Agenda and minutes

People Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 14th November, 2019 10.30 am

Venue: Council Chamber, County Hall, Lewes. View directions

Contact: Stuart McKeown, Senior Democratic Services Adviser  01273 481583

No. Item


Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 227 KB


51.1     RESOLVED to agree the minutes as a correct record.


Apologies for absence


52.1     Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Kathryn Field.


Disclosures of interests

Disclosures by all members present of personal interests in matters on the agenda, the nature of any interest and whether the member regards the interest as prejudicial under the terms of the Code of Conduct.



53.1     Councillor Tutt declared a personal, non-prejudicial interest in item 5 (minute 55) as a non-executive director of iESE Ltd., and iESE Transformation Ltd which are Social Enterprise Companies that market a product called Care Cubed which calculates Adult Social Care costs for Local Authorities.  Councillor Tutt is also Chair of iESE Transformation Ltd. 



Urgent items

Notification of items which the Chair considers to be urgent and proposes to take at the appropriate part of the agenda. Any members who wish to raise urgent items are asked, wherever possible, to notify the Chair before the start of the meeting. In so doing, they must state the special circumstances which they consider justify the matter being considered urgent.



54.1     There were none.


Scrutiny Review of the Changing Care Market: Information and Signposting - 6 month monitoring report pdf icon PDF 161 KB

Report by the Director of Adult Social Care and Health

Additional documents:


55.1     In June 2018 the People Scrutiny Committee established a Scoping Board to consider the range of challenges facing the local care market. One of the key areas identified during the scoping exercise were challenges relating to the public’s understanding and expectation of social care.  As a result, the Information and Signposting Review Board was appointed to investigate this area of work.  The People Scrutiny Committee subsequently approved the final report of the Scrutiny Review Board at its meeting in March 2019. The review report was then presented to Cabinet in April 2019 at which time the department produced an Action Plan which commented on how it would seek to implement the recommendations.  


55.2     Tom Hook, Assistant Director for Planning, Performance and Engagement provided the Committee with an overview on progress with implementing the department’s action plan, as summarized below:


·         Recommendation 1: work on this area of activity is being progressed as part of a wider programme linking it to the Channel Shift and Health Integration programmes;

·         Recommendation 2: the social care Green Paper is yet to be published. The latest position is that it will be published ‘in due course’;

·         Recommendation 3: new Adult Social Care (ASC) financial information pages have been drafted, with user-testing scheduled to take place prior to the new website going live;

·         Recommendation 4: the actions relating to this recommendation have either been implemented or are in the course of being signed-off by service managers;

·         Recommendation 5: the ASC website improvement project is co-hosting a Voluntary and Community Social Enterprise digital workshop alongside NHS colleagues in November 2019;

·         Recommendation 6:  where possible the digital project has sought to use NHS Choices content.  However, there have been occasions where this hasn’t been possible.  The department are therefore also working with local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) to link-up its digital offers.  For example, ESCC digital directories have been linked to the GP consultation and Primary Care Network social prescribing projects. 

·         Recommendation 7: all ESCC libraries and community libraries have been added to distribution lists;

·         Recommendation 8: there is ongoing engagement and promotion with both GP Practice Locality Groups and Patient Participation Groups; 

·         Recommendation 9: that work on the technical comparison between ESCIS and 1Space is near completion and the department are working closely with the East Sussex Social Prescribing Project to provide a database solution for a primary care recording system it aims to establish;

·         Recommendation 10: the re-drafted Adult Social Care and Health departmental guide contains guidance to Members on updating and reporting entries on the East Sussex Community Information Service website;

·         Recommendation 11: it has been agreed that social-prescribing will be included in the scrutiny review on loneliness and resilience; and

·         Recommendation 12: the Adult Social Care and Health departmental guidance has been re-drafted and is available on the Councillor’s intranet page to view.


55.3     The Committee discussed progress regarding the implementation of the recommendations set out in the Action Plan, with Members seeking clarification as to why some deadlines had not been met and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 55.


Reconciling Policy, Performance and Resources (RPPR) 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 145 KB

Report by the Chief Executive.

Additional documents:


56.1     Keith Hinkley, Director of Adult Social Care and Health introduced the report by providing an overview of the current context within which the Council’s RPPR process has been undertaken.  This included, for example, informing Members that the 2019 Spending Round contained additional funding for social care for 2020/21.   Whilst welcoming the one-off funding, </AI6>Mr Hinkley informed Members that the additional monies would not have a significant impact on the Council’s Medium-Term Financial Plan (MTFP). 


56.2      Members were also informed that the one-off funding offers the opportunity to review current savings plans through: reprofiling savings; investing in services to reduce future demand; and/or make one-off capital investment.   The range of one-off funding options presented to the Committee were developed by Chief Officers with the following principles in mind:


  • No ongoing revenue costs which add to future savings are created;
  • Future pressures and or demand are reduced;
  • The effect on partners is considered; and
  • Recognising the MTFP is for 3 years and therefore the funding does not have to be spent in year one.


56.3     The Committee were asked to consider these principles and were invited to:


  • review the updated Medium-Term Financial Plan (MTFP);
  • comment on the options for the use of one-off funding (as set out in Appendices 2 and 3 of the Cabinet report, attached as Appendix A to the covering report); and
  • identify any further work or information needed to aid the Scrutiny Committee’s contribution to the RPPR process for consideration at the December RPPR Board.


56.4       Following an extensive discussion of the options put before them, Members asked for further detail regarding the following items which they identified as priorities:


  • Q - Children’s Services reprofile of safeguarding savings (£0.586m in 2020/21);
  • T - Adult Social Care assessment and care management journey (£0.452m over two years from 2020/21);
  • U - Adult Social Care behavioural insight (£0.500m over two years from 2020/21);
  • V - Adult Social Care Bedded Care (£0.359m, £0.300m, £0.196m in 2020/21);
  • W - Adult Social Care Home Care Commissioning (£0.110m in 2020/21);
  • X - Adult Social Care/Children’s Services Accommodation and floating support (£0.987m, £0.582m, £0.260m in 2020/21, 2021/22, 2022/23 respectively);
  • Y - Adult Social Care/Children’s Services IT Care Management System (£0.165m in 2020/21 and £0.048m in each of 2021/22 and 2022/23); and
  • Z - Children’s Services No Wrong Door (£3.375m over the three years to 2022/23).
  • AC - CS Disability Children’s Homes (£0.242m in 2020/21).  Expected to achieve net savings of £0.352m p.a. from 2020/21.


56.5With regard to the above priorities, the Committee also asked that both departments

provide as appropriate to their remit further commentary about the potential impact of each priority.


56.6   The Committee RESOLVED to agree that further detail about options Q, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z and AC and their potential impact are provided to Members in support of the RPPR Board’s discussion at its meeting on 16 December 2019.



Work programme pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Report by the Assistant Chief Executive.

Additional documents:


57.1     The Committee discussed its Work Programme which is comprised of a number of ongoing scrutiny reviews, reference groups and planned reports.

Initial Scoping Reviews

School Exclusions.


57.2     Members were informed that due to capacity issues it had not been possible to commence the scoping work on this area of activity.  However, arrangements were now being put in place for the Scoping Board to meet in early 2020. 


57.3     The Committee also agreed to increase the membership of the scoping board to include Mrs Nicola Boulter (Parent Governor Representative).  As result the board will now be comprised of: Councillors Field, Liddiard, Loe; and Matthew Jones (Chair) and Nicola Boulter (both Parent Governor Representatives). 

57.4     The Committee RESOLVED to appoint Mrs Nicola Boulter to the school exclusions scoping review board.

Loneliness and resilience.

57.5     The Committee agreed to undertake scoping work for a potential scrutiny review of issues relating to loneliness and resilience within East Sussex.  The subject matter of the scoping exercise had been identified by the People Scrutiny Committee in 2018 as one of four potential scrutiny reviews which form part of an overarching scrutiny review of the ‘Changing Care Market’.

57.6    The Committee RESOLVED to appoint:

1) Councillors Clark, Galley, Ungar and Whetstone to the loneliness and resilience scoping review board; and

2) Councillor Ungar to act as Chair of the scoping board.

Developing Care Markets/Bedded Care Strategy.

57.7     Following a scoping exercise which considered matters relating to the developing care market and bedded care strategy, it was RESOLVED to:

postpone further scrutiny activity on this topic for 18 months whilst the Adult Social Care and Health department develop and progress its workstreams for this area.

Reference groups


Educational Attainment and Performance Scrutiny Reference Group


57.8       The Educational Attainment and Performance Scrutiny Reference Group is scheduled to meet in January 2020 to discuss educational attainment data for 2018/19.  The Committee requested that the Reference Group receive an update on activity relating to the department’s Secondary and Primary School Improvement Boards initiatives.    The Committee also agreed to appoint Nicola Boulter (Parent Governor Representative) to the reference group.


57.9 The Committee RESOLVED to:


1)    request the Children’s Services Department provide a briefing to the Educational

Attainment and Performance Scrutiny Reference Group on both educational data for 2018/19 and developments relating to the work of School Improvement Boards.

2)  appoint Mrs Nicola Boulter, Parent Governor Representative, on to the membership of the reference group.


Health and Social Care Integration Programme Reference Group


57.10   The Director of Adult Social Care and Health informed the Committee that Cabinet will be provided with a progress report regarding the development of a Joint Health and Social Care Plan for East Sussex in January 2020.   In relation to this, the Director proposed that Members of the Health and Social Care Integration Programme (HSCIP) Reference Group meet prior to the Cabinet meeting for a briefing on progress with the Plan. 


57.11   The Committee RESOLVED to agree that a meeting of the HSCIP Reference Group be arranged  ...  view the full minutes text for item 57.


Scrutiny Review: Schools Coping with Change, The Way Forward - 6 month monitoring report pdf icon PDF 201 KB

Report by the Director of Children’s Services

Additional documents:


58.1     The People Scrutiny Committee appointed a scrutiny review board to explore some of the key challenges facing schools and academies in East Sussex.  In particular, the review aimed to identify what could be done to help schools cope with the high level of change within the education sector. The final report of the Review Board (Schools Coping with Change – the Way Forward) was presented to Cabinet in January 2019 and approved by the County Council on 5 February 2019.


58.2     In response to the Review, the Children’s Services department produced an action plan which commented on how it would seek to implement the recommendations.  The report before the committee therefore provided Members with a six-month update on progress with the department’s action plan.   Fiona Wright, Assistant Director (Education and ISEND) also provided Members with further detail regarding progress and confirmed that work is on track to be completed within the timescales provided.


58.3     Members then focused on activity relating to Recommendation 1 of the final report.   This recommendation asked the Chair of the People Scrutiny Committee to write to the Secretary of State for Education and ask for clarification regarding his vision for schools and academies.  In response to the letter which was despatched in March 2019, Lord Theodore Agnew (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State) referred, amongst other comments, to a roundtable meeting he had convened.  At that meeting representatives of a different local authority, the chief executives of a number of Multi Academy Trusts in that area, a teaching school alliance and maintained schools had met and discussed issues relating to partnership working and sharing good practice.   The letter concluded that should the council want to explore the matter further, the relevant Regional Schools Commissioner would be prepared to discuss the possibility of arranging a similar event in East Sussex.   With this offer in mind, Members asked the department for its views on the merits of a such a meeting being convened.


58.4     In response, Fiona Wright, Assistant Director, advised the committee that roundtable discussions of the kind discussed by Lord Agnew were often used in local authority areas where there have been challenges either generally in schools or in relation to academy conversion, and that there is usually a specific theme for the meeting.    However, and to help gain a better understanding of these events, the department undertook to liaise with the Regional Schools Commissioner about whether there would be a value in holding such a meeting and if so, how this would be taken forward. 


58.5     RESOLVED to:          


1)    Note the progress made on the departmental action plan; and

2)    Request that the department liaise with the Regional Schools Commissioner regarding a round table meeting with the Secretary of State for Education


The meeting ended at 12.23 pm.