A report detailing the performance dashboard development work undertaken to date, development of future performance reporting, and 2019/20 out-turn figures for waste services.
The Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations introduced the report and asked for input from the committee as to what they thought should be included as environmental performance indicators. A Member spoke of his surprise that the report was signed off when he felt that it was incomplete and lacking key indicators. He spoke of the proposals that he had made in the past and how he felt they could have been used to develop the report. The Member commented that some of the indicators in the report would already be reviewed by other committees and that this committee should add value by looking at new areas. He briefly outlined several suggested areas for examination, which included electricity usage, gas usage and electric vehicles. He noted that in a previous meeting it was decided his proposed indicators should receive feedback, which had not occurred.
The Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations stated that he wanted this report to be a starting point for the committee so that it could identify areas it wished to scrutinise. He stated that whilst the level of detail in this report may be suitable for other Committees, he wanted to understand what this Committee wished to see. He agreed that some of the areas outlined by the Member could become key performance indicators but stressed that the indicators should be specific to areas for which the Council had direct responsibility.
There was a discussion about what areas fell under the Council’s direct responsibility, rather than reflecting the actions of external agencies. This included a discussion around the possible use of commercial waste recycling as an indicator. The Cabinet Member stated that this may be of interest but it would not be a fair assessment of the Council’s performance because of its limited influence in this area. He did suggest that domestic recycling could be an indicator as the Council has a duty to encourage residents to recycle.
The Vice-Chairman commented that energy usage would be a useful indicator as there were several proposed energy reduction schemes in the Carbon Trust report. There was a discussion around the food waste scheme and how this could impact the Council’s recycling rates. The Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations informed the Committee that households using the food waste scheme were not separated within the report and that the 10% uplift in recycling would not be seen due to the limited area of the district eligible to take part in the scheme.
A Member asked about the future of the food waste scheme and the Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations spoke of the Key Decision that had been made to continue the food waste scheme in the pilot area after the Lincolnshire Waste Partnership ceased its funding. This outlay would be reviewed on a six-monthly basis. The Committee heard of the Cabinet Member’s ambition to continue and expand the scheme. There was a question of cost to the Council and the committee was advised that there was a small increase in the cost of running the scheme but there was an ambition to move towards making the scheme cost neutral in the future. The Chairman confirmed that she was happy to continue to review the food waste scheme as part of the committee’s workplan.
The Committee discussed its role in the selection of indicators. The Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations commented that he wished to join the debate and offer his thoughts on the resource implications of any proposal.
There was a proposal for seven indicators to be adopted as environmental performance indicator with a further proposal that seven other indicators should be examined in greater detail in a workshop of committee Members. This proposal was passed by the committee.
The Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations responded that he was happy to work towards these indicators but warned some would be outside the Council’s control and that there may be difficulties gathering the required data. He also added that some of the data gathered may be not be up to date as there were delays in the Council gaining some of the data in part due to the effects of Covid-19. He added that there may be areas that would measure other agencies’ performance rather than this Council’s. The Strategic Director, Commercial and Operations added that some of the indicators had already been provided and that the report outlined that some of the others were already in train whilst others may be harder to report.
1. The Committee recommends the following seven areas to be used as environmental indicators
1. Energy consumption and cost (for the Council)
2. Water consumption and cost (for the Council)
3. Overall domestic waste arisings (for the District)
4. Percentage domestic waste recycled (for the District)
5. Percentage domestic waste diverted from landfill/incineration (i.e. to include food waste and green waste)
6. Percentage contamination of silver bins
7. Number of fixed-penalty notices issued by enforcement teams
2. The Committee will hold a workshop to examine other possible environmental indicators including the seven listed below.
1. Volume of paper used by the Council
2. Mileage claimed by Councillors
3. Mileage claimed by staff using private vehicles
4. Miles travelled by council vehicles
5. Number of trees planted by SKDC
6. Area of SKDC land dedicated to managed wildlife and/or rewilding
7. Number of complaints received relating to street scene