To receive a report on the Council’s performance for Quarter 1 (May-June 2018). At the progress meeting, a number of areas of focus were identified for more detailed consideration. These were:
· Crime and Disorder
· Digital Strategy
· General Data Protection Regulations
It is intended that further information will be available for the meeting. The quarterly monitoring report can be found here.
The Committee received a presentation from Mr. Jon Rundle, Strategy, Performance and Partnership Manager, on the Quarter 1 Performance Monitoring.
The Quarterly Monitoring Report provided information on how well the Council was performing, and allowed Members and Officers to identify issues on an ongoing basis. It was reported that at the end of Quarter 1, 85.2% of the actions were “green”, 14.8% “amber” and 0% were “red”. The Committee was apprised of the actions being taken on those that were “amber” and noted the reasons why certain projects were not on track to be achieved within the timescales set.
A project relating to the CCTV service and how it would be shaped going forward was raised as “amber”. The current service was provided in partnership with Hart District Council and was due to undergo a review of the current systems capabilities and likely needs for future proofing as part of the procurement process for a new maintenance contract. The Committee was advised that Hart had updated their cameras during the current contract but Rushmoor had taken the decision to continue with the existing cameras. This situation had made the procurement process for a new maintenance contract more complex and there was a slight delay. A meeting was scheduled for the following week to consider this matter. The Committee was concerned that the Council had taken the decision not to upgrade the cameras at the same time as Hart and requested that an update be given to explain the reasons behind the decision.
Action to be taken
To provide an update on the reasons behind the decision to not upgrade the CCTV cameras within Rushmoor at the same times as the ones in Hart.
Carrie Ryan, Community Safety Manager
Since the last meeting, when the Committee had considered Quarterly Performance Monitoring, it was noted that a number of new measures had been added to the report. These related mainly to the SERCO contract and included data on service satisfaction, street cleansing, in particular missed bin collections and fixed penalty notices. Homelessness, walk in customers and staff absence data was also being included. The Committee also noted that data on the Council’s savings requirements had been recorded as part of the information provided. The Committee discussed the savings requirement data and requested that more information on income generation, in particular that generated from property investment, should be added to the work plan.
The Chairman thanked Mr. Rundle for his presentation and welcomed Carrie Ryan, Community Safety Manager and Inspector Phil Mayne of Hampshire Police who were in attendance to provide a background to the crime and disorder figures held within the Quarterly Performance Monitoring Report.
The Committee was advised that there had been a continual decrease in crime rates over the past two years of about 1% despite all the “red” categories shown on the data provided within the report. Figures were skewed as crimes, such as burglaries, could take place over one to two nights; then the offenders would move to a different location or be caught, causing a peak in the figures in a short space of time. Historic crimes such as rapes and domestic abuse could also disrupt the figures as they were logged on the day they were reported and not backdated to the event itself. The Committee discussed rape crimes and noted that teens/young people were more inclined to report rapes than they had in the past. The rapes being reported were not stranger rapes, but often related to young people being too drunk or under the influence and not in the right mind to consent to acts of a sexual nature.
The Committee discussed drug crimes and the actions the Police were taking to address these issues. Operation Fortress was a dedicated team of police officers in Rushmoor working with the Thames Valley and Guildford Police to target known people and vehicles associated with drugs. The aims of the operation were to make Rushmoor a hostile place for dealers and to work with users to deter them from housing transient drug dealers to try to eradicate the problem as a whole. The main drugs being dealt in Rushmoor were cannabis, spice, heroine and cocaine.
A discussion was held around the reluctance of people to call 101, the non-emergency Police phone number. It was noted that it took a considerable length of time to report a problem via 101, which put people off. Inspector Mayne responded by stressing the importance of using the 101 number, as this helped build a picture of crimes and can help identify hotspots and gain intelligence to tackle issues effectively.
In response to queries regarding the issues in the town centres around street drinking and antisocial behaviour, it was noted that the majority of the street drinkers were currently in prison. It was also advised that most of the street drinkers weren’t homeless and chose to drink on the streets due to the fear of losing their accommodation. In respect of begging, the individuals operating in the town centres were passive and could not be prosecuted under the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO). The Police used allegations of fraud (a crime with a higher punishment than a PSPO) as a way of targeting these individuals who were giving the impression that they were homeless.
A request was made for statistics on first time offenders, and measures taken to prevent them from re-offending. It was noted that there were courses available including victim awareness to help change mind sets. The Integrated Offender Management (IOM) Team dealt with regular offenders.
It was agreed that Ms Ryan would look at different ways to display the information in the Performance Monitoring Report, these would be shared at a future meeting of the Progress Group. It was also agreed that the Committee would consider the Crime and Disorder data again when reviewing the Quarter 3 Report.
The Chairman thanked Ms Ryan and Inspector Mayne and then welcomed Cllr Paul Taylor, Customer Experience and Improvement Portfolio Holder and Phillip Roberts, IT Systems Administrator who were in attendance to address the status of the Digital Strategy which appeared as amber in some areas in the Quarter 1 Report.
The Digital Strategy had been adopted on 20th April, 2017 and set out how the Council would seize opportunities to do things better by increasing the digital offer to customers, ensuring that the Council was fit and streamlined for the future. It was noted that the Council had established a group to look in more detail at the Digital Strategy and a work programme was in place. Currently a number of areas were being addressed, these included a web portal for business rates, new ways of working were being scoped as a result of Citizens’ Advice Rushmoor co-locating in the building and the development of a cloud strategy.
An area that was showing “amber” was General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR); it was noted that to meet the Regulations’ criteria, all elected members had to switch to using a Rushmoor email account and this was to be completed by Monday 17th September, 2018. Two training session for Members on GDPR were scheduled for 21st November, 2018 and 14th January, 2019. All Members were being asked to attend a session.
In response to a query regarding Windows 10 and the migration from Windows 7, it was noted that Windows 7 would no longer be supported from 14th January, 2020. A subscription model was available to upgrade as you go although there were cost implications of taking this offer up. It was felt a good option to consider going forward. In the meantime, the IT Service needed to ensure the domain was up to date to allow for migration to Windows 10 when necessary.
With regard to the modern.gov committee administration application, it was noted that a further roll out of the system with support for Members would take place in October.