Agenda and draft minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Monday, 1st February 2021 6.30 pm

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Democratic and Electoral Services  Email: @Click to view live meeting from 6.30pm on 1 February 2021, https://bit.ly/3qLM7pM

Items
No. Item

11.

Declarations of Interest

To receive from Members, declarations of the existence of any disclosable pecuniary, or non-pecuniary, interests and the nature of those interests in relation to any agenda item. Please see Agenda Notes.

Minutes:

11.1       The Chair declared a personal interest in agenda item 8 (Gloucester Community Building Collective) due to formerly being employed by one of the prospective directors of the Gloucester Community Building Collective.    

 

12.

Declaration of Party Whipping

To declare if any issues to be covered in the Agenda are under party whip.

 

Minutes:

12.1       There were no declarations of party whipping.

 

             

13.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 163 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 4 January 2021.

Minutes:

13.1       RESOLVED: - that the minutes of the meeting held on the 4th of January 2021 were approved and signed as a correct record by the Chair.

 

14.

Public Question Time (15 minutes)

To receive any questions from members of the public provided that a question does not relate to:

 

·         Matters which are the subject of current or pending legal proceedings, or

·         Matters relating to employees or former employees of the Council or comments in respect of individual Council Officers

 

If you would like to ask a question please contact democratic.services@gloucester.gov.uk as soon as possible and by Wednesday 27th of January 2021 at the latest.

 

Minutes:

14.1    There were no public questions.

 

15.

Petitions and Deputations (15 minutes)

To receive any petitions and deputations provided that no such petition or deputation is in relation to:

 

·         Matters relating to individual Council Officers, or

·         Matters relating to current or pending legal proceedings

 

If you would like to present a deputation or petition at this meeting, please contact democratic.services@gloucester.gov.uk as soon as possible and by Wednesday 27th of January 2021 at the latest.

 

Minutes:

15.1    There were no petitions or deputations.

 

16.

Overview and Scrutiny Committee Work Programme and Council Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 430 KB

To receive the latest version of the Committee’s work programme and the Council’s Forward Plan.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

16.1       The Chair stated that it was the Overview and Scrutiny Committee's penultimate meeting before the scheduled local elections in May 2021.

 

 

16.2       RESOLVED that the Overview & Scrutiny Committee NOTE the forward plan and work programme.

 

17.

Gloucester Community Building Collective pdf icon PDF 165 KB

To receive the Cabinet Member for Communities & Neighbourhoods’ report which provides an update on the work of Gloucester Community Building Collective (GCBC) and further outlines its business and  strategic proposals.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

17.1       Councillor Watkins, the Cabinet Member for Communities & Neighbourhoods, introduced the report and highlighted key elements. She stated that the aim of the report was for Members to note the great work the CIC had done throughout the pandemic and for Members to look at the five year business plan - required as part of an agreement between the company and the Council. Councillor Watkins added that she and the Corporate Director attended quarterly meetings of the CIC. She said that another purpose of the report was to approve changes to the Board and to endorse the reduction of the number of appointed City Council Directors at the company to allow it to be independent moving forward.

 

 

17.2       Councillor Stephens welcomed the report. He expressed disappointment that the Business Plan in full was not publicly available and would require Members to discuss it in a private session. He stated that the directors appointed were excellent choices. Councillor Stephens concluded by stating that he wished to raise a point in relation to the Key Performance Indicators.

 

 

17.3       The Corporate Director & Monitoring Officer replied by stating that he would look at a way of potentially restructuring the report so more of it could be publicly available when it went before Cabinet. He said that he saw no reason why the Key Performance Indicators could not be publicly released.

 

         

17.4       Councillor Stephens stated that he believed that the current Key Performance Indicators were not sufficient and that he wished for more quantitative targets.

 

 

17.5       Councillor Watkins welcomed Councillor Stephens comments about it being an excellent report. In relation to concerns raised by Councillor Stephens regarding Key Performance Indicators, Councillor Watkins said that it could be difficult, when it came to doing asset-based community work, to formulate statistics and KPIs which would satisfy everyone who prefers to have numerical data. She stated that there was work being undertaken to improve the monitoring and performance of the work, particularly around ripple effect mapping.

 

17.6       The Executive Director of Gloucester Community Building Collective added to Councillor Watkins reply to Councillor Stephens by stating that they had been working with the University of Bristol on ripple effect mapping which was relevant for asset-based community development work. He stated that they would continue to improve their KPIs. He stated that the meeting about effective ripple effect mapping meeting with the University would happen that same week and that they would produce a report by the end of the year on the impact of it.

 

 

17.7       Councillor Wilson asked what rationale was behind the recommendation to reduce the number of Gloucester City Council non-executive directors from two to one, particularly considering the previous issues the Council had had with the management of outside bodies.

 

 

17.8       Councillor Watkins replied that it was never the intention that the Council would remain in charge of the company and that the plan was always for it to become independent. She added that enough scrutiny had been provided to ensure that issues that had  ...  view the full minutes text for item 17.

18.

Equality & Diversity Update pdf icon PDF 254 KB

To receive the Cabinet Member for Communities & Neighbourhoods’ report  which provides an update on the work undertaken around equalities, as well as the work of the Equality & Diversity Working Group.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

18.1       Councillor Watkins, the Cabinet Member for Communities & Neighbourhoods introduced the report and highlighted key elements. She noted that it was race equality week and that Gloucester City Council staff had been asked to all make a pledge to help to combat racism and racial inequality and that she believed that this pledge should also be made by all Members. She said that whilst she was introducing the report, she could not take the credit for the report as it was a shared piece of work created by hard working Council officers and partners. Councillor Watkins thanked everybody involved, including Members from different political groups. Councillor Watkins stated that she wished to make an amendment to the recommendation in paragraph 2.2 of the report to ensure that the recommendation mentioned Council partners.

 

18.2       Councillor Pullen thanked the Council for the good work being undertaken by the Race and Equalities Commission set up in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. He stated that he had heard positive feedback about the newly appointed Chair to the Commission, though he had not yet met him. Councillor Pullen noted that 17 Commissioners had been or were going to be appointed to the Commission and asked why their names were not in the public domain. Councillor Pullen further asked who the Community representatives were.

 

18.3       The Corporate Director (Partnerships) replied that there was no reason why the list of Commissioners could not be shared in due course. She stated that there were currently three commissioners. She stated that one of the Commissioners was a lecturer from the University of Gloucestershire who had a keen interest in diversity matters. She said that one was a board member of Gloucestershire Action for Refugees and Asylum Seekers (GARAS), who was a representative of the Muslim community and one was a young Gloucester resident. She added that the names and backgrounds of the Commissioners would be shared with the Committee.

 

 

18.4       Councillor Pullen noted that a detailed work programme was being developed by the Commission. He asked the Corporate Director whether the Commission would report to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee when it was appropriate.

 

 

18.5       The Corporate Director replied that the Commission were currently doing some information and data gathering and that they would report to the Committee when appropriate. She added that the Commission had a debate and had decided to investigate five areas currently which were:

 

1)    Workforce information;

2)    Health inequalities;

3)    Education, including destination data and exclusion;

4)    Criminal Justice;

5)    Lived experience.

 

 

18.6       The Corporate Director stated that the Commission’s final report would be in the public domain.

 

 

18.7       Councillor Lewis proposed an amendment to Paragraph 3.1 of the report, as he believed that the wording of the paragraph was not worded strongly enough.

 

 

18.8       Councillor Watkins agreed with Councillor Lewis, that perhaps the wording of the paragraph was not strong enough and that the phrase ‘extra-judiciary killing’ would have been more appropriate regarding the reference to the death of George Floyd.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Date of Next Meeting

Monday 1st of March 2021.

Minutes:

Monday 1st of March 2021.