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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 18/01/2005
Portfolio Holders Proposals for Staff Budget Reductions 2005/06




I:\Finance\Accountancy\blong\confid\Draft cost reduction programme 2005-06 Brian.doc
PORTFOLIO HOLDERS PROPOSALS FOR STAFF BUDGET REDUCTIONS 2005/06
Ref
Department
Job Reference
Achievable Sum
Notes
1Committee Committee Sec: non replacement18Saving to be achieved following retirement of postholder.
2
    Personnel
Reduced Hours9Achieved but will impact on Personnel Best Value Plan.
3
    CEX Admin
Corporate Assistant7Requires support from existing staff.
4Land Charges24Deletion of one post.
5Corporate Management Post to Housing Dept
- secondment 3 days per week
3965k cost budgeted in 2005/06 39k saving but impact on Waverley business community etc and WBC image
6
    Locality Office
Locality Offices24Non-Saturday opening. Makes use of telephone & web-payments, plus Planning on-line instead.
7
    Environment
LA21 Assistant10*Met from vacancy savings. Consequential effect on other departments.
8
    Planning
Lower salaried replacement14Planning Policy Officer – replaced with trainee.
9
    Leisure
Arts20Subject to policy implications.
10Sports25Subject to policy implications.
11
    CEX’s
Register of Electors – wages3Discontinue second canvas.
12Public Relations staffing – Press Cuttings55k of 7k is staff costs (re-assess vacant post)
13
    Housing/Community
Kitchen post at Milford Day Centre16Day centre kitchen post following retirement
14
    Finance
Benefits Staff Costs48Additional grant funding towards extra work saved as workload absorbed by existing staff.
Service forecast to be upper-quartile in 2005/2006
15Additional/extended vacancies 240 to 30050* Net of LA21 Assistant (240+10+50=300)
312k
I:\Finance\Administration\pwenha\Budget 2005 06\Impact Assessment - Additional Notes.doc
IMPACT ASSESSMENT

Additional Notes

1
Committee SecretaryWill require Members to reduce to 4 SIGs & Area Planning committees
2
PersonnelThe will be a minor but manageable reduction in the ability of the Personnel Service to support the implementation of the Housing Options Appraisal decision
4
Land ChargesTo be achieved by a reduction in staffing levels.
    Result in a reduction in the turn around time for searches of, currently, 2-4 (at maximum) days
      Aim would be to remain within the Government target of 10 days.
        To achieve that aim with reduced staffing levels would require other staff in the Legal Section to have the competence to cover for the absence of remaining Land Charges staff. At a minimum, this would be for 54 days in a year to cover for contractual annual leave. That would result in a (otherwise unquantifiable) reduction in other legal service to Waverley.
        5
        Economic DevelopmentReallocation of 60% staff time on housing options and other non General Fund projects. 40% remaining for economic and partnership work. Implications: Re-prioritisation of existing projects – remaining time to concentrate on support to Market Town Healthcheck project implementation and limited support to Waverley Business Forum. Withdraw entirely from: Godalming Initiative, Farmers Markets, Tourism, Economic Strategy, External Funding Bids, Village Shops, Beacon follow-up and wider partnerships.
        6
        Locality OfficesOver the last year the Council has invested in facilities outside normal office hours. Customers will shortly benefit from extended arrangements to make payments. Apart from web-based payments, customers will be able to make telephone payments 24/7. Officers anticipate a significant increase in the volume of transactions through these methods, especially with the appropriate publicity.
          In addition, access to planning applications is now available on the web, outside normal office hours.
            Staff employed on Saturdays have a separate contract for this work.
              Redeployment on a Saturday would not be practicable.
                Consequently, staff would either have to be offered equivalent hours during weekdays or they would have to be made redundant from their Saturday roles.
                  This would result in a cost to the Council which has not yet been estimated but would not be substantial as the working week does not exceed 3.75 hours for any one member of staff.
                    An alternative to Saturday closure would be closure for a period during weekdays.
                      This would, contractually, be more difficult to achieve and is considered impracticable at this time.
                      7
                      Environment – LA21 AssistantDownside consequences of removing support for the LA21 post (10,000):
                        o Fairtrade Campaign will need to be slowed down or ceased;
                        o Progress on developing a Waverley EMS (Environmental Management System) will be delayed;
                        o Sustainability input into the LDF (Local Development Framework) will be curtailed;
                        o Input into managing the Eco-Homes Campaign (with Housing) will be reduced; and
                        o Eco-Schools campaign will cease
                        9
                        Leisure - ArtsArts Staffing (20,000)
                          o Live & Direct will not be delivered in Waverley
                          o Surrey Arts Partnership (Surrey wide initiative (100,000) united involvement – Waverley element some 20,000 for Live & Direct.
                          10
                          SportsSports Development (25,000)
                            o Cease inter-town sports competition from 2005 and cease Mayor’s Challenge day at Aldershot Garrison and unable to enter Surrey Youth Games.
                            o Cease youth activity sessions
                            o Unable to deliver sports development initiatives liked to schools/clubs; and
                            o Limited support for sports councils/clubs
                              In addition to the service delivery impact likely to reflect in CPA assessments in respect of the key Culture and Environmental blocks
                              11
                              CEX’s
                                Register of Electors
                                Register of Electors would be less compete/up-to-date
                                  There would be a greater volume of queries at election times
                                  12
                                  Public Relations staffing – Press CuttingsCurrent level of service
                                  Providing a full press cuttings service involves a communications officer identifying, in up to eleven local newspapers, stories relating to Waverley Borough Council business. The articles are cut out, pasted and photocopied and distributed to every councillor and selected service managers.
                                    Following a recent enquiry by the Newspaper Licensing Agency, the service has been temporarily reduced. The current service involves the production of one set of original cuttings which are made available upon request. This is supported by the circulation to members and officers of a table summarising the week’s press cuttings. A full set of papers are made available in the Members’ Room. The press cuttings are used as an internal management tool to identify areas of negative coverage which can then be readdressed through proactive media activity.
                                      Members have also indicated that they find this service useful for identifying topical issues across the borough.
                                        Consequences of ceasing press cuttings service
                                        Approximately three and a half hours of officer time would be saved per week.
                                        Additional savings of approximately 3,000 would be achieved as a result of ceasing to photocopy the cuttings.
                                        Paper consumption would be reduced by 78,000 sheets.
                                        Members may lose a important tool for keeping in touch with public opinion.
                                        13
                                        Housing/CommunityOver the years, the WRVS has taken on a greater responsibility for the management and operation of the Meals-on-Wheels Service in Waverley. Whilst many issues have been clarified, there are still some anomalies.

                                        One of these is that the Council has historically employed two cooks to prepare Meals-on-Wheels. The cook based at Milford and Villages Day Centre recently left the Council’s employ. In addition to preparing Meals-on-Wheels, the cook at Milford also assisted with preparing meals for the Day Centre.

                                        Officers consider this is an opportunity for the Council to cease employing a cook. This would enable the WRVS and Milford and Villages Day Centre take full responsibility for the services they provide and manage. The WRVS is happy with this approach, as it would rather directly manage staff in the service for which they are responsible. Milford and Villages Day Centre is concerned about the financial implications for the Centre of having to fund a cook, for which no budgetry provision has been made (because it had not been anticipated that the cook would leave).

                                        Officers consider that it does not make sense for the Council to re-appoint to this position. It is considered that the post should be deleted from the Establishment and that savings could be taken.

                                        Milford and Villages Day Centre have since written to the Council asking whether the Council would assist it by providing some transitional financial assistance in order for them to cover the costs of employing a new cook.
                                        15
                                        Increased Vacancy Allowance from
                                        240k - 300k
                                        Potential but indiscriminate impact across the board.
                                          Reduces the flexibility, overseen by the Head of Personnel and Central Services, to provide temporary support to staff in areas of the council’s activities who are under particular pressure.
                                            Could, by chance, have a negative impact on key and/pr statutory services.