Agenda and minutes

Executive Board Sub Committee
Thursday, 1st December, 2011 10.00 a.m.

Venue: The Board Room - Municipal Building, Widnes. View directions

Contact: Gill Ferguson on 0151 471 7395 or e-mail 

No. Item




          The Minutes of the meeting held on 3rd November 2011 were taken as read and signed as a correct record.

Children Young People and Families Portfolio


Waiver of Procurement Standing Orders Contracted Services for Speech and Language Therapy pdf icon PDF 25 KB


          The Sub Committee considered a report of the Strategic Director Children and Enterprise which requested a waiver of Standing Orders in order to award a contract for the provision of Speech and Language Therapy services without obtaining quotes. For several years, the Council had commissioned Speech and Language Therapy services from Halton & St Helens Primary Care Trust’s Paediatric Speech and Language Therapy Service. The service assists the Council in addressing speech, language and communication needs in the 0-5 age group and those with Special Educational Needs.


          Members were advised that Halton & St Helens Primary Care Trust had been the only practicable provider for this service due to clinical requirements and both previous and existing partnership arrangements. In addition although provision of this service may be available from other NHS organisations contracting arrangements would have a significant negative impact from both a financial and operational perspective as the Council and the NHS currently fund the service on a shared cost basis. Also withdrawal of Council funding at this stage of NHS transitional developments would severely disrupt service delivery with anticipated increased costs impacting on vulnerable children, young people and families.


          It was noted that in accordance with Government policy, Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Trust was in the process of re-organisation and restructuring which may result in changes to their delivery and costs for Speech and Language Therapy over the next two years. It was proposed that officers would keep the situation under review to ensure the method of service delivery remained the most cost effective option for the Council.


          RESOLVED: That


        1. in light of the exceptional circumstances set out in the report, for the      purpose of Standing Order 1.8.2, Procurement Standing Orders 3.1         to 3.7 be waived on this occasion in order to extend existing contracts     with      Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Trust for the provision      of      Speech and Language Therapy services to children and young       people aged 0-5 years and those who have Special Educational           Needs, in order to ensure continuous care and support; and


        2. the Strategic Director, Children and Young People be authorised, in      conjunction with the portfolio holder for Children Young People and      Families, to enter into the above contracts for an additional year from      April 2012 to the end of March 2013.

Transportation Portfolio


Blue Badges pdf icon PDF 34 KB

Additional documents:


          The Sub Committee received a report of the Strategic Director Communities which advised that on 14th February 2011 the Government had announced wide ranging reforms to improve the Blue Badge scheme. One of the most significant changes was the design of the Blue Badge itself so that it was harder to copy, forge and alter. Following a competitive tendering process the Department of Transport’s (DfTs) evaluation panel had selected Northgate Information Solutions to develop and introduce the new badge design. In addition Northgate would print and supply the new PVC badge, provide a central database, online application system and a single secure print service.


          Members were advised that the Council had already signed an Access Agreement committing to the DfT’s Blue Badge Improvement Service.


          It was noted that the DfT was amending legislation to enable local authorities to charge badge holders a maximum of £10.  As a minimum the Council needed to charge £6 to cover the cost of the badge.  However, the report proposed that the Council charge the maximum of £10 for Blue Badges issued for a three year period from 1st January 2012. Any additional income over and above the cost of the Blue Badge could be used to cover the cost of administration, Occupation Therapy or GP assessments and for people with a terminal illness whose applications would be fast tracked by recorded delivery. A survey of other local authorities indicated that the majority were also considering a £10 charge.


          RESOLVED: That


1.     the increase in charges for Blue Badges from £2 to £10 be approved effective from 1st January 2012; and


2.     the charge of £10 for any lost or stolen badges be approved.

Corporate Portfolio


Procurement of Corporate Print Contract Framework Agreement - Preliminary Estimates Agreement - Preliminary Estimates Report pdf icon PDF 38 KB


          This item was withdrawn.

Health and Adults Portfolio


Extension of Local Involvement Network (LINK) Contract pdf icon PDF 39 KB


          The Sub Committee considered a report of the Strategic Director Communities which requested an extension of the existing Link Involvement Network (LINk) Contract. The Sub Committee had previously approved an extension to the original LINk Host Contract with Halton and St Helens Voluntary & Community Action (VCA), jointly contracted with St Helens Council, to take the contract to the end of March 2012 (Minute ES22 refers).


          Subsequently the Government had announced that there would be an extended transition period from Link to HealthWatch with the establishment of HealthWatch now taking place in October 2012, 6 months after it was originally anticipated. The extension left a potential 6 month gap (April to October 2012) in LINk provision in Halton which needed to be addressed.


          It was reported that St Helen’s Council were keen to extend the jointly contracted Host contract with Halton and the Halton LINk Host had confirmed that they would accept an extension. In addition to date there had not been any performance issues with the LINk Host.


          RESOLVED: That approval be given to extend Halton and St Helens Council’s existing Host Contract by 6 months from April 2012-October 2012, plus an option for 6 x 1 month extensions if required.


MINUTES ISSUED:   2nd December 2011


CALL IN:  9th December 2011


Any matter decided by the Executive Board Sub Committee may be called in no later than 9th December 2011