Agenda and draft minutes

Agenda and draft minutes

Communities and Equalities Scrutiny Committee - Tuesday, 9th November, 2021 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Level 2, Town Hall Extension. View directions

Contact: Rachel McKeon 

Note: This meeting can be viewed on Vimeo at https://vimeo.com/637020824 

Items
No. Item

45.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 155 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 12 October 2021.

Minutes:

The Chair informed the Committee that discussions were ongoing about the Mayor of Greater Manchester or the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime attending a future meeting.

 

Decision

 

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 12 October 2021 as a correct record.

46.

Neighbourhood Directorate Budget 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 274 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods)

 

Following the Spending Review announcements and other updates the Council is forecasting an estimated shortfall of £4m in 2022/23, £64m in 2023/24 and £85m by 2024/25. This report sets out the high-level position. Officers have identified options to balance the budget in 2022/23 which are subject to approval.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods) which stated that, following the Spending Review announcements and other updates, the Council was forecasting an estimated shortfall of £4m in 2022/23, £64m in 2023/24 and £85m by 2024/25. The report set out the high-level position. Officers had identified options to balance the budget in 2022/23 which were subject to approval.

 

The main points and themes within the report included:

 

  • Current budget position;
  • Headline priorities for the services;
  • Revenue budget strategy, including changes approved for 2022/23 as part of the 2021/22 Budget Process and new proposed changes; and
  • Capital budget and pipeline priorities.

 

In response to a Member’s question about the funding of the leisure operator GLL, the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods) advised the Committee that the proposed ongoing support to GLL was a short-term requirement in response to the impact of COVID-19, that the Council was confident that GLL’s financial position was improving as the leisure sector’s recovery continued and it was expected that this would be paid back as part of overall budget arrangement.

 

In response to a question from the Chair, the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods) reported that budget reports were being considered by all six scrutiny committees this week, that it was expected that the financial settlement from the Government would be announced in December 2021 and that the scrutiny committees would receive further reports in February 2022, before the proposals were submitted to the Executive; however, she advised that, if the financial settlement from Government caused significant concern, the scrutiny committees could receive further budget reports in January 2022.

 

Decision

 

To note the report.

47.

Manchester International Festival 2021 pdf icon PDF 711 KB

Report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods)

 

This report provides the Executive with an overview of the outcomes of the 2021 Manchester International Festival (MIF21).

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Strategic Director (Neighbourhoods) which provided an overview of the outcomes of the 2021 Manchester International Festival (MIF21). The report provided a summary of performance against the agreed objectives and detailed the impact of the festival, based on the results of the independent evaluation. The report demonstrated how the festival delivered an inspiring programme which enabled Manchester residents and wider audiences to return to the city to enjoy arts and culture, despite the challenges and uncertainty of COVID-19.

 

The main points and themes within the report included:

 

  • Context (the COVID-19 pandemic);
  • Assessment of delivery of objectives for 2021, which were:
    • To continue to grow the international reputation of the Festival and the city – with artists, audiences, partners and media coverage from all five continents and from a wide variety of backgrounds – in turn driving reach for the Festival, attracting people to the city and the best staff to our team;
    • To bring the most extraordinary artists from around the world to Manchester to create diverse and inspiring new work – made in Manchester and shared across the globe;
    • To connect in new and ever deeper ways with the city and region of Manchester, increasing the range and diversity of those engaging with the Festival, with an ever more visible and transformative presence in the city; and
    • To develop the brand, profile and awareness of MIF/The Factory locally, nationally and internationally in readiness for opening.
  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), sustainability and financial performance;
  • Zero carbon;
  • Employment and skills;
  • Manchester International Festival 2023; and
  • Future Manchester City Council support for the Festival and The Factory.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Committee’s discussions were:

 

  • The attendance figures, including how they were arrived at for free non-ticketed events and whether additional data was available on where people attending ticketed events were from;
  • That neighbourhood organisers had an important role in promoting culture and making it as available as possible and were these temporary or permanent roles; and
  • That more events should take place in different neighbourhoods, not just in the city centre.

 

John McGrath, Artistic Director and CEO of MIF, reported that the attendance figures for the non-ticketed events were based on the same methodology as had been used for events such as the Olympics and that this involved an estimate of the flow of people through the area and, for the work in Piccadilly Gardens, a visual survey of the percentage of people passing through who had stopped to look at it.  He highlighted the value of using public spaces to introduce people to the Festival and advised that this could then encourage them to attend ticketed events.  In response to the question about the breakdown of people attending ticketed events, he advised that the Audience Survey had previously been mainly carried out by email but that not everyone responded and those that did were not necessarily representative of all attendees.  He reported that this year, in addition to the email  ...  view the full minutes text for item 47.

48.

Age Friendly Recovery pdf icon PDF 208 KB

Report of the Consultant in Public Health (Ageing Well Lead)

 

Following the report to the Committee in December 2020 which outlined a set of proposals across five key areas that were designed to help address the barriers many of Manchester’s mid to later life residents report that they face, this report details the progress to date and plans for the next 18 months.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Consultant in Public Health (Ageing Well Lead), following on from the report to the Committee in December 2020 which had outlined a set of proposals across five key areas that were designed to help address the barriers many of Manchester’s mid to later life residents reported that they faced.  This report detailed the progress to date and plans for the next 18 months.

 

The main points and themes within the report included:

 

  • Ageism;
  • Care homes;
  • Neighbourhoods;
  • Employment; and
  • Our Manchester.

 

The Lead Member for Age Friendly Manchester (AFM) outlined how older people had been particularly affected by the pandemic.  He also highlighted the positive work that was being done, as detailed in the report, and the need to continue to address these issues.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Committee’s discussions were:

 

  • The condition of pavements and the disproportionate impact of this on older people;
  • Digital exclusion among older people;
  • The importance of good bus services;
  • The specific needs of older LGBT people;
  • The role of “Friends of” groups in the Age Friendly parks work;
  • Ensuring that the skills development work matched the skills that employers were looking for; and
  • The importance of tackling social isolation.

 

The Age Friendly Programme Lead agreed with the Member’s comment about pavements.  He highlighted the age friendly navigation plans which were being piloted in four neighbourhoods and which aimed to identify what routes people took around the neighbourhoods and what enabled and what hindered older people’s access.  He advised that the condition of pavements had been highlighted as an issue in one or two of these plans and that this information had been fed back to the Neighbourhoods Directorate.  He welcomed the Member’s suggestion of an equalities approach to pavement maintenance and improvement decisions.  He suggested that walking and talking with older residents going around their neighbourhood could highlight different issues than officers on their own might identify.  He stated that parking on pavements was also an issue and that more work was needed to address this, focusing more on increasing people’s awareness of the problems this caused than on enforcement.  The Chair expressed the Committee’s strong support for work to improve the condition of pavements and ensure that they were free from obstructions, such as cars and advertising boards, and for this to be treated as an equalities issue.

 

The Age Friendly Programme Lead advised that the AFM Board recommended that access to services should not be digital by default, and that non-digital options should be available; however, he informed Members that a lot of work had taken place during lockdown about improving digital access, not just access to devices but also the skills and the confidence to use them and that Libraries had an important role in this.

 

The Age Friendly Programme Lead informed the Committee about work to influence the Greater Manchester plans for public transport to ensure the inclusion of an age friendly perspective and detailed work taking place around  ...  view the full minutes text for item 48.

49.

The Impact Of Climate Change As It Relates To The Responsibilities For The Communities and Equalities Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 182 KB

Report of the City Solicitor

 

This report aims to provide an update to the report that came to this committee in June 2021 for further discussion to enable the Committee to consider further areas within their responsibility where the impact of climate change is of particular relevance and for the committee to identify areas within its remit it would like to receive more information on and debate further.

 

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the City Solicitor which aimed to provide an update to the report that came to the Committee in June 2021 for further discussion to enable the Committee to consider further areas within their responsibility where the impact of climate change was of particular relevance and for the Committee to identify areas within its remit it would like to receive more information on and debate further.

 

The main points and themes within the report included:

 

  • Community engagement;
  • Culture sector and voluntary sector;
  • Libraries’ contribution to Climate Change Emergency;
  • Leisure and sport; and
  • A framework for considering climate change.

 

Some of the key points that arose from the Committee’s discussions were:

 

  • The retrofitting of business premises, which was not covered by Government schemes;
  • The environmental impact of major events and mitigation measures to reduce this, while also recognising the importance of continuing with events such as the Wythenshawe Games;
  • How the Sustainable Events Guide was used and how the Council could use its powers, for example when authorising events or allowing its facilities to be used for them, to influence the sustainability of events organised by external organisations, as well as reducing the carbon footprint of its own events;
  • To suggest that Manchester City Football Club be invited to a future meeting to tell the Committee how it was responding to the Climate Emergency;
  • Funding made available to improve the environmental impact of the taxi sector;
  • How to engage with local communities on climate change, including the role of schools; and
  • The importance of good public transport in reducing car use.

 

The Chair informed Members that Manchester City Football Club had previously delivered a report to the Council, although not to this Committee.  He advised that it was useful to hear what partner organisations within the city were doing to address climate change and that he would discuss this with the Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee.  Bearing in mind that business premises cut across the remit of other scrutiny committees, the Chair suggested that the Committee could look at the retrofitting and environmental impact of the Council’s leisure estate. 

 

The Executive Member for the Environment advised that the Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee had recently received a report on the culture sector and events and that she would share this report with the Committee.  She also suggested that the Committee could look at ward-based climate change action plans at a future meeting.  The Chair advised that he would be speaking to the Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee about this.

 

Decisions

 

1.            To receive a report on retrofitting and improving the sustainability of the Council’s leisure estate.

 

2.            To receive a report on the environmental impact of events and what can be done to minimise this impact.

 

3.            To receive a report on what can be done to make the city’s taxi fleet more environmentally sustainable.

 

4.            To recognise that Members need to look at their local climate  ...  view the full minutes text for item 49.

50.

Overview Report pdf icon PDF 264 KB

Report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit

 

This report provides the Committee with details of key decisions that fall within the Committee’s remit and an update on actions resulting from the Committee’s recommendations. The report also includes the Committee’s work programme, which the Committee is asked to amend as appropriate and agree.

Minutes:

A report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit was submitted. The overview report contained a list of key decisions yet to be taken within the Committee’s remit, responses to previous recommendations and the Committee’s work programme, which the Committee was asked to approve.

 

A Member requested that, when the Committee received a report on a particular equality strand, that this included consideration of how other equality strands intersected with it.  The Chair supported this comment.

 

Decision

 

To note the report and agree the work programme, subject to the above comment.