Posted on 11/05/2021

Whilst the Global Covid19 Pandemic affected so many lives since hitting the UK at the beginning of 2020, it was inevitable this would have an impact on the services that are provided from Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and therefore Scrutiny would continue to play a pivotal role to ensure the excellent services provided by the Authority continued in a way that kept our residents and staff safe.

Although challenging on many levels, the pandemic has demonstrated that scrutiny in RCTCBC is more resilient than we had previously appreciated and can be delivered with a level of flexibility which had not previously been realised.

During the year, we considered the impact the pandemic had on the recycling collections and rates throughout the Borough and if the service delivered had affected our residents. We heard of the commitment of all our staff, in particular the collection crews who faced additional pressures whilst working in reduced numbers due to social distancing measures, staff shielding and staff being deployed to other frontline business critical services. The crew were also responsible for sanitising their vehicles on a daily basis. In spite of the additional pressures faced by staff we heard how the Authority were still achieving over and above targets set by Welsh Government and down just 0.5% on the same period last year. We concluded this to be a true testament to the hard work and commitment of not just our staff but also our residents.

The Committee also welcomed the opportunity to Pre-Scrutinise the proposed Extension and Variation to RCTCBC’s Dog Control Public Spaces Protection Orders. We heard that dog fouling remains a significant and serious health concern for the Council and residents, particularly for our children with a minority of dog owners who unfortunately do not clean up after their dogs, and some that fail to keep them under control.

We therefore considered the outcomes of a public consultation exercise and supported the extension for a further three year period the two Public Spaces Protection Orders relating to dog controls in Rhondda Cynon Taf (the Dog Control PSPO’s) which would have expired on 30th September 2020

The Committee encouraged further collaborative working with Town and Community Councils to ensure that all areas of concern could be included in the PSPOs and thus strengthening further our collaborative approach to working with Community Councils. Members also recommended that the Authority work closely with schools to educate our Children and Young People on the importance of being a responsible dog owner and understand the potential health risks of not clearing dog waste.

As ever, we will continue our vital role as the Council’s Public Service Delivery, Communities and Prosperity Scrutiny Committee, focussing on issues which effect local communities and issues that really matter to the residents we represent.

Posted on 11/05/2021