Proposed Efficiency Savings
Proposed Efficiency Savings – Public Notice.
The following public notice is an update on the proposed efficiency savings for the 2018/19 financial year.
As many of you will know, NL Leisure faces significant budget challenges due to the difficult economic climate that we are operating in as well as the reduction in management fee that it receives from North Lanarkshire Council. Taking account of the budget challenges for the year ahead as part of the budget setting process NLL identified high subsidy sites and sites where demand for services has diminished and buildings are no longer fit for purpose and beyond economical repair.
Consequently a number of proposals were identified and presented to NLL’s Board of Directors on 25th January 2018. At this meeting, the Board provided approval for NLL to begin a consultation process with the joint Trade Unions through the Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) and those staff potentially affected by these proposals. These consultation processes have now commenced and are ongoing.
It was proposed that Shotts Leisure Centre, Kilsyth Swimming Pool and John Smith Pool opening hours were reduced as well as the closure of Birkenshaw Sports Barn. This would present NL Leisure with a significant efficiency saving, and would have reduced the wider financial strain currently facing the organisation.
North Lanarkshire Council have now set their budget and agreed a management fee cut for NLL of £300,000 which equates to 3.6% reduction. Any further reductions to the NLL management fee was rejected thereby enabling North Lanarkshire Leisure to avoid immediate reductions in service and facility closure. Even though there is a reduced cut in management fee from NLC, the cost pressures for NLL remain a considerable financial target for NLL to achieve in 2018/19.
NL Leisure have been unable to comment until this stage, as it was vital that we allowed the public consultation to conclude and that the Board of Directors were made aware of its findings and could make the appropriate decisions at the Board meeting on the 7th March.
On Monday 12th March we distributed the findings to all members of staff, and can now share the outcomes of this public consultation process with our members and the wider public.
NL Leisure commissioned an independent research company to undertake a public consultation to assess the impact that these proposals would have upon members and the overall usage of these facilities. The consultation was carried out over a two week period and surveyed 643 users of the above mentioned venues.
Following this public consultation and subsequent Board approval, the following recommendations have been made;
- Shotts Leisure Centre is removed from the 2018/19 proposed efficiency savings and opening hours remain as they are.
- More time is taken to assess the impact of the proposals for Kilsyth Swimming Pool, John Smith Pool and Birkenshaw Sports Barn. It was agreed and recommended by the Board of Directors that more time is taken and the wider impact on the community is assessed before moving forward with these solutions in 2018/19.
The NL Leisure Board of Directors were satisfied with the evidence provided by the independent research company to validate these recommendations. A synopsis of the research findings will be issued and published on the NLL website in the forthcoming days.
Over the course of 2018, NLL will continue to assess the usage figures of both Kilsyth Swimming Pool & John Smith Pool before coming to a final decision about the proposed reduction of these centres opening hours. The Board will also take additional time to assess the future viability of Birkenshaw Sports Barn.
The opening hours at Shotts Leisure Centre will remain as they are, with the usage of the facilities being monitored throughout the year.