Chair of Overview and Scrutiny Committee
101.1 The Chair of Overview and Scrutiny Committee introduced his report and apologised for the length of it, largely due to the backlog of work that had built up since Christmas.
101.2 The Chair of Overview and Scrutiny informed Council that there had been eleven separate items of scrutiny listed in the report, which detailed the reviews and the outcomes. The Chair highlighted the addendum that had been tabled. Included in the addendum was a review of outside bodies, the Committee had spent a considerable amount of time on this and the Chairman was aware that this was an area that had previously to some extent been overlooked. Many Members served on those outside bodies and the Committee have found that it actually benefited both the Council and the community in a two-way partnership. Also, the disabled facilities grant had been an area of particular interest, this was a Suffolk wide problem, and the Council were not alone in finding that the current system did not work and with an underspend in the budget, the Council was potentially not using money which was available for the benefit of the community. The Chairman of Scrutiny stated that the Committee believed that this should be addressed, and he believed it was being addressed in the proposed changes to the DFG’s Disabled Facilities Grants which was illustrated on the third page of the addendum. Finally, the Committee had looked at the implementation and the impact of Universal Credit with particular emphasis on its effect on housing services. As was stated in the report with only a 20% roll out it was difficult to draw a hard and fast conclusion, however, the Committee had seen some early trends that could be of concern. But, the Committee had felt quite strongly, that the Housing Team were very well prepared and flexible enough to deal with that.
101.3 The Chairman thanked the Chair of Overview and Scrutiny for his report.