THE new Fermanagh and Omagh council broke even in its first full year of service, but more work is needed to reduce absenteeism levels and complete major planning applications.
The report revealed absence figures exceeded the 11 day target with staff missing an average of 11.37 days per year. In seeking to improve upon this, the council said an absence target of 10.5 days has been set for the 2016/17 year.
These were some of the main points outlined in the Fermanagh and Omagh District Council’s first Annual Report covering its performance during the 2015/16 year.
The annual report reflects on progress achieved during a period of transition as a newly established council and illustrates what the council set out to achieve, its key achievements, an overview of the financial report, and information on how the council performed against statutory and corporate indicators.
With an average wait of over 70 weeks, the council was more than twice the 30 week target for dealing with ‘major planning applications’.
The report outlined the reasons for this; “The council did not meet the target of 30 weeks for the processing of major applications. Delays largely arose during quarter four when ten major applications were processed.
“Of the ten processed, six were applications transferred from the DoE Strategic Projects team and were already outside of the processing target time at the point of transfer. Of these applications, one was received in 2008, two in 2011 and two in 2012. The combination of the small number of major applications received and the number of existing legacy applications already beyond 30 weeks means that this target is difficult to achieve.
“The council did, however, issue more decisions on major applications than it received, with 30 applications processed (including two withdrawn) and nine applications received.”
However, when it came to processing local planning applications, Fermanagh and Omagh District Council was one of only three councils to meet the 15 week target with a processing rate of 14.4 weeks.
Commenting on the report, council chairman, Cllr Mary Garrity, noted that the 2015/16 year had been a year of significant change with the establishment of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council alongside the challenges of providing public services in a difficult financial climate.
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Posted: 5:07 pm November 3, 2016