Venue: Committee Rooms CDE, Merton Civic Centre, London Road, SM4 5DXItems
|1.||Apologies for absence
Apologies were received from Cllr Butler (with Cllr Fraser is substituting).
|2.||Declarations of pecuniary interest
There were no declarations of pecuniary interest
|3.||Minutes of the previous meeting PDF 154 KB
The minutes of the previous meeting were agreed.
|4.||Cabinet Member priorities
Cabinet member for Commerce, Leisure and Culture – Cllr Caroline Cooper-Marbiah
In response to Panel Member questions, the Cabinet Member for Commerce, Leisure and Culture clarified;
Cabinet member for Regeneration, Housing and Transport – Cllr Martin Whelton
In response to Panel Member questions, the Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Housing and Transport clarified;
Cabinet member for Adult Social Care, Health and the Environment – Cllr Tobin Byers
In response to Panel Member questions, the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health and the Environment clarified;
|5.||Waste,recycling and street cleaning: Performance update PDF 265 KB
Director of Environment and Regeneration introduced the report.
The Chair invited residents to share their experiences of the service.
Sarah Cheetham (Resident): Area is plagued with litter. Rubbish and broken glass encourages a minority to further add to it. Endless reporting has done nothing. Local groups are working to litter pick. What are the Council going to do?
James Leek (Wimbledon Union Res Association): More consultation is required. It would be helpful for Residents Associations to receive a structure of staff so they know who to contact. Online reporting needs to be improved. Telephone reporting is inadequate. More information is needed with regards to the side waste policy. Residents Associations are a huge resource and should be included in consultation work, including the upcoming work on street litter bins.
Mark Gale (Resident): I met with Scott Edgell on 09.08.19 yet drains are still blocked, collections missed, bins are overflowing, street cleaning bags aren’t collected and there are fly posters all over the borough.
Dan Goode (Merton Matters): The instinct of the borough was that outsourcing the waste service was a bad idea. Maintaining standards and providing profit to a private company while tax payers plug the gaps. There are residents that already pay for the service giving free labour to help clean it.
In response Scott Edgell, General Manager for Veolia, replied;
The Chair introduced the themes to be covered today which are bin collections, street cleaning and fly tipping, website and reporting issues, and finally misc. issues including communication, staff motivation, contract and performance monitoring.
In response to Panel Member questions about bin collections, Scott Edgell clarified;
The Director of Environment and Regeneration and the Waste Strategy and Commissioning Manager also explained;
In response to Panel Member questions about street cleaning and fly tipping, Scott Edgell replied
In response to Panel Member questions about website and reporting issues, Scott Edgell, the Director of Environment and Regeneration and the Assistant Director of Public Space clarified;
Panel resolved (eight votes for, none against) to make the following reference to Cabinet;
The Sustainable Communities Overview and Scrutiny Panel welcomes this opportunity to comment on the waste, recycling and street cleaning service and to raise issues for consideration by Cabinet.
The Panel recommended that Merton’s large estates each receive a review on how the new collection service is working. If required due to under performance in service delivery or when requested by local ward members, an action plan shall be prepared that includes a review of the service delivered with recommended improvements, timelines for improvement implementation, resident engagement and a communication plan to support the any service modifications.
The Panel recommended that HMO’s and flats above shops each receive a review on how the new collection service is working. If required due to under performance in service delivery or when requested by local ward members, an action plan shall be prepared that includes a review of the service delivered with recommended improvements, timelines for improvement implementation, resident engagement and a communication plan to support the any service modifications.
The Panel would welcome the opportunity to feed into the upcoming estate modelling work between Clarion and Officers on how the estates can be improved. The panel requests that one Panel Member be invited to the future Clarion meetings to input and feedback on this work. Alternatively, the Panel would encourage Veolia to formally comment on the designs and challenges they have, possible mitigations and writing back to the committee with an update.
The Panel requested that they receive an outline of what the planned web reporting improvements are, including the benefits of implementing Microsoft Office 365, and a date of when this work will be finalised. The Panel requests that this report encompasses all user journeys and considers a single point of access for reporting all public space issues irrespective of which contractor is responsible.
The Panel recommends to Cabinet that the Council should consider developing an “always on” approach to communication. Providing clear and understandable information to all our residents which focuses on why we should recycle, how to use the bins/coloured bags, collection days, examples of street grading and how to report issues. This information could be included as a Council Tax insert, My Merton article, promotion through the council’s social media channels and a New Resident webpage on the council’s website.
The Panel recommended that Cabinet investigate the option of a ward by ward deep clean to get the Borough back to an acceptable base line.
The Panel requested that Cabinet receive evidence of the Improvement Plan being prepared by Veolia The Panel also request that Cabinet consider sharing the plans with the Sustainable Communities Panel for further scrutiny input.
The Panel recommend that Veolia publish their rotas and schedules online in order to promote both transparency and our capacity to hold them to account.
The Panel also requested that Veolia return to the Sustainable Communities Panel in six months in order to carry out a review of the progress achieved.
|6.||Environmental Enforcement: Fly Tipping strategy PDF 77 KB
The Assistant Director of Public Space introduced the report which is focused on delivering improvements, all of which are underpinned by the action plan.
In response to a Panel Member question, the Assistant Director of Public Space and the Waste Strategy and Commissioning Manageranswered;
|7.||Performance monitoring PDF 112 KB
A Panel member asked if there was any update on Planning Enforcement cases?
The Director of Environment and Regeneration explained the Council is committed to reducing the planning enforcement backlog by end of this year. One additional planning enforcement officer has started in their role and another is currently being recruited.
SP025 Debt owed- Arrows shows improvement. Historically our void rate has been better than target.
|8.||Work Programme PDF 109 KB
Work programme agreed.
It was noted that the October and February agendas have been swapped around.
This change has been made to ensure that the representatives required can attend both meetings and allow enough time for proper exploration of the topics in each.