County Report August 2014

peterhudsonfrom County Councillor Peter Hudson

Willingham & Longstanton’s County Councillor gives his second report on County Council business during the last month.

Local Highway Improvements

Held a meeting with Steve Dighton head of the Local Highways Project Team, about the applications for Local Highway Improvements as mentioned in last month’s report.

One application is allowed per year. However, other organisations within the parish may also submit a bid as well as the PC. Those applicants that are prepared to provide more than the required 10% will be looked upon favourably! (20% is a good bench mark). The PC can, if it so chooses, also pay the %cost for that application as well as its own….However, a third party can also supply the funds, i.e. if any local businesses wish to support the local community……….

Timeline is as follows:
Sept 12 – applications need to be submitted by this date to local.projects@cambridgeshire.gov.uk
Oct – Member panel sits at Whittlesford to consider bids. Applicants welcome to address and give any presentation to the panel in support of their bid.
Jan 20th 2014 – Applications sent forward by the panel to be considered and ratified by the Highways Committee at Shire Hall. Meeting starts at 10.00a.m.

The project team will be happy to speak to and advise any council/organisation on their applications.
Steve.dighton@cambridgeshire.gov.uk
Steve.thulborn@cambridgeshire.gov.uk (Steve Thulborn is the project engineer for South Cambs for this scheme.)
Area highways team – 0345 045 5242

It must be noted that any highway improvement which includes changes to the public highway that will require police enforcement, i.e. changes to speed limit, will need informal consultation prior to the submission. This consultation will be via Derek Crosby, Traffic Management Officer Cambs Police.(Derek.crosby@cambs.pnn.police.uk – 01480 422458)

Council says report proves Cambridge is open for business

A report that puts Cambridge at the top of the league for small businesses has been welcomed by Cambridgeshire County Council. The Centre for Cities’ annual Small Business Outlook ranks Cambridge number one when it comes to competing on quality rather than price, being innovative, investing in training and generally doing a good job.

Local County Councillor Peter Hudson, said: “We welcome the report which confirms what we have been saying about how successful an area this is and how vital our local economy is to the national one. It also confirms that the business friendly approach we and our partners have been taking is benefiting business and so helping to create jobs and economic prosperity. We, along with partners, have now signed the Greater Cambridge City Deal which will further help business and the communities we serve as well as promote growth in the local and national interest.

“Cities with the largest share of SMEs using high-growth strategies have wages that are, on average, 18 per cent higher than the bottom five cities. Firms that adopted higher growth strategies are less likely to have taken cost-cutting approaches – such as implementing redundancies – during the recession, and are now more likely to be actively recruiting and expanding their businesses in the recovery. “It is only through ensuring cities are attractive and effective places to live, work and do business that we will encourage more small firms across the country to pursue the high-growth strategies that have delivered such positive results.”

Cambridge Science Park Station – Start of work for the busway link

Cambridge Science Park Station will be a new railway station in the north of Cambridge, close to the Science Park, St John’s Innovation Centre and Cambridge Business Park. Planning permission has now been granted to build the new railway station, a direct bus link from the Busway to the station and foot and cycleways to nearby roads.

The station itself and the infrastructure in the station area (including car parks, cycle parking and bus stops) will be built by Network Rail. Cambridgeshire County Council will build the transport links to the station, including a new Busway from Milton Road and pedestrian and cycle links. The map shows the location of the new busway and station area.

The new Busway will link the existing Busway from Milton Road to the new station. This will be a bus only road with guided sections at the entrance and exit. As with the existing Busway, there will also be a track alongside it, which can be used by cyclists and pedestrians. Buses will be able to cross straight over Milton Road.

What is happening now?

  • Construction of the Busway link to the new railway station is due to start in July 2014.
  • Most of the work will take place away from public roads. However, the existing junction with the Busway on Milton Road needs to be altered to enable buses to cross straight over Milton Road.
  • From 1st July contractors will start preparation works on Milton Road at the junction with the Busway. To minimise disruption to traffic, these early works will take place over five nights from 9pm to 6am. Throughout construction noise will be kept to a minimum.
  • From mid-July the works will start in earnest and road works will take place during the day. Milton Road will always be open for two-way traffic during the road works. Cones and barriers will be used to create a safe working area and road traffic might be diverted on to the bus lanes. Access to the construction site will be via Cowley Road and the future station area.
  • During construction the cycleway underpass alongside Milton Road will need to be closed for safety reasons, between Cambridge Business Park and Dencora Business Centre.
  • Cyclists will still be able use the cycleway on the other side of Milton Road. Traffic lights for crossing Milton Road are near the junctions with Lovell Road and Cowley Road.
  • Further information and updates on the scheme is available online at: www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/scienceparkstation

Better Care Fund update

The Better Care Fund (BCF) was announced in June 2013 with the aim of providing a single pooled budget to support health and social care services to work more closely together in local areas. The fund will represent £37.7m in Cambridgeshire but is not new money, but rather a re-organisation of existing funding that is currently used to provide health, social care and housing services in the county.

Cambridgeshire’s initial plans for the Better Care Fund were submitted to Government by the County Council and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group in April 2014. Because the Cambridgeshire CCG area has the status of a ‘challenged health economy’ we have been advised that Government will expect to undertake additional assurance work before approving the Cambridgeshire plan.

In July 2014 the Department of Health announced that the BCF will have a specific focus on reducing admissions to hospital accident and emergency departments.  The Department of Health have linked around a quarter of the BCF funding to the achievement of a set minimum target of a 3.5% reduction in these admissions, with the money only transferring from acute budgets if this is achieved. This performance pot therefore reduces the value of the confirmed pooled BCF budget by around 25%.

As we continue to develop our BCF plans an outline operating model for a new and more integrated health and social care system was considered at the July meeting of the Health and Wellbeing Board before being consulted on more widely. A new group, the Cambridgeshire Executive Partnership Board (CEPB) will oversee change across the health and social care system and the further development of specific proposals for the use of the budget which will include both existing activity and new schemes.  Further national BCF guidance is expected in the next few weeks and all local areas will be required to resubmit updated plans to Government later this year.

Transforming Lives update

Following the endorsement by the Council’s Adults Committee of the Transforming Lives approach, the first event for Stakeholders and Partners took place on 24th June. The event was an opportunity for strategic partners from health, the voluntary and community sector, district councils and care providers to come together to begin a conversation about Transforming Lives. It was a really positive event and a strong commitment to collaborative working on the Transforming Lives project was evident through discussions and the contributions and expertise of all partners were recognised.

The Council’s commitment to collaborative working on Transforming Lives was reiterated and it was acknowledged that this is a large piece of work that cannot be undertaken in isolation. It was agreed that a workshop for stakeholders and partners would be held in the near future which would focus on further development of how information and advice, prevention, early identification and intervention can work in practice, principles which have been identified as tier one in the transforming lives model.

Update on primary aged permanently excluded children

There has been a large number of primary aged children who have been permanently excluded from school this academic year. An initial analysis has not found a pattern or any one factor that accounts for this increase. Discussions have taken place with schools to identify gaps in services and the support that schools need to deal with very difficult and demanding situations resulting from the extreme challenging behaviour of some children.

A working group has been convened to look at ways forward, including working together to help ensure that children who present with very challenging and complex issues stay in school and in the event that they are excluded, how the systems and support arrangements ensure a timely and successful reintegration back into school. Membership of the group includes representation from schools.

Homecare apprenticeship programme

The homecare apprenticeship programme ended on the 27 June, having established 71 apprenticeships. Currently 41 apprenticeships are in progress with an additional 30 people who have either withdrawn from the scheme or been withdrawn from the project. The project has also delivered 8 work-based academies over the County with a total of 50 job seekers either completed or in progress to complete their Level 1 Award in Preparing to Work in Adult Social Care.

The County Council gained support from 16 commissioned homecare providers and a total of 21 teams supporting the programme within those organisations. These teams have provided placements to potential apprentices and offered interviews for employment as an apprentice. Throughout this project, the County Council has created good partnerships with homecare providers, job centre plus and Health Education East of England to make this project a success. In doing so, we have also gained a better understanding of the recruitment and retention issues within the homecare sector. An external evaluation of the programme is currently taking place and will be completed in August 2014.

Health Related Behaviour (HRB) Survey 2014

The Children Families and Adults Directorate have agreed to fund this Survey in 2014 to enable all secondary schools and all primary schools to participate. The Secondary Survey has been completed by all year 8 and year 10 pupils across Cambridgeshire every other year since 2004 (9,000 young people in 2012) providing a rich and unique source of data on the health and well-being needs of young people. This year will be the first opportunity for all year 6 pupils in Cambridgeshire primary schools to participate. The data, when compiled on a county-wide, area and locality basis is used to inform the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) for children and young people and to support strategic planning and identification of service provision /needs. Locality teams use the data to support discussions with schools on needs in the school and local community.

A series of reports are also produced on the health related behaviour of children and young people in vulnerable circumstances (for example free school meals, young carers, ethnic minorities, LBGT, disability). At school level, the data supports school self-evaluation, provides an agenda for pupil voice work, informs curriculum planning and identifies whole school priorities to promote pupil wellbeing. This year individual school reports will link school data to Ofsted expectations.

Adult support drop-ins July to September 2014 dates

The July to September dates and locations for the council’s adult support drop-in events have been released. These events provide free and confidential information and advice to adults living with a long-term illness or disability, older people struggling with an age-related condition, and anyone providing unpaid support to adult family members or friends who could not manage without this help. Each drop-in session will include information and advice about the support that may be available and an opportunity for carers to book a one-to-one advice session and/or a carers assessment.

The full list of events and full details can be found on Cambridgeshire.net at this link.

Safeguarding Adults and Mental Capacity Act Newsletter

The first newsletter from the Adults Safeguarding Board has been published.

The newsletter is not just aimed at Adult Safeguarding Leads but all people who work with or support vulnerable adults including family carers and those people who use services. It provides updates and information about current topics relating to Safeguarding Adults, The Mental Capacity Act, and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards.

Cambridgeshire Insight

Cambridgeshire Insight is a shared research knowledge base that allows users an efficient easy way to access data, share intelligence and find reports.  It contains a wealth of local information on socio-demographic and economic themes and includes the Cambridgeshire Atlases (http://www.cambridgeshireinsight.org.uk/interactive-maps), a data visualisation tool that allows users to view interactive atlases, area profiles or key indicators, and the Cambridgeshire Profiles (http://www.cambridgeshireinsight.org.uk/cambsprofiles), a set of linked web pages that provide a clear, accessible view of local data on an area-by-area or theme-by-theme basis. The Cambridgeshire Insight website is currently in development and is very much a partnership driven initiative.

Cambridgeshire’s Integrated Sexual Health Services contract awarded

The Integrated Sexual Health Services contract has been awarded to Cambridgeshire Community Services (CCS). The new Service is scheduled to commence on October 1st 2014. The aim of the procurement was to provide the opportunity to re-design and improve sexual health services in Cambridgeshire. The key aims were to integrate the provision of sexual health and contraception services in the community, increase accessibility especially for hard to reach high risk populations, and to address inequities of service provision and health inequalities. CCS has a strong track record of delivering community sexual health services and has also secured contracts for these services in Peterborough, Luton and Suffolk. For this contract CCS is collaborating with the Terence Higgins Trust (THT) and will benefit from THT’s experience of undertaking outreach work with hard to reach populations. This will complement existing preventive work carried out by the local voluntary organisation DHIVERSE.

Older People’s Mental Health

The joint strategic needs assessment reviews the mental health needs of older people in Cambridgeshire, with a particular focus on dementia and depression.

Primary Prevention of Ill Health in Older People

Cambridgeshire has an ageing population, and there are opportunities to maximise the potential for residents to enjoy good health and well-being throughout their lives, and ensure that local communities benefit from the vast assets of the older population. This JSNA focuses on modifiable lifestyle behaviours, for which there are clear associations with poor health outcomes and opportunities to take a preventative approach: active ageing and physical activity, maintaining a healthy diet (including preventing malnutrition), and stopping smoking.

Nomination for a Young Carers award

Jamie Webb, a Consultant Social Workers in Children’s Social Care has been nominated for Young Carers Award by a young person who stated: ‘She helped me understand things and she took the time to get to know me and what I am about. She also listened to me when no-one else would.

To give your points of view on any of these issues, contact me by email at: p-hudson@hotmail.co.uk

As Your County Councillor I welcome hearing from you on these and/or any other issues that affect our community.”

County Councillor Peter Hudson

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