Agenda and minutes

Communities Scrutiny Commission - Monday, 14th January, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: City Hall, College Green, Bristol

Contact: Dan Berlin 

No. Item


Welcome, Introductions and Safety Information pdf icon PDF 126 KB


The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting



Apologies for Absence


Cllr Graham Morris

Cllr HibaqJama



Declarations of Interest





Minutes of the Previous Meeting and Action Tracker pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Members to agree the minutes of the previous meeting.

Action Tracker for information

Additional documents:


The draft minutes of the previous meeting (12th November 2018) were agreed as a correct record of the meeting by the Members.


RESOLVED: Outstanding actions to be reviewed and the Commission reserves the right to ask Officers further questions following this meeting.



Chair's Business


Visit to Temple Street to meet the HomeChoice and Customer Services teams.


·         It was agreed that the HomeChoice visit was informative and helpful.

·         Members agreed that there may be a lack of knowledge within the public and across elected Members on how the various housing processes and teams link together was noted. 


RESOLVED: There should be some awareness raising about HomeChoice processes and team responsibilities so elected Members can better advise and also manage expectations.


There was a discussion about the potential use of libraries and similar community

spaces/venues with the use of Skype or a similar model that enables remote access; and that it

could enable better accessibility for those citizens who have not been able to access Temple

Street Citizen Service Point.


It was agreed by all Members that the tour, presentations and discussions at Temple Street (HomeChoice and Customer Services) was very worthwhile and positive, and Officers deserve thanks and credit. 


Chair confirmed that in the context of the Directorate restructure, the Communities Commission will keep to its work programme.


RESOLVED: It be noted that a Commission review meeting is to be held to address remaining questions the Commission has about the topics discussed at the three meetings on the 2018-19 programme. The meeting will be held in March/April 2019 (TBC).



Public Forum

Up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item


Any member of the public or Councillor may participate in Public Forum. The

detailed arrangements for so doing are set out in the Public Information Sheet at

the back of this agenda.


Public Forum items should be emailed to

and please note that the following deadlines will apply in relation to this meeting:-


Questions - Written questions must be received 3 clear working days prior to the

meeting. For this meeting, this means that your question(s) must be received in

this office at the latest by 5pm on Tuesday 8th January 2019


Petitions and Statements - Petitions and statements must be received on the

working day prior to the meeting. For this meeting this means that your

submission must be received in this office at the latest by 12.00 noon on Friday

11th January 2019


The following Public Forum was received:

·         Questions 1 & 2: Community Infrastructure levy / s106 process review


Answers to the questions were provided to Mr Gimson, and points were raised and discussed at Agenda item 7.


·         Statement 1: Community Toilets Scheme


Mr Redgewell spoke to his statement and points were raised and discussed at Agenda item 8.



Performance for Q2 pdf icon PDF 424 KB

Report and Appendix 1


Additional documents:


Members asked what is being put in place for improvement of the Performance Indicators:


·         DCM191 Levels of Engagement with community development work.

·         DCM414  Improve energy efficiency from home installations.

·         BCP327 % corporate FOI requests to within 20 working days.


ACTION: Officers to provide the Commission responses to the Performance queries


RESOLVED: A final Communities Commission review meeting will be held (date to be confirmed), in which it is requested Q3 Performance report is made available. Following the Directorate restructure there will not be a dedicated Communities report generated, although Officer can produce one from the Directorate reports.



CIL/s106 process review pdf icon PDF 473 KB

Report and Appendices 1&2

Additional documents:


The Neighbourhoods & Communities Service Manager, and the Community Resources Manager delivered a presentation (the slides are included in the published pack).


Chair provided opportunity for Mr Gimson to follow up his Public Forum question:  will the community will be consulted on the changes to the Regulation 123 list.

Officer response:

o   This is referring to Strategic CIL rather than local CIL. There is a request for the Cabinet Member to review.  There are no plans at this stage for further consultation


RESOLVED:That the Public Forum question (whether the proportion of locally allocated CIL funds can be increased from 15%) will be reviewed.


There was a discussion surrounding accessibility of relevant information related to the CIL process for citizens and whether elected Members are appropriately informed.


RESOLVED: That there is a need for updated guidance on the process, and that Member

briefings would be helpful.


There was a discussion about delivery timetables, and Officers stated that there was not a

fixed timetable as it depended on the capacity of the Parks and Transport departments.


RESOLVED: It be noted that (i) as a result of consultation, project resources for Parks will be increased and a schedule will be published when it is clear that there will be enough capacity to enable delivery; and (ii) there is now an agreement in place with Transport and Parks departments to share a tracker for all schemes; that elected Members will receive a status report twice yearly; and there will be further updates should there be changes to existing plans. 


A Member stated that there should be flexibility and a facility for different processes for different levels of funding requested; that the existing model may prevent release of money for a publicly supported project in need of speedy approval.


RESOLVED: Vice-Chair of Communities Scrutiny Commission will make proposals to the Commission of an appropriate process to resolve this issue without using extra Officer resource.



Community Toilets Scheme pdf icon PDF 429 KB

Report and Appendix 1

Additional documents:


The Neighbourhoods & Communities Service Manager and the Neighbourhood Services Manager delivered a presentation (the slides are included in the published pack).


Chair provided opportunity for Mr Redgewell to follow up his Public Forum question:concern about some of the toilets in the scheme closing at 5pm; would like clarity surrounding where the accessible toilets are; and what information is available for bus passenger and members of the public. 

Officer response:

o    Bristol Physical Access Chain (BPAC) have been involved in inspections and informed the definition of what is accessible. 

o    Full details on Council’s website, including a map of the toilets included in the scheme:


o    Each toilet has signs designating the service provision, including whether it is accessible and has baby changing facilities.  Examples of the signs can be found on the website, link above.

o    Bristol Aging Better is producing 6 maps covering the city, and it is planned that they will be widely distributed when published in February.


There was a discussion about whether the Council is working in partnership with other organisations such as train and bus companies so as to ensure provision for their employees and customers; and whether there are funding opportunities for public toilet provision.


ACTION: Officers will feedback details of opportunities for joint working and funding initiatives to the Commission.

ACTION: Officer to provide data on how many refusals to join the scheme and the reasons.


There was a discussion about the targets for accessibility; whether Council toilets are included in the scheme; how standards are monitored; and how success is measured.  The Commission heard that:


·         The 75% target for accessibility has been met at this point; and toilets in the Citizen Service Points and City Hall are included.


·         In terms of distribution and location, there is a significant increase from when the 14 public toilets were closed in December 2017.


·         Being signed up means adhering to a set of standards; there have been no reports of businesses not adhering to standards.


·         Feedback is gathered from current participants and there is just one venue that decided to not continue after sign up.


·         Success can be measured by the number of accessible toilets and coverage of the scheme; and to ensure we meet commitments made in the report to Cabinet.


RESOLVED: It be noted that Officers should be commended on the initiative, although

further progress would be difficult with agreements with breweries;  and as a land/asset

owner, the Council should consider making membership of the scheme a condition of lease



RESOLVED: The Commission would like an update in the coming months including what the

provision and need is by area. The Commission will then ask further questions.


The Commission heard that the priority task of the scheme was targeting provision where the

public toilets were closed. The Community Toilets Scheme goes further than that, providing

extra provision. 


ACTION: Officer to clarify national guidance and standards



Customer Services pdf icon PDF 430 KB

Report and Appendix 1

Additional documents:


Head of Citizen Service presented the report (included in the published pack).


There was a discussion about how customer service is measured; whether the Council has insight into citizens who do not access the Citizens Service Point; and how the Council monitors and reduces repeat calls.


The Commission heard that:


·         Exit interviews are conducted for service users who visit Temple Street Citizens Service Point (CSP).

·         Officers are  investigating ways to get feedback from those who do not attend the CSP.

·         The Council holds repeat caller data using the caller phone number, and if within 24 hours the same number is received, this is logged as a repeat caller.  The same number after a couple of days may not be a repeat caller, it may be the same person with a different query.


ACTION: Officer to provide available data on customer satisfaction and repeat calls.


There was a discussion about the cost of calls and how this is calculated, and how different service departments are recharged fairly.


The Commission heard that:


·         Cost is calculated based on number of calls and average time; and for recharging, the  number of calls and the amount of time spent is calculated and then recharged proportionately.


RESOLVED: It be noted that Officers should be commended on the customer service;  and that there is a concern about the small amount of citizens who may find it difficult to get to Temple Street and so access the services available via the Citizens Service Point.


The Commission heard that the Council has an Engagement team dedicated to reaching citizens who find it difficult to access the CSP. 


ACTION: Officer to provide the Commission further details on the Engagement team.