Council Plan 2015-2017
Wrexham County Borough Council’s purpose is to ensure that the people of Wrexham are supported and enabled to fulfil their potential and to prosper. This Plan, with its four inter-connected themes of economy, people, place and organisation, was first agreed in 2012 and has been reviewed each year since to focus the Council on that purpose.
Our purpose has been refined to reflect more the context in which we are living and working. Public services are having to face up to budget cuts on a different scale to anything we’ve seen before and to ensure that we remain ready for the future we are having to take brave decisions. This Council has reducing resources and is reshaping services to best support and enable local people to prosper whilst prioritising our most vulnerable residents. To help us do so we have sought the services of a reshaping partner who has the national and international experience and expertise to support us.
Local people are key to our reshaping work too. The decisions we take can impact on each of us and we firmly believe that everyone should have the opportunity to engage in the ‘difficult decisions conversation’. We continue to consult widely and it is excellent that increasing numbers of local people are getting involved in the ‘conversation’ and having an influence on decisions such as that to reverse the proposed cuts in highway maintenance and invest a further £500,000 in 2015/16.
Alongside these difficult decisions, we also need to be brave in exploring new opportunities. As technology develops we will support individuals so they are not excluded from online services such as utilities or national government services. We also enable them to use the services which we offer on-line, thus meeting the increasingly common expectations of those who expect services to be available 24/7.
We will build on our successes – having seen the building work start on the North Wales Prison, we now need to ensure that the £212million investment results in the predicted 1000 new jobs and the predicted £23million a year injection into our local economy.
The Council Plan Framework
Wrexham County Borough Council delivers, and enables the delivery of, services to people who live in, work in and visit the County Borough.
The Council Plan is the overarching plan for the Council. It defines where we focus our energies and resources, how we will judge our performance and the Council’s contribution to the Community Strategy (see page 40). The Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009 requires the Council to agree ‘improvement objectives’, which are referred to locally as ‘priority outcomes’ and are agreed as part of this plan.
This Council Plan sets out, for 2012 to 2017:
- The Council’s vision, purpose, guiding principles and values
- The strategic themes and corporate theme that the Council will focus on
- The priority outcomes that sit under each theme; and
- How these were identified
We will judge whether we have been successful by monitoring our progress against agreed outcome indicators and targets, which will help us measure the difference we have made for local people. Targets have been set for the next financial year. This reflects ongoing work within the Council to reshape services to meet the financial challenges ahead whilst prioritising the most vulnerable. As these decisions are taken, targets for subsequent years will be established. To performance manage this work, Members and officers of the Council will also monitor and report on:
- Improvement activity – the projects and improvements that are being planned and delivered to support, influence or deliver improvements in identified outcomes.
- Performance measures – measures of how well improvement activity has been delivered.
The Council will use this document to plan and manage its priorities, improvement activity and service delivery at a strategic level. It is also supported by strategies and plans that contain a far greater level of detail and are regularly reviewed. As such the Council Plan is a living document that must respond to the changing local, regional and national context. It will be formally updated at the start of each financial year. Some people or groups of people are statistically less likely to benefit from services because of their personal characteristics. The Council’s Strategic Equality Plan describes the strategic actions that we will take to address any inequality.
This Plan is not a performance report and does not include information on performance against targets. However, performance management is an ongoing activity throughout the year and performance against target for 2014/15 will be reported to Executive Board in June 2015. The Council also publishes an annual review and assessment of its performance over the financial year each October, the most recent of which is available on this website. This includes an assessment of the authority’s performance when compared to other Local Authorities in Wales, its achievement against the outcomes and targets it set itself, and judgements from bodies such as external regulators. This assessment is a public document and is in turn reviewed by the Wales Audit Office.
The Council as a strong community leader
To ensure Wrexham and its people are supported to fulfil their potential and prosper
Citizens, Customers and Equality – Being at the centre of everything we do
Members – Elected Members as community leaders being at the heart of decision making
Welsh Language – Supporting and encouraging customers and staff to communicate in Welsh and English
It is important for us to recognise what is driving how we deliver our services and how we behave as an organisation.
These values have been used to define the Council’s Way of working:
We ask our customers what they want, consider their requests, work together to identify creative and appropriate ways forward, balancing risk and opportunity, and then feed back to them honestly what can be delivered, working hard to keep our promises. We build trust and help to improve the quality of life for the people of Wrexham.
The Council Plan is available in both English and Welsh from Council Offices, Libraries or to download from our website. As well as the full plan there is an executive summary, a ‘short and snappy’ version which has been developed with the Senedd Yr Ifanc (the young people’s parliament) and an easy read version developed with a local learning disabilities group.
This document is available in languages other than English and Welsh and in accessible formats such as large print, Braille, BSL DVD, audio-CD, or electronic format upon request. To request production of the Plan in these or another format more accessible to you please use the contact details shown.
We welcome your comments on both the format and the content of our Council Plan. If you have any suggestions or comments to make the plan more readable, or for additional/ alternative areas on which the Council should focus, please contact us at the address below. Any proposals for additional areas of focus will be considered as part of the performance management and updating of this plan. Comments on the presentation of the plan will be considered for its next publication in spring 2016.