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‘Council is rising to the challenge’
Good progress is being made on eight governance challenges within Bradford Council that were flagged up in an annual statement six months ago.
A mid-year review has highlighted that progress has been made on all eight of the areas, including one which has been concluded.
The challenges include making sure best practice is adopted in managing data and information; delivering the Council’s change programme relating to review of business processes, customer strategy and transformation; and dealing with the requirements of new legislation.
Other challenges include the need to make sure the Council’s investment in regeneration of the city and activity to stimulate growth in the local economy is seen to be effective and sustainable; implementing an equality-proof pay and grading structure; implementing a joint waste disposal solution for Bradford and Calderdale councils; extending delegated authority to local areas; and effective planning of the education and learning infrastructure for the district.
In a Council report, the authority’s director of finance, Stuart McKinnon-Evans, states: “In every area issues and concerns have been progressed and whilst some areas have completed the required actions, Council officers recognise the need for continuing effort to achieve improvements in the delivery and operation of their services.”
Progress includes setting up an Information Assurance Group which continues to develop a risk-based programme of work on internal processes, policies and procedures to managing data and information; concluding the Changing Our Council programme to transform the way the authority works at every level; working towards the implementation of a business rate retention scheme and localised support for council tax from April; launching the city centre growth zone to provide a focus for investment and a driver for growth and the creation of the Get Bradford Working programme, which is believed to be the largest job creation fund by any local authority in the country; progress towards the start of work on site for a new waste treatment plant at Bowling Back Lane, which is due to commence in April; and work towards the devolution of decision-making to area committees.
The report will be discussed at a meeting of the Council’s corporate governance and audit committee, on Friday at City Hall.