Agenda and draft minutes

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Contact: Committee Section  Email: committee.section@gravesham.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

81.

Apologies

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Cllr Gary Harding; Cllr Derek Ashenden substituted.

 

82.

To sign the minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 114 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday, 24 September 2020 were signed by the Chair.

 

83.

To declare any interest Members may have in the items contained on this agenda. When declaring an interest Members should state what their interest is.

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were made.

 

84.

Q2 2020-21: Performance Report pdf icon PDF 86 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members of the Performance & Administration Committee were presented with an update against the Performance Management Framework, as introduced within the Council’s Corporate Plan, for Quarter Two 2020-21 (July to September 2020).

 

Before going into the report, the Head of Revenues & Benefits gave some context to the outturns to Members and updated them on the additional pressures the service had experienced due to its involvement in delivering the Government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

The Head of Revenues & Benefits guided Members through the report highlighting key performance figures from within the Performance Indicators covering the period July to September 2020.

 

The Head of Revenues & Benefits added to the information in the report and advised Members of updated performance figures:

 

  • The average number of days to assess housing benefit claims improved further and as at end of October 2020 the figure stood at 13.5 days
  • The average number of days to assess change of circumstances in respect of existing benefit claims continued to show a downward trend and as at end of October 2020 the figure stood at 2.9 days; the team were performing above average despite an increased workload stemming from the pandemic. The additional automation and the implementation of vastly improved processes to the service assisted the team with the heavier workloads
  • In addition, the team received 43769 items of work during the first half of the year compared to 17544 during the same period the previous year
  • Council Tax collection rate had improved  and stood at 1.2% below the rate for the equivalent time last year , at the previous Committee meeting it was reported that the figure was 1.8% showing that the team were slowly closing the gap
  • The Business Rates collection rate remained at 1.7% below the rate at the equivalent time last year , as reported during the last quarter and against the national average of collection being 8% down. During the first and second lockdown, the process of sending formal notices for recovery of Council Tax and Business Rates was suspended but officers continued to call customers. Those calls would consist of reminding the customers to pay what they owed or signposting them to services if they were having issues making payments due to difficulties in their life that stemmed from the pandemic such as job loss etc. So far, 4800 cases had been assisted with deferred payments or extensions on their instalment plans

 

It was noted by the Committee that Gravesham’s performance figures were better than other local authorities within Kent as well as above nationwide averages.

 

The Head of Revenue & Benefits informed the Committee of a number of grants, and their associated figures, which had been distributed to residents in the Borough: 

 

  • Business Support Grant
  • Hardship Fund
  • Test and Trace Isolation Payments
  • Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed)

 

Due to an issue with the Head of Revenue & Benefits audio, a portion of his presentation was not heard and it was agreed that the Head of Revenues & Benefits would circulate a document containing the information  ...  view the full minutes text for item 84.

85.

Any other business which by reason of special circumstances the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency.

86.

Exclusion

To move, if required, that pursuant to Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 that the public be excluded from any items included in Part B of the agenda because it is likely in view of the nature of business to be transacted that if members of the public are present during those items, there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.