'Engaging with our communities and maintaining the quality of the place in which they live'
Portfolio holder, Councillor David Russell
Portfolio holder introduction
The People and Places Portfolio brings the community together with the place that they live in, ensuring access to services and a safe and clean environment.
It recognises the importance of engagement and communication to provide information and seek the views of residents, listening to their needs.
The work to modernise service delivery in response to customers' changing needs and digital demands remains a key focus.
Moving towards 24-hour access to online services, and using technology to enhance our service delivery, will be an important element of this.
The upkeep and maintenance of our trees and open spaces and the cleanliness of our streets is central to the quality of the place in which we live, and we will continue to deliver these services to ensure this remains the case.
Understanding and working with our communities has never been more important and we are committed to meaningful engagement with town and parish councils and the voluntary sector to deliver sustainable support, with continued support for the district's arts and cultural heritage.
Our priorities are:
- putting residents at the centre of what we do and how we do it
- modernising customer services and responding to changing needs
- engaging with partners and the community to inform and contribute towards wider outcomes
- ensuring our open space is clean, accessible, and well maintained, and contributes to the sustainable and natural environment of the New Forest
- supporting the arts and cultural heritage of the New Forest
Our key activities are:
- continue to upgrade the back-office systems in preparation for enhanced website functionality designed around the customer
- understand and respond to residents' demand and expectations in the delivery of customer services
- provide grant funding to community groups and charitable organisations in support of the council's objectives in the community
- continued engagement with town and parish councils
- respond to future environmental, social and pest/disease challenges through the tree strategy
- work with partners on initiatives to reduce the levels of littering and fly tipping
- continue to provide more land to meet the demand for burial space
- work with the Arts Council as one of their identified Priority Places to support the creative and cultural potential of the area
Action plan and achievement measures
This plan of specific actions that will directly contribute towards the delivery of the priorities within each portfolio.
These actions will be refreshed annually to keep them up to date.
Achievement indicators for each portfolio have been identified to help monitor progress against the delivery of the priorities and provide tangible measures of success.
Progress updates on specific actions and achievement indicators will be reported to the relevant overview and scrutiny panel during the year.
Specific actions are:
- annual awarding of community grants
- working with others, develop a community strategy that aims to embed sustainable outcomes
- respond to changing customer needs through the Customer Task and Finish Group review of face to face, telephone and online service delivery
- develop a grass strategy, designed to support biodiversity
- monitoring of tree strategy, in response to future challenges
- working with a task and finish group to develop a litter policy
- work with partners on initiative such as 'Operation Wolf' as part of fly tipping enforcement and continue to promote behavioural change on littering
- support creative and cultural potential of the area, reporting back to panel on initiatives in line with the Arts Council's Priority Places
Achievement indicators are:
- % of standard fly tipping incidents responded to within 24hrs (%)
- % of specialist fly tipping incidents responded to within 3 days (%)
- number of trees removed from New Forest District Council land (Number)
- number of trees planted on New Forest District Council land (Number)
- website optimisations resulting in an improved customer experience (Number)
- website accessibility (%)
- increase in subscribers to resident's email (Number)
- average customer satisfaction rating of resident's email (%)