M Brookes presented the report, drawing attention to the number of cases in court regarding fly-tipping cases, the work in the elections team to prepare for the Annual Canvas and preparing the Business Improvement District ballots in November.
Councillor Guest referred to item 2 on page 52 of the report, the operational risk to deliver a successful election. She asked for clarification if there would be no change to this in the first or second quarter as it stated both quarters.
M Brookes agreed that the report should read that it is the first quarter.
Councillor Tindall referred to page 61, the percentage of community alarm calls answered within 1 minute, noting that there was no number stating how many alarm calls were made and how far outside a minute they were answered.
M Brookes stated that this was not his service and therefore did not come under his area. It was noted that this could be taken to the Housing team to respond to. Action.
Councillor Tindall referred to page 62 regarding the percentage of stage 2 complaints resolved in 15 days and asked if there was any explanation for them all being in red, apart from the comments included.
M Brookes commented that they are aware of the poor performance across the board and that they are looking at the structure for complaints. He explained they require additional resources in this area to help with responses and that a post is currently being advertised to assist with this. M Brookes asked members to bear with them as they look at a new plan and recruit appropriate staff.
The Chairman highlighted that as they receive this report on a regular basis and should start to see improvements.
Councillor Tindall referred to page 64 and drew attention to the number of red columns relating to the performance of housing benefit claims. He said he hoped there was a plan intended to ensure claims are made in a more-timely manner.
F Jump added that the service is looking to ensure they are responding as needed and would seek a response on the point. Action.
The Chairman commented on page 52-53 of the report and the number of fly-tipping prosecutions. He asked if they are using opportunities to promote that they will go after those who fly-tip and will take them to court.
K Soley confirmed that they work closely with the legal team and will publicise any prosecutions for awareness campaigns.
The Chairman advised that he would speak to K Soley on this further outside of the meeting.
Councillor Stevens wished to make a comment rather than ask a question. He said he observed a recent walk along the high street in Berkhamsted, noting that A-boards and café seating was out, and that café owners denied knowledge of licenses. He advised that they subsequently received a number of calls on how to pay the license fee and that the activity had therefore paid off.
Councillor Mahmood commented on page 53 regarding licensed taxi drivers and that a meeting due to be held on 1st September was cancelled. He questioned the severity of the cases and the safety of the public if these meetings aren’t going ahead.
M Brookes stated that he was unaware of why the meeting was cancelled and that the team are active in terms of enforcement. He confirmed that he could check why the meeting was cancelled, though he would expect this was due to there being no business to discuss.
Councillor Mahmood queried who was in charge of licensing.
M Brookes advised the Licensing Manager was Phil Wortley.
The report was noted.