Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Committee - Monday, 20 September 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: 135 Eastern Avenue, Milton Park, OX14 4SB

Contact: Candida Mckelvey, Democratic Services Officer  07895 213820

Note: Members of the public can watch the meeting online: 

No. Item


Apologies for absence

To record apologies for absence and the attendance of substitute members. 


Councillors George Levy and Ian White sent their apologies. Councillors Victoria Haval and Jane Murphy were in attendance, as the respective substitute members.


Councillor Mocky Khan, vice chair, chaired the meeting in Councillor White’s absence.


Declarations of interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests in respect of items on the agenda for this meeting. 





Urgent business and chair's announcements

To receive notification of any matters which the chair determines should be considered as urgent business and the special circumstances which have made the matters urgent, and to receive any announcements from the chair. 


The Chair announced that the confidential items were being reordered to make the best use of officer time, with item 10 on the agenda being moved to item 9. The office accommodation item became item 9, to be reviewed first, followed by inter authority agreement as item 10, then the revised capital programme as item 11.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 116 KB

To adopt and sign as a correct record the committee minutes of the meetings held on 9 February 2021 and 1 March 2021. 


Formal minutes and the notes of informal meetings held are published on committee pages, for information.


Additional documents:


One amendment was to be made to the minutes of 1 March 2021- a section of paragraph 95 (on page 11 of the pack). A sentence regarding the work of the task and finish group did not make sense. Deletion of the following was requested, “Ideally, a retrofit officer would be in place. Work with Cosy Homes was also underway”. This amendment request was seconded and the committee agreed. Once amended, these minutes will be republished as an approved version.



The minutes of the meetings held on 9 February 2021 and 1 March 2021 were agreed as a correct record, with the alteration stated above and by the Chair.



Public participation

To receive any questions or statements from members of the public that have registered to speak. 




Work schedule and dates for all South scrutiny meetings pdf icon PDF 146 KB

To review the attached scrutiny work schedule. Please note, although the dates are confirmed, the items under consideration are subject to being withdrawn, added to or rearranged without further notice.




Committee members were reminded that they had opportunity to make any updates or changes.


The Chair asked officers to keep him updated on any changes to the timings of reports coming to the meetings.  It was noted that the programme was constantly under review with senior management team and updated by democratic services.  Reports coming into the October and November meetings were currently on track.



The October work programme was noted.



Q1 2021/22 performance management report pdf icon PDF 122 KB

To consider a report regarding quarter 1 2021/22 performance management (paper to follow).

Additional documents:


The committee reviewed the Q1 performance management report, introduced by Cabinet member, Councillor Andrea Powell. Harry Barrington-Mountford was present as reporting officer to answer questions.


The Cabinet member explained that as monitoring continued, the reports will be a management tool in order to improve and add more quantitative KPI’s as time goes on.  She encouraged councillors to respond with ideas for KPI’s. Which can be used to challenge the findings and make improvements.


The Cabinet member clarified that the timeliness of reporting will improve, with an aim of 6 weeks after a quarter end date, she explained that the current report was later than expected which was in part due to staff leave and the meeting cycles, with less meetings happening over summer.


Councillors highlighted a need for financial measures, constraints and specifics. The Cabinet Member responded that it was hoped to link reporting to budget updates.


Member expressed the view that it was good to see that the diversity and inclusion strategy was in progress.  Broadband was a concern for some, and it was important not to stall on improvements.  It was noted that Councillor Simpson would share information on her current work in this area when she had answers back. On the subject of littering, the number of PCNs was challenged on the basis that the figure seemed too low. The issue of Cycle paths was discussed, including the importance of creating a linked network, poor public transport in rural areas means reliance of private vehicles. There was discussion around the difficulty of improving an already good recycling rate.


Committee asked that Cabinet members for each strand of the Corporate Plan priorities be present for these items in order to get immediate answers to questions.



That committee noted the report and had provided comments to the Cabinet member.



Exclusion of the public

To consider whether to exclude members of the press and public from the meeting for the following item of business under Part 1 of Schedule 12A Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 and as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006 on the grounds that:

(i)        it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraphs 1-7 Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act, and

(ii)       the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information. 



The committee voted in favour of excluding the public, in order to consider three confidential reports.



Office accommodation

To consider a report regarding office accommodation (paper to follow).


(Previously item 10 on the agenda)


The committee considered a report on office accommodation from the Deputy Chief Executive –Transformation and Operations



The committee noted and agreed with the recommendations in the confidential report and provided comments to Cabinet.


Inter authority agreement

To consider a report regarding inter authority agreement (paper to follow).


(Previously item 9 on the agenda)


The committee considered a report on inter authority agreement, led by Deputy Chief Executive for Place. The Deputy Chief Executive –Transformation and Operations left the meeting at this item.



The committee noted and agreed with the recommendations in the confidential report and provided comments to Cabinet.



Revised capital programme

To consider the report on revisions to the capital programme (to follow).



Due to the meeting time guillotine set out in Standing Orders about to expire, the committee deferred the review of the revised capital programme report from the Head of Finance.