Progress Report pdf icon PDF 69 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Kevin Lloyd (the Auditor), a representative from Mersey Internal Audit Agency was in attendance at the meeting to present the report to Members.  He advised Members that the Internal Audit Progress Report, attached as Appendix 1, provided an update on progress against the 2016-17 Internal Audit Plan. 

 

He informed Members that, since the previous meeting of the Committee in November, reviews had been completed concerning treasury management, cash and bank, payroll, the station management framework and on call availability. All areas received a ‘significant’ assurance level, with the exception of the treasury management review which received a ‘high’ assurance level. 

 

The Auditor concluded by informing Members of the key recommendations agreed for action within the report and to the overview of output delivery in Appendix B to the Internal Audit Progress Report.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the 2016-17 Quarter 3 Internal Audit Plan Progress Report be noted.

 

 

6.

Annual Bonfire Period Report 2016 pdf icon PDF 49 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Arson Reduction and Road Safety Manager introduced the report to Members which presented the preventative and operational activities carried out by the Service and partners during the bonfire period 24th October 2016 to 7th November 2016 inclusive. 

 

He advised Members that there was a continuing downward trend in deliberate fires in Cheshire, with 32% fewer incidents of deliberate secondary fires attended compared to 5 year ago.  He referred Members to several areas within the report, providing a brief overview of various matters, e.g. on the recording of incidents, partnership activity, and educational events. 

 

He referred Members to paragraphs within the report containing statistics on service delivery area performance and station performance throughout the period.  Five station areas accounted for 82% of all small deliberate fire activity recorded during the period, with a significant increase in activity in Winsford. He highlighted the work undertaken by the Service and partners to act upon this increase.  He also asked Members to note the significance of Runcorn not being included in the top five stations for small deliberate fire activity and that prevention efforts throughout the area had assisted with the decrease in activity.

 

The Arson Reduction and Road Safety Manager concluded by advising Members of the recommendations arising from activity within the 2016 bonfire period.  

 

The Deputy Chief Fire Officer thanked the Arson Reduction and Road Safety Manager for his work throughout the period.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

[1]       the report be noted; and

 

[2]       the recommendations in the Annual Bonfire Period Report 2016 be supported.

7.

Forward Work Programme pdf icon PDF 194 KB

The table includes those items that have been identified/agreed to-date.  Members are asked to agree any additional items at the end of the meeting which need to be added to the programme.

 

Minutes:

The forward work programme for 2016-17 was submitted to Members for consideration and they were asked to agree any additional items that they wished to include for future meetings.  The Head of Legal and Democratic Services informed Members that an item had been requested at the recent Fire Authority meeting. He intended to add an item to the forward work programme concerned with performance in the Chester areas following the changes at Chester since the go-live at Powey Lane.  Members noted this.