Updates on three Council of the Future (CotF) projects were presented to the Chief Executive, Heads of Service and elected members earlier this month (January).
At a meeting of the CotF Board, held in the Municipal Buildings, information given on Closer to Home, Smart Working, Smart Travel, and Advice Hubs kept Board members abreast of achievements so far and next steps.
Lesley James, Senior Service Manager, Social Work, laid down the key objectives of the Closer to Home strategy, which is projected to provide a net saving of £3.4m to the Council by 2023. At its heart, the strategy looks to shift the balance of care from residential to community based options, focusing on early intervention and prevention across Children’s Services.
Information on Smart Working, Smart Travel was then provided by Fleet Manager, Pat Taggart, who highlighted how pool cars were helping the Council reduce business mileage claims. He also noted that employees were being encouraged to initially consider greener options, such as talking on the phone, before deciding to drive; and if driving was necessary that a pool car should be used if available.
Sally Buchanan, Fairer Falkirk Manager, provided the final presentation, giving an update on the development of Advice Hubs in Grangemouth and Denny and progress on the establishment of a Central Hub in Falkirk. She explained how replacing eight One Stop Shops with three Advice Hubs and outreach in community locations promoted self-service options that freed-up adviser’s time to focus on helping people in or at risk of poverty.
The next meeting of the Board, which was set up to prioritise, monitor and ensure progress of key transformational projects and hold lead officers to account, will take place on March 5th.