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Agenda item

Corporate Policies and Strategies

To consider the list of corporate polices and strategies, attached at Appendix 1 to the report, and identify any for review by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee during 2022/23. 

Minutes:

13.1          The report of the Head of Corporate Services, circulated at Pages No. 122-130, provided a list of policies and strategies that were due for review in 2022/23.  Members were asked to consider the list attached at Appendix 1 to the report and identify any to bring forward to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

13.2          The Head of Corporate Services advised this was an annual report which was brought at the request of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and set out the corporate policies and strategies that would be coming forward for review during the year.  The list would inform the Executive Committee Forward Plan and Members were asked if it would be beneficial for any of the policies and strategies listed to be brought to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee for consideration.  Members were reminded that it was not effective to duplicate the work of other Committees, for example, the Audit and Governance Committee reviewed any governance-related policies, and the Overview and Scrutiny Committee should not review policies which were the responsibility of quasi-judicial Committees such as Planning and Licensing.  It was suggested that Members select no more than two policies or strategies to consider during the year.

13.3          A Member noted that Page No. 130 of the report made reference to the Parking Strategy which was already being reviewed by an Overview and Scrutiny Task and Finish Working Group.  He indicated that he was a Member of that Group but it had not met for some time so he asked for an update on the current position.  The Head of Finance and Asset Management advised that he needed to write the strategy and circulate to Members of the Working Group for approval prior to bringing it to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee. This was on his work plan and he would get to it as soon as possible.

13.4          A Member indicated that he would like to scrutinise the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the Capital Strategy and the Chief Executive explained that, the function of the Transform Working Group was specifically to develop the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the Council’s budget going forward so this would be a duplication of work which was within the remit of the Executive Committee.  The Head of Finance and Asset Management indicated that it would be a huge piece of work to scrutinise and would require a lot of additional resources.  A Member seminar on the interim Medium Term Financial Strategy would be held prior to it going to Council and he encouraged Members to attend that session and ask as many questions as they wished.  The Chief Executive also pointed out that any Member could attend Transform Working Group if they wished to know more.  In response to a query as to whether the Medium Term Financial Strategy was also scrutinised by the Audit and Governance Committee, the Head of Finance and Asset Management clarified that it was not within that Committee’s remit.

13.5          A Member suggested that the Economic Development and Tourism Strategy was an area the Overview and Scrutiny Committee may wish to focus on and that was supported by other Members of the Committee.  The Head of Development Services pointed out that work was being commissioned to identify what was happening with businesses in the borough and she suggested the findings could be presented to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.  A Member felt that it might also be beneficial for the Committee to look at the Capability Procedure given that it was being completely re-written.  The Chief Executive pointed out that this was one of a suite of other documents around disciplinary work which may also need to be covered as part of a review by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee. 

13.6          It was

RESOLVED          That the Economic Development and Tourism Strategy and the Capability Procedure be reviewed by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and that Terms of Reference for the reviews be brought to the Committee for approval at its meeting on 6 September 2022.

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