We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We Asked

We will do everything practicable to ensure that the service provided by Bereavement Services are satisfactory and meet our service user requirements. Please tell us your comments/suggestions relating to the service

You Said

1. Online music or digital system would be good.

2. Your phone number is wrong is Google - this led to a lot of frustration with unanswered calls

3. Curtains were not working in the chapel at Sutton Coldfield Crematorium.

We Did

1. We have arranged for a full digital library to be available at Sutton Coldfield Crematorium.

2.  We have corrected the entry on Google.

3.  We have repaired the curtains which now fully close. 

We Asked

We asked for your comments on the proposal for an In-Year-Variation to reduce the published admission number of Park Hill Primary School for September 2017.

You Said

We received 2 responses via this website.

An anonymised summary of the responses is attached to this consultation webpage, called: Park Hill Summary of consultation response.

 

We Did

We anylised your responses to the consultation and replied to individuals where appropriate.

The analyised responses have been collated and your comments have been sent in full to the decision maker, the Office of the Schools Adjudicator, for their consideration (your personal information has been removed).

Determination (Decision): The Adjudicator has issued a letter and report to Birmingham City Council with the following conclusion and determination.  Full details are attached in the document: Adjudicator Decision.

Conclusion

The admission authority, with the support of the school’s governing body, wish to reduce the school’s PAN for 2017 to 60, from the current PAN of 90. This is due to a falling birth rate in the area of the school and a drop in numbers applying to the school and consequently in offers made. This situation is placing pressure on the school financially and, together with a recent Ofsted judgement of Requires Improvement, on the school’s efforts to raise standards. However, 68 offers have been made for September 2017 and the local authority predicts 63 offers for September 2018.  Maintaining PAN at the current level will ensure that demand for places is met for 2017 and 2018. If, as the admission authority anticipates, actual numbers starting in reception drop to 60 or below, only two reception classes will be needed and following the conclusion of the normal admissions round further pupils need not be admitted as long as prejudice can be demonstrated.

Determination

In accordance with section 88E of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998, I do not approve the variation to the admission arrangements determined by Birmingham City Council for Park Hill Primary School.

We Asked

You to tell us how confident you are when dealing with businesses that are regulated by Trading Standards, Environmental Health and Licensing.

You Said

You provided details of your confidence.

We Did

The results will provide us with an indication of the effectiveness of our services in regulating the market place, they will play a part in helping us to decide where we need to concentrate our efforts to best protect citizens, businesses and visitors.

We Asked

You to provide us with feedback on your satisfaction with the service that you received from us and to provide suggestions as to how we can improve this service.

You Said

You provided your feedback and ideas for improvements.

We Did

The results and suggestions were forwarded to the Head of Service who will consider them in future service planning with a view to improving our services to the customer.

We Asked

You to provide us with feedback on your satisfaction with the service that you received and to make suggestions as to how the service copuld be improved.

You Said

You provided details of your satisfaction and suggestions for improvement.

We Did

The results and suggestions have been forwarded to the Head of Service who will consider them in future service development with a view to improving our service delivery.

We Asked

You to provide us with an indication of your satisfaction with the service provided and to make suggestions for service improvement.

You Said

You  provided this feedback

We Did

The results and suggested improvements have been forwarded to the Head of Service who will consider them in future service planning with a view to improving our services to our customers

We Asked

You to provide us with an indication of your satisfaction with the Pest Control service that you received, against a number of different criteria. We also asked you to provide us with suggestions to inmprove our services.

You Said

You provided your feedback

We Did

The results and suggestions were forwarded to the Head of Service who will utilise them in future service planning with a view to delivering improved services

We Asked

Birmingham City Council asked for your views on Birmingham’s air quality. We wanted to understand whether or not air quality is important to the people of Birmingham and in what ways; how much it interests you or has an impact on you.

You Said

We received 1,104 responses to this survey – thank you to everyone who took part.

The results showed that Birmingham people are very concerned with the issue of air quality and the negative effects it could have on our city with:

  • 87% of respondents thinking air quality is a ‘serious issue’ to be tackled now;
  • 88% telling us they think air quality has a very serious impact on health; and,
  • 67% saying that air quality was an important consideration when making choices about how they travel.

Those who filled in the survey also told us what they thought contributed most to air pollution. The top three causes chosen were:

  • congestion and vehicles idling in queues;
  • lorries and vans; and,
  • diesel cars.

Respondents also selected the ways in which they thought air pollution could be tackled. The top three ways are:

  • using public transport;
  • more trees and green spaces; and,
  • restricting access for polluting vehicles.

We Did

Birmingham City Council has been working towards creating a greener, more sustainable city for a number of years: working on the basis that every person who lives and works in Birmingham has a right to clean air. For example, through our Birmingham Connected programme we aim to transform the way people travel around the city in an attempt to reduce vehicle emissions.

The results of this Be Heard survey will contribute towards the next phase of our work. This includes feasibility studies to identify areas of Birmingham where air pollution is at its highest so we can create the Clean Air Zone the Government requires Birmingham – and other UK cities – to have in place by 2020 to comply with air quality legislation.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

We asked for your comments on the proposal by the Governing Body of King's Norton Boys' School regarding the alteration to the age range and the removal of the sixth form provision.

You Said

We received 14 responses via the BeHeard website.

The responses were from a mixture of parents, parents who are also local resisents, local residents and former pupils.

Of the 14 responses received 14 were opposed to the proposal.

A letter was also received which was neither in favour or opposed,

We Did

All comments were forwarded to the decision makers for a decision no later than 2nd April 2017.

This proposal was approved jointly by Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Schools and the Strategic Director for People on 23rd March 2017.

The Local Authority, in exercise of the powers conferred on it, has determined that the school implement the proposal.  The reasons for the decision are contained in section 7 of the Cabinet report:

"To enable the Governing Body of King’s Norton Boys’ School to alter the upper age limit of the school from 11-18 to 11-16 years to remove the sixth form provision which is both financially and operationally unviable. This will enable the school to address both financial and operational issues and concentrate resources to improve outcomes in year groups 7 to 11".

A copy of the full Cabinet report can be found here:

https://birmingham.cmis.uk.com/birmingham/Decisions/tabid/67/ctl/ViewCMIS_DecisionDetails/mid/391/Id/3527/Default.aspx

We thank all respondents for taking part in the consultation, your comments are greatly appreciated.

 

We Asked

An open call out for organisations interested in being gifted benches, bins, railings and bollards from Centenary Square to submit an expression of interest.

We also asked whether there was any feedback on the process and decision to decommission Tess Jary's Carpet artwork from Centenary Square.

You Said

Ten organisations expressed an interest in receiving street furniture items from Centenary Square. 

There were no comments on the process and decision to decommission Tess Jary's Carpet artwork from Centenary Square.

We Did

Of these ten organisations, at least six organisations will receive a selection of railings, bins, benches, bollards. The railings have been allocated for use around the Peace Gardens, and other items will be gifted to various high streets and one park.

There was little interest in the lamp columns but all other street furniture items have been allocated.

A selection of items to be gifted to the Birmingham Museums Trust, ensuring a sample of the heritage of the centenary celebration will be kept in a public collection for future generations.

We Asked

For your comments on the proposed Tiered Model for Community Libraries, as part of the council’s consultation on library services.

You Said

We were very pleased with the number of responses received and thank everyone who took part.

There were:

  • 1,947 responses to the online survey on our Birmingham Be Heard website
  • 72 responses submitted by letter or email
  • 1,675 responses to a survey specifically aimed at children which was sent to all primary schools and was available in community libraries
  • 9 petitions.

We Did

Initial plans for a three-tiered service (with opening hours and staff support reduced in tiers 2 and 3) were put forward as part of the council’s effort to respond to reduced funding from central government and would have seen the libraries at Aston and Sutton close – reducing annual expenditure by £1.9million by 2018/19.

However, comments and feedback along with potentially up to £150,000 in a one-off funding pledge from Sutton Coldfield Town Council have helped Birmingham City Council refine its plans all within the reduced finances, the highlights of which are as follows:

•        Sutton Coldfield Library to remain open until 31st August 2017, whilst the city council, town council, the Library Lobby campaign group and other organisations work together to see if a long-term sustainable partnership solution can be established for the service.

•        Aston Library to remain open as a Tier 3 library, with nearby Birchfield to operate as a Tier 2 instead of a Tier 1 facility.

•        Services at Glebe Farm to be enhanced (from current opening hours of 15 hours per week up to 21 hours per week), with Kents Moat closing (in line with suggestions made by the public during the consultation period)

In addition to this there will be an increase in spend on the book fund, a proposed budget of £380,000 against last year's £140,000.

The repairs and maintenance fund for libraries will also increase by £50,000 to £145,000 and there will be an investment of £800,000 in new technology to improve self-service facilities for library users.

Staffing numbers will still have to reduce from 112 to 99 full-time equivalents, up from an initially-proposed 88 after the reshaped plans meant it was possible to increase staffing levels in some of the busier libraries.

The Tiered model:

  • Tier 1 sites (19 in total) would be open for 35 hours per week, likely to be delivered from the existing sites and have other services (e.g benefits verification) delivered from them too. All will have investment in self-service equipment.

Locations: Small Heath, Ward End, Kings Heath, Acocks Green, Sparkhill, South Yardley, Northfield, Balsall Heath, Erdington, Hall Green, Harborne, Mere Green, Handsworth, Kings Norton, Shard End, Quinton, Weoley Castle, Yardley Wood, Sutton Coldfield.

  • Tier 2 sites (10 in total) would be open for 21 hours per week, likely to be delivered from the current library buildings, although options may exist to increase hours of operation by working with partners.

Locations: Birchfield, Walmley, Kingstanding, Perry Common, Frankley, Spring Hill, Boldmere, Druids Heath, Tower Hill, Sheldon.

  • Tier 2/3 sites (2 in total) would be open for 21 hours per week, but will need the involvement of communities or other organisations to be sustainable.

Locations: Stirchley, Glebe Farm.

  • Tier 3 sites (5 in total) would be run by community organisations, from either their own premises or via a facility transferred to them by the council. The library service will offer support through a 15-hour worker and the provision of books and investment in self-service equipment.

Locations: Aston, West Heath, Bartley Green, Bloomsbury, Selly Oak.

  • A further group (Tier 4) is also proposed, under the heading of Community Initiated Library Services, through which any local scheme that increases access to one of the Society of Chief Librarians’ universal offers (digital, learning, information, reading or health) would be considered for support via a small grants scheme or the city’s Local Innovation Fund. At present there are live discussions with four organisations around Tier 4 provision. Castle Vale Library already operates under such arrangements.
  • Two sites (Bloomsbury and West Heath) are temporarily closed, but are proposed for Tier 3 provision solution once operational again.

We Asked

1. We asked you would have any objection to mini graves being inrtoduced into BBC cemteries.

2. We asked if you were opposed to the introduction of a grave reservation fee.

You Said

1. You were not opposed to the introduction of mini grave in the city cemeteries.

2. You were not opposed to the introduction of a grave reservation fee.

 

We Did

1. We are rolling out the introduction of mini graves in the city cemeteries.

2. We introduced a grave reservation fee from 1 April 2017.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

 

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

To assess the quality of the learning provision and to understand whether learning has been transferred into practice.

You Said

Feedback was provided.

We Did

The results were reviewed by the BSCB Learning and Development Sub Group and will inform the development of further training.

We Asked

For comments/views on the proposed new set of conditions attached to the licences issued in respect of Private Hire Operators.

You Said

The responses were split with 4 responses feeling the proposed conditions went far enough to ensure the safety of the public whilst the other 5 felt further conditions should be added to ensure the safety of the public.

We Did

The results of this consultation will form part of a report which will be heard and approved by members at a future Licensing and Public Protection Committee before any action can be taken by our officers.

We Asked

About The Consultation on Proposed Admissions Arrangements.

You Said

Various comments.

We Did

Fed those back to the necessary admission authorities.

We Asked

We will do everything practicable to ensure that the service provided by Bereavement Services are satisfactory and meet our service user requirements. Please tell us your comments/suggestions relating to the service

You Said

1. You said the chapel flowers looked tired.

2. We would like to thank the staff for the service provided

3. You said as the coffin is lowered you see bare brick wall.

We Did

1. New flower arrangements have been organised

2. We passed your thanks onto the staff.

3. The interior of the catafalque has been painted to resolve this.

We Asked

Should the Council should introduce an Additional Licensing scheme for all Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) in Selly Oak ward?

You Said

Landlords were generally against the proposal, since they feel that the Council have sufficient existing powers to deal with rogue landlords in the area.

Residents were in favour of licensing all HMOs, since they see Additional Licensing as a way of improving the standard of management of HMOs in the area.

Tenants felt that the Council already have sufficient powers to deal with the problems in the area, and were concerned that the cost of any Additional Licensing scheme might be passed on through increased rents.

We Did

We are currently analysing the responses received, and will report the findings to the Cabinet Member - Housing and Homes.

The Government have recently consulted on a proposal to extend the Mandatory Licensing of HMOs, which may bring into the licensing regime some of the HMOs in Selly Oak ward that are not currently licensable.