Agenda item

Corporate Risk Register

To consider the status of the council’s corporate risk register in order to monitor the effectiveness of risk management within the performance management framework.


It was noted that the Head of Corporate Performance was unable to attend the meeting on this occasion and the Interim Director of Strategy introduced the report with the following comments:


i.             The Interim Director of Strategy was working with the Corporate Leadership Team to strengthen approaches to corporate services and on risk and performance management.


ii.            Work was continuing on a systematic framework for strategy, policy and planning, including the use of evidence from risk and performance management in decision-making.


iii.          The corporate risk register and the directorate risk registers as at September 2022 were appended to the report.


iv.          A corporate protocol was being developed on the approach to strategic risk and this was expected to be delivered towards the end of the calendar year.


The committee discussed the report, the principal points included:


1.           With attention drawn to action 91 in the committee’s action log, ‘Consider how corporate centre will look at the aggregation of similar risks in or across directorates’, a committee member commented on the need to consider risks from a horizontal perspective and said that it would be helpful for the committee to be sighted on the direction of travel with strategic risks; as an example, reference was made to risk CS.08 ‘Recruitment Strategy’ in the Corporate Centre Risk Register (agenda page 87) and it was commented that there were also recruitment and retention issues in other service areas.


The Interim Director of Strategy acknowledged that there had been focus on individual directorates historically and said that an update on the approach to strategic risk should be available in the new calendar year.


2.           In response to a question from the Chairperson about the new risk CRR.73 ‘Removal of ring-fence around Public Health budget’ in the Corporate Risk Register (agenda page 72), the Director of Resources and Assurance commented on: current levels of public health grant; Public Health England had been replaced by two agencies (UK Health Security Agency and the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities); additional expenditure by the council on public health interventions currently; and the potential risks if the government removed the ring-fence, particularly given inflationary pressures.


3.           The Vice-Chairperson commented on the need to keep track of new risks CF.11, CF.12 and CF.13 in the Children and Young People Directorate Risk Register (agenda page 80), and the corresponding risks CRR.75, CRR.76 and CRR.77 in the Corporate Risk Register (agenda page 72).


The Chairperson noted that, for each of these risks in the Corporate Risk Register, the ‘risk score before controls’ remained the same as the ‘risk score after controls’, whereas the committee might anticipate adjustment in the risk scores following mitigations.  The Interim Director of Strategy was invited to reflect upon this in the ongoing review of risk management.


4.           The Vice-Chairperson drew attention to risk EE.28 ‘Phosphate Pollution in Lugg Catchment’ in the Economy and Environment Directorate Risk Register (agenda page 84) and said that there were concerns which went beyond the 5 Year Housing Land Supply.


The Chairperson suggested that the Head of Corporate Performance might wish to ask the risk owners to give further consideration to the wider economic and environmental implications in relation to risk, and to the potential of the Cabinet Commission – Restoring the Wye in relation to mitigation.


5.           In response to a question from the Chairperson about new risk CR.78 ‘Impact of Statutory Direction’ in the Corporate Risk Register (agenda page 72), the Director of Resources and Assurance acknowledged the need to understand whether there would be additional financial impacts in the event of the removal of children services from the council’s control into a children’s trust.


The Chairperson noted that the work programme anticipated a further item on the Corporate Risk Register for the 21 November 2022 meeting but, in view of the development work on the approach to strategic risk, it was suggested that this be deferred to the 30 January 2023 meeting.




That the committee has considered the report and has made comments to ensure effective risk management.




180   That it be suggested to the risk owners of EE.28 (Phosphate Pollution in Lugg Catchment) that further consideration be given to wider environmental and economic implications, and also to potential mitigations (e.g. the work of the Cabinet Commission – Restoring the Wye).

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