The second progress update has been prepared for the Birmingham Independent Improvement Panel. This sets out the city council’s progress in responding to recommendations made by Lord Kerslake’s report and provides an update on the organisation-wide change programme ‘Future Council’.
The Independent Improvement Panel will hold its next public meeting on 11 September. Council leader Sir Albert Bore, deputy leader Ian Ward and chief executive Mark Rogers will respond to questions from the panel and public, along with opposition leaders Cllrs Robert Alden and Paul Tilsley.
Sir Albert Bore, leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “We have been working hard to make significant and sustainable progress at speed over the summer. Although it has been necessary to focus on change within the organisation, residents and our partners will also start to see improvements in the way we communicate and engage with them.
“One of the key challenges mentioned by Lord Kerslake’s report is the way we work with others and we are absolutely committed to working constructively with partners in setting up the combined authority and ‘Birmingham Partners’; we have not sought to take control but have worked collaboratively and supportively. Where we have taken the lead this has been at the behest of others.
“The political will to change remains strong and we are working harder and smarter to deliver the new type of local government the city needs and deserves. We will continue to work together to ensure we provide the best possible services for all our citizens, secure increased powers and funding for the region and improved community governance.”
Chief Executive Mark Rogers said: “I am pleased the panel has recognised the progress we have made in the last couple of months in terms of delivering the first stages of the Future Council programme. Both Lord Kerslake’s report and communications from the panel have been clear on the need for the council to change its culture, specifically around being more open and outward-facing, and we are seeing progress.
“The council is increasing its strategic capacity; additional funding from central government has made it possible to recruit at a faster pace and move the programme forward significantly.
“It is also vital that we communicate what we are doing to residents, partners and stakeholders and we therefore have a clear and targeted strategy for engaging with all these groups. We know our residents and partners are proud of Birmingham and we are determined to give them full confidence and trust in our organisation.”
For those unable to attend the meeting the council will be producing a live webcast: http://www.birmingham.public-i.tv/core/portal/home