North Yorkshire County Council


Corporate & Partnerships Overview & Scrutiny Committee


24 October 2022


Update on the Operation of the Parish Portal / Members’ Dashboard and Parish Council Engagement


Report of the Assistant Director – Highways and Transportation


1.0          Purpose of Report


1.1         To update the Committee on the Parish Portal and Members’ Dashboard.



2.0       Background – Parish Portal


2.1       Members will recall the briefing note submitted to your meeting of 13th September 2021. By way of update/recap, there are some 731 Parish councils/meetings in North Yorkshire. Of this number, around 570 are currently active. When we first reported in December 2018, some 382 parish portal accounts existed - this figure increased to 397 last July and has increased further since to 430. This means that three out of every four active parish councils/meetings now has a parish portal account.


2.2       Approximately 26,000 service requestshave been made via the portal sincethe launch.  The target set for activity is 11,000 service requests annuallyon an on-going basis and in the last 12 months to end of March 2022 that target has been reached.  More encouraging is that volumes continue to increase steadily, which demonstrates the long-term value of the portal and the increasing use / buy-in continues to be reinforced by those parishes using the facility who see it as being of benefit. 


3.0       Ongoing / Continual Improvements – Parish Portal


3.1       As per the last update, work has been ongoing to increase the list of services that can be requested via the Portal to make the portalmore attractive to Parishes. Those currently ‘integrated’ into our asset management system (Symology) are Roads,Pavements, Drainage, Vegetation and Street Lighting. This means that we have the mechanism to provide direct feedback to the Parish on any cases they may raise in these specific categories. Work continues to improve this amenity and the following elements have been reviewed and integrated to simplify and improve user experience:


·         Boundary fences and walls

·         Road markings

·         Obstructions/deposits on the highway

·         Winter maintenance – request for grit bin/heap refill


3.2       Therefore, the next priorities for overall improvement of the parish portal are:


·         Continue to extend the number of servicesavailable through the portal – including yet to be determined services currently delivered by District/Borough Councils

·         Continue to reduce the number of non-integrated services.

·         Review parish feedback and continually refine the product

·         Work with Members to understand how they can benefitfrom the information in the parish portal (and the customer portal)to understand reportedand resolved issues in their divisions

·         Working with Executive Member for Highways and Transport and in turn Local Members to further-increasethe number of parishes registered and the number of service requestsreceived through the portal.


4.0       Members’ Dashboard



4.1       Using existing Business Intelligence data, we have developed a system that allows Members to have an overview of what Parishes and the Public are reporting in their Division.   This provides a more streamlined means of Members being able to access data in their ward in sufficient detail that allows vision of what Parish/Town Councils are reporting in their Divisionwithout the need for Members to register for every individual parish portal account.  The Members Dashboard also includes reports made via the customer portal thereby giving Members an encompassing perspective of demand for service in their Divisions.


4.2       This system is now live and we have delivered a presentation to new Executive Member for Highways & Transport who is happy to advocate use of this system to all Members. It is an easy to use but effective tool to access real-time information regarding activity and service demand in their Divisions. This allows Members to keep a true ‘finger on the pulse’ of local issues on a local level and will benefit the Members as well as the parish councils/meetings they support, especially as Members can access data immediately in advance of any formal parish council meetings.



5.0       Equalities Implications


5.1       Consideration has been given to the potential for any adverse equality impacts arising from the recommendation.  It is the view of officers that the recommendation does not have an adverse impact on any of the protected characteristics identified in the Equalities Act 2010 and a copy of the completed decision that “Equalities Impact Assessment is included with this report


6.0       Financial Implications


6.1       Now the system is set up and continues to use Business Intelligence data, any ongoing maintenance of the system is negligible. Whilst some officer time will be required to induct/upskill new Members and refresh re-elected Members in how to access and navigate the system. This is being undertaken as BAU (as part of the HCCO role) Any training can be facilitated via the local weekly Member Highways surgeries that now exist, so Members could have area-based or one-to-one training depending on their preference. The fact that Members can also ‘self-serve’ using the dashboard if they wish means that HCCOs will have more time to support Members with more-complex queries. Ultimately, this ‘quid-pro-quo’ time swap means there are no financial implications.




7.0       Legal Implications


7.1       There are no legal implications with these proposals.


8.0       Climate Change Impact Assessment


8.1       Since the Members’ Dashboard was rolled out there has been no environmental / climate change impact. Access to data would be online using existing IT equipment issued to Members. The Climate Change Impact Assessment form is attached to this report


9.0       Recommendation


9.1       It is recommended that the Members of this Committee:


       i.       Note the content of this report

      ii.       Endorse the continued roll out of the Members Dashboard.





Assistant Director – Highways & Transportation



Authors of Report:


Nigel Smith, Head of Highway Operations

Deborah Flowers – highways Customer Communications Officer



Background Documents:


·         Briefing Note dated 13th September 2021 to informal Skype Meeting of O&S Committee

·         Report to O&S Committee December 2018





Initial equality impact assessment screening form

(As of October 2015 this form replaces ‘Record of decision not to carry out an EIA’)

This form records an equality screening process to determine the relevance of equality to a proposal, and a decision whether or not a full EIA would be appropriate or proportionate.


Business and Environmental Services

Service area

Highways & Transportation

Proposal being screened

Update on the Operation of the Parish Portal / Members’ Dashboard and Parish Council Engagement


Officer(s) carrying out screening

Nigel Smith

What are you proposing to do?

Provide Update on Parish Portal use & continued Roll-out of Members’ Dashboard

Why are you proposing this? What are the desired outcomes?

O&S Committee are keen to keep pace with take-up / use of the portal and the rollout of the Members’ dashboard to provide County Councillors with a simple means of accessing service request data salient to their Division will improve Members’ ability to keep track of those service requests and support the local community as strongly as possible


A number of mechanisms exist for online reporting of highway issues; ‘do it online’ and self-service makes the process efficient, but to ensure its effectiveness parish and town council meetings/ forums are supported by local highways teams. The desired outcome is an effective and efficient fault reporting system

Does the proposal involve a significant commitment or removal of resources? Please give details.

No.  The portal is already up and running and the Dashboard uses existing business intelligence data. Upskilling Members can be incorporated into regular liaison meetings between local highways contacts and Members

Is there likely to be an adverse impact on people with any of the following protected characteristics as defined by the Equality Act 2010, or NYCC’s additional agreed characteristics?


As part of this assessment, please consider the following questions:

·       To what extent is this service used by particular groups of people with protected characteristics?

·       Does the proposal relate to functions that previous consultation has identified as important?

·       Do different groups have different needs or experiences in the area the proposal relates to?




No / Not applicable



If for any characteristic it is considered that there is likely to be a significant adverse impact or you have ticked ‘Don’t know/no info available’, then a full EIA should be carried out where this is proportionate. You are advised to speak to your Equality rep for advice if you are in any doubt.


Protected characteristic



Don’t know/No info available







Sex (Gender)






Sexual orientation



Gender reassignment



Religion or belief



Pregnancy or maternity



Marriage or civil partnership



NYCC additional characteristic

People in rural areas



People on a low income



Carer (unpaid family or friend)



Does the proposal relate to an area where there are known inequalities/probable impacts (e.g. disabled people’s access to public transport)? Please give details.





Will the proposal have a significant effect on how other organisations operate? (e.g. partners, funding criteria, etc.). Do any of these organisations support people with protected characteristics? Please explain why you have reached this conclusion.


Decision (Please tick one option)

EIA not relevant or proportionate:

Continue to full EIA:


Reason for decision

This a report that updates members on the use of the Parish Portal and also seeks endorsement to continue the roll out of the Members Dashboard. It has no negative impact on the operation of the highway from the current position.


Both the Parish Portal and the Members Dashboard meet the accessibility regulations and guidance for public sector bodies.


For these reasons, it has no negative impact on people with protected characteristics.

Signed (Assistant Director or equivalent)

Barrie Mason





Climate change impact assessment                                                                                                                                                                                                           


The purpose of this assessment is to help us understand the likely impacts of our decisions on the environment of North Yorkshire and on our aspiration to achieve net carbon neutrality by 2030, or as close to that date as possible. The intention is to mitigate negative effects and identify projects which will have positive effects.


This document should be completed in consultation with the supporting guidance. The final document will be published as part of the decision making process and should be written in Plain English.


If you have any additional queries which are not covered by the guidance please email 

Please note: You may not need to undertake this assessment if your proposal will be subject to any of the following: 
 Planning Permission
 Environmental Impact Assessment
 Strategic Environmental Assessment
 However, you will still need to summarise your findings in in the summary section of the form below.
 Please contact for advice.












Title of proposal

Update on Parish Portal & ongoing Roll-out of Members’ Dashboard

Brief description of proposal

Provide Update on Parish Portal use & ongoing Roll-out of Members’ Dashboard



Service area

H&T / Highway Ops

Lead officer

Nigel Smith

Names and roles of other people involved in carrying out the impact assessment

Nigel Smith – Head of Highway Operations

Date impact assessment started

30 August 2022








Options appraisal


Were any other options considered in trying to achieve the aim of this project? If so, please give brief details and explain why alternative options were not progressed.



No – Following discussion at previous O&S Committees, this is an evolution of the Parish Portal Concept by allowing Members a means of accessing Business intelligence Data through a dashboard.


This is a regular report based on the ongoing roll out of the parish portal (and Members’ dashboard).




What impact will this proposal have on council budgets? Will it be cost neutral, have increased cost or reduce costs?


Please explain briefly why this will be the result, detailing estimated savings or costs where this is possible.



Given the system uses existing Business Intelligence data, any maintenance of the system will be negligible, if any. Some officer time will be required to brief /

upskill new and re-elected Members in how to access and navigate the system.


This can be rolled out as part of the Highway Customer Communication Officer (HCCO) role.


Any training can be facilitated via the local weekly Member Highways surgeries that now exist so Members could have area-based or one to one training depending

on their preference. The fact that Members can also ‘self-serve’ using the dashboard if they wish means that HCCOs will have more time to support Members

with more-complex queries.


Ongoing promotion of effective self-service through our online reporting mechanisms ensures costs of dealing with service requests are kept to a minimum as opposed to, for example, parish and town councils calling NYCCs customer service centre. Ultimately, this is a cost-neutral exercise.





How will this proposal impact on the environment?

N.B. There may be short term negative impact and longer term positive impact. Please include all potential impacts over the lifetime of a project and provide an explanation.

Positive impact

(Place a X in the box below where relevant)

No impact

(Place a X in the box below where relevant)

Negative impact

(Place a X in the box below where relevant)

Explain why will it have this effect and over what timescale?


Where possible/relevant please include:

·      Changes over and above business as usual

·      Evidence or measurement of effect

·      Figures for CO2e

·      Links to relevant documents

Explain how you plan to mitigate any negative impacts.


Explain how you plan to improve any positive outcomes as far as possible.

Minimise greenhouse gas emissions e.g. reducing emissions from travel, increasing energy efficiencies etc.


Emissions from travel




There might be a small reduction in travel if Members do not travel to Highways Offices to eek information about service requests in their Divisions once this can be accessed online



Emissions from construction







Emissions from running of buildings














Minimise waste: Reduce, reuse, recycle and compost e.g. reducing use of single use plastic







Reduce water consumption







Minimise pollution (including air, land, water, light and noise)





Potential for reduced CO2 emissions if travel to meet officers reduced



Ensure resilience to the effects of climate change e.g. reducing flood risk, mitigating effects of drier, hotter summers







Enhance conservation and wildlife








Safeguard the distinctive characteristics, features and special qualities of North Yorkshire’s landscape









Other (please state below)










Are there any recognised good practice environmental standards in relation to this proposal? If so, please detail how this proposal meets those standards.


 Not directly, however the ability to access this information online and remotely will be of benefit to users (Members)










Summary Summarise the findings of your impact assessment, including impacts, the recommendation in relation to addressing impacts, including any legal advice, and next steps. This summary should be used as part of the report to the decision maker.



If officer recommendations are taken then the proposal is to seek permission from the Corporate Director and Executive Member for access & Leader to roll this facility out to all County Councillors, however there is no environmental / climate change impact.














Sign off section


This climate change impact assessment was completed by:



Nigel Smith

Job title

Head of Highway Operations

Service area

Highway Operations / H&T




N Smith

Completion date

30 August 2022


Authorised by relevant Assistant Director (signature): B Mason


Date: 30 August 2022