Venue: Council Chamber - Rotherham Town Hall, Moorgate Street, Rotherham, South Yorkshire S60 2TH. View directions
Declarations of Interest
To receive declarations of interest from Members in respect of items listed on the agenda.
Cllr T Collingham declared a personal interest as co-signatory of the original petition to improve road safety on Cumwell Lane/Kingsforth Lane. He remained present for the Board’s consideration of the issue and its resolution.
Questions from Members of the Public and the Press
To receive questions relating to items of business on the agenda from members of the public or press who are present at the meeting.
There were no questions from members of the public or press.
Exclusion of the Press and Public
To consider whether the press and public should be excluded from the meeting during consideration of any part of the agenda.
There were no exempt items on the agenda.
To consider a progress report on road safety measures along Cumwell Lane and Kingsforth Lane.
The Strategic Director for Regeneration and Environment introduced the report and outlined that it provided an update on the recommendations made by the Board when it first considered the petition on 11 May 2022. The Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport welcomed the progress made and noted that the Council had responded to the issues raised with urgency, with road safety on this stretch being subject to ongoing monitoring. He repeated his condolences to the families of the bereaved.
The Chair reiterated that Members of the Board should not refer to details of the inquests currently before the Coroner.
The report detailed road safety improvements which had been undertaken on Cumwell Lane and Kingsforth Lane over previous years. These measures included vehicle activated signs; improved signage; carriageway resurfacing; replacement of road studs and improvement to visibility.
At its meeting in May 2022, the Board endorsed the measures outlined to improve road safety. Since June 2022, the Council had introduced additional intervention measures which included a 50mph speed limit; replacement signage; drainage improvements; new road marking and reflective verge markers; and clearance of vegetation and detritus. It was noted that the use of an average speed camera was not being proposed at this time. The speed limit had been reduced and this would be monitored.
Clarification was sought if the actions detailed in the report would improve road safety. In response, it was outlined that it was that in officer’s professional opinion, the measures would be of benefit, although there was a caveat that factors such as driver’s behaviour were difficult to mitigate. Officers committed to engage with petitioners to seek their views on the improvements.
The progress made was welcomed. It was noted that at the time of the speed surveys, the speed was reduced to 40mph because of extensive road works. Clarification was sought that additional surveys would be undertaken at points during the year to capture an accurate representation of road use and speeds. It was confirmed that a speed survey would be conducted following completion of the road works.
Clarification was sought if the work would be ongoing on road maintenance and vegetation clearance. It was confirmed that highways inspectors monitor the route daily and defects would be addressed as soon as possible. Feedback from the public was also welcomed. Signage was monitored frequently and landowners were contacted to ensure that visibility was maintained.
It was noted that parts of the road were often affected by mud. It was outlined that problems should be identified in daily inspections. There was a clear line of communication with the landfill site. Ward members were invited to report concerns should they arise.
In response to the question if the speed reduction to 50mph was sufficient, it was outlined that the road would be monitored over the next year. It was noted that the Council was required to follow Government guidance on speed limits. On the basis of available data, there had been a reduction in overall average speeds as a ... view the full minutes text for item 118.
To consider a report outlining the complaints and compliments that the Council received in 2021/22 in line with statutory requirements.
The Chair welcomed the Cabinet Member for Corporate Services, Community Safety and Finance, the Head of Policy, Performance and Quality, the Corporate Complaints Manager and officers from each directorate to the meeting.
The Cabinet Member introduced the report which covered the formal complaints and compliments received during the financial year of 2021/22. It was noted that the overall number of complaints had increased, although this was not yet at previous levels prior to the Covid 19 pandemic. It was outlined that complaints were important to the Council to ensure improvements can be made to the customer experience. Complaints helped the Council understand where things have not gone right, check that the right process were in place, apologise when mistakes have been made and learn from this to ensured that issues were rectified. Complaints were also an important measure of performance and that customers were treated fairly.
The Head of Policy, Performance and Intelligence gave a presentation to introduce the report, highlighting performance headlines over the past five years.
Trends in each directorate were also outlined. It was outlined that these trends and details of complaints were submitted to Directorate Leadership Teams (DLT) for monthly review and action.
Fewer complaints had been upheld, with the majority resolved at Stage1 which was was in line with previous years’ performance. Quality of service, lack of services or delays in services accounted for 73% of all complaints. There was a smaller number of complaints received at Stage 3, which demonstrated that the procedure was working effectively. It was also noted that there had been an increase in the number of compliments received, with Adult Care seeing the biggest increase.
An overview was given of learning to deliver better outcomes. Each complaint, regardless of whether it has been upheld, was reviewed by the relevant manager and DLT to identify areas of learning.
In respect of the current direction of travel, numbers of complaints were increasing. It was noted that there had been a slight decline in complaint responses, although this was still in line with a five-year average and Council plan target across directorate reflecting a return to pre-pandemic trends.
The Head of Policy, Performance, and Intelligence outlined the key actions for the year ahead. This included:
• improvements to services to ensure that the new regulatory requirements for Housing Services were met;
• learning and making improvements were captured;
• the right resources and links were in place to support the management of complaints and learning others;
• remedy requests by the Ombudsman were completed on time; and
• staff engagement with the compliments process was increased.
The Chair noted that the last time the Board had considered the Annual Compliments and Complaints Report (2019-20), she had raised concerns following comments from the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman’s (LGSCO) about Council delays in responding to its enquiries promptly. It was noted in the current report, the Ombudsman expressed disappointment in the Council’s late response and that the same problem ... view the full minutes text for item 119.
To consider any issues referred for call-in from recent Cabinet meetings.
There were no call-in issues.
To determine any item which the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency.
There were no urgent items.
Date and time of next meeting
The next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board will be held on 14 December 2022 at 10.00am at Rotherham Town Hall.
Resolved: - That the next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board will be held at 10.00am on Wednesday 14 December 2022 at Rotherham Town Hall.