Agenda and minutes

Overview and Performance Scrutiny Forum - Thursday, 25th June, 2020 5.00 pm

Contact: Charlotte Kearsey  01246 345236

No. Item


Declarations of Members' and Officers Interests relating to items on the Agenda


No declarations of interest were received.


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Dyke and  Fordham.


Leader and Deputy Leader - Overview of Chesterfield Borough Council's Covid-19 response


Huw Bowen, Chief Executive, delivered a presentation on Chesterfield Borough Council’s (CBC) response to Covid-19.


The council made an early decision on 16 March, 2020 to turn off services and require staff and members to work from home.


The council had responsibility for the provision of essential services and a large amount of work went into adapting and delivering these services.


·      Within two weeks the ICT Team enabled the contact centre staff to work from home while the contact centre received double the usual number of calls.

·      Careline received 6k calls in one month, 500 of which were emergencies.

·      The Revenues and Benefits Team processed a 275% increase in Council Tax Support applications and a 39% increase in new benefits claim applications.

·      Almost 3k emergency repairs were carried out to properties.

·      The full Waste Collection service continued throughout lockdown.

·      Staff were redeployed to assist significantly affected teams, such as at the Crematorium where almost all of the cremator technicians were vulnerable and had to shield at home.

·      Different arrangements were put in place for Travellers because of their vulnerability.

·      All of the rough sleepers in the borough were taken off the street in compliance with the deadline and were supported through the pandemic.


A number of CBC staff had been involved with a range of groups including the Derbyshire Local Resilience Forum Strategic Coordinating Group to represent Chesterfield’s interests.


CBC had provided support to the community during the pandemic:


·      Four members of CBC staff were embedded within Derbyshire Voluntary Action to connect referrals from the Derbyshire Community Support Unit to local volunteers. The volunteers provided support with shopping, collecting medicines and making welfare calls. Support was also provided for new and existing community response services to establish Covid-19 secure operations.

·      Eight members of staff were redeployed to support local pharmacies with medicine deliveries, a total of 7,041 of which were carried out.

·      Leisure and cultural staff were redeployed to make food deliveries and support the operation of local testing facilities.


CBC had also provided support to businesses in Chesterfield:


·      661 businesses had received £18m in business rates relief for 2020/21.

·      CBC had paid out £25.070m in small business grants to 2147 businesses.

·      CBC was processing discretionary grant fund payments to 178 businesses.

·      Rental payments from commercial tenants had been deferred for the period April through June and would be recovered over an 18 month period.

·      Normal payment terms had been suspended.


The Committee was informed that the Council had continued building projects because of the benefits for local labour workers and the local supply chain.


The process of turning services back on was complicated and challenging but progress was being made. Work had been undertaken to reopen Chesterfield town centre safely, including the implementation of new signage, floor markings and safety barriers. Council staff were redeployed as town centre ambassadors to assist the public during the first few weeks of reopening.


The Chief Executive informed the committee about the economic assessment of Chesterfield in light of the pandemic. Chesterfield’s economy  ...  view the full minutes text for item 47.


Scrutiny Annual Report pdf icon PDF 733 KB


The Senior Democratic and Scrutiny Officer presented the Scrutiny Annual Report for 2019/20.


The report would be submitted to Full Council for approval on 15 July, 2020.




1. That the Scrutiny Annual Report 2019/20 be approved for submission to Full Council on 15 July, 2020.


2. That authority be delegated to the Joint Scrutiny Chairs and the Senior Democratic and Scrutiny Officer to make any late amendments to the Annual Report.


Work Programme for the Overview and Performance Scrutiny Forum pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Additional documents:


The Senior Democratic and Scrutiny Officer submitted a report which included the details of the proposed Overview and Scrutiny Committees’ Interim Work Programme for 2020/21.


The interim work programme included the following items for the next scheduled meeting of the Overview and Performance Scrutiny Forum on 17 September, 2020:


·      Climate Change Action Plan

·      Northern Gateway / Elder Way developments.


It was noted that further work was scheduled to finalise the scrutiny work programme for the whole of 2020/21, prior to submission to the scrutiny committees in September, 2020.




1.    That the Overview and Scrutiny Work Programme 2020/21 be approved and recommended to the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committees (OSCs).


2.    That the items from the interim work programme for the Committee’s next scheduled meeting on 17 September, 2020 be approved.



Forward Plan

Please follow the link below to view the latest Forward Plan.


Forward Plan


The Committee considered the Forward Plan.




That the Forward Plan be noted.



Scrutiny Monitoring pdf icon PDF 125 KB


The Committee considered the Scrutiny recommendations implementation monitoring schedule.


It was noted that monitoring of the implementation of some recommendations had been delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, but that this would be resumed and rescheduled.




That the Scrutiny monitoring schedule be noted.



Overview and Scrutiny Developments


The Joint Scrutiny Chairs would be participating in the virtual East Midlands Scrutiny Network on 26 June, 2020.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 72 KB


The Minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Performance Scrutiny Forum held on 23 January, 2020 were presented.




That the Minutes be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.