Agenda item

Work Programme

Reporting Person: Councillor Josh Brown


The Chair introduced the report on the updated Work Programme, drawing Members’ attention to the key changes since the document had been received at the Committee’s previous meeting.

The Chair was keen to invite the Government’s Commissioners to a future meeting of the Committee.  In addition, the Chair advised the Committee that he had attended a meeting with the representatives from the Centre for Governance and Scrutiny (CfGS) at which they had emphasised the importance of the Committee concentrating on the proposed cuts to the Council’s services and their impact.  The CfGS had suggested that as many as possible unrelated items of business should be deferred until after the confirmation of budgets in February 2024.

The Committee would therefore look to invite key stakeholders to future meetings, including representatives from community groups such as Community Transport and Citizens Advice Woking, and services such as Pool in the Park and the Centres in the Community. 

Reference was made to the Commissioners and a request from a resident that the Commissioners should be available to answer questions.  It was suggested that the possibility of enabling a limited number of questions to be posed to the Commissioners should be considered.  (Note: following the meeting of the Committee, the arrangements for Members of Public to raise questions with the Commissioners Team was circulated to Councillors (Contact the commissioners | Woking Borough Council). 

It was noted that the Committee had previously asked for two reports on the overview of complaints to be prepared each year, in September and March.  Officers were asked to explore whether the first of these reports could be brought to the next meeting of the Committee, to enable Members to identify any underlying trends.

In light of the comments of the CfGS, it was suggested that the item on the Joint Waste Management Performance Review should be deferred to March 2024.

A topic for scrutiny had been received from a resident writing on behalf of Citizens Advice Woking, a local Charity which had historically been funded by the Council.  The request was in light of the current consultation on services which included the possibility of ending the discretionary funding of local community groups, and sought a review by the Committee before a final decision was taken by the Council.  The Councillors expressed disappointment that the request was not before the Committee and, in view of the timescale for the review of services, it was agreed that the request would be reviewed by the Chair and Vice-Chair in consultation with Officers following the meeting, with a view to inviting representatives for Citizens Advice Woking to the next meeting.

In relation to the request, the Committee was encouraged to consider the impact of the Council’s proposals across the wider community, seeking to avoid a piecemeal approach, and adopting a suitable methodology to achieve consistent outcomes.  It was recognised that some organisations would not necessarily be in a position to make similar representation directly to the Council.  The Committee should also look to review the importance given to the outcomes of the public consultation.


That the Work Programme be noted.

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