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ANGUS COUNCIL

MINUTE of MEETING of the CONTRACT SERVICES COMMITTEE held in the Town and County Hall, Forfar on Tuesday, 2 June 1998 at 4.00 pm.

Present: Councillors WILLIAM CROWE, JACK GIBB, WILLIAM DOIG, Mrs RENATE LAMONT, STEWART McGLYNN, WILLIAM MIDDLETON and SANDY WEST.

Councillor CROWE, Convener, in the Chair.

1. MINUTE OF PREVIOUS MEETING

The minute of meeting of this Committee of 21 April 1998 was approved as a correct record and signed by the Convener.

2. QUALITY ACCREDITATION

With reference to Article 3 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 20 January 1998, the Committee noted that it had been agreed that Contract Services should seek QUEST qualification for Leisure Management activities.

A preliminary assessment had been carried out, both internally and by an external assessor.

In order to achieve the level of formal management documentation required to be successful, it would be necessary to dedicate staff resources for a short period and to have two members of staff trained as internal assessors. The cost of this was estimated at £25,500.

The cost of Registration and Formal Assessment would be in financial year 1999/2000. It was anticipated that this expenditure would be contained within the overall Contract Services’ existing estimates and should this prove not to be viable, a further report would be submitted at the relevant time.

The Committee agreed to note the position.

3. BEST VALUE SERVICE REVIEW PROGRAMME

With reference to Article 7 of the minute of meeting of the Policy and Resources Committee of 12 May 1998, there was submitted Report No 565/98 by the Contract Services Manager detailing Contract Services’ Programme for Service Review which was required under the Scottish Office Best Value Guidelines and covered a five year period. A detailed Programme was appended to the Report and the initial tranche would be undertaken when the Lead Officers had received appropriate training.

The Committee noted the terms of the Report and agreed:-

(i) to approve the Service Review Programme, a copy of which was appended to the Report; and

(ii) to note that any further variations in the Programme would be reported in due course.

4. SERVQUAL

There was submitted Report No 566/98 by the Contract Services Manager seeking homologation for the Leisure Management Section of Contract Services to participate in the Accounts Commission’s pilot exercise to assess service quality using the SERVQUAL Model.

SERVQUAL was an approach which had been developed in the United States by which customers’ perceptions were obtained by questionnaire. The process was expected to result in the production of a gap analysis which would highlight possible areas for improvement within service delivery in line with the Council’s Best Value submission. The results would also assist in the preparation of the Department’s Business Plan and Budget for 1999/2000 by prioritising requirements in areas highlighted for improvement. The draft timescale for the pilot was outlined in the Report.

Following a presentation by the Accounts Commission, it had been suggested that the SERVQUAL model be piloted in the Housing Department, the Planning Department and Contract Services Leisure and Management Section.

The Committee noted the terms of the Report and agreed to homologate participation by Contract Services in the Accounts Commission’s pilot of the SERVQUAL model.

5. BRECHIN AND CARNOUSTIE HIGH SCHOOL POOLS USAGE UPDATE

With reference to Article 3 of the minute of meeting of the Contract Services Committee of 21 April 1998, there was submitted Joint Report No 567/98 by the Director of Recreation Services and the Contract Services Manager updating the position with regard to use being made of the High School pools at Brechin and Carnoustie.

The operation of the High School facilities by Contract Services had shown substantial improvement over the previous year, as had been seen in the annual increase in use of approximately 2,000 in each facility. The improved level of recharge which the Recreation Services Department paid to the Education Department for the use of the facilities and the charge which the Recreation Services Department paid Contract Services to operate the management of the facilities had resulted in the subsidy being reduced. Further work was planned to ensure that the improvements continued and that a the summer season was successful.

The Committee noted the terms of the Report and agreed that a further update be provided at the November cycle of meetings on the progress being made to make the operation of the High School pools more viable.

6. USE OF GREENENERGY CITYDIESEL

With reference to Article 9 of the minute of meeting of the Environmental and Consumer Protection Committee of 26 May 1998, there was submitted Joint Report No 552/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection and the Contract Services Manager, advising of the benefit of fuelling the Council diesel powered fleet with the recently developed fuel, Greenenergy Citydiesel.

A considerable proportion of Angus Council’s vehicle fleet operated in the streets of towns and villages carrying out duties such as refuse collection and street cleaning. It was therefore accepted that the Council had a responsibility to take practical action to improve the quality of the emissions from these vehicles. One tangible method of improving air quality was to fuel all the Council’s fleet of diesel powered vehicles on Greenenergy Citydiesel. Angus would be only the second Council in Scotland to adopt the use of this fuel which provided environmental benefits and went towards meeting the aims of Agenda 21 and improving air quality in Angus.

The Committee agreed, for its interest, to note the environmental benefits of fuelling the operational fleet with Greenenergy Citydiesel as part of the Council’s strategy towards meeting the aims of Agenda 21 and improving air quality in Angus streets.