London Fire Brigade

Agenda and minutes

Resources Committee
Thursday, 10 March 2016 10.30 am

Contact: John Johnson, Ground Floor, 169 Union Street, London, SE1 OLL; telephone: 30084; e-mail:  JOHN.JOHNSON@london-fire.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

1.

Chair pdf icon PDF 69 KB

Minutes:

Andrew Dismore AM, as Chair, opened the meeting and announced to the Committee that he was to resign from the position of Chair of the Committee with immediate effect, reading out a statement to explain his decision.  Mr Dismore AM then handed a letter of resignation to the Clerk to the Authority (see Appendix to these minutes) and vacated the chair.

 

The chair was taken by the Vice-Chair, Councillor Stephen Knight AM, for the duration of the meeting, in accordance with Standing Order 41.

2.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor David Cartwright QSFM, for whom Andrew Boff AM substituted.

3.

Disclosures of Interests and Dispensations

Clerk to Authority – Known details of membership of the GLA, other functional bodies and London Boroughs are attached as an Appendix to this agenda.  The Appendix does not remove the need for a Member to declare at the meeting an interest (whether or not listed in the Appendix) in any relevant item on the agenda paper and to state also the nature of that interest. 

Minutes:

Resolved – That the details of membership of the GLA, other functional bodies and London Boroughs, as attached as an appendix to the agenda, be noted.   No further disclosures were made.

 

4.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 96 KB

Minutes of the meeting held on 14 January 2016.

Minutes:

Resolved – That the minutes of the meeting of the Resources Committee held on 14 January 2016 be signed as a true record.

5.

Resources Committee - Summary List of Actions - FEP 2587 pdf icon PDF 102 KB

Clerk to the Authority – reporting on actions arising from previous meetings of the Committee.

 

Minutes:

Report by the Clerk to the Authority.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the ongoing and completed actions arising from previous meetings of the Committee, as set out in the report, be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Fiona Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

6.

2016/17 Budget - FEP 2574/A pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – presenting the budget for 2016/17 for the Committee’s recommendations to the Authority regarding final approval.

 

[For Authority also]

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report and supplementary report by the Commissioner and the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

After discussion and in accordance with Standing Order 55(a), the motion was made by Gareth Bacon AM – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes the decision taken by the Appointments and Urgency Committee at its meeting on 9 March 2016 to receive and adopt, on behalf of the Authority, the Mayor’s Direction 1617, issued by the Mayor on 1 March 2016 and relating to the 2016/17 Budget;

 

(2)          Recommends that the Authority agrees a 2016/17 revenue budget of £382.4m being made up of £12.7m funding from specific grants, and the associated funding to and from reserves, revenue estimates and establishment changes as set out in paragraphs 37 to 42 of the report (FEP 2574);

(3)          Recommends that the Authority agrees the capital programme with gross expenditure in 2016/17 of £39.5m as set out in Appendix 5 to (FEP 2574); and

(4)          Notes that the final decisions on the revenue and capital budgets for 2016/17 as informed by the Direction will be taken by the Authority at its meeting on 17 March.

The motion was seconded by Councillor Heaster. 

 

In response to questions from Members, the Clerk to the Authority clarified that the Appointments and Urgency Committee decision on 9 March was with regard to legal compliance with Mayor’s Direction 16/17.  It was still open to the Committee, in line with its terms of reference, to make recommendations to the full Authority in terms of the revenue and capital budgets for the 2016/17 year, although it would now need to take account of the Mayor’s Direction to the Authority in so doing.

 

The motion was put to the vote and there were 3 (three) votes for the motion and 0 (zero) votes against.  The motion was declared to be carried.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

7.

Financial Position as at the end of December 2015 (Quarter 3) - FEP 2575 pdf icon PDF 624 KB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services - presenting the financial position as at the end of December 2015 and providing information on financial performance against revenue and capital budgets.

 

 

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report and, along with the Director of Operations and the Head of Legal and Democratic Services, answered questions from Members. 

 

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services agreed to provide the Committee with a briefing detailing the latest position in recovering the outstanding ‘shut in lift’ debts from Sanctuary Housing and Homes for Islington (page 147 of the agenda referred).

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the report be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

8.

Treasury Management Strategy Statement for 2016/17 - FEP 2576/A pdf icon PDF 695 KB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – reporting in accordance with Financial Regulations.

 

[For Authority also]

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report and supplementary report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

The Committee heard from Luke Webster, Chief Investment Officer, GLA Group Investment Syndicate (GIS), and noted that, in line with Members’ wishes, the GIS was content to review its strategy in relation to ethical matters. The Committee also noted that no new investments were currently being made in the Gulf States.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the Authority be recommended to approve the contents of the Treasury Management Strategy Statement, subject to amendments being made to the investment strategy (Appendix 4) as set out in the supplementary report (FEP 2576A).

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

 

9.

Co-Responding Trial - Update on Progress - FEP 2577 pdf icon PDF 141 KB

Director of Operations – updating the Committee on the progress of the trial.

 

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Operations.

 

The Director of Operations introduced the report, updated the Committee on the trial so far, and answered questions from Members.

 

With the agreement of the Committee and, in accordance with Standing Order 15, Mr Gordon Fielden made representations to the Committee on behalf of the FBU.  The Commissioner and the Director of Operations responded to the points made by Mr Fielden regarding the issuing of stab vests, the provision of hepatitis B vaccinations, and matters relating to indemnity, and confirmed that all matters would be decided upon once the trial had finished and had been evaluated.

 

The Commissioner and the Director of Operations responded to further questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the Committee notes the details of the trial so far, with a view to officers producing a final report to the September 2016 meeting of the Committee, following the end of the trial.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

 

10.

Overarching Management Information Solution - Approval of Capital Project - FEP 2578 pdf icon PDF 482 KB

Head of Information and Communications Technology – seeking approval to an overarching management information solution .

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

 

The Head of ICT introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

After discussion, the motion was made by Darren Johnson AM – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes the report;

 

(2)          Notes Members’ concerns that the possibility of joint procurement and/or collaborative working on this project has not been sufficiently explored; and

 

(3)          Instructs officers to fully explore all possible options for sharing the cost of providing the Business Intelligence system with potential partners and to report back to the meeting of the Committee in July 2016 with recommendations to take the project forward.

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Heaster, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

 

 

11.

Emergency Services Mobile Communications Programme (ESMCP) - FEP 2579 pdf icon PDF 200 KB

Head of Information and Communications Technology – informing the Committee about the work of the ESMCP.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

 

The Head of ICT introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes the progress within the programme;

(2)          Notes the funding arrangements and methodology proposed by DCLG; and

(3)          Authorises the Commissioner to sign the programme document attached at Appendix 1.

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – That:

 

12.

Sustainable Development Strategy - FEP 2580 pdf icon PDF 422 KB

Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support – presenting the new draft sustainable development strategy.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support (PTSS).

 

The Head of PTSS introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

Members were of the view that the Authority needed to make more of its leadership role on sustainability issues across the GLA Group.

 

The Vice-Chair thanked officers for all their hard work in drawing up the Strategy.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the draft Sustainable Development Strategy provided in Appendix 4, including the revised Sustainable Development Framework, be approved.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

13.

Vehicles and Equipment Contract Update - FEP 2581 pdf icon PDF 339 KB

Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support providing an update on the operation of the Vehicles and Equipment contract with Babcock Critical Services Ltd.

 

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support (PTSS).

 

The Head of PTSS introduced the report and updated the Committee on recent performance.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes the report; and

 

(2)          Agrees that the Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support be authorised to accept the tender prices obtained under the contract terms with Babcock Critical Services Ltd   for the fleet and operational equipment  replacement  payments that fall due within 2016/17 at a total cost not exceeding  £3,390k as set out in paragraph 16 of the report.

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

14.

Attendance Update - FEP 2582 pdf icon PDF 818 KB

Head of Human Resource Management – providing the regular 6 monthly report.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Human Resource Management.

 

The Commissioner drew the Committee’s attention to the aspects of the report which dealt with outside employment and pre-arranged overtime.  The Brigade had been negotiating with the staff side on those matters, and there were, currently, a number of areas where there was no agreement.  As such, Members were advised that the correct forum for the continuation of those negotiations, with Member involvement, was the LFEPA Joint Council. 

 

The Clerk to the Authority confirmed the advice given by the Commissioner and stated that, in line with the constitution of the Joint Council, where there was a dispute and no agreement on ‘negotiable’ matters,  it was the Joint Council that became the body to which the matter should be referred.  It was the view of officers that it would therefore be outside the terms of reference of the Committee to take final decisions on those matters at this stage.

 

Andrew Dismore AM spoke on his tabled amendment to the officer recommendations.  He confirmed that he regarded the matter as within the Committee’s terms of reference, which included development of human resources strategies and policies. 

 

In response to questions from Members, the Head of Legal and Democratic Services advised against the Committee taking any final decision relating to the final clause in part (5) of the tabled Labour Group amendment  - “…(5) instructs officers to effect any amendments to the respective policies necessary to achieve these objectives by negotiation  with staff representative bodies and, in the meantime, to apply those policies in a manner which gives effect to these recommendations.”.  The amendment effectively instructed officers to apply amendments to policies for outside employment and pre-arranged overtime and to implement those amended policies with immediate effect.  It was open to the Committee to make recommendations on those issues, but the view of officers was that the correct forum to take forward those negotiable issues was the LFEPA Joint Council. 

 

The Clerk to the Authority confirmed that any decision taken on those issues would effectively need to be ‘subject to consideration by the Joint Council’ and that, as such, there could be no implementation of any of the issues prior to consideration by the Joint Council, because, although the Committee could determine human resources policies, the Authority had established the Joint Council as the body to which disputes on negotiable issues must be referred.

 

With the agreement of the Committee and, in accordance with Standing Order 15, Mr Gordon Fielden (FBU) made representations to the Committee on behalf of the Staff Side, and expressed disagreement with the procedural advice given by officers (as recorded above). 

 

At 12.15pm, and after further discussion, the Vice-Chair adjourned the meeting for 5 minutes.

 

The meeting resumed at 12.20pm.

 

In accordance with Standing order 46, the Vice-Chair ruled that it would be not be in order for the Committee to make final decisions on adopting changes to the policies, as outlined in part (5) of the tabled amendment.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.

15.

Training Contract: Babcock's Performance - Quarters 1 and 2, 2015/16 - FEP 2583 pdf icon PDF 420 KB

Head of Development and Training – updating the Committee on Babcock’s performance in the delivery of the training contract, and providing an update on the Firefighter Development Programme and Babcock’s Learning Management System.

 

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Development and Training.

 

The Head of Development and Training introduced the report and, along with the Commissioner, answered questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the report be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

16.

LFB Enterprises Ltd - Business Plan 2016/17 - FEP 2584/A pdf icon PDF 95 KB

Director of Operations – setting out the business plan developed by the directors of LFB Enterprises Ltd, in accordance with discussions at Resources Committee in September 2015.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report and supplementary report by the Director of Operations.

 

The Director of Operations introduced the report and, along with the Commissioner, answered questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the report and supplementary report be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

 

17.

Future of West Hampstead Fire Station Cottages - FEP 2585 pdf icon PDF 151 KB

Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support – Updating the Committee on the outcome of discussions with Housing Associations/Private Housing Providers regarding the cottages.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support (PTSS).

 

The Head of PTSS introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

After discussion, a motion was moved by Andrew Dismore AM – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes the results of the approach to the housing associations/private housing providers;  

 

(2)          Considers that the shortage of affordable housing in London, especially for key worker housing including for firefighters, is an important consideration in the future of the cottages;

 

(3)          Agrees that the Head of Procurement and Technical and Service Support be authorised to commence a marketing exercise that will invite bids aimed at providing a solution for the cottages that reflects (2) above if at all possible; and

(4)          Agrees that officers report back with a final recommendation for the future of these cottages once the marketing process is complete.

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM.

 

In response to questions from Members, the Head of Legal and Democratic Services confirmed that the motion, if agreed, would not prevent the Committee from having to give regard to the ‘best consideration’ requirements if it agreed with any future recommendation by officers to sell the cottages.

 

The motion was then put to the vote and there were 7 (seven) votes in favour of the motion, and 0 (zero) votes against.  The motion was declared to be carried.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

18.

Disposal of 8 Albert Embankment - FEP 2586 pdf icon PDF 260 KB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – setting out the results of the disposal process for 8 Albert Embankment and recommending a preferred bidder for the site.

 

[For Authority also]

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the report be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

19.

Urgent Business

Any other items which the Chair decides are urgent.

Minutes:

There was no Part 1 urgent business.

 

20.

Exclusion of Press and Public

The Committee is recommended to agree to exclude the public and press from the meeting, in accordance with paragraphs 3 and 7a of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), in order to consider the following items of business.

Minutes:

Resolved – That the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business, in accordance with paragraphs 3 and 7a of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

 

21.

LFB Enterprises Ltd - Business Plan 2016/17 - FEP 2584X

Director of Operations - setting out the business plan developed by LFB Enterprises Ltd.

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Operations.

 

The Director of Operations introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the report be noted.

 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

22.

Disposal of 8 Albert Embankment - Update - FEP 2586X

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – providing further information to the Committee.

 

[For Authority also]

 

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report and answered questions from Members.

 

Following questions from Members, officers agreed to have the bidders’ models on display at City Hall for Members to view prior to the Authority meeting on 17 March.

 

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – That the Committee:

 

(1)          Notes this report;

 

(2)          Authorises the  Director of Finance and Contractual Services, in conjunction with the Head of Legal and Democratic Services, to complete the Agreement (subject to planning and other appropriate conditions) and to include the obligation for the re-provision of the fire station and Museum with the company named in the report (FEP 2586X) on the basis that their base tender price results in the best consideration reasonably obtainable for the site at an appropriate level of risk to the Authority; and 

(3)          Notes the option for an uplift to the sum outlined in (FEP 2586X), if the Authority was minded to defer payment until completion of the entire scheme in August 2020, is to be considered after a planning consent is granted (assuming this is forthcoming) and subject to agreeing the requisite details before the Agreement is entered into. 

The motion was seconded by Dr Twycross AM, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

23.

Urgent Business

Any other exempt items which the Chair decides are urgent.

Minutes:

There was no exempt urgent business.