The Scrutiny Support Officer presented a report to outline the purpose of the meeting, which was to establish the Panels proposals for its 2012-2013 Work Programme, which would be submitted to the Overview and Scrutiny Board for consideration in July 2012.
The report contained proposals received from the service area, Members, and key issues identified the previous year that had not been addressed. In addition, the Panel had a responsibility to address certain issues each year including the Safer Middlesbrough Partnership (SMP) and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA). The Panel had also indicated that it wished to receive further information in January 2013, on the outline strategy and funding position in relation to addressing Domestic Violence.
The Head of the Community Protection Service was in attendance at the meeting to provide an overview of the Service. The public protection remit of the Service included Community Safety, Trading Standards, Food Health and Safety, Housing, Environmental Protection and Middlesbrough Environment City.
Community Safety covered anti-social behaviour, neighbourhood nuisance, CCTV and Street Wardens. The Trading Standards teams covered areas such as the Joint Meteorology Laboratory, North Ormesby Market and the Money Debt Advice Service. Food Health and Safety work included inspections of premises relating to food and also outbreaks of diseases such as Legionella. Environmental Protection was concerned with air quality and pollution generated by traffic or people illegally burning waste, fly tipping and pollution of ground or water. In relation to Housing, the Service worked to ensure that accommodation standards were acceptable, generally in the private sector.
Middlesbrough Environment City was a charitable company which was managed by Middlesbrough Council employees. The Company supported the work of the Council in the areas of One Planet Living and sustainability.
Community Protection also encompassed Sport and Leisure Services with a focus on the public health function. Whilst the service had to be run commercially it was also there to achieve the objective of the Council to reduce health inequality by not only providing the venues but also various activities. Parks and the activities that took place in the parks were also managed by Community Protection as well as bereavement services, the crematorium and the cemeteries.
Finally, the Head of Community Protection had the lead responsibility for Emergency Planning, which was a joint organisation covering the Cleveland area.
Members discussed the suggested topics and the Scrutiny Support Officer and Head of Community Protection provided additional information as appropriate.
The proposed topics were as follows:
1. Police Resource - effect of reduction in Police budget on the resources applied to Middlesbrough in respect of Community Safety. To include the effect on Neighbourhood Policing, and also the relationship with Neighbourhood Watch and Street Wardens.
2. Leisure Facilities - the shaping of leisure facilities provided by the Council in response to budgetary reduction.
3. Exploitation of Children - issues associated with child abuse, and identification facilities and procedures available to tackle it.
4. Anti Social Behaviour (ASB) - problems associated with ASB in Stewart Park.
5. Hate Crime - facilities afforded to victims and detection of offenders.
6. Updates would also be scheduled on SMP, RIPA and Domestic Violence.
1. The Scrutiny Support Officer would prepare a list of the preferred topics and circulate it to Members of the Panel for comment.
2. The following topics would be submitted to the Overview and Scrutiny Board for approval: Police Resource, Leisure Facilities, Exploitation of Children, Anti Social Behaviour and Hate Crime for approval for inclusion in the Panels Work Programme 2012-2013