Council Minutes

Wednesday, 25th March, 2009
04.30 p.m.
Conference Room, The Education Centre, Juntion Road, Norton, Stockton, TS20 1PR
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

The Worshipful the Mayor (Cllr John Fletcher); Cllr Mrs Lynne Apedaile, Cllr Paul Baker, Cllr Jim Beall, Cllr Phillip Broughton, Cllr Mrs Ann Cains, Cllr Dick Cains, Cllr Julia Cherrett, Cllr Aidan Cockerill, Cllr David Coleman, Cllr Robert Cook, Cllr Mrs Eileen Craggs, Cllr Alex Cunningham, Cllr Ian Dalgarno, Cllr Ken Dixon, Cllr Jackie Earl, Cllr Kevin Faulks, Cllr Mrs Suzanne Fletcher, Cllr Maurice Frankland, Cllr John Gardner, Cllr Robert Gibson, Cllr Miss Barbara Inman, Cllr Mohammed Javed, Cllr Paul Kirton, Cllr Terry Laing, Cllr Colin Leckonby, Cllr Alan Lewis, Cllr Ken Lupton, Cllr Mrs Ann McCoy, Cllr Mrs Kath Nelson, Cllr Steve Nelson, Cllr Bill Noble, Cllr Mrs Jean O'Donnell, Cllr Maurice Perry, Cllr Mrs Maureen Rigg, Cllr Roy Rix, Cllr Fred Salt, Cllr Andrew Sherris, Cllr Steve Walmsley, Cllr Mrs Sylvia Walmsley, Cllr Mrs Mary Womphrey, Cllr Mick Womphrey, Cllr Bill Woodhead and Cllr Barry Woodhouse.
N Schneider, L King, S Lee, K Fulton (CE); D E Bond, M Waggott, P K Bell (LD); M Robinson, S Daniels, P Diggins, R Poundford, C Straughan, J Edmunds (DNS); J Danks, G Morrigan, I Miles (R); S Willson, T Beckwith, P Seller, R Kench, J Morrison (CESC).
In Attendance:
S Boyd (Director of Tristar Homes Ltd).
Apologies for absence:
Cllr Hilary Aggio, Cllr Jennie Beaumont, Cllr Mick Eddy, Cllr David Harrington, Cllr Tina Large, Cllr Andrew Larkin, Cllr Liz Nesbitt, Cllr Ross Patterson, Cllr Mike Smith, Cllr Mick Stoker and Cllr Allison Trainer.
Item Description Decision
Councillor Gibson declared a personal non prejudicial interest in respect of agenda item 3 - Cabinet minutes, CAB 156/08 as he was a Member of Newtown Resource Centre Management Board.

Councillor Mrs McCoy declared a personal non prejudicial interest in respect of agenda item 3 - Cabinet minutes - CAB 156/08 as she was the Chair of Stockton District Information and Advice Service.
Moved by Councillor Lupton, seconded by Councillor Laing and RESOLVED that the minutes of Cabinet held on 5th March 2009 (Minute CAB 152/08 - CAB 168/08) be confirmed or received as appropriate.
Moved by Councillor Lupton, seconded by Councillor Laing and RESOLVED that the minutes of Cabinet held on 19th March 2009 (Minute CAB 169/08 - CAB 172/08) be confirmed or received as appropriate.

1. The draft Council Plan and Service Improvement Plans for 2008 - 2011 be approved.

2. Final approval of the Council Plan and Service Improvement Plans be delegated to the Chief Executive and the Leader of the Council.

(Councillor Mrs Fletcher wished it to be recorded in the minutes that she did not vote on the above item.)
RESOLVED that the Health Select Committees response to the consultation be endorsed.
04.30 pm - 06.30 pm


Consideration was given to a report that gave an overview of the draft Council Plan and Service Improvement Plans for 2009-2012. The Council Plan set out Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s key improvement plans to contribute to the Borough’s Sustainable Community Strategy. The Council Plan was supported by Service Improvement Plans which provided more detail on how key objectives and priorities would be met. Both the Council Plan and the Service Improvement Plans were available on Stockton on Tees Borough Council website.

The Council Plan set out how the Council would contribute to community objectives. The plan was based on the objectives and outcomes already set in the Sustainable Community Strategy, but provided focus on the key objectives which needed to be achieve authority wide, and which necessitated monitoring by the Corporate Management Team and the Cabinet.

The principle underlying the development of the Council Plan was that it should be a business plan for the organisation, focusing on key corporate priorities for change, rather than summarising all activities that the Council undertakes. This approach was vital to ensure a clear focus on improvement, but meant that some significant service areas did not feature in the key objectives and outcomes. The focus of the plan shifted each year as the key improvement priorities altered over time; it was a three year rolling plan which was updated on an annual basis.

Service Improvement Plans supported the Council Plan by setting out how key priorities and objectives would be delivered, and their resource implications. The plans also included information about each service area and its achievements.

The 2009-2012 Council Plan contained two main parts. The first was a narrative explaining about the Borough, the Council, its achievements and future plans. This was supported by the second main part - an action plan which set out how the objectives and priorities of the Council would be delivered.

The objectives within the 2009-2012 Council Plan had changed from the 2008-2011 one to take account of new and emerging national policy, legislative requirements and the development of the Efficiency, Improvement and Transformation Programme.

The plan had been developed in partnership with:-

• Councillors - through seminars on the budget and Council Plan and through "drop in" sessions for Members to discuss the plan with officers.

• Corporate Management Team, Heads of Service and Policy Officers through joint working to develop the plan

The plan also took into consideration the results of recent consultation and engagement with local people including the 2008 independent residents survey.

The intended audiences for the Council plan were:-

a. The authority itself including elected members and officers (primary audience)

b. The Government, because the plans contain essential information enabling it to monitor performance (secondary audience)

c. The public in order that there is visibility and transparency about what the Council’s objectives and targets are

d. Key partners, to facilitate joined up approaches to making a difference to the lives of local residents where appropriate.

Full copies of the plan would be provided to members, senior managers and key partners. A summary version of the Council Plan would also be prepared for all staff. It would also be ensured that the Council Plan was available in public places and that copies could be provided to the public when requested. Full and summary versions would also be available via the Internet.

The measures that were included in the Local Area Agreement were also included in the Council Plan to provide officers and members with a joined up local performance framework. At this stage it was possible to indicate in the "success measures and outcomes" section of the action plans where there was a link to the Local Area Agreement and other measures in the NIS but in some cases it was not possible to provide final targets as data was still being collected against emerging definitions and guidance and some targets were in the process of being re-negotiated with Government. Subject to endorsement of the refreshed Local Area Agreement by Stockton Renaissance on the 17th March 2009 and approval by Cabinet on 19th March 2009 the refreshed LAA would be submitted, via Government Office North East, to central government for ministerial ratification. Once targets were formally agreed, the Council Plan would need to be updated.

The service planning framework was reviewed in 2005 and a revised framework put into place to focus on changes and improvements and to bring service and resource (finance, human resources, ICT, procurement) planning closer together. Service Improvement Plans included the key changes, improvements and priorities which would require significant attention from heads of service to deliver. Core business in each service was covered in business unit plans which sit beneath the Service Improvement Plans.

The Service Improvement Plans supported the delivery of the Council Plan and Sustainable Community Strategy. The Plans were structured to include:-

a. an introduction outlining the strategic direction of the service and key achievements from the previous year;

b. Action Plans linked to the eight themes of the Sustainable Community Strategy and a theme of organisational development. The Action Plans included links to other plans, identified actions and milestones, responsible officers, success measures and targets, and risks. In addition where actions had resource implications these were identified.

c. The Medium Term Financial Plan for the service.

d. A performance indicator table including both measures and targets.

Plans had been developed to cover all service areas. In some areas it had been sensible to develop combined Service Improvement Plans covering more than one head of service’s remit e.g. Children’s Services. Performance against Service Improvement Plans would be monitored and reported to Members twice a year, alongside Council Plan monitoring.

Available at the Performance Management Section on the intranet were abridged and full versions of the draft Service Improvement Plans, focusing on key elements of the action plans. Once agreed, plans would be published in both electronic and hard copy with a set of hard copy plans lodged in the members library.

Members were provided with presentations from the following service groupings on the content of their Service Improvement Plans 2009/2012 which represented a summary of their more detailed service delivery plans:-

Children, Education and Social Care
Development and Neighbourhood Services
Law and Democracy
Policy Performance and Communications

Members were given the opportunity to comment and ask questions on each of the above presentations.
Consideration was given to a report that sought endorsement of the Health Select Committee response to the Stockton-on-Tees Teaching Primary Care Trust’s consultation on the development of a new purpose-built centre designed to deliver primary care services in Billingham, which involved the relocation of three GP’s practices.

At their meeting held on Monday 16th March 2009, the Health Select Committee received a presentation regarding the Billingham Headway Development from Dr Hugh Geoghegan (Dr Geoghegan and Partners), Dr John O’Donaghue (Marsh House Medical Centre) and Chris Potter (PH&S Architects). Joanne Dobson and Ruth Hill were in attendance to represent the PCT. Ward Councillors for Billingham were also invited to attend the meeting.

The proposed development would bring together three of the seven practices based in Billingham: Dr Geoghegan & Partners; Dr Rasool from Queensway Health Centre; and Marsh House Medical Centre. The location of the development would be one kilometre from all the existing surgeries, which were considered outdated and impractical and viewed as not fit for purpose, at the rear of the old Billingham Technical College site. The development would provide a range of healthcare services and encourage closer, more effective working.

Members of the Health Select Committee and Ward Councillors were given an opportunity to discuss the proposals with the practice and ask questions.

The Health Select Committee’s response was to support the proposals presented by Billingham Headway Limited which the Committee concluded would provide enhanced primary care services for Billingham and to encourage the practices to continue to work closely with the PCT in developing the proposals and any further opportunities for co-location of services.

Can't find it

Can't find what you're looking for? Let us know and we'll do our best to point you in the right direction