A report by the Insights and Transformation Manager
The Portfolio Holder presented the report supported by the Insights and Transformation Manager. Members were advised the detailed report was backward looking to identify any KPI’s that had reached their target (highlighted in red within the report). A detailed narrative was provided for such KPI’s providing a reason as to why they had not reached the target.
Committee questioning and comment followed which included:
In response to concerns at raised in respect of the drop in occupancy of market traders, members were advised that the time line of the report was for Quarter 4 – the first three months of the year, and weather conditions did impact during that period. The Portfolio Holder advised that the new Portfolio Holder for the markets provision was actively improving the markets offer and sourcing additional stall holders.
On voicing concerns in respect of the workforce survey identifying that many staff members did not feel informed about the partnership and the decisions it was making, members were advised that work was ongoing to look at and to understand the reasons for the response. A staff survey with more in-depth questioning would be issued to try to identify the issues. The Portfolio Holder confirmed that the situation had been picked up by the recent Peer Review and advised it was being looked into.
Referencing the differential in car parking a member queried the budgeting for the service as they felt it should be accurate with previous years’ incomes to work from. Members were advised that there had been an obvious loss during and following lockdown with changes in the usage in car parking, but it was anticipated that the budget for the current year would be more accurate. Members also noted issues of ticketing machines being out of operation for long periods due to a lack of parking attendants and the Portfolio Holder agreed the sentiments and further advised that new parking machines were being sourced. They would enable cash and card payments, and also require registration details to stop any ticket sharing.
In response to a member question about scrutiny being provided with comparative data with similar authorities, the Insights and Transformation Manager confirmed that whilst some benchmarking did take place, it was reliant on a comparable authority to provide such data. All authorities recorded their data differently there was not one system across the Councils, and not all Councils offered the same services such as a markets offer. As such, if members had any areas of interest then research could be carried out for reporting. Historically Boston had used South Holland District Council for benchmarking but that was not practical now as it was a member of the partnership.
A request was tabled for information relating to Council Tax collections to identify any changes being due to the changing nature of houses within the Borough.
Members were advised that the scrutiny provision could scrutinise any service delivered by the Council and members should table such requests during the work programme item or direct their request to the relevant Chairman of the relevant committee.