Decision details

Contract arrangements for Community Advice (Citizens Advice) AH15 18/19

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adults and Health

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes

Purpose:

The contract with Citizens Advice to provide a generalist advice service across West Sussex will cease in March 2019. The contract is funded via a long-standing partnership arrangement between the County Council and the West Sussex District and Borough Councils that dates from 2010. The current 2017-18 contract provides the majority of the core funding (£1m) for the Citizens Advice service provided across West Sussex. The remainder of the funding (£200k) is raised by Citizens Advice through income generated from additional contracts that depend upon the core service and fund raising.

 

The future funding of the community advice service for up to three years is a clear commitment from the County Council to support effective partnership working with district and borough partners and voluntary and community sector service providers.

 

The community advice service in West Sussex is a universal service with a high-profile brand identity that is well known to the general public. The service is often the first point of contact for people in crisis situations and works with other voluntary and statutory sector organisations that operate within county, district and borough and parish boundaries. Through its universal advice offer the Citizens Advice service contributes to the following key West Sussex Plan objectives:

 

  • Best start in life
  • A prosperous place
  • A strong, safe and sustainable place
  • Independence for later life
  • A council that works for the community

 

The Citizens Advice service in West Sussex is 80% delivered by volunteers and supports volunteering opportunities across the county. The service in West Sussex also supports better partnership working between the voluntary and the statutory sectors including the County Council, for example in promoting place-based local service delivery and the future development of volunteering.

 

Decision:

The Cabinet Member for Adults and Health has approved:

 

1)   the procurement of a generalist community advice service via a single tender process, with Citizens Advice as the preferred provider, from 1st April 2019 for a period of 1+1+1 years;

 

2)   that the County Council leads the tendering process on behalf of our funding partners, the West Sussex District and Borough Councils;

 

3)   authority be delegated to the Executive Director, Children’s Adults’ Families Health and Education, to award the contract to the bidder as set out in the report for an initial one year period and agree to future extensions of the contract up to a further two one year periods; and

 

4)   that the contract is let at the same price as the current contract with an option to reduce funding by 10% in the third and final year, subject to available budget, negotiation with funding partners and overall service performance.

 

 

 

 

 

Interests and Nature of Interests Declared:

None

Publication date: 27/02/2019

Date of decision: 27/02/2019

Effective from: 11/03/2019