To consider Council performance in the third quarter of 2020/21 and to note and make any observations to Executive on the following reports:
· Key Performance Indicator performance for Q3 2020/21
· Key Performance Indicators to be reported on for 2021/22
· Revenue budget performance for Q3 2020/21
· Capital Programme performance for Q3 2020/21
Members received the Quarter 3 2020/21 Performance reports: Key Performance Indicator (KPI) performance for the last quarter, KPIs to be reported on for 2021/22, Revenue budget performance for Q3 2020/21 and Capital Programme performance for Q3 2020/21.
Councillor Lewanski, Portfolio Holder for Corporate Policy and Resources, reported that of the ten KPIs reported on in the third quarter, nine were on target. One KPI was off target – KPI 7 (Net affordable housing completions) which was red rated.
Members discussed and asked questions on the following areas:
Affordable housing – It was noted that the Council was continuing with its long-term plans to provide more affordable housing in the borough. Against a target of 75 there were 48 completions by the end of Q3. However, allowing for fluctuations in development activity and economic circumstances, performance was reported to be on track. The borough’s affordable housing target is for 1,500 affordable units to be built between 2012 and 2027. Since 2012, 875 affordable units have been completed.
A number of key sites were in mature development including Pitwood Park and Cromwell Road which contained affordable housing units. The Council was also working with social housing provider Raven Housing Trust on proposed future projects to deliver more rented social housing. The Committee requested an update on the Housing Strategy adopted in 2019 at a future meeting.
Staff sickness absence – the Committee was pleased to see that KPI4 showed that the last quarter had seen a continuation of the downward trend in staff sickness since quarter 1 in April 2020 and the first UK lockdown. The average duration of short-term sickness per employee reduced from 4 days down to 3.36 days. Members said this was an impressive achievement as a large number of staff were having to cope with remote working combined with home-schooling and caring responsibilities as well as some periods of shielding and self-isolation. Other staff were continuing to work in frontline critical services such as refuse and recycling.
Interim Head of Paid Service, Mari Roberts-Wood, said that the data behind this KPI4 was being analysed carefully as the numbers could be affected by a small number of longer-term sickness absences. The Council and managers had provided support for staff during the pandemic, to help their physical and mental wellbeing during a tough year.
Homelessness prevention – Members were pleased to see that KPI5 – the % of positive homelessness prevention and relief outcomes was improving due to continued successful multi-agency working. With the courts closing again, there had been a decrease in families approaching the Council for support, but this had been matched by an increase in approaches from single people, many with complex needs.
Investment income – the Committee was disappointed that KPI 12 2020/21, which was an indicator on investment income, had been dropped from the proposed list of KPIs for the coming year 2021/22, given the importance of this area for the Council and its finances. The report proposed that this annually reported indicator was removed to avoid duplication with the performance information that is now reported to the Commercial Ventures Executive Sub-Committee (CVESC) in this area. The Committee requested that the Executive reconsiders the proposal in the report: ‘that KPI 12 be superseded as one of the KPIs to be reported on for 2021/22.’
Councillor Schofield, Portfolio Holder for Finance and Governance, outlined the Revenue budget performance and the Capital Programme performance for Q3 2020/21. The Revenue Budget full year outturn forecast variance at the end of Q3 for Service budgets is 3.4% lower than the management budget. Central budgets were reporting 27.6% lower than budget with an overall forecast of £3.2m or 12.9% lower than budget.
The Medium Term Financial Plan and Capital Programme set out the Council’s five-year financial strategy. Key to delivery of a sustainable budget over the medium term will be the Council’s Commercial Strategy.
The Committee thanked Pat Main, Interim Head of Finance, and the Finance team, for their work on managing the financial impact on the Council from the pandemic and for effective administration of the multiple COVID-19 central government funding allocations.
(i) To note the Key Performance Indicator (KPI) performance for Q3 2020/21, the Revenue Budget performance for Q3 2020/21 and Capital Programme performance for Q3 2020/21.
(ii) To note the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to be reported on for 2021/22.
(iii) To request that Executive reconsiders the proposal for Key Performance Indicator 12 (2020/21) on investment income to be superseded as one of the KPIs to be reported on for 2021/22.