Agenda and draft minutes

Vibrant, Safe and Sustainable Communities Scrutiny Panel - Thursday, 17th July, 2014 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 3 - 3rd Floor - Civic Centre. View directions

Contact: Deb Breedon  01902 551250 or Email:

No. Item




Apologies were submitted on behalf of Cllrs Barry Findlay, Bhupinder Ghakal and Malcolm Gwinnet.



Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest.


Minutes of the Previous Meeting (10 April 2014) pdf icon PDF 64 KB



That the minutes of the previous meeting (10 April 2014) be approved and signed as a correct record.


Matters arising


Work Programme 2014/15


Cllr Andrew Wynne referred to item 5 in the minutes relating to neighbourhood wardens and requested an update report to 2 October meeting. Cllr Richard Whitehouse requested that the report should cover issues relating to noise and other issues raised at the previous meeting. Keren Jones confirmed that an update report would cover all of the issues referred to.


Cllr Stephen Simkins referred to the minute relating to work programme and advised that he had met with Tim Johnson and Nick Edwards to consider a list of work programme items from Scrutiny Board. Panel considered the relevance and timeliness of each item and agreed that the following items


The Chair informed the Panel that, in addition to the work items highlighted by Scrutiny Board, Panel can add pre-decision items (that fall within the panel remit) and raise any other emerging issues, but that these must be passed to Scrutiny Board for approval.


Councillor Wynne asked for confirmation which Panel would consider Regeneration matters.


In response to questions Kenny Aitchison confirmed that Cabinet (Performance Management) Panel considers reports relating to performance of Wolverhampton Homes.




  1. That the following items be referred to Scrutiny Board for inclusion in the work programme 2014-15:



Theme for session


Items to be confirmed by Scrutiny Board

17 July 2014


Sustainability Improvement Strategy.

(Keren Jones/ Ric Bravery)


2 October 2014


Anti-Social Behaviour


(Keren Jones / Karen Samuels)

·         Anti-social behaviour review update

·         Anti-social, Crime and Policing Act 2014

·         Neighbourhood Wardens update

4 December 2014


Crime reduction and Policing


(Keren Jones / Karen Samuels / CI Tracey Packham)

·         New Police and Crime Commissioner

·         Update on the Crime Reduction, Community Safety and Drugs Strategy

·         Wolverhampton Local Policing and Crime Plan 2014/15

5 February 2015


Sustainable Leisure offer for Wolverhampton (added commercial value) to include the Wolverhampton Fit Card.


(Chris Huddart / Keith Ireland)


·         Wolverhampton Fit Card

23 April 2015


Housing – mortgage default / repossession, housing allocation

and other housing matters.


(Nick Edwards / Kenny Aitchison)

·         Mortgage default and housing repossession / interest rates

·         Housing policy reviews

  1. That Scrutiny Board clarify which Scrutiny Panel hold the remit to consider items relating to regeneration of the City.

  2. That Scrutiny Board approve inclusion of an update report relating to neighbourhood wardens in the work programme for the Vibrant Safe and Sustainable Communities Scrutiny Panel meeting 2 October 2014.



Sustainability Improvement Plan pdf icon PDF 694 KB

[To receive a progress report of the first year of the council’s joint Sustainability Implementation Plan and Climate Local Action Plan, including the monitoring report for 2013-14 and to comment on the priority actions for the future to inform the review of the Implementation Plan.]


Cllr John Reynolds introduced the report. Ric Bravery and Keren Jones provided a report to inform the Scrutiny Panel of progress in the first year of the Council’s joint Sustainability Implementation Plan and to seek comments on the priority actions to inform the review of the Implementation Plan which is currently being undertaken.


 During consideration of the report several points were considered:

·         The Sustainability Advisory Group meets three or four times a year to consider and provide guidance on the promotion of sustainability in the City. The group has met for two years and is making good progress.

·         The Sustainability Strategy and Implementation Plan was approved by Cabinet in July 2014 and replaced a number of documents.

·         The Strategy remains relevant and the Implementation Plan is being reviewed to make it more focussed on a few key areas and take advantage of opportunities provided by partnerships and funding, in particular through Black Country LEP

·         Attention was focussed upon the red and amber indicators outlined in the report.

·         Two red indicators relate to the Green Deal. The Green Deal was launched in October 2012 to allow residents to self-fund energy efficiency measures to their own homes supported by the Energy Company Obligation, however has failed to take off. Subsequent changes announced in the Autumn Statement in December 2013 changed the emphasis of ECO away from “hard to treat” properties back to cavities and lofts with ECO funding spread over four years rather than two. This has meant that Council’s plans to develop a city-wide coordinated offer has not been possible and the programme to improve the Council’s own housing stock has been delayed. The remaining red indicator related to a sustainable procurement policy; this was now being addressed in discussions with the Acting Head of Procurement.


Keren Jones outlined the proposed outcomes and measures for sustainability:

  1. Growth in low carbon economy – increase the number of jobs to grow the sector and the number of low carbon businesses that are created or investing in low carbon products
  2. To reduce the city’s contribution to climate change  - reduce CO2 and improve the energy efficiency of housing and other property
  3. More socially inclusive and resilient City – reducefuel poverty, increase volunteering and increase domestic recycling rates
  4. A more attractive city where people choose to live, work and do business - increasing the green infrastructure, improving air quality, improving the perception of the city by visitors and visitors to a planned Green Summit


The debate that followed raised several points of interest:

  • The need to get the sustainability message across to people and businesses
  • The need to look at local delivery
  • Lessons learnt from Jaguar Land Rover
  • Wolverhampton does not generally send waste to landfill but to its incinerator
  • Amey will run the waste contract until 2023.
  • The recycling rate has reduced; there is a reduction in Government funding to publicise recycling and a need to invest in educating new households.
  • The number of visible solar panels is quite low in the City,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Next Meeting

[To consider the focus of items to the next meeting 2 October 2014]



Items to the next meeting are as follows:


·         ASB Review update

·         Anti-social, Crime and Policing Act 2014.  This comes into effect from 1 October 2014. There is a need to brief Councillors on local implementation of the new ASB tools and powers and also seek their views on the proposed process for the Community Trigger