Agenda item

Council Plan 2023-28

To present the report of the Head of Profession (HR) and Transformation.


The report of the Head of Profession (HR) and Transformation incorporating the Council Plan for the period 2023 to 2028 was presented for the Committee’s consideration.

Councillor Robin Williams, Portfolio Member for Finance, Corporate Business and Customer Experience presented the Council Plan as the culmination of 12 months of preparatory work including extensive consultation with the Council’s staff, elected members and the residents of Anglesey regarding the Council’s strategic objectives for the next five-year period. The Portfolio Member referred to the conduct of the consultation and its outcome which were addressed in the Developing the Council’s Strategic Aims 2023-28 report presented to this Committee’s 19 January 2023 meeting. As a result of this work and previous considerations, the draft Council Plan is presented to the Corporate Scrutiny Committee and includes the corporate wellbeing aims along with the strategic objectives and associated work streams.


The Chief Executive advised that regardless of the current challenging circumstances the Council has a responsibility to plan for a more prosperous future for the residents of Anglesey and to maximise the opportunities that come its way. The Council Plan therefore seeks to create ambition with being realistic about what can be achieved in the next five-year period based on actual data and taking into account the resources available. It identifies the Council’s statutory responsibilities as well as the outcomes the Council wishes to achieve for the people and communities of Anglesey in terms of creating a better future. An annual delivery document will be produced which will formally report on progress, success, and outcomes. Subject to the Executive’s endorsement and the County Council’s approval a finalised version of the Council Plan will be issued, and its contents will be used and publicised widely. The Chief Executive thanked all those who had been involved in developing the Plan as well as those who had provided input along the process.


In discussing the Plan, the Committee raised questions regarding the challenges to its successful delivery; the extent to which it addresses statutory duties; the role of partners and the Plan’s alignment with the expectations of the Well-being of Future Generations Act (Wales). The Committee also enquired about the arrangements for reporting and monitoring progress and how the public response may have influenced the Plan. The Officers and Portfolio Member further advised –


·                That the Plan is the result of extensive consultation and seeks to cover what the Council is required to do by statute and what it wants to do by choice; an exercise to scope all the relevant legislation was undertaken at the outset of the development work to ensure that statutory duties are addressed by the Plan. However, the Plan is being issued in a period of uncertainty and it may have to be adapted to respond to challenges and/or opportunities as the Council moves through the period. The Plan is considered to be a robust document and the direction which it sets for the Council for the next five years should not change even if the detail does.

·                That collaboration and co-operation are fundamental principles of the Council’s work in all areas and the Council has well-established relationships with the Welsh government, its public sector partners including Health although the pressures on the social care system are proving challenging for interactions at present, the regulators, the voluntary and community sectors, the private sector and town and community councils. Equally important is the relationship with elected representatives both locally and nationally in bringing influence to bear on government.  All play a part and are key to the successful delivery of the Plan.

·                That this is the second Council Plan to be delivered under the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act. The Plan sets out three wellbeing objectives supported by the strategic objectives which in turn are aligned with the aims and objectives of the Act. The Council’s services also operate in accordance with the five ways of working set out in the Act which underpin the principle of sustainable development.

·                That while there are currently factors beyond the Council’s control which are creating uncertainty some of the main challenges to the successful delivery of the Plan relate to the availability of resources both to deliver services and to maintain assets, being able to fulfil statutory requirements, and the level of demand on council services. Although the Council has an able and committed workforce, recruitment and retention in a labour market that has been transformed by the pandemic remain a challenge as well. The Council has also to continue with modernising its services and ways of working including moving to digital processes and to be prepared for the challenges which that brings.

·                That the successful delivery of the Plan against the stated objectives will be monitored by publishing an annual delivery document which outlines what the Council intends to achieve in the financial year which will provide the Council with an understanding of what elements of the Plan will be moving forwards in that year. The Programme Boards will be looking at specific aspects of the Delivery document and can make recommendations as appropriate. The quarterly scorecard report presented to Scrutiny and the Executive identifies any areas of underperformance for remedial action. Further, the Local Government and Elections Wales Act requires councils to undertake an annual self-assessment which brings together different aspects of the performance management framework to provide an overall corporate view of annual performance.

·                That in terms of consultation and engagement, the Plan has been created on the basis of the most far-reaching consultation work ever carried out by the Council which has resulted in a better understanding of what is important to Anglesey’s residents. The initial engagement sought to establish what Anglesey’s residents thought of as priority areas for the Council Plan following which six draft strategic objectives were developed and a further consultation was undertaken on those objectives. While those were endorsed by the majority, some changes were made in specific areas in the course of developing the Plan in response to the feedback received.

The Committee also noted that only 9% had responded to the consultation process through the medium of Welsh which Members highlighted as an issue requiring attention. Assurance was given that this statistic will be looked into further.

Having considered the information presented both written and verbally at the meeting it was resolved to recommend the Council Plan 2023-28 to the Executive for further consideration.


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