Fair and effective enforcement is essential to protect the health, safety and interests of the residents, visitors and businesses of South Derbyshire.
We are also committed to supporting a national programme of improving regulation which is being managed across the region by the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) called Better Business Regulation. The project aims to support businesses primarily by making business regulations easier to access and understand.
Even in a small case a decision about enforcement action has serious implications for all involved; the general public, businesses, victims, witnesses and defendants. We apply this policy so that we can make fair and consistent decisions and so that everyone knows the principles that we apply when carrying out enforcement work.
Council officers are given wide ranging powers to enforce many different areas of law. We have a legal duty to use these powers is a way that is transparent, accountable, proportionate, consistent and targeted.
Many areas of the laws we enforce are subjective and therefore the way in which the legislation is interpreted and applied relies of the professionalism, competence and experience of our officers.
We have developed an enforcement policy which provides our officers with a framework within they must work. Any enforcement action that is taken by our officers should meet the policy.
The government has set a priority of reducing the regulatory burden on business. So to help businesses to grow, the Better Business for All project started in 2013. This aims to support businesses primarily by making business regulations easier to access and understand. This is being led across the region by the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire LEP as their Better Business Regulation project.
Meeting regulations is not as difficult as is often believed. We, along with other regulators across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, are committed to supporting businesses by providing advice and guidance that helps them understand and meet their responsibilities.
Better Business for All includes:
All the latest information on Better Business for All is on the D2N2 Growth Hub.
The Better Business for All project consists of a number of pieces of work:
A Business Advice Start-up pack has been produced to give businesses direct access to all of the local organisations they may need to speak to when getting their business off the ground.
A free health and safety advisory service is available to all businesses across the region until March 2015, and we aspire to keep it going beyond this. A specialist health and safety advisor will provide free, confidential advice and practical help to sort out any workplace health and safety concerns. The free service can be contacted on the Business Support Helpline 0333 006 9178.
We have signed up to the D2N2 Pledge of Support. We will be progressively implementing the commitments within the pledge.
A Regulatory Services Partnership has formed, led by a steering group made up from regional businesses and regulators. We are committed to supporting and implementing the work of the steering group.
A quarterly newsletter is being produced to highlight the benefits and changes resulting from the BBfA programme.
All staff working in our areas of business regulation have been given a briefing note on the importance and relevance of the project.
We have introduced new performance indicators within our service plan to direct our activities towards promoting business growth.
A ‘Meet the Regulators’ event was held in Derby in October 2013 to enable regulators and businesses to share their experiences.
A regulatory awareness event was held in January 2014 to improve the understanding that staff in each regulatory authority has the way other regulatory authorities work.
A single point of contact has been provided to assist businesses, including links to business advice, funding and grant opportunities
Further work has been identified as necessary which includes:
The Environmental Health Service intentionally does not have any targets for enforcement action. We deal with approximately 500 inspections and 2,500 investigations a year and every case is dealt with on its merits. Any cases which the investigating officers considers should be taken to court needs to be approved by a director of the council.
South Derbyshire District Council
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