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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 4, Town Hall, Upper Street, N1 2UD. View directions

Contact: Peter Moore 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Councillors O’Halloran, Klute, Doolan, Chowdhury, Gallagher and Clarke-Perry


Declaration of Substitute Members




Declarations of Interest

Declarations of interest

 If you have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest* in an item of business:

§  if it is not yet on the council’s register, you must declare both the existence and details of it at the start of the meeting or when it becomes apparent;

§  you may choose to declare a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest that is already in the register in the interests of openness and transparency. 

In both the above cases, you must leave the room without participating in discussion of the item.


If you have a personal interest in an item of business and you intend to speak or vote on the item you must declare both the existence and details of it at the start of the meeting or when it becomes apparent but you may participate in the discussion and vote on the item.


*(a) Employment, etc - Any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.

(b)  Sponsorship - Any payment or other financial benefit in respect of your expenses in carrying out duties as a member, or of your election; including from a trade union.

(c) Contracts - Any current contract for goods, services or works, between you or your partner (or a body in which one of you has a beneficial interest) and the council.

(d) Land - Any beneficial interest in land which is within the council’s area.

(e) Licences- Any licence to occupy land in the council’s area for a month or longer.

(f)   Corporate tenancies - Any tenancy between the council and a body in which you or your partner have a beneficial interest.

 (g) Securities - Any beneficial interest in securities of a body which has a place of business or land in the council’s area, if the total nominal value of the securities exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body or of any one class of its issued share capital. 


This applies to all members present at the meeting.






To approve minutes of previous meeting pdf icon PDF 148 KB



That, subject to the following amendment – minute 399 – the insertion of an additional recommendation as follows-


That the Borough Commander be requested to inform Members of the Committee of the number of pursuits that Police have carried out in relation to moped thefts, how many times requests for moped chases have been received and the number of pursuits that have taken place following these requests


 the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 2 November 2017 be confirmed and the Chair be authorised to sign them


Matters Arising from the minutes




Public Questions


The Chair outlined the procedure for Public questions and filming and recording at meetings


Chair's Report




ASB Update pdf icon PDF 257 KB


Councillor Andy Hull, Executive Member Finance, Performance and Community Safety was present together with Jan Hart, Service Director Public Protection and Andrew March, Housing ASB. Jan Hart and Andrew March made a presentation to the Committee, a copy of which in interleaved.


During consideration of the report the following main points were made –


·         Jan Hart outlined the operation of the ASB service, including the out of hours service

·         There has been a continued increase in ASB calls to the Council, while calls to the Police decrease

·         The number of repeat callers has increased also and a new process to tackle repeat callers has now been introduced

·         The Community MARAC is continuing to be successful in dealing with vulnerable victims, with full partnership support

·         There is new Clinical Psychologist in post to help understand the drivers behind the complex ASB cases

·         There is a new approach to tackling street population issues – there had been a 300% increase and work is taking place as to how this could best be managed

·         In response to a statement from a Member It was noted that often complaints arose from residents about the ASB service, as ASB issue resolution is often passed on to other organisations where the Council did not have direct involvement. However, there were now 2 staff being employed in order to progress complaints and it was hoped this would improve the situation

·         There were 3 area based housing teams serving 29.000 council tenant and leasehold tenancies

·         It was noted that evictions had only taken place in 0.08% of cases of ASB reported

·         A Member referred to the fact that tenants were suffering from ASB as a result of criminality, such as drug taking and yet it appeared there is a lengthy process for action to be taken and eviction took place in a relatively small number of cases. It was stated that notice to seek possession is sought in about 17% of cases, however there were often measures put in place that did not lead to eviction

·         Members were also informed that mental health issues often played a part in complaints of ASB, and that such issues had to be dealt with sensitively, with the involvement of appropriate agencies, where necessary

·         In response to a question it was stated that the Council had decided to adopt introductory tenancies rather than opting for demoted tenancies

·         Reference was made to the need to ensure that the new housing database is able to contain more ‘smart’ information such as GPS and ASB hotspots and link in tenants’ history. It was stated that a system was being investigated whereby Public Protection and Housing could share information so that data could be combined

·         Discussion took place as to problems where there were vulnerable tenants and that often this took time to resolve satisfactorily

·         There were also difficulties with cases where a tenant moves between housing and supported housing and work took place with the NHS, Children’s Services and other partners in these instances

·         It  ...  view the full minutes text for item 410.


Presentation Executive Member Finance, Performance and Community Safety - Verbal pdf icon PDF 142 KB


Councillor Andy Hull, Executive Member Finance, Performance and Community Safety was present and made a presentation to the Committee, a copy of which is interleaved.


During discussion the following main points were made –


·         Members noted the difficult challenges relating to criminal activity in the borough in relation to moped theft, mobile phone theft, drugs and knife crime and that despite efforts made this is not reducing significantly enough

·         Members noted the increase in crime in Junction/St.Georges wards, however a number of arrests had been made and it was hoped that crime would reduce

·         The Executive Member expressed the view that it should be recognised however that the significant reduction in Police numbers in the borough has had an impact on the rise in crime

·         It was noted that the Council’s early intervention strategy is thought to be the best way to reduce criminality in the longer term

·         The Council has also been focusing on work to reduce hate crime, and whilst the Police were treating this more seriously the detection rates for such crimes were too low

·         Work is also going on in relation to violence against women and girls and child sexual exploitation and that a ‘drop in’ shop is being established.

·         Reference was made to Police tweeting on crime and that this may exacerbate Public concern in some cases

·         In response to a question it was stated that there were some established gangs in the borough, however there were now individuals becoming involved in crime that had previously not been known to the Police. A great deal of work is being done to divert young people away from crime in terms of youth provision and work to prevent girls being involved in gangs and in relation to child sexual exploitation

·         The integrated gangs team is working well and works with siblings of older gang members

·         Gangs crossed borough borders and work is taking place with neighbouring boroughs in this regard

·         In terms of the 2018/19 budget the Council were finding it harder each year to prepare a balanced budget, in view of the significant reduction in Government funding, however it is anticipated a balanced budget would be set despite having to save over £30 million. There is huge pressure on the Children’s Serviced budget and it is felt that this will continue

·         It was noted that Universal Credit is being rolled out by the Government for Islington in June 2018, and not in March 2018, as planned, however it will still  present significant challenges for residents and the Council

·         Reference was made to the Council’s IT and security systems and whether Members could be assured that these are secure. Councillor Hull stated that a great deal of work has taken place on security of data, and a lot of training now took place for staff, however no system can be totally secure and sometimes ‘human error’ could occur

·         In response to a question about the popularity of the Town Hall as a wedding venue, Councillor Hull  ...  view the full minutes text for item 411.


Quarters 1/2 Performance update pdf icon PDF 401 KB


This item was dealt with in conjunction with minute         above


Use of Agency Staff pdf icon PDF 622 KB


Councillor Andy Hull, Executive Member Finance, Performance and Community Safety was present, together with Liz Haynes, Director of Human Resources.


During consideration of the report the following main points were made –


·         Members were of the view that reports should still continue to come to Committee as per the current scheduling and that the changing of provider also made this imperative

·         Members were informed that Islington compared well to other boroughs on agency staff employment and spend and that in addition Islington had a higher proportion of directly delivered services than most other boroughs

·         There were a number of measures being taken to further reduce agency staff and there had been a reduction in spend over the previous 12 months

·         As Islington delivers responsive services there will always be a need for agency staff and the Director of Human Resources stated that whilst efforts are being made she felt that it would be difficult to reduce agency staff employment much further

·         A Member expressed concern that there is still concern amongst Committee Members about the level of agency staff employment and the length of time some staff are employed. It was added that if an agency worker is employed for over 6 months then they should be offered full time employment. The Director of Human Resources stated that agency staff were in many cases offered permanent employment, but for a number of reasons were not willing to take this offer up

·         Discussion took place as to the number of social work agency staff employed and that social work recruitment was a problem across London, however Islington had been commended by OFSTED on the level of directly employed children’s social workers

·         Reference was also made to the fact that whilst some agency staff seemed to have had long term assignments, they may have been engaged to do various jobs if their work had proven to be good, or only employed for specific times a year

·         Councillor Hull informed Members that Members of PPS Committee had provided a constant challenge to the Executive and officers to reduce agency spend and he welcomed this. He added that he believed that this challenge had engendered a change in attitude and that this is now seen as a political priority and there is a focus on reducing employment of agency staff, whilst recognising that this will always be necessary in some instances




That the information in the report be noted and Members wish to continue receiving such reports three times per year although reports could be simplified if possible, whilst still providing relevant information to the Committee


Monitoring report




That the report be noted