MAIDSTONE BOROUGH COUNCIL
Minutes (PART I) of the meeting held on Friday 29 January 2016
Councillor Mrs Gooch (Chairman), and
Councillors Mrs Blackmore, D Burton, Cox, Hemsley, Joy, McKay, D Mortimer, Round, Sargeant and Mrs Wilson
12. Apologies for Absence
Apologies had been received from Councillors McLoughlin and Perry.
13. Notification of Substitute Members
It was noted that Councillor Hemsley was substituting for Councillor McLoughlin.
14. Urgent Items
The Chairman advised that she intended to take Agenda Item
10 – Report of the Chief Executive which related to the Proposed Pay Scale
Changes as an Urgent Item.
15. Notification of Visiting Members
It was noted that there were no Visiting Members.
16. Disclosures by Members and Officers
The Head of HR Shared Services disclosed an interest on behalf of all members of staff in relation to Agenda Item 10 – Report of the Chief Executive - Pay Scale Changes.
17. Disclosures of Lobbying
There were no disclosures of lobbying.
18. Exempt Items
RESOLVED: That the item on Part II of the agenda be taken in private as proposed.
19. Minutes of the Meeting held on 27 August 2015
RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the meeting
held on 27 August 2015 be approved as a correct record and signed subject to
the following resolution being inserted under Minute 9, Resolution 2 –
Appointment of Substitutes to Sub-Committees:-
It was proposed by Councillor Burton and seconded by Councillor Cox that the Committee would appoint up to 5 named substitutes for Sub-Committees from the Members or Substitute Members of the Committee.
Voting: For: 11
Substantive motion carried.
RESOLVED: That the Committee will appoint up to 5 named substitutes for Sub-Committees from the Members or Substitute Members of the Committee.
Voting: For : 11
By way of an update to the minutes of the last meeting in regard to the report of the Chief Executive - Director Recruitment, it was noted that Members had requested a comparison between the estimated costs incurred should the process be administered by internal HR against the process as undertaken by external recruitment consultants outside of the meeting.
The Head of HR Shared Service apologised that she had not sent these figures around but had undertook to update Members verbally at this meeting.
Members were advised that a tendering process had been executed and concluded in December last year and the consultants Berwicks were appointed.
The Head of HR Shared Service advised that an advertisement
had appeared in the Guardian and talks were still ongoing with prospective
candidates by the recruitment consultants.
20. Report of the Head of Human Resources - Pay Policy Statement 2016
Members considered the report of the Head of HR Shared Service which related to the Pay Policy Statement.
It was noted that the pay policy statement would need to be approved formally by full Council before the end of March. Members were informed of the changes that had been made for this year which included a reference to the legislative changes that would be introduced from April 2016 relating to compensation payments by senior staff. However, this still needs to be worked out as it is quite a complicated piece of legislation.
In Section 4 – Monitoring it was noted that the calculation for earnings had changed this year from previous years following guidance from the Local Government Association. It was suggested that the same rationale was attributed to future data and that only comparators from one year to another are detailed.
It was also noted that in Section 5 – Trade Union facility time, hardly any resources had been spent on trade union business. Members were advised that the Council was only required to report if more than 50% of the trade union representative’s time is spent on trade union business.
In response to Members’ questions, the Head of HR Shared Service advised:-
That although the Reward Strategy was last reviewed in 2006,
there were four themes to the Strategy and one of these themes, the Pay Policy,
would be considered by Members in Part II of the agenda.
That the redundancy policy would apply to all members of staff.
Market Supplements are applied to those positions where
difficulty has been experienced in recruiting, i.e. Senior Planners, Surveyors
RESOLVED: That Council be recommended to agree the proposed Pay Policy Statement as set out in Appendix 1 to the report of the Head of HR Shared Service prior to publication on the Council’s web site.
Voting: For: 11
21. EXCLUSION OF THE PUBLIC FROM THE MEETING
RESOLVED: That the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business because of the likely disclosure of exempt information for the reason specified, having applied the public interest test:-
Head of Schedule 12 A and
Report of the Chief Executive - Paragraph 4 – Labour Relations
Proposed Pay Scale Changes
22. Report of the Chief Executive - Proposed Pay Scale Changes
Members considered the exempt report of the Chief Executive on the Pay Scale Changes which addressed the level of minimum pay to be adopted by the Council.
It was noted that one of the changes to have been applied to the pay scale related to the application of the Living Wage to the lowest grade on the pay scale. This had been adopted by Members in 2012.
The National Living Wage (NLW) introduced by the Government recently would be a statutory minimum for anyone over 25 years of age. The NLW would be lower than the Living Wage and Members would need to consider whether its policy would continue to reflect the Living Wage or match the NLW.
Councillor D Mortimer left the meeting at 10.30 a.m. before the recommendation was made and voted on.
That the National Living Wage (NLW) be adopted as the minimum level of
pay for MBC staff.
Voting: For: 9 Against: 1 Abstentions: 0
Members expressed concern that they could not fully consider the other recommendations until further information had been provided by the Head of HR Shared Service. It was therefore proposed that the meeting be adjourned until a revised report could be produced for Members further consideration.
It was proposed by Councillor Mrs Gooch and seconded by Councillor Cox that the meeting stand adjourned until the Head of HR Shared Service provided further information.
Voting: For: 10 Against: 0 Abstentions: 0
23. Duration of Meeting
9.00 a.m. to 11.40 a.m.