Agenda and minutes

Shared Revenues Partnership Joint Committee
Wednesday 18th June 2014 4.00 pm

Venue: Orwell Room, Grafton House

Contact: Trisha Sutton  01473 432512

Items
No. Item

1.

Election of Chair

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that Councillor D Haley be elected as Chair for the next two meetings only, subject to a report being submitted to the next meeting to amend Items 2.1 and 2.4 of Schedule 1 of the Shared Revenues Partnership Agreement.

2.

Appointment of Vice Chair

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that Councillor M Cook be appointed as Vice-Chair for the municipal year 2014/15.

 

In the absence of Councillor D Haley, Councillor M Cook took the Chair.

3.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors D Haley & K Pollard.

4.

Unconfirmed Minutes of Meeting held on 5 March 2014 pdf icon PDF 42 KB

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the minutes of the meeting held on 5 March 2014 be signed as a true record.

5.

Dates and Times of Meetings - all at 4.00pm

Wednesday 3 September 2014

Wednesday 5 November 2014

Wednesday 21 January 2015

Wednesday 11 March 2015

Minutes:

The dates and times of meetings were confirmed.

6.

To Confirm or Vary the Order of Business

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the Order of Business be confirmed as printed on the agenda.

7.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

8.

SRP/14/01 Head of Shared Revenues Partnership report pdf icon PDF 89 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

8.1      The Head of Shared Services explained that the report contained a review of the performance, financial aspects and key achievements of the Shared Revenues Partnership for 2013/14.  An overview of the processing times showed consistent performance results from all three authorities. 

 

8.2      During 2013/14 the Shared Revenues Partnership processed a total of 8,602 new claims and over 80,000 changes in circumstances for Benefits alone and the totals for each authority were detailed.  A steady increase in the use of electronic forms had occurred and feedback from the on-line customer survey was detailed at Appendix 3 to report Ref No: SRP/14/01.

 

8.3      Work with internal and external colleagues continued to ensure the requirements of our mutual customers was being met through information sharing.  Following a discussion about the performance targets, the Head of Shared Services confirmed that the existing targets remained challenging.  It also continued to be the responsibility of all customers to report any change in circumstance but in comparison to the paper equivalent, the time taken to complete the on-line form was greatly reduced.

 

8.4      The Finance & Procurement Operations Manager explained the final position of the Shared Revenues Partnership Operational Account (Revenue) and detailed the under spend carried forward from 2012/13.  The Director of Finance (Babergh District Council) reiterated that the level of reserves was in line with the 10% figure approved in the Shared Revenues Partnership agreement and Officers had no cause for concern for any financial matters.  Several staff had attained professional qualifications during the year and congratulations were given to those achievers.  

 

Resolved:

 

1.    that the Shared Revenues Partnership financial outturn for 2013/14 be noted and that the financial treatment of the favourable variance be agreed, to allow the SRP to continue to have a reserve to fund the future changes expected, future developments in the service and to cover the running costs to maintain the current level of service.

 

2.    that the financial position of the SRP be reviewed further during 2014/15 in relation to partner contribution, taking into account the prospects for ongoing and future cost.

9.

SRP/14/02 Welfare Reform Update pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

9.1      The Shared Revenues Partnership Manager highlighted the additional changes which had taken place during the year apart from the changes to Benefit and the cases affected by the removal of the Spare Room Subsidy in each of the authorities as at 31 March 2014 were listed.

 

9.2      The Discretionary Housing Payments awards for 2013/14 were detailed and how this matched the funding from Central Government for each of the authorities and the DHP administration funding to support the delivery costs of the implementation of the welfare changes were also listed.

 

9.3      A meeting with representatives of each of the three authorities Housing Sections would be held in July 2014 to confirm how much had been committed so far in the first three months of the 2014/15 municipal year.  A challenge to a Discretionary Housing Payment had been raised but no decision had been made to date.  The Head of Shared Service was tasked to provide the figures being made available to Central Government by the Housing Sections of each authority and report them to the next meeting.

 

9.4      In response to a question about the average benefit capping it was confirmed that the limit of the benefit capping totals were £500 per week for single parents and couples with children and £350 per week for single people.  The Head of Shared Service was tasked to provide details about the upper and lower limits of benefit capping cases rather than average and report them to the next meeting. 

 

9.5      The latest information available was that an element of Universal Credit would be implemented in all areas by 2016.

 

            Action:

 

1.    The figures being made available to Central Government by the Housing Sections of each authority to be reported at the next meeting. (Head of Shared Service)

 

2.    Details about the upper and lower limits of benefit capping cases to be reported at the next meeting. (Head of Shared Service)

 

            Resolved:

                       

            that the impact of the welfare changes in the first year of implementation, be noted.

10.

SRP/14/03 Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 46 KB

Minutes:

10.1    In respect of the future Chairmanship of the Shared Revenues Partnership, a report would be submitted to the 3 September 2014 to amend the SRP Agreement. 

 

10.2    It was requested that, apart from the two actions tasked for inclusion in the Welfare Reform report, at minute 9.3 and 9.4, details on how the workload had changed over time, the priorities and targets for the year and any savings which could be identified also be included.

 

10.3    It was confirmed that a service review of the SRP in respect of the Transformation Programme had been projected to be completed by the end of 2014.   

 

Resolved:

 

            That, with the inclusion of the report as detailed at 10.1 above, and the details requested for inclusion as detailed in 10.2 above, the Forward Plan, be noted.

11.

Exclusion of Public

To exclude the public (including the Press) from the meeting during consideration of the following items under Regulation 21 of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulation 2000 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during this item there would be disclosure to them of exempt information falling within paragraphs 1,4 & 5 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

Minutes:

            Resolved:

 

            that the public (including the Press) be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items under Regulation 21 of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulation 2000 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during these items there would be disclosure to them of exempt information falling within paragraphs 1, 4 & 5 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

NOT FOR PUBLICATION

12.

Unconfirmed Exempt Minutes of the Meeting held on 5 March 2014

13.

SRP/14/04 Revenues Update