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ILF Scotland - Minute of Board Meeting - 30 April 2019

Type of document: Board Reporting
ILF Scotland - Minute of Board Meeting - 30 April 2019 cover image

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Published: April 30, 2019

APPROVED

Independent Living Fund Scotland: Board Meeting

Fleming B, Atlantic Quay, 5 Broomielaw, Glasgow

Tuesday 30th April 2019 11:00am – 2:45pm

Present

Susan Douglas-Scott CBE                     Chair, Board Director

Liz Humphreys                                      Vice Chair, Board Director

Alan Dickson                                         Board Director

Mark Adderley                                       Board Director

Betty McAtear                                       Board Director

Fiona O’Donnell                                    Board Director

In Attendance

Peter Scott                                           CEO

Colin Dunlop                                         Sponsorship Manager, Northern Ireland

Harvey Tilley                                           Chief Operating Officer

Jim Maguire                                          Finance Director

Holly Child                                            Communications Manager (from 11am-11:30am)

Linda Scott                                           Head of Policy

Aileen McNiven                                        Executive Business Manager (Secretariat)

Welcome, declarations of interest and apologies

The Chair welcomed everyone to the ILF Scotland Board meeting, introducing and welcoming Holly Child, Communications Manager and Colin Dunlop, Sponsorship Manager, Northern Ireland.

Apologies

None

Declaration of Interest

Mark Adderley (Mark) updated his Declaration of Interests. Mark has joined the Board of Calderdale & Huddersfield Solutions Ltd.

No additional Declarations of Interest received out with Declaration of Interest Register.

Chairs Introductory Remarks

Susan Douglas-Scott (Susan) opened the meeting with an up to date summary of recent work completed, stating it has continued to be a busy year for ILF Scotland with the following noted :-

  • ILF Scotland reached £200m of 2015 Fund award payments on week commencing 29th April 2019 and almost 1000 Transition Fund application submissions. 
  • The organisation is increasingly stretched, as a result of the increasing complexity of the 2015 Fund coupled with the growing Transition Fund. 
  • Previously reported optimism about further reform of Available Income contributions has not been realised.  ILF Scotland continue to make robust representations to Government about the urgent need for reform. This issue was discussed with the Minister in Belfast. 
  • Discussions continue about the 2019/20 Grant-in-Aid allocation for ILF Scotland. 
  • Again, previously reported optimism about early work to address issues highlighted in the Coming Home Report have not progressed.  Work on the Programme for Government commitment to explore a new national scheme has also not progressed. A highly successful two days with our Scottish and Northern Ireland Stakeholder groups in Belfast was held at the beginning of April.  Joe Fitzpatrick, Scotland’s Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing attended on the 1st day, raising awareness of ILF Scotland. Peter has also been invited to join the Adult Social Care Reform Leadership Alliance where it is hoped that consideration to the above will be part of the conversation.

Susan directed the Board to the Quarterly Corporate Report for further detail and additional workstreams.

Susan invited Holly Child (Holly) to present the successful ‘#trysomethingnew’ campaign, designed to raise awareness of the Transition Fund (TF).

The Board were pleased to learn of the clear success of the campaign, and appreciated hearing such positive stories from our TF grant recipients and the clear difference the awards are making to so many young people’s lives. Questions were taken from the Board with particular interest in how results were measured.

Susan thanked Holly and the wider team for the hard work, perseverance and the transformation this campaign has made to hundreds of youngsters whose positive outcomes were strongly portrayed throughout the presentation.

The Board wished Holly and the team good luck with the two awards they have been short listed in:

  • Shortlisted for the Edinburgh Chamber  of Commerce Awards in the Digital Marketing category.
  • Shortlisted for the Public Relations & Communications DARE awards for Best Public Sector Campaign in Scotland.

Holly left the meeting.

1.   Minutes of Previous Meeting

The ILF Scotland Board approved the Board Minute of 29th January 2019 as an accurate account of the meeting.

2.   Matters Arising

 (BD 29 Jan 2019 - Action 3): Letter of appointment.

ACTION 1: Peter Scott (Peter) to chase correctly dated ‘Letter or Re-appointment to the Board’ for Betty McAtear (Betty).

 (BD 29 Jan 2019 – Action 4):

The Board noted the outstanding and overdue Framework Agreement and SLA sign-off. Both agreements were submitted to the office of the Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing following the previous Board meeting in January 2019. The Board will keep under review at the next meeting.

 (BD 30 October 2018 - Board Director Recruitment Update)

Susan furnished the Board Directors with the new Board Director Recruitment schedule and updated with the criteria and process.

ACTION 2: Peter to investigate the possibility of amending the Articles of Association to facilitate recruitment of Directors who have lived experience of disability. 

3.   Annual Corporate Report & Business Plan

3.1 Annual Corporate Report- Refer to paper 2

Peter spoke at length to the Annual Corporate Report highlighting many items including the following:

Policy 4 (Available Income)

Following confirmed commitment in principle from the Scottish Government (SG) for further reform of Policy 4 and raised expectations of the Board, recipients and stakeholders, Peter reported that further reform has not yet received ministerial sign-off. The latest policy reform proposal was submitted in December 2018, and was subsequently amended in February 2019.  It proposed reduction of the Available Income cap from £83.00 to a maximum of £50.  Despite ILF Scotland evidencing affordability within existing allocations (based on 2015 award funding of £47.2m), approval has not yet been given. The Board noted SG have indicated that 2015 award allocation will be reduced below the budgeted amount, which would make this reform unaffordable. Further detailed and lengthy discussion ensued.

The Board demonstrated a unanimous disappointment that the recipients who need this financial support will endure further financial hardship.

The Board requested Susan write to Joe Fitzpatrick to request a meeting to discuss how the Board and executives report this news to the expectant recipients and stakeholders.

ACTION 3: Susan to write to Joe Fitzpatrick to request a meeting to discuss how the Board’s serious concerns regarding governance of ILF funding and its inability to deliver ILF strategy on behalf of the Scottish Government.

Northern Ireland/Scotland Stakeholder Meeting –1st/2nd April 2019

The Joint Stakeholder Meeting and the Stormont Event on the 2nd have been reported as positive and successful by both Northern Ireland Stakeholder and Scottish Stakeholder groups.

The emotive Stormont event on the 2nd April has raised the profile of ILF in Northern Ireland amongst key decision makers. This included highlighting the implications for those who do not receive ILF funding relative to the positive outcomes for those who do.

Following the 2 day event the Permanent Secretary for Health (NI) has made a positive commitment to start preparatory work to explore reopening the ILF Fund in Northern Ireland. Colin Dunlop (Colin) confirmed he has started this work and this will then be presented to NI Ministers once their Assembly is reinstated. Until this time it is not possible to make policy changes in Northern Ireland.

Susan thanked Colin and the Northern Ireland team for the support and assistance to ensure this event was delivered so successfully and for his ongoing commitment to gathering evidence to present to future Ministers.

Potential Reopening of Fund ‘New National Scheme’/ ‘Coming Home Scheme’

Peter updated the Board on the previous optimistic news of the Coming Home scheme and New National Scheme summarising it is now unlikely that either schemes will open in the near future.

However, on a more positive note, Peter has been invited to join the Adult Social Care Reform Leadership Alliance where it is hoped that consideration to the above will be part of the conversations.

Organisational Stretch

Harvey Tilley (Harvey) informed the Board of the organisational stretch across every area of business. Harvey detailed the rationale following changes in policy, annual Scottish Living Wage implementation, Transition Fund etc.

In 2015/16 there were approximately 2000 interventions with recipients in total.  However, as a result of increased complexity, SG policy changes and increasing numbers through the Transition Fund, we now have circa 5000 interventions, leading to organisational stretch.

As an already lean organisation a formal structural review is planned for later this year. This will be to ensure the organisation has the skills, experience and resource in the right areas to deliver the new strategy and the organisation is fit for purpose.

Information will be gathered and feedback submitted to the Board in due course if change required.

The Chair thanked the Executive team and full staff team for the hard work and positive outcomes over the last year.

The Board noted the Annual Corporate Report 2018/19.

3.2 Corporate Business Plan 2018/19: Paper 2a

The Board noted the Business Plan 2018/19

4.   Audit Committee Report

4.1 Draft Minute (11 March 2019) - Refer to paper 3

Alan Dickson (Alan) spoke to the paper, confirming ILF Scotland Finance and Audit & Risk procedures are in a good position to February 2019.

Alan explained the current tendering process to engage new Internal Auditors confirming the closing date of 24th May 2019.

ACTION 4: Nadeem to circulate possible dates to the Audit & Risk Committee to meet to continue the Public Contracts Scotland procurement process for new Internal Auditors.

Following the change to NDPB status, we await parliamentary approval to appoint External Auditors via Audit Scotland. The Board noted the tardiness in this process and raised concerns in this delay to have External Auditors appointed timeously.

The Board noted the Draft Minute (11 March 2019) update.

4.2 Management Accounts (February 2019) - Refer to paper 3a/3a (ii)

The Management Accounts to February 2019 were presented by Jim Maguire (Jim). Jim clarified the Management Accounts in detail.

Grant in Aid (GiA) for the financial year 2018/19 was:

  • £44,300,000 for the 2015 Fund Scotland
  • £6,850,000 for the 2015 Fund Northern Ireland
  • £4,600,000 for the Transition Fund (TF)

Grant in Aid (GiA) payments to end February 2019 was:

  • £40,322,537 for the 2015 Fund Scotland
  • £6,403,265 for the 2015 Fund Northern Ireland
  • £1,558,898 for the Transition Fund (TF)

The Board queried the option of spending the reserves (to further support our recipients) which have been returned to SG. It was confirmed that ILF Scotland has ‘no delegated authority’ to spend reserves out with current policy and without Ministerial consent.

The Board noted the Management Accounts to February 2019.

4.3 Administration Budget - Refer to paper 3b & 3b (ii)

Jim spoke to the paper and explained the salient changes to the previous paper, particularly in the Funding section on Pg. 7.

The Board discussed at length, and raised strong concerns with regard to the shortfall between funding allocated relative to budgetary requirements, and the lack of a Capital Expenditure budget from SG, despite requests for this made on a regular basis.

Although email communication has been received confirming intended Grant in Aid for 2019/20, the Board raised further strong concerns as the formal Grant in Aid Letter for 2019/20 has yet to be received.  The Board expressed collective concern over its lack of involvement in significant financial decisions affecting the company, in particular the change in funding allocations awarded relative to the published SG budget. 

Whilst recognising implications for ILF Scotland recipients and strategy, the Board accepted this in principal, but noted the governance concerns and implications for Directors’ fiduciary duties.

ACTION 5: Susan to write to Jamie MacDougall, Deputy Director Health & Social Care, to raise the Board's serious concerns regarding corporate governance, Board fiduciary duties and its inability to deliver ILF strategy on behalf of the Scottish Government."

4.4 Risk Register - Refer to paper 3c & 3c (ii)

Increased Residual Risk - 3PW: The Board again voiced concerns to the potential reputational loss should changes to inherited policies not be signed off. E.g. Available Income Policy change, now heightened by the extension of Free Personal Care to under 65s.

Liz Humphreys (Liz) highlighted that previously agreed action from Audit and Risk Committee, to record any deviation from standard low risk appetite for any individual risk, has not yet been complete.  Wording on ‘background’ section of risk register also to be amended to reflect this.

ACTION 6: Nadeem to amend the Risk Register to include an ability to reflect the flexibility of organisational Risk Appetite.

Liz suggested the residual long term risks of 1F and 3PW be aligned to reflect the relationship between the two.

ACTION 7: Nadeem to align risk 1F and 3PW to reflect the relationship between the two.

The ILF Scotland Cyber Champion (Liz) reported attendance at a recent Cyber Resilience Conference where ILF Scotland was used as an exemplar organisation in the Cyber Security area by John Swinney, Deputy First Minister of Scotland and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills.

Liz reassured the Board that ILF Scotland is well placed with good, high quality security safeguards in place, noting that it is important to ensure we continue this work and not become complacent.

The Board thanked Liz for adding value as Cyber Champion and accepted her offer to create a tailored version of the Board Tool Kit for Cyber Security Resilience.

ACTION 8: Liz to create a tailored version of the Board Tool Kit for Cyber Security Resilience.

The Board noted the Risk Registerupdate.

5.   Remuneration Committee Report

5.1     Remuneration Committee Draft Minute (11 Feb 2019) – Refer to Paper 4

Fiona O’Donnell (Fiona) referred the Board to the Draft Minute of 11 Feb 2019 and updated on the content.

5.2     Pensions Update
(Verbal)

Harvey updated on the recent invitation to ILF Scotland to join the Civil Service Pension Scheme (Alpha scheme (Defined Benefits) and Partnership Scheme (Defined Contributions)).

A project plan, using professional advisors and consulting with PCS Union representatives,   is being developed to allow staff to be consulted and advised prior to changing T&C’s and aligning to this scheme in Autumn 2019.

The Board noted the project plan will be submitted to the Remuneration Committee in advance of final approval to the Board later in the year.

Harvey thanked the Sponsor team and SPPA for their help and support to this point.

The Board noted with assurance the Pensions update.

5.3     Change of Status (Band Change) - Refer to Paper 4a

Following a lengthy 3 year process, Harvey introduced the Change of Status (Band Change) proposal, explaining the rationale and progression to ensure ILF Scotland is aligned appropriately with other Public Bodies. This proposal provides information to the ILF Scotland Sponsor team to take forward on ILF Scotland’s behalf.

The Board noted the Change of Status (Band Change) proposal to submit a business case to the Finance Pay Policy Team to change the band of public body in relation to ILF Scotland.

6.   MACC & PQQ

The Board noted that no MACC & PQQ’s had been received since the last Board meeting in January 2019.      

7.   Health & Safety Report – Refer to Paper 6

Aileen McNiven (Aileen) spoke to this paper.

The Board noted with reassurance the Health & Safety Report.

8.   Modern Slavery Statement
      (Refer to Paper)

Peter introduced this paper outlining the rationale for the statement.

Following discussion the Board approved the Modern Slavery Statement subject to ensuring all effective measures are implemented.

9. AOB

  • Strategic Plan – 2020-2023

Early work progresses in the development of the Strategic Plan 2020-2023.  The board will be fully involved with this work in due course.  In the meantime, Peter requested that Directors reflect on strategic progress to date, and consider future strategic priorities.

ACTION 9: Board Directors to consider development of Strategic Plan 2020-2023 ahead of further involvement later in the year.

  • Meeting with Mr. Jamie Hepburn, the Minister for Employability and Training

At the Family Friendly Awards event in Glasgow the Minister asked for Public Sector organisations to become Champions for Fair Work and Employment.

Peter and Harvey will meet Mr. Hepburn at the end of May to discuss how best we can support this initiative and how we can fulfil this role in an effective innovative way.

10.     Close. 

Important Board Dates:

Next Audit & Risk Meeting: 9:30am, Monday, 10th June 2019, Atlantic Quay

Next Board Meeting Date:  10:00am, Tuesday, 25th June 2019, Denholm House

Next Remuneration Committee Meeting: Monday, September 23rd 2019, Atlantic Quay

Next Board Development: Monday, September 23rd 2019, Atlantic Quay

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