Agenda and minutes

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Items
No. Item

6.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 59 KB

Minutes:

The Minutes of the last meeting held on 3 June 2014 were signed by the Chair.

7.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were made.

8.

Performance Update - Quarter One 2014/15 pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To provide Members of the Performance & Administration Committee with a report on the progress made by the council in delivering the Strategic Objective and Measures of Accountability, relevant to the committee, as set out within the Corporate Plan 2011-15 (Mid-term review).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Service Manager (Revenues & Benefits) provided Members of the Performance & Administration Committee with a report on the progress made by the Council in delivering the Strategic Objective and Measures of Accountability, relevant to the Committee, as set out within the Corporate Plan 2011/15 (Midterm Review).

 

The Service Manager (Revenues & Benefits) highlighted the following Key areas of improvement/good performance:

 

 

CBP 31a-d – Self-help (pay-me, e-billing, direct debits and web forms)

Performance in respect of CBPs 31a-d was successful as each recorded outturns ahead of their respective 2014/15 quarter one targets.

 

CBP 33 – Collection of council tax

The collection rate of 28.82 per cent is above the new higher target of 24.25 per cent. However it will probably fluctuate from month to month as it did last year as this reflects the current uncertainty in the economy due to the many welfare reform changes.

 

CBP 34 – Collection of non-domestic rates (GBC)

The collection rate of 31.59 per cent is significantly above target, albeit it is likely to fluctuate from month to month as it did last year, reflecting the current uncertainty in the economy.

 

CBP 36 - Benefits Change of Circumstances

The processing time for change of circumstances is 6.3 days which is better than the 7.6 days achieved in the first quarter of 2013/14 and is therefore currently below our target of 9 days.  This is due to the fact that a lot of the changes reported to us are via the Automated Transfer of Local Authority Systems which can now be processed more quickly.

 

The Service Manager (Revenues & Benefits) fielded several questions from Members and advised the Committee of the following: -

 

  • good performance has been achieved on Council Tax collection because of the willingness of customers to pay and the continued recovery action taken by staff;
  • no date has been given for the introduction of Universal Credit in the Borough but the Council is doing its best to be prepared;
  • there are numerous documents that are required to support Housing Benefit and Council Tax Reduction claims (e.g. Birth Certificate, Driving Licence, National Insurance Card, proof of earnings etc.). The full requirement checklist will be emailed to Members of the Committee following the meeting.

 

Members noted the information contained within the report appendix.

9.

IT Security and Innovation - presentation by Darren Everden, Service Manager (IT) pdf icon PDF 517 KB

Minutes:

The Committee received a presentation from the Service Manager (IT Services) on IT Security and Innovation – attached here: http://bit.ly/X75Zpq

 

The Service Manager fielded several questions from Members and advised the Committee of the following:-

 

  • data is protected through backup facilities.  Policies regarding Information Security and Data Protection are in place.  Checks and reconciliations of data are completed on a regular basis;
  • for the cloud based storage system, the Council has a contract with Microsoft and the Council retains ownership of all files stored;
  • business continuity procedures for IT personnel are in place and all passwords and documentation are stored in a secure manner.

 

Members discussed the presentation and agreed that data is being effectively managed at Gravesham Borough Council.

 

Members expressed concern over the Councils ‘dated’ and ‘not very user friendly’ website.

 

The Service Manager (IT Services) advised Members that the new Gravesham ‘Digital Team’ will be updating and improving the Council’s website.  The Digital Team expect to have a timetable of improvement in place by the end of September/October 2014.

 

Peter Price (Co-optee and Officer of the Council) advised Members that he did not think the Council provides enough one to one or group IT Training for staff.

 

The Service Manager (IT Services) agreed with Peter Price and expressed his support for staff development, especially to provide a wider awareness of technology.

 

The Committee agreed that the Council should consider providing a balance of group and one to one training as well as web based training.