Litter Enforcement and the Contractual Arrangements between Wrexham County Borough Council and Kingdom Services Group

The request was refused by Wrexham County Borough Council.

Dear Wrexham County Borough Council,

Formal Freedom of Information Request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to Wrexham County Borough Council in relation to Litter Enforcement and its Contractual Arrangements with Kingdom Services Group

1. Policy

a. Please provide a clear, unambiguous statement of policy, as should be defined within Wrexham County Borough Council’s (WCBC) Quality, Environment, Health and Safety Management System, detailing WCBC’s current approach to litter enforcement.

b. Please explain how such policy can be linked to the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

c. Under WCBC Constitution Section 3.01(b), Information:-
i. 3.01(b)(ii), please confirm the forward work programme in relation to litter enforcement, including key decision dates, both contractual and governance related, in conjunction with records of Scrutiny Committee consideration and discussion.
ii. 3.01(b)(iii)-(iv), please confirm how reports, papers and records of decisions relating to Litter Enforcement, are promulgated within the community.

2. Internal Organisation

a. In relation to WCBC’s internal working, please provide the name of the person within WCBC who is ultimately accountable for discharging WCBC’s responsibilities pertaining to litter enforcement under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

b. Please provide the roles & responsibilities of the person named in point 2a above by means of agreed job description.

c. Please provide a description, by means of an organisational structure, which details the flow of responsibilities from the Executive down to the department responsible for delivery of litter enforcement policy.

d. Please provide the name of the person within WCBC who is accountable for monitoring delivery of the contract with Kingdom Services Group Environmental Protection Division (herein noted as KS). Again, please also provide job description.

e. Please provide the number of resources available internally within the department responsible for delivery of the litter enforcement policy, including monitoring of contract delivery and collation of data from KS.

f. Please provide information regarding how internal resources are trained in the requirements of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

g. Please provide details of the frequency of internal resources’ refresher training, including any changes to legislation and guidance.

h. Please provide details of any ‘embedded’ KS employees within WCBC.

i. Please provide the name of the person accountable for management and day-to-day running of the Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) Appeals Process, indicating whether said person is an internal resource or KS employee.

j. Please provide the name of the person accountable for sending out FPNs to an ‘offender’ if not received in hand at the time of the offence, indicating whether said person is an internal resource of KS employee.

k. Please provide the name of the person accountable for notifying ‘offenders’ of court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid, indicating whether said person is an internal resource of KS employee.

l. Please provide the name of the person accountable for sending court verdict, fine and costs to an ‘offender’.

m. Please provide details of any cross-county working groups within both North Wales & beyond that WCBC is involved in, in the spirit of sharing of good practice and consistency between enforcement strategies deployed by each County Council.

n. Please provide details and frequency of meetings between the department responsible for delivery of the WCBC litter enforcement policy and the Wrexham Town and Community Councils.

o. Please provide minutes from the meetings defined in 2k above, for the last 5 calendar years.

3. Contractual Arrangements & Working Procedures

a. Please provide a copy of the contract between WCBC and KS.

b. In relation to the contract between WCBC and KS, please provide the percentage WCBC receives for each FPN issued by KS.

c. Please provide the name of the person within KS who is responsible for delivery of this contract within Wrexham.

d. Please explain what governance procedures does WCBC have in place to ensure that employees of KS, contracted to WCBC (the authority) are compliant with guidelines issued by the UK Government for Issuing Fixed Penalty Notices (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 15th February 2017 guidance).

e. If WCBC does not follow the guidance described in 3d above, please confirm what guidance is followed, in the interests of good practice and consistency, and if not, why not.

f. Please confirm the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that KS are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and will further be compliant with changes in data protection legislation, ie the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2018.

g. Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that KS have received the required training in the issue of FPNs, as required under the Environmental Offences (Fixed Penalties)(Miscellaneous Provisions)(Wales) Regulations 2007.

h. In line with the WCBC’s Welsh Language Policy, please provide details of how Wrexham residents have their rights to be communicated in Welsh, when dealing with WCBC and agents acting on their behalf, protected.

i. Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that KS working on behalf of WCBC has an adequate Welsh language ability within its organisation to protect residents’ rights to be communicated to in Welsh.

j. Please provide historical details for the duration of the contract with KS, calendar month by calendar month, of how many Welsh speaking KS operatives there have been operating on behalf of WCBC.

k. Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS operatives have adequate business car insurance when carrying out their duties.

l. Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement for KS operatives to be fully trained Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence holders. If there is no requirement for KS operatives to hold SIA licences then please explain.

m. Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that KS operatives hold SIA licences.

n. Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement for KS operatives to be DBS checked.

o. Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that KS operatives are DBS checked.

p. Please provide the process by which KS operatives request identification and proof of address from members of the public.

q. Please define which documents are acceptable to WCBC as both proof of identity and proof of address in relation to litter enforcement.

r. Please define which documents are acceptable to KS as both proof of identity and proof of address, in relation to issuing FPNs on behalf of WCBC.

s. Please confirm how KS verifies identity of members of the public in relation to litter enforcement.

t. Please confirm how WCBC assures itself that verification of identity by KS, are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and further will be compliant with forthcoming changes in data protection legislation (GDPR).

u. In relation to identity checking and verification, please confirm whether proof of identity and proof of address is captured on an operative’s bodycam.

v. Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS operatives are, at all times,:-
i. wearing appropriate uniform
ii. wearing formal picture identification, on show, at all times
iii. introducing themselves formally when approaching a member of public
iv. informing a member of public that their interaction is being filmed on their bodycam
v. not acting inappropriately, ie following a member of public on foot or by car
vi. not capturing children on bodycam, without express permission from their parents/legal guardians

w. Please provide a formal definition of WCBC’s Zero Tolerance Policy.

x. Please provide an explanation of the process of issuing FPNs on Private Land.

y. Please provide an explanation of how a landowner can withdraw its consent for the issue of FPNs on Private Land.

z. Please provide a list of private companies operating in Wrexham who have formally withdrawn their consent for the issue of FPNs on their land, along with the dates documentation was received by WCBC for each company concerned.

aa. Please provide information if WCBC are aware of complaints from members of the public regarding the above points and how WCBC has dealt with such complaints.

bb. Please provide confirmation of the agreed working hours of KS enforcement operatives.

cc. Please provide information relating to the issuing of FPNs to minors, over 80s, and vulnerable people, including those with unseen disabilities.

dd. Please provide information relating to how KS enforcement operatives approach individuals with an obvious disability, or are whom accompanied by persons, including minors, with an obvious disability.

ee. Please provide the process by which KS enforcement operatives deal with accidental littering, ie tissue falling out of someone’s pocket when reaching for car keys, bus pass etc.

ff. Please provide the process by which KS enforcement operatives deal with accidental littering by children under 10, ie toddler drops sweet wrapper etc.

gg. Please provide the process whereby FPNs are sent to an ‘offender’ if not received in hand at the time of the offence.

hh. Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are notified of court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid.

ii. Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are informed of court verdict, fine and costs when a FPN has not been paid.

jj. KS state on their website that they “secure local demographic data and get straight to the heart of the problem using their virtual mapping software”. Please confirm
i. the process by which WCBC assures itself that this software is appropriate, certified and accredited
ii. the process by which WCBC reviews interpretation of the software’s output.

4. Performance Monitoring

a. Which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and metrics have been agreed with KS and are currently being monitored on a month by month basis, including reporting of said metrics for upwards reporting to the Scrutiny Committee and further upwards reporting to the Welsh Government.

b. Please provide a breakdown of offences, month by month, calendar year by calendar year for the last 5 years (herein noted as the timescales) of the number of FPNs issued (in line with Office for National Statistics demographic categories), including, inter alia: -
i. age group
ii. gender
iii. location of offence, ie town centre, retail park, road service area, village etc
iv. type of litter associated with offence
v. employment status
vi. resident/visitor
vii. number of active enforcement officers during these calendar months, clearly stating when said operatives have been council employees or provided by KS.

c. With particular reference to dog fouling offences for the timescales above, please provide the total number of FPNs issued for each
i. school playing fields
ii. leisure centre grounds
iii. public parks
iv. any other areas
clearly stating the name of each location in each of points c(i)-(iv) above.

d. Following on from point 4b above, please provide a further breakdown of the statistical data including: -
i. Number of FPNs paid to date, per calendar month, by gender, age group and location of offence
ii. Number of FPNs issued in Welsh.
iii. Number of instances whereby KS have had to obtain members of the public’s details through the DVLA
iv. Number of instances whereby KS have had to call North Wales Police, and consequently North Wales Police have attended.
v. Number of FPNs appealed, in the timescales defined above.
vi. Number of FPNs not paid and consequently submitted for hearing at the local Magistrate’s Court, again per calendar month, over the last 5 financial years.
vii. Number of subject access requests made by WCBC residents/visitors, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, for review of bodycam footage, as held by WCBC, both prior to and after prosecution.
viii. Number of instances subject access requests, including bodycam footage, under the Data Protection Act 1998, has been released to WCBC residents/visitors both prior to and after prosecution.
ix. Number of cases ruled in WCBC’s favour, in the timescales defined above, at Magistrate’s Court
x. Number of FPNs pursued at Crown Court, in the timescales defined above
xi. Number of cases ruled in WCBC favour, in the timescales defined above, at Crown Court
xii. Number of cases dropped by WCBC following issue of summons and hearing date set.

5. Audit & Review

a. Please provide the date that Environment and Planning Department was last audited in relation to litter enforcement.

b. Please provide the system by which assurance is gained that Contracting & Procurement processes and procedures, in relation to KS, are operating effectively and in accordance with best practice.

c. Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS processes and procedures are robust, operating effectively and in accordance with best practice.

d. Please confirm whether KS Quality, Environmental, Health & Safety Management System is accredited to an international standard.

6. Customer Feedback & Satisfaction

a. Please provide details of how feedback from the relevant Wrexham Town & Community Councils is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter enforcement policy.

b. Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham residents is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter enforcement policy.

c. Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham visitors is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter enforcement policy.

d. Please provide the number of complaints received by WCBC in relation to operation of the current KS litter enforcement contract. Please include all complaints received via email, post, telephone conversations and on-line proformas.

7. Information Governance, Management & Security

a. Please confirm the process for the keeping of records, including personal data and bodycam footage, in relation to WCBC Litter Enforcement Policy: -
i. WCBC Records Management Policy and Document Retention Policy, to include record retention periods, back-up of data, security of storage locations, methods of secure disposal of records, number of resources associated with the management of all records, training of resources and the last time this service was subject to internal and self audit.
ii. KS Records Management Policy and Document Retention Policy, to include how WCBC assures itself that these policies are in full alignment with WCBC’s own systems, including external audit of KS Information Governance systems.

Yours faithfully,

Mrs W Watson BSc(Hons) MSc

foi, Wrexham County Borough Council

6 Attachments

Dear Mrs Watson

 

Request for information

Freedom of Information Act 2000

 

Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
(FOIA) dated 13/04/2018 which was received by Wrexham County Borough
Council on 14/04/2018.  Under the FOIA, we have 20 working days to comply
with your request and you should expect a full response by 14/05/2018.

 

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Yours sincerely

 

 

Corporate Information Team / TÎm Gwybodaeth Corfforedig

Corporate and Customer Services Department / Adran Gwasanaethau
Corfforaethol a Chwsmeriaid

Wrexham County Borough Council / Cyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Wrecsam

 

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Dear Wrexham County Borough Council,

 

Formal Freedom of Information Request under the Freedom of Information Act
2000 to Wrexham County Borough Council in relation to Litter Enforcement
and its Contractual Arrangements with Kingdom Services Group

 

1.            Policy

 

a.            Please provide a clear, unambiguous statement of policy, as
should be defined within Wrexham County Borough Council’s (WCBC) Quality,
Environment, Health and Safety Management System, detailing WCBC’s current
approach to litter enforcement. 

 

b.            Please explain how such policy can be linked to the
Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

c.             Under WCBC Constitution Section 3.01(b), Information:-

i.              3.01(b)(ii), please confirm the forward work programme in
relation to litter enforcement, including key decision dates, both
contractual and governance related, in conjunction with records of
Scrutiny Committee consideration and discussion.

ii.             3.01(b)(iii)-(iv), please confirm how reports, papers and
records of decisions relating to Litter Enforcement, are promulgated
within the community.

 

2.            Internal Organisation

 

a.            In relation to WCBC’s internal working, please provide the
name of the person within WCBC who is ultimately accountable for
discharging WCBC’s responsibilities pertaining to litter enforcement under
the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

b.            Please provide the roles & responsibilities of the person
named in point 2a above by means of agreed job description.

 

c.             Please provide a description, by means of an organisational
structure, which details the flow of responsibilities from the Executive
down to the department responsible for delivery of litter enforcement
policy.

 

d.            Please provide the name of the person within WCBC who is
accountable for monitoring delivery of the contract with Kingdom Services
Group Environmental Protection Division (herein noted as KS).  Again,
please also provide job description.

 

e.            Please provide the number of resources available internally
within the department responsible for delivery of the litter enforcement
policy, including monitoring of contract delivery and collation of data
from KS.

 

f.             Please provide information regarding how internal resources
are trained in the requirements of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

g.            Please provide details of the frequency of internal
resources’ refresher training, including any changes to legislation and
guidance.

 

h.            Please provide details of any ‘embedded’ KS employees within
WCBC.

 

i.              Please provide the name of the person accountable for
management and day-to-day running of the Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN)
Appeals Process, indicating whether said person is an internal resource or
KS employee.

 

j.             Please provide the name of the person accountable for
sending out FPNs to an ‘offender’ if not received in hand at the time of
the offence, indicating whether said person is an internal resource of KS
employee.

 

k.            Please provide the name of the person accountable for
notifying ‘offenders’ of court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid,
indicating whether said person is an internal resource of KS employee.

 

l.              Please provide the name of the person accountable for
sending court verdict, fine and costs to an ‘offender’.

 

m.           Please provide details of any cross-county working groups
within both North Wales & beyond that WCBC is involved in, in the spirit
of sharing of good practice and consistency between enforcement strategies
deployed by each County Council.

 

n.            Please provide details and frequency of meetings between the
department responsible for delivery of the WCBC litter enforcement policy
and the Wrexham Town and Community Councils.

 

o.            Please provide minutes from the meetings defined in 2k
above, for the last 5 calendar years.

 

3.            Contractual Arrangements & Working Procedures

 

a.            Please provide a copy of the contract between WCBC and KS.

 

b.            In relation to the contract between WCBC and KS, please
provide the percentage WCBC receives for each FPN issued by KS.

 

c.             Please provide the name of the person within KS who is
responsible for delivery of this contract within Wrexham.

 

d.            Please explain what governance procedures does WCBC have in
place to ensure that employees of KS, contracted to WCBC (the authority)
are compliant with guidelines issued by the UK Government for Issuing
Fixed Penalty Notices (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th February 2017 guidance).

 

e.            If WCBC does not follow the guidance described in 3d above,
please confirm what guidance is followed, in the interests of good
practice and consistency, and if not, why not.

 

f.             Please confirm the process by which WCBC satisfies itself
that KS are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and will further
be compliant with changes in data protection legislation, ie the EU
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2018.

 

g.            Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself
that KS have received the required training in the issue of FPNs, as
required under the Environmental Offences (Fixed Penalties)(Miscellaneous
Provisions)(Wales) Regulations 2007.

 

h.            In line with the WCBC’s Welsh Language Policy, please
provide details of how Wrexham residents have their rights to be
communicated in Welsh, when dealing with WCBC and agents acting on their
behalf, protected.

 

i.              Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself
that KS working on behalf of WCBC has an adequate Welsh language ability
within its organisation to protect residents’ rights to be communicated to
in Welsh.

 

j.             Please provide historical details for the duration of the
contract with KS, calendar month by calendar month, of how many Welsh
speaking KS operatives there have been operating on behalf of WCBC.

 

k.            Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that
KS operatives have adequate business car insurance when carrying out their
duties.

 

l.              Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement
for KS operatives to be fully trained Security Industry Authority (SIA)
licence holders  If there is no requirement for KS operatives to hold SIA
licences then please explain.

 

m.           Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that
KS operatives hold SIA licences.

 

n.            Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement for
KS operatives to be DBS checked.

 

o.            Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that
KS operatives are DBS checked.

 

p.            Please provide the process by which KS operatives request
identification and proof of address from members of the public.

 

q.            Please define which documents are acceptable to WCBC as both
proof of identity and proof of address in relation to litter enforcement.

 

r.             Please define which documents are acceptable to KS as both
proof of identity and proof of address, in relation to issuing FPNs on
behalf of WCBC.

 

s.             Please confirm how KS verifies identity of members of the
public in relation to litter enforcement.

 

t.             Please confirm how WCBC assures itself that verification of
identity by KS, are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and
further will be compliant with forthcoming changes in data protection
legislation (GDPR).

 

u.            In relation to identity checking and verification, please
confirm whether proof of identity and proof of address is captured on an
operative’s bodycam.

 

v.            Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that
KS operatives are, at all times,:-

i.              wearing appropriate uniform

ii.             wearing formal picture identification, on show, at all
times

iii.            introducing themselves formally when approaching a member
of public

iv.           informing a member of public that their interaction is being
filmed on their bodycam

v.            not acting inappropriately, ie following a member of public
on foot or by car

vi.           not capturing children on bodycam, without express
permission from their parents/legal guardians

 

w.           Please provide a formal definition of WCBC’s Zero Tolerance
Policy.

 

x.            Please provide an explanation of the process of issuing FPNs
on Private Land.

 

y.            Please provide an explanation of how a landowner can
withdraw its consent for the issue of FPNs on Private Land.

 

z.             Please provide a list of private companies operating in
Wrexham who have formally withdrawn their consent for the issue of FPNs on
their land, along with the dates documentation was received by WCBC for
each company concerned.

 

aa.          Please provide information if WCBC are aware of complaints
from members of the public regarding the above points and how WCBC has
dealt with such complaints.

 

bb.         Please provide confirmation of the agreed working hours of KS
enforcement operatives.

 

cc.           Please provide information relating to the issuing of FPNs
to minors, over 80s, and vulnerable people, including those with unseen
disabilities.

 

dd.         Please provide information relating to how KS enforcement
operatives approach individuals with an obvious disability, or are whom
accompanied by persons, including minors, with an obvious disability.

 

ee.         Please provide the process by which KS enforcement operatives
deal with accidental littering, ie tissue falling out of someone’s pocket
when reaching for car keys, bus pass etc.

 

ff.           Please provide the process by which KS enforcement
operatives deal with accidental littering by children under 10, ie toddler
drops sweet wrapper etc.

 

gg.          Please provide the process whereby FPNs are sent to an
‘offender’ if not received in hand at the time of the offence.

 

hh.         Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are notified of
court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid.

 

ii.             Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are
informed of court verdict, fine and costs when a FPN has not been paid.

 

jj.            KS state on their website that they “secure local
demographic data and get straight to the heart of the problem using their
virtual mapping software”.  Please confirm

i.              the process by which WCBC assures itself that this
software is appropriate, certified and accredited

ii.             the process by which WCBC reviews interpretation of the
software’s output.

 

4.            Performance Monitoring

 

a.            Which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and metrics have
been agreed with KS and are currently being monitored on a month by month
basis, including reporting of said metrics for upwards reporting to the
Scrutiny Committee and further upwards reporting to the Welsh Government.

 

b.            Please provide a breakdown of offences, month by month,
calendar year by calendar year for the last 5 years (herein noted as the
timescales) of the number of FPNs issued (in line with Office for National
Statistics demographic categories), including, inter alia: -

i.              age group

ii.             gender

iii.            location of offence, ie town centre, retail park, road
service area, village etc

iv.           type of litter associated with offence

v.            employment status

vi.           resident/visitor

vii.          number of active enforcement officers during these calendar
months, clearly stating when said operatives have been council employees
or provided by KS.

 

c.             With particular reference to dog fouling offences for the
timescales above, please provide the total number of FPNs issued for each

i.              school playing fields

ii.             leisure centre grounds

iii.            public parks

iv.           any other areas

clearly stating the name of each location in each of points c(i)-(iv)
above.

 

d.            Following on from point 4b above, please provide a further
breakdown of the statistical data including: -

i.              Number of FPNs paid to date, per calendar month, by
gender, age group and location of offence

ii.             Number of FPNs issued in Welsh.

iii.            Number of instances whereby KS have had to obtain members
of the public’s details through the DVLA

iv.           Number of instances whereby KS have had to call North Wales
Police, and consequently North Wales Police have attended.

v.            Number of FPNs appealed, in the timescales defined above.

vi.           Number of FPNs not paid and consequently submitted for
hearing at the local Magistrate’s Court, again per calendar month, over
the last 5 financial years.

vii.          Number of subject access requests made by WCBC
residents/visitors, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, for
review of bodycam footage, as held by WCBC, both prior to and after
prosecution.

viii.         Number of instances subject access requests, including
bodycam footage, under the Data Protection Act 1998, has been released to
WCBC residents/visitors both prior to and after prosecution.

ix.           Number of cases ruled in WCBC’s favour, in the timescales
defined above, at Magistrate’s Court

x.            Number of FPNs pursued at Crown Court, in the timescales
defined above

xi.           Number of cases ruled in WCBC favour, in the timescales
defined above, at Crown Court

xii.          Number of cases dropped by WCBC following issue of summons
and hearing date set.

 

5.            Audit & Review

 

a.            Please provide the date that Environment and Planning
Department was last audited in relation to litter enforcement.

 

b.            Please provide the system by which assurance is gained that
Contracting & Procurement processes and procedures, in relation to KS, are
operating effectively and in accordance with best practice.

 

c.             Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself
that KS processes and procedures are robust, operating effectively and in
accordance with best practice.

 

d.            Please confirm whether KS Quality, Environmental, Health &
Safety Management System is accredited to an international standard.

 

6.            Customer Feedback & Satisfaction

 

a.            Please provide details of how feedback from the relevant
Wrexham Town & Community Councils is considered when monitoring the
success of WCBC’s litter enforcement policy.

 

b.            Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham
residents is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter
enforcement policy.

 

c.             Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham
visitors is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter
enforcement policy.

 

d.            Please provide the number of complaints received by WCBC in
relation to operation of the current KS litter enforcement contract.
Please include all complaints received via email, post, telephone
conversations and on-line proformas.

 

7.            Information Governance, Management & Security

 

a.            Please confirm the process for the keeping of records,
including personal data and bodycam footage, in relation to WCBC Litter
Enforcement Policy: -

i.              WCBC Records Management Policy and Document Retention
Policy, to include record retention periods, back-up of data, security of
storage locations, methods of secure disposal of records, number of
resources associated with the management of all records, training of
resources and the last time this service was subject to internal and self
audit.

ii.             KS Records Management Policy and Document Retention
Policy, to include how WCBC assures itself that these policies are in full
alignment with WCBC’s own systems, including external audit of KS
Information Governance systems.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

Mrs W Watson BSc(Hons) MSc

 

 

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foi, Wrexham County Borough Council

6 Attachments

Dear Mrs Watson

 

Request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000

 

I am writing about your request made to Wrexham County Borough Council
validated on the 14/04/2018 requesting information on the following:

 

Formal Freedom of Information Request under the Freedom of Information Act
2000 to Wrexham County Borough Council in relation to Litter Enforcement
and its Contractual Arrangements with Kingdom Services Group

                          

1.         Policy

 

a.         Please provide a clear, unambiguous statement of policy, as
should be defined within Wrexham County Borough Council’s (WCBC) Quality,
Environment, Health and Safety Management System, detailing WCBC’s current
approach to litter enforcement. 

 

b.         Please explain how such policy can be linked to the
Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

c.         Under WCBC Constitution Section 3.01(b), Information:-

i.          3.01(b)(ii), please confirm the forward work programme in
relation to litter enforcement, including key decision dates, both
contractual and governance related, in conjunction with records of
Scrutiny Committee consideration and discussion.

ii.         3.01(b)(iii)-(iv), please confirm how reports, papers and
records of decisions relating to Litter Enforcement, are promulgated
within the community.

 

2.         Internal Organisation

 

a.         In relation to WCBC’s internal working, please provide the name
of the person within WCBC who is ultimately accountable for discharging
WCBC’s responsibilities pertaining to litter enforcement under the
Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

b.         Please provide the roles & responsibilities of the person named
in point 2a above by means of agreed job description.

 

c.         Please provide a description, by means of an organisational
structure, which details the flow of responsibilities from the Executive
down to the department responsible for delivery of litter enforcement
policy.

 

d.         Please provide the name of the person within WCBC who is
accountable for monitoring delivery of the contract with Kingdom Services
Group Environmental Protection Division (herein noted as KS).  Again,
please also provide job description.

 

e.         Please provide the number of resources available internally
within the department responsible for delivery of the litter enforcement
policy, including monitoring of contract delivery and collation of data
from KS.

 

f.          Please provide information regarding how internal resources
are trained in the requirements of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

g.         Please provide details of the frequency of internal resources’
refresher training, including any changes to legislation and guidance.

 

h.         Please provide details of any ‘embedded’ KS employees within
WCBC.

 

i.          Please provide the name of the person accountable for
management and day-to-day running of the Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN)
Appeals Process, indicating whether said person is an internal resource or
KS employee.

 

j.          Please provide the name of the person accountable for sending
out FPNs to an ‘offender’ if not received in hand at the time of the
offence, indicating whether said person is an internal resource of KS
employee.

 

k.         Please provide the name of the person accountable for notifying
‘offenders’ of court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid, indicating
whether said person is an internal resource of KS employee.

 

l.          Please provide the name of the person accountable for sending
court verdict, fine and costs to an ‘offender’.

 

m.        Please provide details of any cross-county working groups within
both North Wales & beyond that WCBC is involved in, in the spirit of
sharing of good practice and consistency between enforcement strategies
deployed by each County Council.

 

n.         Please provide details and frequency of meetings between the
department responsible for delivery of the WCBC litter enforcement policy
and the Wrexham Town and Community Councils.

 

o.         Please provide minutes from the meetings defined in 2k above,
for the last 5 calendar years.

 

3.         Contractual Arrangements & Working Procedures

 

a.         Please provide a copy of the contract between WCBC and KS.

 

b.         In relation to the contract between WCBC and KS, please provide
the percentage WCBC receives for each FPN issued by KS.

 

c.         Please provide the name of the person within KS who is
responsible for delivery of this contract within Wrexham.

 

d.         Please explain what governance procedures does WCBC have in
place to ensure that employees of KS, contracted to WCBC (the authority)
are compliant with guidelines issued by the UK Government for Issuing
Fixed Penalty Notices (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
15th February 2017 guidance).

 

e.         If WCBC does not follow the guidance described in 3d above,
please confirm what guidance is followed, in the interests of good
practice and consistency, and if not, why not.

 

f.          Please confirm the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that
KS are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and will further be
compliant with changes in data protection legislation, ie the EU General
Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) 2018.

 

g.         Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that
KS have received the required training in the issue of FPNs, as required
under the Environmental Offences (Fixed Penalties)(Miscellaneous
Provisions)(Wales) Regulations 2007.

 

h.         In line with the WCBC’s Welsh Language Policy, please provide
details of how Wrexham residents have their rights to be communicated in
Welsh, when dealing with WCBC and agents acting on their behalf,
protected.

 

i.          Please explain the process by which WCBC satisfies itself that
KS working on behalf of WCBC has an adequate Welsh language ability within
its organisation to protect residents’ rights to be communicated to in
Welsh.

 

j.          Please provide historical details for the duration of the
contract with KS, calendar month by calendar month, of how many Welsh
speaking KS operatives there have been operating on behalf of WCBC.

 

k.         Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS
operatives have adequate business car insurance when carrying out their
duties.

 

l.          Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement for KS
operatives to be fully trained Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence
holders  If there is no requirement for KS operatives to hold SIA licences
then please explain.

 

m.        Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that KS
operatives hold SIA licences.

 

n.         Please provide confirmation that there is a requirement for KS
operatives to be DBS checked.

 

o.         Please provide confirmation of how WCBC assures itself that KS
operatives are DBS checked.

 

p.         Please provide the process by which KS operatives request
identification and proof of address from members of the public.

 

q.         Please define which documents are acceptable to WCBC as both
proof of identity and proof of address in relation to litter enforcement.

 

r.          Please define which documents are acceptable to KS as both
proof of identity and proof of address, in relation to issuing FPNs on
behalf of WCBC.

 

s.         Please confirm how KS verifies identity of members of the
public in relation to litter enforcement.

 

t.          Please confirm how WCBC assures itself that verification of
identity by KS, are compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998, and
further will be compliant with forthcoming changes in data protection
legislation (GDPR).

 

u.         In relation to identity checking and verification, please
confirm whether proof of identity and proof of address is captured on an
operative’s bodycam.

 

v.         Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS
operatives are, at all times,:-

i.          wearing appropriate uniform

ii.         wearing formal picture identification, on show, at all times

iii.        introducing themselves formally when approaching a member of
public

iv.        informing a member of public that their interaction is being
filmed on their bodycam

v.         not acting inappropriately, ie following a member of public on
foot or by car

vi.        not capturing children on bodycam, without express permission
from their parents/legal guardians

 

w.        Please provide a formal definition of WCBC’s Zero Tolerance
Policy.

 

x.         Please provide an explanation of the process of issuing FPNs on
Private Land.

 

y.         Please provide an explanation of how a landowner can withdraw
its consent for the issue of FPNs on Private Land.

 

z.         Please provide a list of private companies operating in Wrexham
who have formally withdrawn their consent for the issue of FPNs on their
land, along with the dates documentation was received by WCBC for each
company concerned.

 

aa.       Please provide information if WCBC are aware of complaints from
members of the public regarding the above points and how WCBC has dealt
with such complaints.

 

bb.      Please provide confirmation of the agreed working hours of KS
enforcement operatives.

 

cc.       Please provide information relating to the issuing of FPNs to
minors, over 80s, and vulnerable people, including those with unseen
disabilities.

 

dd.      Please provide information relating to how KS enforcement
operatives approach individuals with an obvious disability, or are whom
accompanied by persons, including minors, with an obvious disability.

 

ee.       Please provide the process by which KS enforcement operatives
deal with accidental littering, ie tissue falling out of someone’s pocket
when reaching for car keys, bus pass etc.

 

ff.         Please provide the process by which KS enforcement operatives
deal with accidental littering by children under 10, ie toddler drops
sweet wrapper etc.

 

gg.      Please provide the process whereby FPNs are sent to an ‘offender’
if not received in hand at the time of the offence.

 

hh.      Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are notified of
court proceedings when a FPN has not been paid.

 

ii.         Please provide the process whereby ‘offenders’ are informed of
court verdict, fine and costs when a FPN has not been paid.

 

jj.         KS state on their website that they “secure local demographic
data and get straight to the heart of the problem using their virtual
mapping software”.  Please confirm

i.          the process by which WCBC assures itself that this software is
appropriate, certified and accredited

ii.         the process by which WCBC reviews interpretation of the
software’s output.

 

4.         Performance Monitoring

 

a.         Which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and metrics have been
agreed with KS and are currently being monitored on a month by month
basis, including reporting of said metrics for upwards reporting to the
Scrutiny Committee and further upwards reporting to the Welsh Government.

 

b.         Please provide a breakdown of offences, month by month,
calendar year by calendar year for the last 5 years (herein noted as the
timescales) of the number of FPNs issued (in line with Office for National
Statistics demographic categories), including, inter alia: -

i.          age group

ii.         gender

iii.        location of offence, ie town centre, retail park, road service
area, village etc

iv.        type of litter associated with offence

v.         employment status

vi.        resident/visitor

vii.       number of active enforcement officers during these calendar
months, clearly stating when said operatives have been council employees
or provided by KS.

 

c.         With particular reference to dog fouling offences for the
timescales above, please provide the total number of FPNs issued for each

i.          school playing fields

ii.         leisure centre grounds

iii.        public parks

iv.        any other areas

clearly stating the name of each location in each of points c(i)-(iv)
above.

 

d.         Following on from point 4b above, please provide a further
breakdown of the statistical data including: -

i.          Number of FPNs paid to date, per calendar month, by gender,
age group and location of offence

ii.         Number of FPNs issued in Welsh.

iii.        Number of instances whereby KS have had to obtain members of
the public’s details through the DVLA

iv.        Number of instances whereby KS have had to call North Wales
Police, and consequently North Wales Police have attended.

v.         Number of FPNs appealed, in the timescales defined above.

vi.        Number of FPNs not paid and consequently submitted for hearing
at the local Magistrate’s Court, again per calendar month, over the last 5
financial years.

vii.       Number of subject access requests made by WCBC
residents/visitors, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, for
review of bodycam footage, as held by WCBC, both prior to and after
prosecution.

viii.      Number of instances subject access requests, including bodycam
footage, under the Data Protection Act 1998, has been released to WCBC
residents/visitors both prior to and after prosecution.

ix.        Number of cases ruled in WCBC’s favour, in the timescales
defined above, at Magistrate’s Court

x.         Number of FPNs pursued at Crown Court, in the timescales
defined above

xi.        Number of cases ruled in WCBC favour, in the timescales defined
above, at Crown Court

xii.       Number of cases dropped by WCBC following issue of summons and
hearing date set.

 

5.         Audit & Review

 

a.         Please provide the date that Environment and Planning
Department was last audited in relation to litter enforcement.

 

b.         Please provide the system by which assurance is gained that
Contracting & Procurement processes and procedures, in relation to KS, are
operating effectively and in accordance with best practice.

 

c.         Please provide the process by which WCBC assures itself that KS
processes and procedures are robust, operating effectively and in
accordance with best practice.

 

d.         Please confirm whether KS Quality, Environmental, Health &
Safety Management System is accredited to an international standard.

 

6.         Customer Feedback & Satisfaction

 

a.         Please provide details of how feedback from the relevant
Wrexham Town & Community Councils is considered when monitoring the
success of WCBC’s litter enforcement policy.

 

b.         Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham residents
is considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter enforcement
policy.

 

c.         Please provide details of how feedback from Wrexham visitors is
considered when monitoring the success of WCBC’s litter enforcement
policy.

 

d.         Please provide the number of complaints received by WCBC in
relation to operation of the current KS litter enforcement contract.
Please include all complaints received via email, post, telephone
conversations and on-line proformas.

 

7.         Information Governance, Management & Security

 

a.         Please confirm the process for the keeping of records,
including personal data and bodycam footage, in relation to WCBC Litter
Enforcement Policy: -

i.          WCBC Records Management Policy and Document Retention Policy,
to include record retention periods, back-up of data, security of storage
locations, methods of secure disposal of records, number of resources
associated with the management of all records, training of resources and
the last time this service was subject to internal and self audit.

ii.         KS Records Management Policy and Document Retention Policy, to
include how WCBC assures itself that these policies are in full alignment
with WCBC’s own systems, including external audit of KS Information
Governance systems.

 

I can confirm that the information requested is subject to an exemption as
per the following:

 

Section 12 – Request exceeds costs threshold

Section 12 of the Act provides that a public authority is not obliged to
comply with a request for disclosure where the cost of identifying and
retrieving relevant information would exceed the statutory limit of £450
(calculated as 18 hours at £25 per hour). 

 

Due to the amount of information which falls within scope of your request
and the way information is recorded, we consider that it would take a
significantly large amount of time to complete the tasks required to
gather the information together.    To answer the questions under section
4b of your request, as the Local Authority does not hold the information
in the format which would make the information readily retrievable, would
require checking each FPN manually.  To provide the information requested
in 4b for just one year (January to December 2017) would require examining
each of the 5163 FPNs to extract the information.  Allowing 2 minutes for
each FPN 172 hours, this would total over 24 hours.  It would then be a
further task to answer the remaining questions, thus exceeding the
statutory limit.

 

If you are unhappy with the way the Council has handled your request, you
may ask for an internal review.  Please contact [1][Wrexham Council request email]
01978 292000 if you require an internal review of your case.

 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a
decision.  The Information Commissioner can be contacted at – Wycliffe
House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AS, telephone 0303 123 1113,
[2]www.ico.org.uk

 

Yours sincerely

 

Corporate Information Team / TÎm Gwybodaeth Corfforedig

 

 

Corporate and Customer Services Department / Adran Gwasanaethau
Corfforaethol a Chwsmeriaid

Wrexham County Borough Council / Cyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Wrecsam

 

 

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We welcome correspondence in Welsh. We will respond to any correspondence in Welsh and this will not lead to any delay.

Take a look - you can pay, report, request, have your say and find information online at www.wrexham.gov.uk. Save paper - think before you print!

This e-mail message and any attachments are intended solely for the individual or organisation to whom it is addressed. For full conditions in relation to content and use of this e-mail message and any attachments, please refer to www.wrexham.gov.uk/top_navigation/discla...

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