Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall, High Street, Maidstone. View directions

Contact: Tessa Mallett  01622 602524

No. Item


The Committee to consider whether all items on the agenda should be web-cast


RESOLVED: That all items on the agenda be webcast.





Apologies were noted from Councillors Mrs Parvin and Cllr B Watson.



Notification of Substitute Members


Councillor Vizzard was present as a substitute for Councillor B Watson.



Notification of Visiting Members


Councillors Daley and Grigg were present as visiting members for item 8 on the agenda: Review of Maternity Services in Maidstone Borough.



Disclosures by Members and Officers


There were no disclosures by members or officers.



To consider whether any items should be taken in private because of the possible disclosure of exempt information


RESOLVED: That all items be taken in public as proposed.



Minutes of the meeting held on 11 November 2014 pdf icon PDF 84 KB

Additional documents:


RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting held on 11 November be approved as a correct record and signed, subject to ensuring Janet Greenroyd’s name is spelt correctly on page 7.



Review of Maternity Services in Maidstone Borough pdf icon PDF 41 KB

An update on Maternity Services for Maidstone Borough residents since the services were moved to Pembury Hospital, Tunbridge Wells, in 2010.


Interviews with:


·  Dr Bob Bowes, Chair of West Kent Health and Wellbeing Board;

·  Councillor Susan Grigg, Maidstone Borough Council (whose suggestion it was to review Maternity services);

·  Maternity service users since the move to Pembury Hospital.

Additional documents:


Before this item was taken, the Chairman read out a point of clarification on Maternity Services in Maidstone. The Chairman stated that publicity that had been sent out for this item, as well as the covering report for this item, which had stated that ‘Maternity Services have moved from Maidstone’. This was not the case- what the publicity and covering report should have stated was that Maternity Services at Maidstone Hospital had changed from a Consultant led service to a Midwife led service.


The Chairman read out a statement from Helen Grant, the MP for Maidstone and the Weald, concerning this item. The statement said that at the time of the consultation on the proposals local GPs wanted to keep consultant led services at Maidstone. However wider regional support for the proposals won local opposition in Maidstone. Mrs Grant asked the committee to seek a response to two questions: whether all stakeholders were happy maternity services at both Pembury and Maidstone Hospitals were adequate and safe for Maidstone mothers and babies; and, whether there had been any incidents over the past three years that may suggest a need to look at the current configuration in more detail.


Councillor Grigg was asked to speak on this topic as it had been her suggestion to conduct this review.


Cllr Grigg explained she had suggested this topic as one of her residents had had a bad experience at in Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Hospitals. Cllr Grigg explained she thought it might be a good idea to see whether there were any other reports of this happening or if it was a one off case.


Dr Bob Bowes, Chair of West Kent Health and Wellbeing Board, was invited to speak on this item. Dr Bowes made a presentation to the committee covering the following points:

·  At the time of the suggested changes to services, around 97% of local GPs had concerns about the changes;

·  However statistical analysis had shown a reduction in adverse outcomes in deliveries since the service changed;

·  Dr Bowes had asked GP colleagues who were on the Clinical Commissioning Group whether they had heard of any negative experiences from their patients. Dr Bowes explained only one GP had noted a negative experience of the service.  This was regarding a mother who had given birth in an ambulance. However it was noted the mother did not experience any adverse outcomes as a result;

·  Dr Bowes explained to the committee whilst there was concern in Maidstone regarding the need to travel to Tunbridge Wells to access a consultant led service; those in Tunbridge Wells who needed to access the midwife led service in Maidstone experienced similar travel issues;

·  Dr Bowes informed the committee that one of the assessments of NHS services, the ‘friends and family’ test, where patients were asked whether they would recommend the service to their friends and family. Dr Bowes suggested the committee asked for the results of this assessment for the maternity service from Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS  ...  view the full minutes text for item 56.


Review of Street Cleansing Service pdf icon PDF 41 KB

An interview with Jennifer Shepherd, Waste and Street Scene Manager, Environmental Services.

Additional documents:


Jennifer Shepherd, Waste and Street Scene Manager, and Gary Stevenson, Shared Head of Environment and Street Scene were invited to speak on this item.


Mrs Shepherd gave a presentation to the committee covering the following points:

·  The aims of the new street cleansing service were:

o  Greater transparency;

o  A service that reflected the needs of the borough;

o  Increased attention to detail; and

o  Reducing costs from 2016.

·  The review compared different ways of delivering the street cleansing service, including private sector and in house teams and mechanical and manual methods;

·  Every street in the borough was assessed to determine its cleansing needs;

·  A review of productivity levels in the cleansing teams showed lower productivity than was expected. This was not down to the work of the cleansing teams but due to the systems and structures being used. For example, the splitting of the borough into two zones had hindered flexibility.

·  The review found the service relied on a high levels of overtime to deliver core functions.


In response to this review, the following changes were being implemented, in consultation with the workforce:

·  More manual cleansing, instead of mechanised cleansing. Manual cleansing was better for achieving greater attention to detail.

·  Moving from area based cleansing to team based cleansing.

·  Formation of a ‘hit squad’ to cleanse areas that required urgent attention. This team could be sent out via an app, and members of the public could ‘tag’ areas online that needed urgent attention.


In response to a question from the committee, Mrs Shepherd stated the last review of street cleansing took place in 2010. This review led to the area based cleansing system in place at this time.


The committee were interested to know why shopping areas seemed to receive a lot of attention from cleansing teams, as this ought to be the responsibility of shops. Mrs Shepherd responded that the approaches to shopping areas were high footfall areas, where high levels of waste gathered.


The committee asked Mrs Shepherd for a copy of the cleansing schedule. Mrs Shepherd explained this not available yet, as workforce engagement had not yet taken place on the new proposals. It was important to engage with staff as they had the expert knowledge on what would work well on the ground. Once the new schedule had been finalised, it would be made publicly available on the internet.


The committee enquired whether the proposals would lead to an increase in the number of staff employed on cleansing. Mrs Shepherd informed the committee that the proposals within the review were focused on using existing resources better, rather than taking on new staff. Mrs Shepherd made it very clear that cleansing staff were committed to the job and hard working, however the systems in place could make them inefficient. For example, through long journey times between jobs.


A member of the committee asked what delegation was given to parishes for cleansing in their areas. Mrs Shepherd responded that some work was carried out in collaboration  ...  view the full minutes text for item 57.


Maidstone Families Matter update - report only pdf icon PDF 41 KB

Update report for information only.

Additional documents:


RESOLVED: That the committee noted the report.



Financial capability update - report only pdf icon PDF 41 KB

Update report for information only.

Additional documents:


The committee noted that Citizens Advice Bureaux (CAB) was not mentioned as one of the partners in the Financial Capability Partnership in Miss Kershaw’s report. The committee requested that Miss Kershaw provide clarification over whether CAB were involved in the Financial Capability Partnership.


RESOLVED:  That the committee noted the report.



Future Work Programme and SCRAIP update report pdf icon PDF 42 KB

Additional documents:


The Chairman introduced the Future Work Programme and SCRAIP update to the committee.


The following changes had taken place to the Future Work Programme since the last meeting:

·  Impact of welfare reforms- moved from the 9 December 2014 to 14 April 2015 as the data was not available to complete the report;

·  Private Rented Sector Update- moved from 13 January 2015 to 14 April 2015 as central government requirements had not yet been published;

·  A report on the proposed model to gather data for the Loneliness and Isolation in the over 65s of Maidstone borough be presented at the meeting of 13 January 2015; and

·  A report on bereavement services in Maidstone borough is to be presented at the meeting of 13 January 2015.


All SCRAIPs that were due for the meeting had been responded to.


RESOLVED: That the Head of Housing and Community Services prioritises the cost/benefit analysis of the night time economy so that it is available for the next Crime and Disorder Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting on 10 March 2015.



Duration of Meeting


18:35 to 19:55