Policy and Resources Committee

26 July 2016

Is the final decision on the recommendations in this report to be made at this meeting?



Strategic Plan Performance Update Quarter 1 2016/17


Final Decision-Maker

Policy and Resources Committee

Lead Head of Service

Angela Woodhouse, Head of Policy & Communications

Lead Officer and Report Author

Anna Collier, Policy & Information Manager and Alex Munden, Performance Officer



Wards affected




This report makes the following recommendations to this Committee:

1.   Note the summary of performance for Quarter 1 of 2016/17 for Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and corporate strategies and plans.

2.   Note where complete data is not currently available.†††

3.   Note the performance of Key Performance Indicators from Quarter 4 of 2015/16 for which indicators were not available at Policy & Resources Committee on 27 April 2016.



This report relates to the following corporate priorities:

         Keeping Maidstone Borough an attractive place for all

         Securing a successful economy for Maidstone Borough

Key Performance Indicators monitor the delivery of the Councilís Corporate Priorities as set out in the Strategic Plan 2015-20. The Performance Plan provides progress against the Councilís key strategies which deliver the Councilís corporate priorities.






Wider/Corporate Leadership Team

19 July 2016

Policy & Resources Committee

27 July 2016

Strategic Plan Performance Update Quarter 1 2016/17





1.1     Policy and Resources Committee is asked to review the progress of key strategies, plans, and performance indicators that support the delivery of the Strategic Plan 2015-2020.


1.2     As agreed by Policy & Resources Committee on 27 April 2016 data has been provided where it was not available for the End of Year Performance Plan.





2.1     Having a comprehensive set of actions and performance indicators ensures that the Council delivers against the priorities and actions set in the Strategic Plan.


2.2     The Strategic Plan now has 33 Key Performance Indicators that were agreed by Committee in April 2016. This is in addition to the existing 14 plan and strategy updates.


2.3     Performance indicators are judged in two ways; firstly on whether performance has improved, sustained or declined, compared to the same period in the previous year. This is known as direction. Where there is no previous data, no assessment of direction can be made.


2.4     The second way is to look at whether an indicator has achieved the target set and is known as PI status. If an indicator has achieved or exceeded the annual target they are rated green. If the target has been missed but is within 10% of the target it will be rated amber and if the target has been missed by more than 10% it will be rated red.


2.5     Some indicators will show an asterisk (*) after the figure, these are provisional values that are awaiting confirmation. Data for some of the indicators were not available at the time of reporting in these cases a date has been provided of when the information is expected.


2.6     Contextual indicators are not targeted but are given a direction. Indicators that are not due for reporting or where there is delay in data collection are not rated against targets or given a direction.





3.1     There are 33 key performance indicators (KPIs) which were developed with Heads of Service and unit managers, and agreed by Policy & Resources Committee for 2016/17.†


3.2     Overall, 57% (8) KPIs reported this quarter achieved their annual target for quarter 1, and for 36% of indicators, performance improved compared to the same quarter last year.




4.      RAG Rating












Strategic Actions



















†††††††† Data not available


         Percentage of household waste sent for reuse, recycling, or composting

         Percentage of relevant land and highways that is assessed as having deposits of litter that fall below an acceptable level

         Percentage of relevant land and highways that is assessed as having deposits of detritus that fall below an acceptable level

         Income derived from environment and public realm projects.

         Percentage of Parishes satisfied with the level of engagement


4.2     Kent County Council provides recycling and composting data. Currently, only the data for April has been provided. Complete data for Quarter 1 will be provided as an update to Policy & Resources for the Quarter 2 performance plan update in October.


4.3     The acceptable levels of litter and detritus indicators require data that is collected on a four monthly period. This indicator will be included for the remaining three quarters of 2016/17, and will be reported two months in arrears due to the nature of data collection.


4.4     Problems with the accounts for environment and public realm projects mean that an accurate figure for income cannot be produced. Separate cost codes are being created to make this easier to report on in the future. The Head of Environment and Public Realm is currently working with the accountant so that this data can be provided from quarter 2 onwards.


4.5     Draft results for Parish satisfaction with engagement will be available for the Performance Plan Quarter 2 update to Policy & Resources Committee. The survey to Parish Councillors will close on the 30 September 2016, with all consultation results being ready by 7 October 2016.




5.       Performance by Priority


Priority 1: Keeping Maidstone Borough an attractive place for all


5.1     Recycling data for April shows an increase against the same month in 2015/16, but a lack of data means a quarterly comparison is not possible. Mixed recycling was at a higher level for April, although levels of composting were lower for the same month. The recycling and composting rate for April is 48.7%.


5.2     There has been a better than expected reduction in fly-tipping within the quarter with 199 incidences. This is a third less than was expected for the quarter. †The drop in number of fly-tips compared to the target is likely to be due to seasonal shifts. This will become clearer after quarter 3.


5.3     No safeguarding practitioners were trained in Quarter 1. The Safeguarding Policy will be presented to Communities, Housing & Environment Committee in September. Delivery of training for practitioners will increase if the policy is implemented.†


5.4     Crime has increased by 16.0% in the first quarter compared to the same quarter for 2015/16. Violent crime in the Borough has increased by almost 25%. It is normal for a quarter of violent crime to be domestic abuse. An increase in domestic abuse is positive as it means more victims are coming forward. This also shows confidence in the police and other agencies in supporting and protecting domestic abuse victims.


5.5     The number of Disabled Facilities Grants (DFGs) completed in quarter 1 is below target, with nine less than estimated for completion† however this is the highest number of DFGs that have been completed in the first quarter since 2013. Performance this quarter is due to a high number of cases being finished by builders in quarter 4 to achieve their level of spend against budget before the end of the financial year.


5.6     User satisfaction at the Leisure Centre has shown a decrease in comparison to the same period in 2015/16. The main negative aspects from survey responses relate to a period when the boiler failed at the Leisure Centre, and the pool temperature dropped. Comments also mention poor service in the cafť area, particular the slow service during peak times, and tables not being clear. The Leisure Centre management team are confident that they can address these issues and improve satisfaction. The situation will be closely monitored by the Maidstone Culture and Leisure Monitoring Officer.


5.7     The number of people completing a course at the leisure centre this quarter is 33.


Priority 1: Keeping Maidstone an attractive place for all & Priority 2: Securing a successful economy for Maidstone Borough


5.8     Footfall at the Museum and Visitor Information Centre has not achieved the quarterly target. It is possible that this was caused by a very early Easter with a number of schools having holidays in March. Footfall was 16,764 in quarter 1 compared to 19,039 for the same period in 2015/16. In June, Dino Day was particularly popular and attracted nearly 2000 visits in a single day. However, this was not enough to make up for the shortfall observed in April and May.


5.9     In quarter 1, 2,496 children took part in educational activities supported by the Museum. As well as events that are held at the museum, the Learning Team also carry out sessions and schools using objects from the museumís collection. These sessions cover a number of topics including history, art, and natural science. This indicator will includes children who are directly involved in activities relating to the objects that are loaned to the school.


5.10 Footfall on the High Street for Quarter 1 is around 300,000 above the quarterly target, but numbers are lower than observed in quarter 1 2015/16. Despite this, weekly data is showing an upward trend, similar to that which occurred last year. It is expected that the annual target will be met.


5.11 The net contribution from commercial activities was £63,500 for the quarter. The target was £139,900 for this quarter, a performance comment was not provided to explain the shortfall in income. The methodology for this indicator may need to be reviewed going forward, so it is clear what income is included.


Priority 2: Securing a successful economy for Maidstone Borough


5.12 The number of school journeys undertaken without a car is a new KPI. The data demonstrates a large number of pupils using sustainable ways of travelling to school. This number is lower than was recorded in quarter 1 of 2015/16, however due to the way that the data is collected it is likely some is provided late causing the number to increase over time.

5.13 The percentage of people claiming an out of work benefit has risen by 0.1% since the same period last year, an increase of 20 people. Please note the figures for June have not yet been released. This indicator previously referred to those claiming Job Seekers Allowance, but is now referred to as Ďout of work benefití as it includes Universal Credit claimants.


5.14 The data for the percentage of 16 to 18 year olds not in employment, education, or training (NEETs) is for April and May only as June data has not been released. Maidstone has a NEET proportion of 5.43%, and is currently ranked fifth out of the 12 Kent authorities. Sevenoaks has the lowest figure with 4.07%, while Swale has the highest with 7.49%.


5.15 The number of business and start-ups that have received information, advice, and guidance from the Business Terrace is above target by 10. 210 unique businesses have received support from different resources provided by the Business Terrace. These include information from the website, advice from seminars and workshops, and guidance from onsite advisers and specialists.


5.16 The number of affordable homes delivered has exceeded its target of 45. 73 affordable homes were delivered in the first quarter, 19 more than the same quarter for 2015/16. There are more than 300 affordable units forecast for completion this year, many sites have progressed quicker than anticipated. It is expected the annual target for this indicator will be met if these developments are on schedule.


5.17 The number of households that were housed through the housing register has also exceeded its target. This was helped by a significant amount of affordable new builds being completed. It is expected that the annual target will be achieved due to the number of affordable homes that are forecast throughout the year. This provides a supply of affordable housing to those on the housing register.


5.18 Development Management processed 100% of major applications within the agreed timescale for Quarter 1. 19 applications were determined in the quarter, with each of these being within 13 weeks, or within the agreed timescale with the developer. Extensions of time are negotiated on a significant proportion of major applications due to the complexities, and negotiations on Section 106 agreements. A protocol is being put in place to commit Legal Services and Development Management to producing decisions within a set timeframe. This should speed up processing of major applications and reduce the length of extensions.


2015/16 End of year data


6.        This is data that was not available at the time of publishing the 2015/16 End of Year performance plan.


6.1     Percentage of household waste sent for reuse, recycling or composting saw a recycling rate of 43.51% for Quarter 4 of 2015/16. The tonnage collected is higher than Quarter 4 in 13/14 and 14/15. As household waste tonnage also increase for this period, the percentage of recycling was lower, even though more material was recycled.


6.2     The percentage of vacant retail units in the town centre was 10.6% for 2015/16. This is the highest percentage of vacant units since 2010/11. This is higher than the South East vacancy rate (7.4%) and the National vacancy rate of (9.6%).


6.3     Net additional homes provided: This information could not be provided until the annual survey and data analysis took place. Analysis the data showed that 521 homes were delivered against a target of 500. This is around 20% more homes than were delivered in 2013/14 and 2014/15.




7.   Briefings will be held with Chairs and Vice Chairs on performance information relevant to their service committee






8.1     It is recommended that progress made against strategies and performance indicators. Where recommendations are made to improve or sustain performance these should also be noted.


8.2     The Council could choose not to monitor the Strategic Plan and/or make alternative performance management arrangements, such as the frequency of reporting. This is not recommended as it could lead to action not being taken against performance during the year, and the Council failing to deliver its priorities.









Impact on Corporate Priorities

The key performance

indicators and strategic

actions are part of the

Councilís overarching

Strategic Plan 2015-20 and

play an important role in the

achievement of corporate


They also cover a wide range

of services and priority

areas, for example waste and recycling.

Angela Woodhouse, Head of Policy & Information

Risk Management

The production of robust

performance reports ensures

that the view of the Councilís

approach to the management

of risk and use of resources

is not undermined and allows

early action to be taken in

order to mitigate the risk of

not achieving targets and outcomes.

Angela Woodhouse, Head of Policy & Communications


Performance indicators and

targets are closely linked to

the allocation of resources

and determining good value

for money. The financial

implications of any proposed

changes are also identified

and taken into account in the

Councilís Medium Term Financial Plan and associated

annual budget setting

process. Performance issues

are highlighted as part of the

budget monitoring reporting


Section 151 Officer


Having a clear set of targets enables staff outcomes/objectives to be set and effective action plans to be put in place.

Angela Woodhouse, Head of Policy and Communications


None identified.

Legal Team

Equality Impact Needs Assessment

None identified.

Policy & Information Officer

Environmental/Sustainable Development

None identified.

Policy and Information Manager

Community Safety

None identified.

Policy and Information Manager

Human Rights Act

None identified.

Policy and Information Manager


None identified.

Policy and Information Manager

Asset Management

None identified.

Policy and Information Manager




The following documents are to be published with this report and form part of the report:

         Appendix I: Strategic Plan Performance Update Q1 2016/17