Agenda item

Corporate Risk Register Update: Quarter 2


The Leader introduced the report providing an update of the Council’s Corporate Risk Register for the end of Quarter two (1 July to 30 September 2022).


Cabinet members were asked to consider the contents of this report and continued the monitoring of these risks and the actions being taken to address the risks identified in the report.


The Council’s Risk Management Policy and Corporate Risk Register enabled this administration and officers to effectively identify, manage and monitor those risks which prevented Cabinet from achieving its strategic priorities and to undertake statutory duties as a local authority.


The Quarter two risk report would also be presented to the Council’s Governance and Audit Committee in January 2023 to review the Council’s risk management process and governance arrangements.


At the end of quarter two Newport Council had 42 risks recorded across the Council’s eleven service areas.


The risks deemed to pose the most significant risk in the delivery of the Council’s Corporate Plan and services are escalated to the Council’s Corporate Risk Register for monitoring. 


At the end of quarter two, 14 risks were recorded in the Corporate Risk Register.

·        Eight Severe Risks (15 to 25);

·        Six Major Risks (seven to 14);


In comparison to quarter one, there were no new and/or escalated risks and two risks were closed.


Ten risks remained at the same score as quarter one.


Three risk scores increased, and one risk score decreased in the Corporate Risk Register.


With a risk score increased from 20 to 25, Newport City Council’s social services were under considerable demand and in the last quarter, Newport’s Children Services had to put in place measures to manage the increase volume of referrals into its safeguarding hub. 


There was also pressure on its staff, managing its sickness levels and recruitment into staff vacancies.


The service was working to ensure the most vulnerable and at risk were prioritised through risk assessments and to ensure statutory services are delivered.   


The Council’s Medium-Term Budget risk score increased from 12 to 20, as already highlighted at Cabinet, the Council was facing a significant budget gap in its Medium-Term Financial Plan.


The Finance Cabinet Report and presentation of the budget proposals were demonstrating the Council’s actions to identify savings across service areas to reduce the impact of the budget gap. 


Newport City Council would be consulting with the public on the budget proposals and would consider the feedback from the public before making any final decisions in the New Year.


The potential impact of cyber-attacks remained prominent; risk score decreased from 16 to 12.  Throughout the year Newport Council’s IT service (Led by the Shared Resource Service) continually tested, monitored and reported on attacks on the Council’s systems. 

The Council had measures in place to manage cyber-attacks and to manage any potential breaches, including training for staff and members.


As identified in the Council’s Medium Term budget risk, schools across Newport were also being impacted, with a risk score increased from nine to 12 by the inflationary pressures and there was an increased risk of some schools at the end of the financial year being in a deficit position.


The Council was working with schools and their governing bodies to identify and support schools which could be facing financial difficulty and to put in place necessary actions to mitigate its impact.


At the end of quarter 2, based upon the information provided, the Council agreed to close two risks, Covid-19 Pandemic and Post EU Transition risk. 


We recognised that Covid continued to impact residents and our Civil Contingencies team alongside partners in Health and Welsh Government continued to monitor its impact across communities and key services. 


Many of the services in Newport City Council were now managing its impact through ongoing HR, and health and safety business as usual procedures. 


Regional and local Gold emergency arrangements were stood down to reflect this position. 


It was therefore agreed for this risk to close at the end of Quarter 2. 


Since the UK has left the European Union, many of the arrangements in place were largely outside of Newport Council’s control. 


As part of the Welsh Local Government Association, we continued to provide our voices and respond to any future changes to post EU arrangements as they arose.


For EU citizens living in Newport, we remained committed to support those communities and residents who would always be welcome to live in Newport.  Our Community Cohesion team and other partners continued to support EU citizens with any advice, and guidance; and continued to celebrate and promote the benefits which different cultures provided to the City of Newport. 


Comments of Cabinet Members:


·        Councillor Davies commented on the three risks associated with Education and whilst they remained amber, The Cabinet for Education and Early Years would work hard with the school team as the impact of the budget would have unwanted pressures on schools, particularly with the effect of out of county placements.  Additional Learning Needs (ALN) and Special Educational Needs (SEN) provision was also an ongoing pressure for schools.  It was therefore important to focus on keeping the risk low in relation to this.  The Cabinet Member also echoed the comments of the Leader that everyone was welcomed in the city of Newport as a city of sanctuary.


·        Councillor Marshall referred to joint services and at briefings with adult services, Cabinet kept a regular focus on where the risk could be lowered at every opportunity.


·        Councillor Hughes echoed the comments in relation to adult services and also the community cohesion side and visited a Hungarian community market in Newport, their children spoke in Welsh and had taken to Newport as their home city and the culture they brought made a positive impact.  It was a real pleasure to see them celebrate their culture.




Cabinet considered the contents of the quarter two update of the Corporate Risk Register.


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