Agenda and minutes

Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service Committee
Wednesday, 29 March 2017 11.30 am

Venue: Committee Room C, County Hall, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey KT1 2DN. View directions

Items
No. Item

1/17

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

2/17

MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING pdf icon PDF 128 KB

3/17

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

4/17

PROCEDURAL ITEMS

5/17

Members' Questions

6/17

Public Questions

7/17

Petitions

8/17

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 50 KB

    To review and agree the Board Committee work program.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Steve Ruddy, Head of Trading Standards, Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service

    Phil Dart, Service Director for Communities, Buckinghamshire County Council

     

    Key points from the discussion:

     

    1.    The Head of Trading Standards introduced the item and informed Members that the Forward Plan would be a new standing item published with each agenda to track items for future meetings. The Officer highlighted that a Tackling Scams item and a Primary Authority and Business Partnerships item would be added to the Committee’s Forward Plan for September 2017.

    2.    The Service Director for Communities suggested to Members that an item on the impact of Brexit be considered at a future meeting as it would be a relevant topic worth discussing. It was also suggested that an item regarding the unitary debate on the integration of regulatory services at Buckinghamshire County Council be discussed. Members agreed that this would be better discussed at a future private Trading Standards Board meeting.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    1.    A1/17 - To add Tackling Scams and Primary Authority and Business Partnerships to the Forward Plan for September 2017.

     

    RESOLVED;

     

    that the Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Joint Trading Standards Service Committee review and agree the Committee’s Forward Work Programme 

     

     

9/17

Action Review pdf icon PDF 50 KB

    To review and agree the Committee actions tracker.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Joss Butler, Committee Assistant, Surrey County Council

     

    Key points from the discussion:

     

    1.    The Committee Assistant introduced the item and informed Members that the actions tracker was a new standing item which aim was to follow up and track any future actions that arise from meetings.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    RESOLVED:

     

    that the Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Joint Trading Standards Service Committee review and agree the Committee’s Action Tracker

     

     

10/17

PERFORMANCE AND JOINT SERVICE BUDGET pdf icon PDF 124 KB

    The Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Trading Standards Service Joint Committee is asked to note the performance of the service for the third quarter of the financial year (from October 2016-December 2016) and since April 2016. The information provided covers performance against seven high level indicators and in relation to the service budget.

     

    The information provided shows that:

     

    a)    Overall the Service is performing well and is delivering excellent results against key performance indicators.

    b)    It is projected that the service budget will be under spent at outturn, achieving all the savings projected in the Business Case for the shared service and exceeding income generation targets for the year.

    The Joint Committee is asked to agree the Performance Indicators about which it wishes to receive information in the year 2016/17 and to endorse the revised joint service budget, with the addition of further savings over and above those previously agreed for the joint service.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Steve Ruddy, Head of Trading Standards, Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service

    Amanda Poole, Assistant Head of Trading Standards, Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service

    Phil Dart, Service Director for Communities, Buckinghamshire County Council

    Andy Tink, Senior Principal Accountant, Surrey County Council

     

    Key points from the discussion:

     

    1. Officers introduced the item and summarised for Members the performances relating to each Key Performance Indicator (KPI) from Annex 1 of the report. Relating to KTP 1, an updated annex was tabled at the meeting and attached to these minutes which updated the compensation and savings figures. A further £250,000 had been secured in compensation for victims and a further £160,000 in direct savings for residents had been achieved to date in the 4th quarter. Members stressed their appreciation to officers as these savings would not have been achieved without the work of the Trading Standards team. In particular in one Financial Investigation in excess of £100,000 had been recouped from the perpetrator and repaid to the Adult Social Care service which had been the victim of the scam, in addition to compensation paid to both DWP and to Reigate and Banstead Borough Council.  Officers went on to make clear that the service would always prioritise compensation back to the victims. Members noted that the vast majority of compensation had been obtained under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
    2. Members discussed KPI 3 in the report and noted that the Trading Standards Twitter account had received over 300,000 impressions during a 91 day period. Members made clear that it was excellent to see that the Twitter account was having an impact on residents by raising awareness of scams, rogue traders and unsafe products. A Member of the Committee sought clarification on the number of volunteers that had signed up to assist with Trading Standards projects.  Officers confirmed that the number of volunteers had increased but could not give the exact figure. It was agreed for details to be circulated after the meeting.
    3. Officers asked the Committee to note that the figure showing the year to date total income linked to Primary Authority Partnerships in KPI 4 was now over £140,000.
    4. A discussion took place around the WorkPlace Wellbeing Charter (WWC) which officers described as a scheme to encourage organisations to publicise health and wellbeing in the workplace. Members stressed that it was very important for Surrey and Buckinghamshire County Council to have a coordinated approach when supporting this scheme as each County Council would need to have a positive internal environment before promoting it to other organisations. It was agreed that the WWC for Surrey and Buckinghamshire County Council be circulated to the Committee.
    5. Members highlighted that it was important to present information clearly in the report as it was a public facing document and asked that officers considered this further in the future.
    6. Members had a discussion on the mitigation techniques for preventing illegal and unsafe  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10/17

11/17

OFFICIAL FOOD STANDARDS AND FEED CONTROLS PLAN 2017-2018 pdf icon PDF 115 KB

    The Official Food Standards and Feed Controls Service Plan (known as the ‘FSA Plan’) is a statutory plan required to be produced annually by the Food Standards Agency (FSA).

     

    The overall structure follows guidance from the FSA and includes the necessary facts and statistics to ensure the document is valid as a statutory plan.

     

    This ‘statutory’ Plan is required to be submitted to the ‘relevant Member Forum for approval’. In approving this Plan, the Committee will be establishing a framework that will meet the expectations of the Food Standards Agency.

     

    Whilst the FSA Plan is a public document and will be made available via the website and in printed version to anyone on request, we will produce additional information for the public in April that is in a more resident friendly and accessible format.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Steve Ruddy, Head of Trading Standards, Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service

    Amanda Poole, Assistant Head of Trading Standards, Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Council Joint Trading Standards Service

    Phil Dart, Service Director for Communities, Buckinghamshire County Council

     

    Key points from the discussion:

     

    1. Officers provided Members with a summary of the 2017/18 Official Food Standards and Feed Controls Service Plan (FSA Plan) and highlighted its key points. It was noted that a further document would be published which concentrated on ensuring a more user friendly theme to allow for easier understanding by the public. It was also noted that significant work had been done with the Food Standards Agency (FSA) to improve how food regulation would work and how food services would be regulated in the future.
    2. Members discussed the importance of labelling allergens on food products and the consequences of mislabelling. Members questioned how this was monitored which lead to officers providing details of a project with district and boroughs to ensure compliance with allergen labelling.
    3. Members sought clarification of the fees set by Trading Standards and how it compared to other County Councils. Officers confirmed that many fees were set statutory so could not currently be changed but others did have the opportunity to be put under review in the future.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    RESOLVED:

     

    that the Buckinghamshire County Council and Surrey County Joint Trading Standards Service Committee approves the 2017/18 Official Food Standards and Feed Controls Service Plan (the FSA Plan).