Cabinet Member decisions

Decisions published

06/05/2022 - 22/00050 - Inflationary Pressures on Capital Construction Programmes ref: 2598    Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)

Proposed decision:

TheDeputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services to agree to recommendations to:

 

1.  note the £28.8 million estimated impact on capital budget spend in the Medium-Term Financial Plan of £339.3 million across the capital programme for 2022-23, were already approved via key decision or covered by appropriate delegated authority to be funded from the options identified;

 

2.  consider the use of Fluctuation clauses when deemed necessary to control costs to KCC and alleviate adverse effects to the main contractor supplier of the rise in material costs; and

 

3.  delegate authority to the Director of Infrastructure or the Corporate Director of Growth, Environment and Transport (for Highway Schemes), in consultation with the Corporate Director of Finance and the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services, to take the necessary actions, including but not limited to entering into contracts and other necessary documentation to enable the delivery of the capital programme taking into account construction and inflation where existing Record of Decisions levels are needed to be adjusted.

 

Further Information:

The national fiscal and economic context is an important consideration for the Council in setting and managing its revenue and capital budgets.  The budget report to County Council on 10 February 2022 referred to the extraordinary and unexpected challenge to the UK economy and economies across the world arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.  Kent County Council (KCC) has a significant Capital Construction Programme, that has been adversely impacted by the inflationary pressures facing the UK construction industry.

 

KCC needs to ensure that is has sufficient capital allocated and effective contractual management arrangements in place to deliver the programmes and projects A decision is required to implement these in the time available to avoid disruption to front line services to secure the contractual arrangements for the provision of key infrastructure projects including the provision of school places to meet KCC’s statutory duties. 

Decision Maker: Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services

Decision published: 17/05/2022

Effective from: 25/05/2022

Decision:

As Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services, I agree to:

1. note the £28.8 million estimated impact on capital budget spend in the Medium-Term Financial Plan of £339.3 million across the capital programme for 2022-23, were already approved via key decision or covered by appropriate delegated authority to be funded from the options identified;

2. consider the use of Fluctuation clauses when deemed necessary to control costs to KCC and alleviate adverse effects to the main contractor supplier of the rise in material costs; and

 

3. delegate authority to the Director of Infrastructure or the Corporate Director of Growth, Environment and Transport (for Highway Schemes), in consultation with the Corporate Director of Finance and the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services, to take the necessary actions, including but not limited to entering into contracts and other necessary documentation to enable the delivery of the capital programme taking into account construction and inflation where existing Record of Decisions levels are needed to be adjusted.

Lead officer: James Sanderson


13/05/2022 - 22/00040 - Domestic Abuse Duty: 2022 to 2023 funding ref: 2601    Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)

Proposed decision:

 

The Leader is asked to consider taking the decision to:

 

a)    accept £3,112,501 domestic abuse funding (2022/23) for delivery of domestic abuse support in safe accommodation duties as defined by the Domestic Abuse Act,

b)    delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Strategic and Corporate Services, in consultation with the Leader, the Corporate Director of Adult Social Care & Health and the Corporate Director for Children, Young People and Education to accept future years’ allocations of safe accommodation funding, provided funding is given on similar terms,

c)    continue to delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Strategic and Corporate Services to take other necessary actions, including but not limited to entering into contracts or other legal agreements, as required to implement this decision.

 

Reason for the decision:

£125 million is being allocated to local authorities for the delivery of their domestic abuse duties (safe accommodation) in 2022 to 2023 with £3,112,501 allocated to Kent. A decision is needed to accept the funding.

 

The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 placed new duties on local authorities across England to ensure that victims of domestic abuse and their children can access the right support in safe accommodation when they need it.

 

Within the Domestic Abuse Act definitions of safe accommodation includes refuge, dispersed accommodation (non-communal supported accommodation), sanctuary schemes (security provision within a survivor’s home) and move-on accommodation where some levels of support are still required. Funding associated with the Act is to provide support services for those in these forms of accommodation.

 

Options:

The safe accommodation funding is to support compliance with the new statutory duties under the Domestic Abuse Act.  The option of turning down the grant was discarded as there are many people in Kent who will benefit from this resource.

 

Decision Maker: Leader of the Council

Decision published: 15/05/2022

Effective from: 21/05/2022

Decision:

 

The Leader of the Council is asked to consider taking the decision to:-

 

a) accept £3,112,501 domestic abuse funding (2022/23) for delivery of domestic abuse support in safe accommodation duties as defined by the Domestic Abuse Act;

b) delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Strategic and Corporate Services, in consultation with the Leader, the Corporate Director of Adult Social Care & Health and the Corporate Director for Children, Young People and Education, to accept future years’ allocations of safe accommodation funding, provided funding is given on similar terms; and

c)  continue to delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Strategic and Corporate Services to take other necessary actions, including but not limited to entering into contracts or other legal agreements, as required, to implement this decision.

 

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Serine Annan-Vetch


13/05/2022 - 22/00035 - School Term Dates 2023-24 ref: 2600    Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)

Proposed decision:

The Cabinet Member for Education and Skills is asked to determine the School Year dates for community and voluntary controlled schools, by the local authority (LA)

 

Background:

Schools are required by statute to provide schooling for 190 days. Teaching

staff are required by their terms and conditions to complete 195 days

including 5 development days.

 

Term dates and holidays, in England, are set:

              for community and voluntary controlled schools, by the local authority (LA)

              for foundation, voluntary aided schools, academies and free schools by the             governing body.

 

The government’s policies to promote academies and free schools will mean that increasingly school governing bodies will be determining the school term dates for their schools.

 

The proposed calendar will be considered by Children, Young People and Education Cabinet Committee and following this the Cabinet Member for Education and Skills will take the final decision. Following the consultation and approval, the agreed school term dates calendar for 2023-24 will be published.

 

Setting school term dates has a relationship to one of the priorities in Delivering Vision and Priorities for Improvement 2018 – 2021.  The priority states KCC will ‘ensure that the maximum number of children and young people of statutory school age are enabled to attend education provision on a full-time basis.’

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 13/05/2022

Effective from: 21/05/2022

Decision:

As Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, I agree the School Term dates for 2023-24.

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Ian Watts


12/05/2022 - 22/00038 - Pocket Money and Savings Policy for Children and young people in care - ensuring all children in care have a financial "Nest Egg" investment as part of their transition to adulthood ref: 2599    Recommendations Approved

Proposed decision – to agree the proposal and process to take the £10 per week savings at source from the foster carers/providers maintenance payment, from the period of time from the child/young person’s 14th week in care and ongoing until they leave care. This is to achieve a financial “Nest Egg” investment for all children in care.

 

1.       Introduction

 

1.1      Since a challenge in 2018 from our children and young people in care to give minimum amounts of pocket money and savings, it is an expectation that all foster carers /providers follow the KCC Savings and Pocket Money policy. This is to enable our young people to leave care at aged 18 years with some financial savings to use to support them moving into independence.

 

1.2      KCC have not previously been able to take children’s savings at source due to the capabilities of the different technical systems being able to communicate with each other. Foster carers have consistently asked for the savings to be taken at source, as the current system is complicated and the review of the process, has included working with our Foster Carer Ambassadors so that they are fully informed of the proposed change.

 

 

2        Background

 

2.1      For the past year, there has been a working group exploring whether we can use information from Controc, Oracle and Liberi systems to take the £10 savings at source, pay it into a central KCC bank account and then have it transferred over to either the child’s bank account if they leave care before the 12-month period or transferred to their Child Trust Fund or Junior ISA if they remain in care. The Child Trust Fund and Junior ISAs are managed by The Share Foundation and all children in local authority care for over a 12 month period, receive a £200 payment from the government into either their Child Trust Fund or Junior ISA.

 

2.2      The current process is that foster carers and providers who receive a maintenance payment for the care of the child, make savings on an individual basis which often results in children’s savings being kept in a variety of different bank accounts. This process needs to be changed to simplify it and remove the risk of our children and young people’s savings going astray or it being spent before they reach 18 years old.  We therefore would like to manage the savings ‘at source’ and reduce the number of accounts that children/young people have. Each area has managed a number of complaints from young people who have moved between carers/providers and savings have not been made available to them. If foster carers are no longer fostering for KCC, it makes it almost impossible to get them to pass on any savings, if these have not been passed on, whilst the child is in their care.

 

2.3      In some cases, carers/providers do not always open the child’s bank account quickly enough, they may then be reluctant to ‘backpay’ the £10 per week and this is challenging for social workers to have oversight of, there have been instances where children/young people have moved to alternative carers or left care and not had their savings paid, leaving them with no money to support their transition to independence and the directorate has had to cover these funds as a resolution to the complaint from the young person. 

 

2.4      There are also income tax implications for foster carers, who must pay the £10 per week from the maintenance fee already received and if we could eradicate this it will have a small benefit on carers payments, which may positively impact recruitment and retention of foster carers and reduce resistance to introducing this change.

 

2.5      The first phase of this proposed change of process will apply to all children and young people placed in “in house” foster care, Independent Fostering Agencies and Residential care home provision. 

 

2.6      The second phase will review the savings provision for young people aged 16 – 18 years living in supported accommodation, following a challenge and a number of complaints from this age group of young people, who feel they are not treated equally to those in foster care. This will be a separate workstream and a review undertaken with a timescale for completion and recommendations delivered by September 2022.

 

3.       Pocket Money and Savings Policy

 

3.1      0-13 weeks in care - carers/providers receive as part of the maintenance payment, £10 per week settling in fee per child/young person to account for initial costs and set up Bank Account in child/young person’s name to encourage them to put aside a small amount of their pocket money, that they can access at any time.  The child’s social worker will complete the CIC Review Pre-Meeting Report to confirm this has been done, record Bank Account details on Liberi ‘Record of child/young person’s Bank Account, CTF/JISA’ and Independent Reviewing Officer (IRO) will check at Review (No change in policy).

 

3.2      From the child/young person’s 14th week in care, £10 per week will be taken at source from the maintenance payment and be held in a Kent County Council Account, until either a Child Trust Fund or Junior ISA is identified by The Share Foundation, following a child/young person’s 52 weeks in care.

 

3.3      Should the child/young person leave care before 52 weeks, the amount of savings held in the KCC Account will be paid into the Bank Account set up in the first 13 weeks by the carer/provider. 

 

3.4      At 52 weeks, Management Information Team contact The Share Foundation to request that either a Junior ISA is set up, or the details of the Child Trust Fund are located (depending on the age of the child, as to whether they were eligible for the Child Trust Fund). The current government funded policy, pays £200 into their account with The Share Foundation, once the child has been in care for over 12 months. 

 

3.5      The monies accrued in the KCC Account for those children/young people who have remained in care for 52 weeks will be paid into their JISA/CTF and £10 per week will continue to be paid into the JISA/CTF from the KCC Account every month for the period up until the care period ends.

 

Alternatives considered-

 

The alternative would be to continue with the current process and make no changes.

 

 

 

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Integrated Children's Services

Decision published: 12/05/2022

Effective from: 20/05/2022

Decision:

As Cabinet Member for, I agree to:

the proposal and process to take the £10 per week savings at source from the foster carers/providers maintenance payment, from the period of time from the child/young person’s 14th week in care and ongoing until they leave care. This is to achieve a financial “Nest Egg” investment for all children in care.

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Caroline Smith


28/04/2022 - 22/00041 - Supplementary Substance Misuse Treatment and Recovery Grants 2022/23 to 2024/25 ref: 2597    Recommendations Approved

Proposed decision:

As Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, I agree:

      i.    To accept the Supplementary Substance Misuse Treatment and Recovery Grants 2022/23 to 2024/25 and the Inpatient Detoxification Grant (£7,421,560) under the Office for Health Inequalities and Disparities (OHID) terms and conditions.

     ii.    DELEGATE authority to the Director of Public Health to take relevant actions, including but not limited to, entering into and finalising the terms of relevant contracts or other legal agreements, as necessary, to implement the decision. The provision and related grant funding will be flexibly deployed to be responsive to local need as identified through both local and national indicators during the course of the grant.

    iii.    DELEGATE authority to the Director of Public Health, after consultation with the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health and the Corporate Director of Finance, to accept and deploy further funding from OHID towards substance misuse service associated with the 10-year Harm to Hope national drug strategy.

 

Reason for the decision:

Dame Carol Black was commissioned by the Home Office and the Department of Health and Social care to undertake an independent review of drugs to inform thinking on what more can be done to tackle the harm that drugs cause. Following the review, a three-year funding package has been announced in the National Drug Strategy to implement the recommendations outlined in the review through additional funding outside of the Public Health Grant to local authorities.

 

Background:

Under the Health and Social Care Act 2012, local authorities have the duty to reduce health inequalities and improve the health of their local population by ensuring that there are public health services aimed at reducing drug and alcohol misuse. Kent County Council receives a ring-fenced Public Health grant each year, of which a condition is to deliver services aimed at reducing drug and alcohol misuse.

 

Options (other options considered but discarded):

-       Reject the funding - As with any grant, there is an option to accept or reject the funding. The funding will support KCC’s statutory responsibility in providing Drug and Alcohol treatment services and will support KCC’s strategy in improving the quality of life of vulnerable residents. Rejecting the grant would not be in the public’s interest.

-       Outsource the management of the grant – The management of the grant could be outsourced either in full or in part to a third party. Outsourcing the management of the grant was discounted to ensure that KCC could closely control and monitor the grant in line with existing service delivery and ensure flexible application to emerging need.

 

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health

Decision published: 28/04/2022

Effective from: 07/05/2022

Decision:

As Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, I agree to:

 

  1. ACCEPT the Supplementary Substance Misuse Treatment and Recovery Grants 2022/23 to 2024/25 and the Inpatient Detoxification Grant (£7,421,560) under the Office for Health Inequalities and Disparities (OHID) terms and conditions.
  2. DELEGATE authority to the Director of Public Health to take relevant actions, including but not limited to, entering into and finalising the terms of relevant contracts or other legal agreements, as necessary, to implement the decision. The provision and related grant funding will be flexibly deployed to be responsive to local need as identified through both local and national indicators during the course of the grant.
  3. DELEGATE authority to the Director of Public Health, after consultation with the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health and the Corporate Director of Finance, to accept and deploy further funding from OHID towards substance misuse service associated with the 10-year Harm to Hope national drug strategy.

 

Division affected: (All Division);


25/04/2022 - 22/00033 - Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service Commissioning ref: 2596    Recommendations Approved

Proposed decision:

Commence joint commissioning activity for a Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service and delegate authority to the Corporate Director Adult Social Care and Health to take other relevant actions, including but not limited to finalising the terms of and entering into required contracts or other legal agreements, as necessary to implement the decision.

 

Reason for the decision:

The current contract arrangements end on 31 March 2023. Ongoing performance and quality monitoring, service reviews and recent market engagement findings provides significant evidence that the service delivers successful outcomes in line with the original vision. The service has supported the market to increase and improve the overall offer of mental health and wellbeing interventions available in Kent.

 

The outcomes achieved to date for Kent residents who have used the service demonstrate the numerous benefits of the service. The service has become a vital element of Kent’s mental health pathway and the service has demonstrated a clear need for such support.

 

Mental ill health currently represents 23% of the total burden of ill health in the UK and is the largest single cause of disability.

 

One in four adults in Kent experience at least one diagnosable mental health problem in any given year, and it is estimated that around 212,000 people in the county have a common or severe mental illness.

 

The National Community Mental Health Framework for Adults and Older Adults was published in September 2019 and sets out a plan for radical change in the design of community mental health care.

 

The National Community Mental Health Framework (CMHF) supports delivery of the NHS Long Term Plan vision for an accessible, person-centred and place-based comprehensive mental health offer through the alignment of Community Mental Health Teams (CMHTs) and Primary Care Networks (PCNs) and stronger relationships with Local Authority and voluntary sector services.

 

In order to achieve its vision all Integrated Care Systems (ICS) in England will receive their ‘fair share’ of central transformation funding to deliver new models of integrated primary and community mental health care for adults and older adults with severe mental health problems.

 

Transformation funding should be used to bring about whole system change across local health and care partnerships, enabling people with severe mental health problems to live well in their communities. Kent and Medway have now secured funding over three years to deliver this ambitious programme.

 

In Kent and Medway, the programme delivery team has been established, workstreams have been developed and work has begun.

 

The Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service performs a pivotal role and is a key partner as part of the transformation programme.

 

Considering the evidenced need for community mental health and wellbeing services in Kent, the success of current provision and the clear interdependencies between the continuation of these services and the success of the Community Mental Health Transformation Programme, it is recommended Kent County Council (KCC) continue to work in collaboration with Kent and Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (K&M CCG) or its successor body and Medway Council to jointly commission the Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service. This approach supports the aspiration for closer integration and working with Health/CCG commissioning colleagues.

 

The contract start date will be 1 April 2023 and will be jointly funded by Kent County Council, Kent & Medway NHS CCG and Medway Council. The Contract length will be 3 years with a 2-year extension option and delivery will be by preferred bidders identified following a competitive tendering exercise.

 

Financial Implications: 

The contract length will be 3 years with a 2-year extension option. The table below outlines the costs to KCC Adult Social Care and KCC Public Health for the initial 3 years and extension option.

 

Table 1: Contract costs to KCC Adult Social Care and Public Health (Initial 3 years and extension options)

 

 

KCC Public Health

KCC Adult Social Care

Initial 3-Year Contract Term

£6,757,945.50

£9,232,609.50

2 Year Optional Extension Period

£4,505,297.00

£6,155,073.00

Total (Initial 3-Year Contract Term + 2 Year Optional Extension Period)

£11,263,242.50

£15,387,682.50

 

 

The above contract values can be funded within the approved budget.

 

Table 2: Contract costs for Kent and Medway Clinical Commissioning Group

 

 

Kent & Medway CCG

Initial 3-Year Contract Term

£4,466,511.00

2 Optional Extension Period

£2,977,674.00

Total (Initial 3-Year Contract Term + 2 Optional Extension Period)

£7,444,185.00

 

Legal Implications:

It is the intention to undergo a procurement exercise to identify a suitable supplier in accordance with PCR 2015 Regulation 32(2)© and Procurement Policy Note 01/20.

 

Section 2 of the Care Act 2014 places a general duty on local authorities to provide, arrange or otherwise identify services, facilities, and resources to prevent, delay or reduce the needs of adults for care and support. The Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service contributes significantly to:

 

·       Prevention

·       Integrated partnership working and

·       The provision of good quality services and goods

 

A Section 256/Memorandum of Agreement will be entered in to by all parties to provide a framework within which to work with health partners and other local authorities and includes financial protections for KCC. Given the joint nature of the contract in place, ASCH operations would support the merits of this request.

 

If there is a change in Strategic Partners, TUPE regulations will apply. KCC needs to be conscious to mitigate the disruptive effect that this may have on current service users.

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health

Decision published: 25/04/2022

Effective from: 04/05/2022

Decision:

As Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, I agree to:

 

a) COMMENCE joint commissioning activity for a Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Service; and

 

b) DELEGATE authority to the Corporate Director Adult Social Care and Health to take other relevant actions, including but not limited to finalising the terms of and entering into required contracts or other legal agreements, as necessary to implement the decision.

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Sharon Dene