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Council steps up to peer review recommendations

Published on Friday, 27th May 2022

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The Local Government Association (LGA) team has provided a progress update on its Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council peer review.

During September 2021 the Borough Council took part in a LGA peer review to help improve the Council’s work.

During their visit the LGA team met staff and councillors as well as local businesses and other organisations, and sought to review processes, policies, and practice at the Council.

The LGA states that peer challenge is one of the key tools to support improvement nationally. It is designed to be forward-looking and problem-solving, is not a form of inspection and does not rank or score the Council.

Their team spent several days working with the Council in order to produce a report containing recommendations for future action for the organisation to consider.

Following the visit, the Council published a report and developed an action plan in response to the ten recommendations made by the peer team.

The action plan was jointly produced by the Corporate Management Team and Cabinet and was approved by Cabinet in November 2021. Since then, progress has been continually monitored by the Council.

As part of the LGA peer review process, a progress review was undertaken in March this year to monitor the Council's progress against the initial LGA action plan.

The progress review showed that there had been many positive updates and several areas of progression.

The peer team heard that the Borough Council has maintained good progress in building senior Member and officer relationships through ongoing regular meetings and a Leadership Board.

In order to meet the future financial challenges, a three-year Medium Term Financial Strategy is being developed with a new Director of Finance and Enterprise appointed to help lead the progression on this.

An Employment Committee has been established which has developed a programme to review HR policies, and a new People Strategy is to be agreed in June.

Work is continuing on the development of some of the key strategies and the Council is reviewing its project management methodology to support the effective planning and delivery of major projects.

The Economic Development Strategy is on track for finalisation in June 2022 and is currently being consulted with Members and private sector stakeholders. The Town Centre Strategy will have a Supplementary Planning Document which is being consulted with stakeholders – for completion by the end of June.

Cabinet has approved the new corporate plan - Building a Better Borough. A public consultation has taken place on the plan with a more structured survey to be delivered in summer 2022.

A new Communications and Marketing Strategy has been developed and the Council has increased the officer resources in the Communications Team.

Explained Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council Leader Cllr Kristofer Wilson:

“The LGA Progress Report clearly shows that we are making great progress towards addressing their recommendations. Whilst there is much to celebrate about the work our council does, I recognise that there is always room for improvement. A lot of hard work has taken place and we will continue working hard to Build a Better Borough for all of the residents of Nuneaton and Bedworth.”