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Agenda item

Recovery Update

Report by the Chief Executive – Terence Herbert.

Minutes:

Questions had been received from Mr Ben Pilley in relation to the Climate Emergency and Mr Chris Caswill in relation to the Climate Strategy, Health Scrutiny and Public Health Care Homes. Responses had been provided in the Agenda Supplement.

 

In response to supplementary questions from Chris Caswill, Cllr Clewer advised that whilst the Climate Task Group had not finalised a report, the council had taken action straight away following declaration of a climate emergency, investing £1.5m to improve the council’s buildings and taken additional steps since. In response to questions about care home testing it was confirmed officers were working closely with care homes to support all to implement testing, and that the test and trace system was a responsibility of national rather than local government.

 

Terence Herbert, Chief Executive, advised in response to a question from Cllr Grant that a Task Group was being formed to support the community following the Dyson announcements and Dyson had confirmed the current situation does not affect their wider growth plans.

 

Cllr Graham Wright, Chair of the Wiltshire COVID-19 Response Task Group, updated on the Task Group meeting of the 12th August and the report presented to the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee. Cllr Wright also updated on the Climate Change Task Group and confirmed the Task Group was considering a significant amount of evidence to form recommendations in due course.

 

The Leader introduced the report which provided a further update on Wiltshire Council’s response to the pandemic and its plans for recovery, thanking local residents for their commitment to keeping their communities safe.

 

Terence Herbert, Chief Executive, advised the Council was working in a systems approach to recovery, sharing learning with partners and other authorities, and this approach was proving effective. Other key updates included that work with care homes was on-going and testing had been rolled out and prioritised where necessary. The Chief Executive also advised that Local Outbreak Management Plans were in place and exercises had been developed. It was also noted the council’s climate strategy would feature into recovery plans. At present, a key priority for the council was supporting schools to prepare for return in September and public health officers were monitoring the Covid-19 situation in Devizes closely.

 

In response to questions from councillors, the meeting heard the council was expecting a full opening of schools, and schools had successfully developed plans to ensure the health of pupils in line with government advice. The Leader confirmed the governance of the council had not changed and decisions would continue be made in the proper way and involving all members in recovery. Area Boards would be key to recovery, and plans were currently under way for a Wiltshire Assembly.

 

Comments arising from the discussion included that contingency plans were place for schools in response to local outbreaks and the council wanted parents to feel confident to get their children back to school. The Council was preparing additional support for school transport. In relation to the recovery of Trowbridge town centre, it was noted parking/access arrangements would be included in the Trowbridge Future High Street project. Cllr Clewer invited Cllr Oldrieve to submit ideas around local tree planting schemes, following a discussion of how this linked to the climate agenda.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the government’s new Contain framework and additional enforcement powers available to Wiltshire Council;

 

To note the additional chapter to the government’s Roadmap to Recovery and associated timescales;

 

To note the work underway within the four Recovery Coordinating Group themes and on organisation recovery.

 

Reason:

 

Implementation of the multi-agency Recovery Coordinating Group’s Recovery

Plan is successfully underway. Wiltshire Council continues to work closely with partners to deliver this in a rapidly changing environment.

 

 

Supporting documents:

 

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