Agenda and draft minutes

East Kent (Joint Arrangements) Committee
Wednesday, 16th March, 2011 10.00 am

Venue: The Guildhall, Westgate, Canterbury

Contact: Committee Administrator  (01227) 862 006 or e mail  lynda.mcdaid@canterbury.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

TO RECEIVE apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies received from Councillors Carter (Kent) and Scales (Dover) and Wise (Thanet).

 

2.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

TO RECEIVE declarations of interests

Minutes:

No declarations of interests were received.

 

3.

SUBSTITUTE MEMBERS

The Chairman to report any notifications received prior to this meeting

regarding the attendance of substitutes for the named Members of this

Committee.

Minutes:

There were no substitute Members present at the meeting

4.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 71 KB

TO CONFIRM as a true record the minutes of the meeting of the committee held on 26 January 2011.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 26 January 2011 were agreed as a correct record.

 

5.

PROVISION OF HR SERVICES BY THE EAST KENT HR PARTNERSHIP TO EAST KENT HOUSING LIMITED pdf icon PDF 72 KB

TO CONSIDER a report from the Head of Corporate Services (Shepway)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services (Canterbury) introduced the report. The report detailed the need for a unanimous decision by the East Kent (Joint Arrangements) Committee to allow the East Kent HR Partnership to provide HR services to East Kent Housing Limited.

 

He indicated that the total value of the services described in the Service Level Agreement was £324,000 over two years.  A term had not been specified in the report but the underlying intention was that the agreement would be for two years.  The contribution made from the HRA of each council to the General Fund will remain the same for the first two years, which had been agreed throughout the negotiations and was now enshrined in the agreement appended to the report.

 

It was explained in the course of preparing the report questions had been raised about how the EU procurement regime should be applied to both this and the report which followed.  The east Kent lawyers had concluded that there were two reasons why the arrangement was not subject to public procurement regulations:

 

       (i)    By an exemption in the public contracts regulations 2006, under which the provider is a contracting authority within the meaning of the regulations (a public service itself) and delivering services to the parties under an exclusive right in accordance with a legal or other provision compatible with the EU Treaty.

 

       (ii)   Where the EU Court of Justice had considered such matters before they had found that, irrespective of the nature of the delivery vehicle, so long as there was a collaborative arrangement between public service parties then an arrangement between those authorities would not be subject to the public procurement regime. 

 

Under the terms of the collaboration agreement relating to the East Kent HR Partnership he said all parties represented on the Joint Arrangements Committee must give their consent irrespective of whether they are a party to the agreement or not.

 

A Member sought clarification that the 2 year term would be specified within the recommendation.  It was agreed that the term be incorporated into the minute to clarify the point.

 

A Member asked a question about the relationship between the council and East Kent Housing Limited and whether the Committee was able to make such decisions on behalf of East Kent Housing Limited.  The Head of Legal and Democratic Services explained that it was in accordance with the management agreement, the principles of which all councils had already agreed, and the lawyers were currently in the process of finalising that agreement.  He said therefore whilst it was not technically possible to decide on their behalf, in the event of a legal challenge the arrangement between the councils and the arms length management organisation was such that there had always been an understanding that a two-year transitional arrangement would apply.  It was accepted that one could not rule out the ability for a third party to challenge a decision if it so wished to.

 

A Member asked whether the value  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

PROVISION OF SERVICES BY EAST KENT SERVICES TO EAST KENT HOUSING LIMITED pdf icon PDF 85 KB

TO CONSIDER a report from the Head of Legal and Democratic Services (Canterbury)

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services (Canterbury) asked the Committee, as the body responsible for East Kent Services, for its approval to East Kent Services (acting by Thanet District Council) entering into a contract with East Kent Housing to perform those functions which previously it performed for the in-house housing landlord service.

 

RECOMMENDED -

 

1.      To receive and note this report

2.      To authorise East Kent Services acting by Thanet District Council to provide ICT and Customer Contact Services to East Kent Housing Limited with effect from 1 April 2011, for a period of two years expiring 31 March 2013, subject to the completion of any necessary agreement to the satisfaction of the principal Legal Officers in the four East Kent District Councils. 

3.      To authorise the Director of Shared Services to perform such of her delegated functions in relation to East Kent Housing Limited as may be necessary from time to time.

 

7.

ANY OTHER URGENT BUSINESS TO BE DEALT WITH IN PUBLIC

Minutes:

East Kent HR Partnership performance data

 

The Chairman of the Committee, Councillor Bliss (Shepway) made a statement [appendix 1 to the minutes] from the Chair about an item requested for the agenda that had not been included.  The item requested information about how the East Kent HR Partnership was performing against the approved service level agreements and delegations, along with up to the minute financial analysis of costs by authority.  He said he looked forward to seeing the report on the agenda for the next scheduled East Kent (Joint Arrangements) Committee on 8 June.

 

A discussion of the statement followed. 

 

 

Timetable for the remainder of Phase 1 of the shared services project

 

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services (Canterbury), speaking on behalf of the Chief Executives, reminded the committee that Phase 1 of shared services performed by EK Services consisted of five service areas.  The business cases for the first three: ICT, Customer Services and Revenues and Benefits had been approved and the functions now delegated.  He said the other two functions identified within Phase 1: Residual Housing and Building Control had not reached the same stage for various logistical reasons, but the Chief Executives felt it would be useful to indicate that they have set a target, and that they be asked by the Committee to sign off the business cases by 1 July.

 

In the course of discussions, services closely associated to those that had already transferred such as print, post and facilities management had been identified that could usefully be added to Phase 1.  It was indicated that the decision on whether those services would be included or excluded, dependant on consideration of a business case would be recommended to the councils that it be taken by 1 July.

 

 

There being no other business the meeting closed at 10.34am