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Hampshire Probation Area

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Hampshire Probation Area

Hampshire Probation Area

CONSULTATION PAPER ON TRAVEL ALLOWANCES AND CAR PARKING

Contents:

1. Context

2. Travel Policies

3. Background

4. Proposals

    Appendix 1 Financial data on ECU and car parking options

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1. CONTEXT

The financial outlook for both NOMS and other public sector organisations was already

    going to be difficult prior to the recent upheaval in the financial markets. We had already

    been notified that we were facing „flat cash‟ settlements over the next three year period, i.e. funding remaining at the same level without any increases to take account of inflation.

    Some preliminary work was undertaken earlier in the year to project the impact of these

    settlements upon Hampshire‟s budget. The outcome of this analysis was as follows:

     2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 Accumulated Potential funding 6.3% 9.7% 13.0% deficit based on 3% ?1.57m ?2.4m ?3.25 m inflation.

    Number of full time 45 69 93 equivalent posts

There are no indications that this position will improve and it could get worse. You will

    see therefore that we have to find savings of around ?1m each year, with more required in

    2009-10.

In its budget strategy the Board will seek to minimise the impact of these deficits upon

    jobs, not least because there will still be an expectation that performance will remain high

    if the Area is to achieve Probation Trust status. We know that we will have to produce a

    robust, well thought out financial plan for the three year period as part of our Trust

    application.

    The other factor that we must take account of is the “Specification, Benchmarking and Costing programme. This programme will ultimately identify the standards to which all

    Probation Areas and Prisons must deliver and the level of funding they require, achieving

    best practice, in order to do this. There will be pressure from the centre upon Areas to

    adopt those practices which have been implemented in the most cost-effective and cost-

    efficient Probation Areas. This has relevance to Hampshire‟s travel budget.

Finally, most organisations are committing themselves to an environmental policy which

    aims to reduce dependence on cars and increase use of public transport. Given the nature

    of Probation work there will always be a need for some car travel, especially as locally

    we still need to increase our level of home visiting. We should nonetheless have green

    policies which play their part in protecting the environment.

2. TRAVEL POLICIES

The principles underpinning the travel policy should be that:

    ? It will enable staff to work effectively

    ? It will provide value for money and

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    ? It will be applied equally to all grades of staff.

    We would want these principles to underpin a new travel policy for the next three year period.

    In undertaking financial planning we will scrutinise all budgets, especially those which do not pay directly for staff. Given the size of deficit that we are facing, it is probably unavoidable that we will lose some posts. The major items of expenditure that are not directed towards staff salaries are as follows:

    ? Property recharges ?2,311,606

    ? Travel budget ?1,002,790

    ? IT recharges ?472,454

    ? Telephones ?194,733

    ? Training and Recruitment ?192,870

     (including Health and Safety)

    ? Legal expenses ?163,000

    ? Offender travel ?127,389

    The total travel budget represents approximately 4% of our overall funding. It is broken down as follows:

    ? ECU ?305,640

    ? Mileage ?267,450

    ? Other travel ?216,550

    ? Car parking ?167,950

    ? Fleet ?45,200

    The timing of discussions about the travel policy is being deliberately aligned to budget planning. This is to ensure that all budgets are scrutinised at the same time, whilst also not over or under-estimating the need for change without some firm figures against which to plan.

    The remainder of the paper sets out in more detail the proposals about which the Probation Board wishes to consult with Trade Unions and staff members. A final decision is likely to be taken at either the December or January meeting of the Board.

3. BACKGROUND

There are currently 284 staff who receive ECU. Figures used in this report are based on stst September 2007-31 August 2008. There are 208 office mileage data for the period 1

    parking spaces in Hampshire, all of which are currently free to those using them. In addition, 148 staff receive parking permits, 98 of whom are ECU holders. There are, therefore, 356 or 55% of staff receiving free parking.

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The cost of providing permits is c?150,000 (this includes an additional 27 permits for

    pool and prison cars). The cost of ECU allowance is ?311,000. The cost of providing

    office spaces for parking has not been quantified, though would be reflected in the

    property charge absorbed by HPA. Any savings to these figures, particularly ECU,

    would need to be offset against the higher mileage rate applicable to casual users. HPA

    is out of line with many other Probation Areas both in its continued provision of ECU to

    such a large number of staff, and in the volume of staff for whom it provides parking

    permits.

4. PROPOSALS

ECU

4.1 It is proposed to phase out ECU over a four year period, ie by 1.4.12. The phasing

    will allow all staff who currently receive ECU to have adequate notice of its

    withdrawal, to have time to put alternative travel arrangements in place, and for

    managers to be able to build up systems and protocols that will provide realistic

    alternatives to the use of the private car.

    The phasing of the withdrawal of ECU would be achieved by increasing the

    threshold at which staff would be eligible in the three years up to 2012, starting stst September 31 August 1.4.09. In every case, the reference period would be 1

    of the year before the April in which the threshold comes in. ie for staff assessing

    whether they would be likely to meet a threshold from 1.4.09, data on mileage

    from 1.9.07 31.8.08 would be used, and made available.

    Some options for phasing in are shown below:

     2009 2010 2011 2012

    1000 2000 3000 removed Option 1

    1500 3000 5000 removed Option 2

    3000 5000 10000 removed Option 3

4.2 It is proposed that no new staff will receive ECU.

4.3 It is proposed that ECU will pro-rata‟d for part time staff

4.4 It is proposed that a one-off, lump sum payment of ?500 will be paid to staff who

     voluntarily elect to move from ECU to casual car status wef 1.1.09 (ie three

     months before the new threshold would come in). This offer of an ECU „buy out‟

     would be time limited, and would have to be accepted by 31.12.08, effective from

     the following month.

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    PERMIT PARKING

4.5 It is proposed to phase out paid parking permits for staff by 1.4.12, with the

     exception of permits at ferry terminals and for pool cars (if not kept in office car

     parks)

4.6 Allocation for paid parking permits will be more strictly controlled during the

     period up to 31.3.12. Eligibility will be determined by:

    ? Applicant must be an ECU holder and

    ? There is no availability in the office car park where the applicant works

4.7 Staff who are currently not ECU holders will cease to receive a paid permit from

    1.4.09. There may be exceptional circumstances where this might be waived; eg if

    the member of staff is a disabled badge holder and there is no disabled space

    available in the office car park. Such exceptions must be agreed in advance by the

    Director of Finance.

4.8 Depending on the thresholds agreed for the phasing out of ECU, it is likely that

    paid parking permits may cease ahead of the deadline of 1.4.12, as office parking

    spaces become available. It is, however, recognised that staff losing both ECU

    and permit parking at the same time will suffer a significant financial loss, and it

    is therefore proposed that staff who lose their ECU eligibility, and are in receipt

    of a paid permit, will have their permit extended by a maximum of one year from

    the loss of ECU, subject to making the contribution outlined in 4.10 below. This

    protection will not be available for „casual‟ car users who lose their permit,

    although casual car users may claim re-imbursement of parking costs on days

    when they use their car for a business journey.

    OFFICE PARKING

4.9 It is proposed to introduce charging for all HPA office car parks from 1.4.09. All

    users of office spaces (whether ECU, disabled, or other qualifying role) will be

    liable for this payment.

4.10 It is proposed that staff who may be eligible for a permit in an external car park

    under 4.6 would have this provided, but would be liable to contribute to this at the

    „office‟parking rate

4.11 It is proposed that the rate of charge for use of an office car park will be at 0.5%

    of salary

4.12 It is proposed that eligibility to receive a permit to park in an office car park will

     be based on:

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    ? Post holder being in receipt of ECU. The numbers of these staff will

    decrease over the four year period up to 1.4.12.

    ? Post holder being required to cover more than one site within their role ie

    Directors, Area Managers, Resource Managers, Health and Safety

    Manager, Training and Development Manager and relevant training staff,

    some Assistant Resource Managers. This list is not exhaustive.

    ? Recommendation from Occupational Health, where the post holder has a

    disability and office parking is identified as a reasonable adjustment

4.13 Staff will be required to apply for a parking permit, and only staff holding one

    may park at their office base. All applications for permits must be scrutinised by

    the appropriate line manager and authorised by the Finance Director, who will

    keep a list of eligible staff.

4.14 It is proposed Resource Managers will devise a scheme to use designated spaces

    in office car parks to create spaces for „hot‟ parking and business use parking.

    This will be available for staff who need to use their car on a given day for

    business use, but do not qualify for a space or a permit. Spaces in offices will

    increase as those who are eligible by virtue of holding ECU decreases; therefore

    the scheme needs to identify how to create business use parking in the short term,

    and how to prioritise spaces as they become available in the longer term.

ALTERNATIVES TO USE OF PRIVATE CAR FOR MULTIPLE JOURNEYS

4.15 In conjunction with 4.14, it is proposed that Resource Managers provide costings

    for an increase in pool car numbers in offices where there is likely to be most

    need in the short term, and introduce use of „Whizzgo‟ scheme in certain offices,

    so that there is both additional pool car capacity and a hire-by-the-hour capacity

    in city offices

4.16 In conjunction with 2.14, it is proposed that HR will establish the feasibility of a

    salary sacrifice scheme for rail passes and purchase of bicycles

4.17 In conjunction with 2.14, it is proposed that Resource mangers will negotiate staff

    discounts on buses and local taxis

4.18 In conjunction with 2.14, it is proposed that a project group of Senior Probation

    Officers to be set up with an Area Manager to determine methods of working that

    reduce reliance on a car (this may include the above, but may also concern how

    and when eg home visists are undertaken).

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DISCOUNTED PARKING SCHEME

4.19 It is proposed that a discounted car parking scheme for all staff will be introduced

    from 1.4.09. This scheme will act as a „salary sacrifice‟ scheme, which will

    enable staff to achieve significant reductions in the cost of their parking by

    between 30 50%.

4.20 It is proposed that all staff will be eligible for this scheme so that it will cover:

    ? Staff who purchase their own permits at public car parks

    ? Staff who purchase their own annual/seasonal passes for park and ride

    schemes

    ? Staff who in future will be charged for a permit to park in an office car

    park

    ? Staff who have a permit provided, but who are required to contribute to

    the cost of this permit at the „office car park‟ rate

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    APPENDIX 1

    Data on threshold and car parking options

    1. Staff losing ECU at various thresholds and consequent saving Based on mileage from 1. 9.07 31/8/08 and grossed up the following pertains:

Staff mileage number Saving

    <1000 109 ?119,355

    <1500 168 ?183,960

    <3000 243 ?266,085

    <5000 266 ?291,270

    <12000 284 ?311,000

    ECU at ?1095 per annum

2. Car parking options

    The following table shows the amount of car parking spaces available at each office, and

    the effect if different ECU thresholds were used as the basis for eligibility to park at that

    office:

    current spaces available 1000+ 1500+ 3000+ 5000+ Aldershot 1 12 5 0 0 Alton 4 6 4 3 2 Andover 9 4 3 1 1 Barclays 4 13 8 3 0 Basingstoke 45 30 13 5 3 Cromwell 14 9 2 1 0 Dickson House 5 1 0 0 0 Enterprise House 4 43 19 5 3 Fareham 20 18 3 1 0 Farnborough 5 3 1 0 0 Havant 20 10 3 2 2 Hythe 4 0 0 0 0 Kingston 2 0 0 0 Winchester 1 0 0 0 IB Road 0 4 0 0 0 HQ 11 7 4 1 0 C:\convert\temp\54975328.doc 16/05/2010 8

    London Road/OBH 12 29 11 4 1 Lymington 8 9 6 3 2 Landguard Road 8 0 0 0 0 Lyndhurst 1 0 0 0 Newport 0 8 2 0 0 The Grange 20 1 0 0 0 Totton 3 4 3 0 0 Town Quay 11 31 5 1 0 TOTAL 208 246 92 30 14 This indicates that if eligibility for office parking were linked to ECU, and the threshold

    set at either 3000 or 5000 miles, then there would be adequate parking in almost every

    office. At 1500 there would be a shortage of spaces, but ECU holders exceeding office

    spaces would be in single figures and only at a small number of offices, so this could be

    dealt with by issuing permits to those staff. At 1000 miles a large number of offices

    would have their capacity exceeded, and arguably little would have been achieved to

    alleviate the current problems.

    The 1500 threshold will also allow capacity to prioritise parking for staff who have to

    cover more than one site (eg some ARMs) and allow for hot parking disabled parking and

    business parking, with any spare capacity being subject to some form of rota. Any sums

    raised through charging for a permit could be redistributed amongst staff accessing the

    discounted car parking scheme.

    3. Income from introducing a car parking discount scheme

    at ?150 pa ?31,200 employer's NI saving ?3,900.0 at ?300 pa ?62,400 ?7,800.0 at ?500pa ?104,000 ?13,000.0 The above table illustrates the income that would be generated by charging for car

    parking in our offices, based on an annual rate x 208 spaces. This income could be

    redistributed to increase the discount available to staff using the proposed car parking

    discount scheme; alternatively it could be used towards any efficiency saving target.

    The second table shows the employer‟s national insurance saving that would be generated

    using the same figures. It is expected that using consultants to ensure an inland-revenue

    approved scheme were introduced would cost c?4k, ie the cost of introducing the scheme

    is met by income generated by the scheme in its first year; thereafter this would represent

    efficiency savings. The figure would in practice be higher, as it is based on the savings

    that follow from office parking alone; depending on the take up of the discount scheme

    for public car parking, this figure would in increase.

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4. Savings achievable

    The following table shows the saving if permits were allocated against mileage thresholds,

    taking into account that staff above that threshold would be eligible for (chargeable)

    office parking. The permit saving above 1500 is the same as at 1500, as the additional

    permits above this figure (prison/pool car parking) would remain an ongoing cost.

Saving on ECU at different

    thresholds

     Threshold 1000+ 1500+ 3000+ 5000+

     staff losing ECU 109 168 243 266

     saving ?119,355 ?183,960 ?266,085 ?291,270

     Threshold 1000+ 1500+

     staff losing permit 87 149

     saving ?87,000 ?149,000

Estimated combined

    ECU/permit savings

     Threshold 1000+ 1500+ 3000+ 5000+

     combined saving ?206,355 332,960 ?440,085 ?466,270

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