maidstone.gov.uk

Your Councillors


Communities, Housing & Environment

17 APRIL 2018

 

Public Realm CCTV Service Update

 

Final Decision-Maker

Communities, Housing and Environment

Lead Head of Service/Lead Director

John Littlemore – Head of Housing and Communities

Lead Officer and Report Author

Matt Roberts – Community Partnerships & Resilience Manager

Classification

Public

Wards affected

All

 

Executive Summary

 

This report provides members with an update on the tendering process that was due to begin in January which has been delayed due to the impact of the flooding which occurred in the Town Hall and asks members to approve a merged desk arrangement in order to achieve part of the saving required by the medium term financial strategy.

 

 

This report makes the following recommendations to this Committee:

 

1.        That the Committee agrees that Option 2 as outlined in paragraph 6.2 is implemented by the Head of Housing & Community Services.

 

 

 

Timetable

Meeting

Date

Communities, Housing & Environment Committee

17 April 2018


201


Public Realm CCTV Service Update

 

1.      INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

 

1.1        On the 14 November 2017 the Communities, Housing and Environment Committee agreed for the Retendering for the CCTV Service for a new 5-year term be implemented by the Head of Housing and Community Services.

 

1.2        It has not been possible to implement this retendering due to the impact of flooding which occurred in the basement of the town hall.

 

2            TOWN HALL FLOODING

 

2.1        Late in the afternoon on Friday 15th December 2017 we received an alert from Medway Commercial Group (MCG) to say that there appeared to be a puddle of water in the control room in the basement of the Town Hall. Upon carrying out an inspection it was found that a large quantity of water had entered the basement through the floor and that the water level was rising.

 

2.2        The Property Services Team were notified and in turn Southeast Water were asked to carry out an emergency inspection to try and identify where the water was coming from, an engineer carried out a test of the water and concluded that it was not mains water due to a lack of chlorine.

 

2.3        As a result of the rising water the CCTV systems in the town hall had to be switched off to prevent the water from becoming electrified and the equipment becoming a hazard. It was not possible to locate the source of the water and moving the equipment was not an option due to it being fixed in place so things were left and monitored over the weekend.

 

2.4        The following week a temporary sump was dug and a pump installed to begin taking out the water. The water had severely damaged most of the CCTV equipment, knocking out the camera system entirely. A decision was taken to put a solution into place in order to get the system back up to provide CCTV coverage in time for the Christmas and New Year period, this was at a cost of £14,500. This is due to be recovered through an insurance claim.

 

2.5        MBC commissioned SLR Consulting Ltd to conduct a hydrology assessment, including sampling and analysis of the water egress into the basement. This has found that the water is coming from a mains source, a copy of this report has been given to Southeast Water and we are currently awaiting a response.

 

4.         CCTV CONSULTANT

 

4.1        The water is still coming up through the floor and while it is under control there is still water on the floor and should the pump fail or the water increase the equipment will be damaged and the system knocked out again. This has highlighted the need to relocate the equipment from the basement of the Town Hall and deal with the risk to the system before a tendering process can be undertaken.

 

4.2        Relocating the equipment to the IT Server Room in Maidstone House is currently being explored and is the preferred option. This would provide the air-conditioning and Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) needed without additional cost to the Council in providing this equipment in an alternative location.

 

4.3        Global MSC Security have been commissioned to undertake a review of our existing CCTV equipment and provide costed options to relocate the equipment and upgrade the system to both future proof and make savings, for example a wireless telemetry system could be provided at a capital cost which in turns saves money by reducing, or removing complete, the need to use BT fibre and thus saving the year revenue cost for the fibre used currently.

 

4.4        Swale Borough Council are undertaking a similar review, as part of the shared IT services arrangement the recording equipment for both Authorities could be housed at Maidstone House and result in savings for both Authorities.

 

4.5        Once the consultant has finished the review a report will be provided to CHE Committee with costed options and ask for a decision on implementing a preferred option.

 

5            CCTV PARTNERSHIP

 

5.1        While the report to CHE Committee in November 2017 explained that MCG were unable to provide a solution that would achieve the savings envisaged by the Council’s MTFS the situation created by the flooding means that we need to address the risk to the system before entering into a tendering exercise to reduce the hours of monitoring.

 

5.2        An alternative model was proposed by MCG that continues to provide 24 hour monitoring but through a shared desk arrangement. This would result in a reduced cost of £156,747, giving MBC annual savings of £75,688. However, to achieve this new operational model would require the Council to cover the cost of the new infrastructure, which is in the region of £25,000.

 

 

6            AVAILABLE OPTIONS

 

6.1        Option 1. Do nothing, this is not recommended as the situation in the basement of the Town Hall is precarious and savings need to be achieved in order to meet the medium term financial strategy.

6.2        Option 2. Accept MCG’s proposal for a merged desk approach as outlined in section 5.2 above and extend the CCTV Partnership Agreement for a further year. If the Committee gives its approval, then this would go forward in 2018/19.

 

6.3        While this option does not achieve the total amount of saving identified in the MTFS it does provide a saving until the consultant has finished reviewing the options for the service and a further report can be presented to Members.

 

 

 

7            PREFERRED OPTION AND REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATIONS

 

7.1        Option 2 is the preferred option; it provides for some stability in the running of the service and provides a proportion of the savings needed.

 

7.2      Negotiations will continue with MCG to identify whether an alternative   
 delivery model could be provided through the existing partnership on new
 terms that is able to deliver the remainder of the savings needed while we
 
 explore the relocation of the system in to Maidstone House.

 

8            NEXT STEPS: COMMUNICATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DECISION

 

8.1        The previous 5 year contract expired on 31 March 2017 and a clause within the agreement to proceed with an annual rolling agreement was triggered by all of the Local Authority Partners.

 

8.2        An extension to the current rolling agreement is required for an additional period of between 6 and 12 months. This proposal will need to be communicated to our partners and MCG, together with a newly drafted agreement.

 

 

 

9            RISK

 

8.1    There is a risk that if the preferred recommendation in the report is not followed the saving identified in the MTFS will not be achieved.

 

 

 

10     CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES AND IMPLICATIONS

 

Issue

Implications

Sign-off

Impact on Corporate Priorities

Impact on Corporate objectives were reviewed in the previous report and no empirical evidence exits to demonstrate that the reduction in monitoring hours would have a detrimental impact on keeping Maidstone a clean and safe place.

 

Head of Housing & Community Services

Risk Management

Included within the report

Head of Housing & Community Services

Financial

 

£150,000 of savings are included in the Medium Term Financial Strategy for the CCTV service.  The recommended option sets out a route for delivering these savings.

Section 151 Officer

Staffing

 

 

 

Legal

A new agreement is required should the current agreement need to be extended

 

Privacy and Data Protection

 

 

Equalities

 

[Policy & Information Manager]

Crime and Disorder

Contained within the report

Head of Housing & Community Services

Procurement

 

 

 

11      REPORT APPENDICES

 

None.

 

 

12      BACKGROUND PAPERS

 

Decommissioning Part of the Public Realm CCTV Service - CHE Committee 14 November 2017

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