Agenda and minutes

Policy Overview Committee
Tuesday 19 September 2017 7.00 pm

Venue: B12

Contact: Email: memberservices@dartford.gov.uk 

Items
Note No. Item

13.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors P F Coleman, R M Currans, S R Jarnell, J Jones, M B Kelly, R Lees and D Page.

14.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the terms(s) of the Grant of Dispensation (if any) by the Audit Board or Managing Director.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

15.

Confirmation of the minutes of the Policy Overview meeting held on 13 June 2017 pdf icon PDF 107 KB

Minutes:

            RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the Policy Overview Committee held on 13 June 2017 be confirmed.

16.

Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.

17.

To consider references from other Committees (if any)

Minutes:

There were no references from other Committees.

18.

Regulation 9 Notice pdf icon PDF 59 KB

To consider any issues arising from the Regulation 9 Notice for the period 15 August 2017 to 31 December 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the contents of the Regulation 9 Notice, for the period 15 August 2017 to 30 December 2017, be noted.

SD (IS)

19.

Action Points Arising from the Policy Overview Committee Meeting held on 13 June 2017 pdf icon PDF 53 KB

To note the list of action points arising from the Policy Overview Committee meeting held on 13 June 2017

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report asked Members to note the list of action points arising from the Policy Overview Committee meeting held on 13 June 2017.

 

Health Funding in Dartford

 

Members referred to the letter that had been received from NHS England in response to funding concerns that had been raised by Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) when they had attended the Committee’s meeting in March 2017 and expressed disappointment at the fact that the funding allocation continued to be based on an inaccurate view of population growth. It was felt that the impact of the Ebbsfleet Garden City development, and the transient population required during construction of the proposed Entertainment Resort on the Swanscombe Peninsula, had not been given sufficient consideration and that, given the pressures already being placed on Darent Valley Hospital, together with the budgetary issues being experienced by the CCG, a fairer funding formula was required. It was also noted how the majority of growth in population over the whole Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley area would be focused in the borough of Dartford and that the funding distribution required to deliver the health services needed to meet the increased demand in Dartford should take account of this. It was therefore proposed that, having ascertained the local CCG and NHS Trust’s views on the response that had been received from NHS England, a further letter of concern be sent to NHS England.

 

Members also questioned whether the number of patients registered at each GP was the best way of ascertaining funding requirements given that some residents may not be registered with a GP.

 

The Chairman also asked that NHS England’s letter be copied to the MP so that he is aware of their response to the funding issues that have been raised.

 

Performance Indicator Monitoring

 

The Policy and Corporate Support Manager advised that, following approval of the Corporate Plan 2017 – 2020 at the General Assembly of the Council meeting held on 17 July 2017, work is now taking place with service managers to define targets for the revised set of performance indicators and that the first version of the revised ‘Corporate Plan – Performance Indicator’ report will be presented to the Committee’s December meeting.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.         That the list of action points arising from the Committee meetings held on 13 June 2017 be noted.

 

2.         That, having ascertained the local CCG and NHS Trust’s views on the response that had been provided by NHS England, a further letter of concern be sent to NHS England.

SD (IS)

20.

Pharmacy Services pdf icon PDF 51 KB

To receive a briefing on the services that can be provided by pharmacies.

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed Cheryl Clennett, Consultant Pharmacist for Kent Public Health, and John O’Sullivan, Kent Local Pharmaceutical Committee member, to the meeting, who were present to provide Members with a briefing on the forthcoming Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment and the services that are provided by pharmacies.

 

Ms Clennett began by explaining how a Kent Health and Wellbeing Board Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) is carried out every three years to review the pharmaceutical services that are being provided and assess whether more are required. She then noted how one was being carried out this year and anticipated that its findings would be published for consultation in October or November. She then said that Members views on its content would be welcomed.

 

Ms Clennett then showed how the age range of the population in the Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley Clinical Commissioning Group (DGS CCG) was distributed, and how it compared to the rest of Kent, and noted that the DGS area had a larger percentage of people in the 25 to 35 age range, and children under 10. She then showed how the population density was distributed in the DGS area but noted that none were above the highest recorded densities nationally. She then referred to population growth and noted how the greatest future growth would be seen in the 65 years and over category. She then showed the DGS area’s ethnic minority profile and, whilst noting how this can differ within an area, said that this needed to be taken into consideration because of the differing pharmaceutical needs of different cultures. She then noted how the PNA also took an area’s index of multiple deprivation into account and showed, at a ward level, the relative levels of deprivation that had been measured throughout the DGS area.

 

Ms Clennett then displayed maps showing how existing community pharmacies that provide 40 and 100 hours of service per week, together with those practices that are able to dispense, are currently distributed across the DGS area and in Dartford town centre. Members noted the low number of 100 hour community pharmacies shown and that Dartford town centre only had one. Ms Clennett replied that some supermarkets also provide a 100 hour service and explained that it was up to each pharmacy to decide whether to apply to provide a 100 hour service since they could not be directed to do so. Members also noted that there were no dispensing practices in Dartford town centre. Ms Clennett said that there were historic reasons for this and noted how Darent Valley Hospital was able to dispense.

 

Members then referred to the development that had taken place at The Bridge and the fact that attempts to establish a pharmacy in the area had so far failed which caused problems for those in the area who require access to the services that community pharmacies provide. Ms Clennett explained how NHS England decide whether a new pharmacy outlet is to be allowed and said that a figure of 1000 homes  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.

SD (ES)

21.

Air Quality Review pdf icon PDF 79 KB

This report presents an update on air quality and its implications for health, both locally, and set against the national context.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report presented an update on air quality and its implications for health, both locally, and set against the national context.

 

The Scientific Officer described how Environmental Health continued to maintain a large network of air quality monitoring sites across the Borough and that, although monitoring data from 2016 suggested that pollution levels had generally improved from those in the preceding year, levels remained high and above action levels at most monitored roadside sites. He then referred to an air quality health review that had been carried out in 2015 to try to identify any correlation between high levels of traffic congestion and poor health outcomes but said that the research proved inconclusive. He said that whilst there was an indicator that measures the fraction of mortality attributable to particulate air pollution, this data was only available for the district as a whole and that the only health based data available at ward level was for respiratory conditions including asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

 

The Scientific Officer then noted how air pollution was just one of many triggers that can worsen symptoms of asthma and COPD and that cigarette smoking, house dust, pollen etc. can have the same effect and, given that the health data doesn’t make distinctions between the triggers, it would not be advisable to suggest that a high prevalence of these conditions would be due to one overall single factor. He also advised that the data cannot account for the actual pollution that an individual would be exposed to as they may spend large amounts of the time working in areas with much higher or lower levels of pollution when compared to pollution levels where they live.

 

The Scientific Officer then said that, in July 2017, Defra had published a new national UK Air Quality Plan for the reduction of nitrogen dioxide and had only identified one road in Dartford (the A206 close to the border with Bexley) that was predicted to exceed the NO2 limit in 2017, and no roads by 2018 and noted how this seemed highly optimistic when compared to monitored data. He also confirmed that the A282 (Dartford Crossing approach road) had now been included and modelled for the baseline but was not predicted to exceed the defined NO2 limits.

 

The Scientific Officer then advised that the principle action that had been proposed in the draft action plan was to mandate local authorities to implement Clean Air Zones (CAZ), which essentially handed down responsibility for compliance with EU limit values to local authorities, and that as the UK Action Plan predicted that NO2 levels within Dartford would be reduced to a level below the actionable threshold by 2020, the Council is not required to undertaken additional assessments and is not compelled to consider the implementation of a CAZ.

 

The Scientific Officer then said that he was concerned that the modelling used for the production of the UK Action Plan significantly underestimated pollution levels across the Borough and had  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

SD (IS)

22.

Fairfield pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To inform the Committee about developments at the Fairfield site.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report provided Members with an update on proposed developments at the Fairfield site and outlined how future performance is to be measured.

 

The Policy and Corporate Support Manager described the actions being taken to address the issues that had arisen following the, greater than anticipated, success of the refurbished facility. He noted how Cabinet had agreed enhancements to the gym and car parking area, and would also be addressing concerns that had been raised in relation to the changing facilities. He said that the associated funding requirements had been agreed and that work was underway, although he noted that changes to the car parking arrangements would need planning approval before being progressed. He then referred to the detailed set of performance indicators that had been agreed with the operators of the facility and said that progress made against those indicators would be reported annually. He also highlighted how the facility was generating £40k worth of income for the Council per month.

 

Reference was then made to the monitoring of the newly defined performance indicators and it was asked whether they would show that the Council’s aims of promoting increased activity, improving residents’ health and wellbeing, and providing economic benefits for the Council, were being delivered. The Cabinet portfolio holder for leisure, who was present at the meeting, noted how the indicators enabled the increasing number of people who were making use of the facility to be tracked and welcomed the action that was being taken to address the capacity and privacy issues that had been raised. She also welcomed the income that was now being generated from the facility. The Policy and Corporate Support Manager then advised that the intention was to report on these detailed indicators on an annual basis but said that key ones could be reported quarterly if required. He also noted how those health and wellbeing related indicators defined in the Corporate Plan would continue to be reported to the Policy Overview Committee quarterly. He then described how the Cabinet portfolio holder for leisure met with officers on a monthly basis to review the performance of this leisure facility and others across the borough.

 

In response to a further question relating to figures that had been included in the scorecard and the way that the targets and timescales had been presented the Policy and Corporate Support Manager confirmed that the figures covered the facility’s first full financial year of operation and showed an overall 60% increase in usage with the gym currently running at full capacity and the pool running at 95% of capacity.

 

The Dartford Borough Residents’ Forum representative also noted how the pulmonary rehabilitation programme being run at Fairfield was improving the health and wellbeing of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) sufferers that she personally knew and said that she herself uses the pool twice a week.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the content of the report be noted.

SD (ES)

23.

Update on Housing and Planning Act 2016 pdf icon PDF 62 KB

This report provides information on the range of measures proposed in the Housing and Planning Act 2016 and, where relevant, the impact this may have on housing need in the borough.

Minutes:

The Housing and Planning Act 2016 enables government to implement the sale of high value council homes, provide starter homes, implement pay to stay and a number of other measures designed to promote home ownership, increase housebuilding and provide a ‘fairer’ system for the allocation and maintenance of social housing.

 

This report provided information on the range of measures proposed and, where relevant, the impact this may have on housing need in the borough.

 

Members noted how a number of the proposals that had originally been included in the Act had either been removed or amended to have a less significant impact. They did however highlight the potential negative impact that the sale of high value homes, and the extension of the ‘Right to Buy’ to Housing Associations, could have on the number of available homes for rent in the Borough.

 

It was also asked that the number of Housing Association homes that have been purchased through ‘Right to Buy’ be circulated to all Committee members.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.         That the content of the report be noted.

 

2.         That the number of Dartford Housing Association homes that have been purchased through ‘Right to Buy’ be ascertained and circulated to Committee members.

SD (IS)

24.

Policy Overview Committee Work Plan pdf icon PDF 54 KB

This report sets out the Policy Overview Committee’s work plan.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This report set out the Policy Overview Committee’s Work Plan.

 

Having referred to the areas that had been suggested for future consideration the Chairman, with the Committee’s approval, asked that an item on planning related parking standards be added to the March 2018 meeting agenda, and an item on fly-tipping and bulk waste collection be added to the June 2018 meeting agenda.

 

The Chairman also confirmed the following additions, which had been agreed during the consideration of previous agenda items:

 

  • Pharmacy Services – June 2018
  • Air Quality Review Update - June 2018

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the Work Plan, together with the minuted additions above, be noted.