25th February 2021 HR Sub-Committee – Minutes

Minutes of the meeting held on 25th February 2021 at 6:30pm by video conferencing.

Present: Cllr Peter Clayton (Chairman) with Cllrs Alan Matthews, Mike Facey, Dawn Carey, Phil Harvey and Sue Harvey

Sam Winter (Town Clerk) was in attendance.

01/21/HR       Apologies

                        None.

Cllr Hancock was absent.

02/21/HR       Declarations of Interest in items on this agenda & dispensations granted

                        None

03/21/HR       Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the Human Resources meeting held on 10th December 2021 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

Motions for note/resolution

04/21/HR       To approve the pensions discretion policy

The meeting considered the council’s options with regards flexible retirement of staff within the pension scheme. It was resolved to accept the proposals suggested by the RFO & town clerk and to make a recommendation that the Finances & Resources Committee adopts the policy.

05/21/HR       To note that the death benefit nomination form for staff and councillors is due to be circulated (there has been no change to the policy or benefit itself)

                                Noted.

06/21/HR       To note the required change to provide electronic staff payslips

The change was noted and it was acknowledged that the portal system is a more efficient and cost effective way of providing play slips.

07/21/HR       To note that this TC is registered as a disability confident employer and that the certification will be used on the website.
                        Noted.

08/21/HR       To receive a report on meetings management software and consider its use within the council to support efficiency and the aims of the Corporate Plan.

The meeting received a report on the implementation of the ibabs meetings management system and its proposed funding. It was recognised that the use of the ibabs system and devices was a forward-thinking way of levelling-up councillors’ access to paperwork. It was acknowledged, that whilst acting under public health guidance, the provision of hard copy paperwork should be avoided for both councillors and public. Future increased use of the large screen should apply to on-site meetings and any future issue of paper should be reduced to a minimum through provision to the public only, on request.   

The proposal to implement ibabs and provide councillors with (good sized) devices was welcomed by the sub-committee and it was unanimously resolved to agree the expenditure from the staffing budget and to recommend that the Town Council adopts a policy approach of extending the use of the ibabs system to all councillors.  

 09/21/HR      To receive an update on performance within teams.
Admin/ customer services team: The meeting received an update on staffing matters and heard that strategies for re-opening courthouse reception, based on recruitment under the agreed staffing budget, were under review for consideration by the sub-committee at a future meeting. Initial consideration was given to methods for making better use of engagement through social media and the sharing of good news stories.
Princess: The meeting received an update on staffing matters and acknowledged that the staff organisation at the Princess will imminently require review, including consideration of the tech role in order to meet improved performance, correct use of new equipment and legal requirements with regards health & safety.   
The position with regards potentially increased cleaning regimes in both of the council’s public buildings is undergoing review and the committee was requested to be mindful of the options and potential budgetary requirements, for later consideration.
The meeting heard that staff appraisals are either complete or scheduled.

It was proposed by Cllr Phil Harvey, seconded and unanimously resolved that, as a thank you to all staff who have worked “above & beyond” throughout the pandemic, each will be given an extra day’s leave to be taken in the next leave year.

10/21/HR       To receive an update on matters relating to staff health & safety

The meeting heard that the fire risk assessment of courthouse is complete with some works being actioned.
All staff have completed or are in the process of completing mandatory fire awareness training.
The CV19 risk assessments will be reviewed ahead of re-opening and at the present time, it is anticipated that the courthouse will not permit public to wait inside the building for appointments. It was noted that this approach will be kept under review according to PHE guidance.
Legionella assessments across all sites are complete with minor works required on all sites.
The Princess has undertaken required fire prevention works and fire risk assessment is scheduled for when the refurb works are complete, and before opening. New evacuation plans have been started and will be reviewed by the fire assessment. The emergency lights have been serviced and the equipment and soft furnishing have been fire-proofed. Covid 19 fogging equipment was purchased using CRF grant funding.
Staff H&S training is required and ongoing, with emphasis across higher risk areas (Princess and grounds) to ensure that the council risk assessments meet the necessary ‘competent person’ standard.  
Resources and events for good mental health continue to be shared across the staff.  
10/21/HR       To receive an update on the work review of the grounds team
The meeting received an update on progress with the allocation of town ranger roles.
The meeting welcomed the idea that environmentally friendly initiatives and modes of transport should be encouraged and provided. Further details will be provided by the office to the sub-committee.      
11/21/HR       To consider the position across the council for emergency call-out arrangements and agree a process, with focus on the Princess Theatre.
The meeting heard that the staff/cllr call-out list has been updated and training arranged.
12/21/HR       The next meeting of this sub-committee is to be agreed.

The Chairman closed the meeting at 19:30hrs.

The Mayor Councillor Mike Facey said “It was with sadness that Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge Town Council learnt of the death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.”

The flags in the towns of Burnham and Highbridge will be flown at half-mast during this time of national mourning.

Online Book of Condolence

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