27th July 2021 HR Sub-Committee Minutes – Draft

Minutes of the meeting held on 27th July 2021 at 6pm in the Old Courthouse.

Present: Cllr Peter Clayton (Chairman) with Cllrs Alan Matthews, Mike Facey, Dawn Carey and Chris Allen

Sam Winter (Town Clerk) was in attendance.

21/21/HR       Apologies

                        Cllr P Harvey, S Harvey, B Hancock.

22/21/HR       Declarations of Interest in items on this agenda & dispensations granted

                        None

23/21/HR       Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the Human Resources meeting held on 6th April 2021 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

Motions for note/resolution

24/21/HR       To receive an update on cleaning at the courthouse.

The meeting heard that a new cleaning contract is underway for twelve months with a professional company who has shown a sound adherence to COSHH & H&S practices and higher standards re: Covid 19.

25/21/HR       To receive an update on matters relating to staff health & safety across all sites

The meeting heard that despite most legal restrictions having been lifted, the TC is still under a duty to carry out and follow appropriate risk assessments. The meeting noted specific health needs of individual staff and the updated CV19 risk assessments across all sites since 19/07/21, with staff feedback incorporated (hard copies provided to committee chairman & town council chairman). Meetings guidance for chairmen has been updated in line with the risk assessment and circulated, along with a revised statement on notices for public meetings. 

26/21/HR       To consider arrangements for provision of a face to face public reception at the council offices. 

The meeting received the Govt’s expectation that moving staff back to the office should be gradual over the summer, with Cornavirus precautions in place. The meeting heard that all staff have started to return to working from the relevant premises’ offices, under appropriate risk assessments, and it considered matters of equalities and staff absence.

It was acknowledged that there are currently no reception/admin support staff at the courthouse and this work is being covered by officers who have limited capacity for additional work, along with increasing TOIL levels. The meeting considered the volume and reasons for public enquiries and noted the increasing use of email to make contact. 

It was unanimously resolved that the public facing reception will not operate for ‘drop-in’ visitors until staffing levels are increased after the summer, and that officers will continue hybrid working as already organised internally according to service need and in adherence to equality considerations. 

27/21/HR       To agree on the recruitment of administrative/ customer services posts and agree any interview arrangements.

The meeting considered the courthouse recruitment decisions to date, along with staffing levels, staffing budget and reserves as projected over three years. Discussion included the changes to work levels that might be expected at potential alternative premises and under local government reorganisation.

It was unanimously resolved that the office should proceed with the recruitment of 2 part-time customer services officers at SCP7-10 and that staff workload and staffing levels will be kept under review.

28/21/HR       To receive an update on the recruitment of a comms & marketing officer.

The meeting heard from interviewing councillors, Cllr Clayton and Carey, who updated the meeting on the appointment of a Comms & Marketing Officer to start work in September. Matters of contract, including hours and flexibility were discussed and agreed.

29/21/HR       To receive the town clerk’s upcoming leave dates.

The dates were received and it was agreed that the town clerk will circulate the dates by email to the sub-committee for diaries.

30/21/HR       The next meeting of this sub-committee is to be agreed.

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