Meeting documents

Venue: Mezzanine Room 1, County Hall, Aylesbury. View directions

Contact: Kama Wager 

Note: Please note that this meeting will be webcast - please use the "Webcasts" menu link 


Webcast: View the webcast

Note No. Item



Apologies for Absence

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Apologies were received from Mr S Bowles, Mrs L Clarke OBE, and Mrs A Macpherson.


Declarations of Interest

To disclose any personal or disclosable pecuniary interests.

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There  were none.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 230 KB

Of the meeting held on 25 September 2018.

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Of the meeting held on 25 September were agreed and signed by the Chairman.


Public Questions

This is an opportunity for members of the public to put a question or raise an issue of concern, related to Environment, Transport and Locality Services.   Where possible, the relevant organisation to which the question/issue is directed will be present to give a verbal response.  Members of the public will be invited to speak for up to four minutes on their issue.  A maximum of 30 minutes is set aside for the Public Questions slot in total (including responses and any Committee discussion). This may be extended with the Chairman’s discretion. 


For full guidance on Public Questions, including how to register a request to speak during this slot, please follow this link:

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There were none.


Chairman's Report

For the Chairman of the Committee to provide an update to the Committee on recent scrutiny related activity.

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The Chairman thanked Committee Members for their continued work on the Committee and thanked Ms Wager, for her support to the Committee.


Gully Cleansing and Drainage System Maintenance pdf icon PDF 434 KB

As a result of Member concerns raised in previous meetings, Members will review the council’s current policy and approach to gully cleansing and drainage maintenance, through the Transport for Bucks contract. They will examine the current performance, risks and opportunities, with a view to identifying key areas of challenge and possible improvements.



Mark Shaw, Cabinet Member for Transportation

Mark Averill, Head of Highways (Client)

David Stewart, Scheme Delivery Manger (TfB)


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The Chairman welcomed the Cabinet Member for Transportation and the Operations Manager for TfB who introduced the item and highlighted the following in their summary:


The full discussion can be viewed on the webcast.

  • The operations manager had been in post for three years which had driven improvements in the service.
  • Over the last 2 years nearly 80 capital drainage schemes had been delivered to address drainage issues.
  • Gully emptying was only part of the suite of work for drainage maintenance to remove water from road surfaces to prevent rapid deterioration of road surfaces.
  • There were approx. 79000 gullys in Buckinghamshire.
  • The network of pipework was in various states of deterioration, there was not currently a full picture of the state of the pipework and issues of flooding gullys was often a result of pipework issues, rather than lack of previous cleansing or problems with the gully itself. This lack of information was a significant challenge.
  • The current regime was a cyclical approach to programming of works, with two full time gully emptiers and a third that was hired in when necessary for reactive works. 
  • The gullys on A and B roads were cleared once a year, the ones on C and U roads were cleared once every 3 years.
  • The programme would be disrupted by reactive requirements with resources deployed elsewhere which meant it could at times be difficult to keep to the programme. The KPI for adherence to the programme had a target of at least 95%.
  • Over the last three years TfB had met the performance targets for gully cleaning and had kept within budget.
  • When prioritising works the teams would judge the severity of the blocked gully. If it was not fully blocked and still draining, even if slowly, or if water could drain further down the system, it would not necessarily be a priority to deploy resource away from the programme to address these reactively.
  • The Capital programme over the last 3 years of £720,000, £720,000 and £1m enabled around 80 sites to be addressed where gully emptying could not resolve bigger drainage issues.
  • There were seasonal challenges with leaf and debris build up causing difficulties in Autumn, and poorer weather in winter usually meant a more onerous reactive requirement. In the winter the drivers of the gully emptiers, as HGV drivers, would also be part of gritting rota’s meaning additional potential disruption to programme.
  • A (significant) number of Local Authorities were moving away from programmes on a cyclical basis and were using technology and innovation to build up information around the asset, high risk areas and vulnerable locations and moving to a more risk based approach to gully cleaning programmes.
  • TfB would like to use such systems to build up intelligence to target the resource at the most vulnerable areas of the network.
  • TfB were currently working on a business case for different approaches, looking at savings and efficiencies they could bring.  They were also exploring sensor technology to help build intelligence to tailor  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Modern Slavery Inquiry: 6 Month Recommendation Progress Review pdf icon PDF 86 KB

Members will monitor and review the progress towards the implementation of the inquiry recommendations as agreed by Cabinet in March 2018.



Noel Brown, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement

Nigel Sims, Head of Community Wellbeing

Faye Blunstone, Community Safety Coordinator


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The Chairman welcomed the Cabinet Member for Community Engagement, Mr N Sims Head of Community Wellbeing and Mrs F Blunstone Community Safety Coordinator who introduced the item. The full discussion can be viewed on the webcast but included the following points:


·         That significant progress and success had been made with the set up and successful start to the new victim service. There was a coordinator, 2 other posts and the programme manager in place.

·         In September there was a hugely successful police raid. A number of victims of modern slavery were rescued. The victim service offered by the Willow Project was fundamental to this. Three perpetrators were arrested and six victims agreed to be referred through the National Referral Mechanism and agreed to go to court. This was an unprecedented level of support gained from victims.

·         The Inquiry Chairman Mr S Lambert, told officers and the Cabinet Member he was hugely impressed with the progress that had been made and praised the officers for their hard work and dedication to driving forward the Committee’s recommendations and work within this important area.


Mrs F Blunstone then provided the Committee with an update on each recommendation in turn and Members asked questions. The full report can be found in the agenda pack and these minutes should be read alongside the detailed progress report.


The following points were raised:


Recommendation 1: Members were informed that this action had been fully implemented The Modern Slavery statement had been agreed by the Cabinet Member and would be published online imminently. Members agreed that this action had been completed to their satisfaction and praised the officers for their detailed response.


Recommendation 2: Members agreed that this recommendation was on track. They asked to see the wording that was due to be added to the business unit plans for both Adult Social Care and the Children Social Care Service areas.


ACTION: Mr Blunstone to provide Ms K Wager with the wording that would be added to the BU plans as required by recommendation 2. Ms Wager will then circulate this to Committee Members.


Recommendation 3: Members agreed that this was on track and they were impressed with the progress made to date.  Members asked about the steps taken to increase the numbers of County Council staff and Members attending the training. Mr Reed and Mr Lambert offered to encourage Members through the Member Development Working Group to attend and Mr Lambert informed the Committee that a Member briefing on modern slavery was being scheduled.


Members were told that training leads within Adults and Children’s Social Care had been contacted to help encourage more staff from these important teams to sign up to training sessions. There would be another 50 County Council staff trained in November, the majority of which were social workers. The training had been marketed internally and with partners and the team would continue promoting the training sessions to ensure that it reached as many staff as possible. There would also be an E-learning package  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 79 KB

Members will consider upcoming items within the work programme and suggestions for future review topics.

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The Committee noted the forward plan and highlighted that they would be holding a detailed work programme workshop in March 19 to develop the annual work programme for 2019/20.  


Date of the Next Meeting

The next meeting will be held on the 22 January 2019, in the Mezzanine Room 1, County Hall at 10:00 am.

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The next meeting will be held on 22 January 2019 at 10:00 am, in the Mezzanine Room 1, County Hall.