Executive Board minutes: February 2017

Minutes from the 7 February 2017 meeting of the Executive Board, which is chaired by the Permanent Secretary.

Attendees and apologies


  • Leslie Evans, Permanent Secretary (Chair)
  • Sarah Davidson, DG Communities
  • Liz Ditchburn, DG Economy
  • Paul Gray, DG Health and Social Care
  • Paul Johnston, DG Learning and Justice
  • Ken Thomson, DG Strategy and Operations
  • Gordon Wales, Director for Financial Management
  • Janet Hamblin, Non-Executive Director
  • Linda McKay, Non-Executive Director

Also in attendance:

  • Barbara Allison, Director for Communications, Ministerial Support and Facilities
  • Nicky Richards, Director for People
  • Roger Halliday, Head of Office of the Chief Statistician and Strategic Analysis
  • David Rogers, Director of Strategy and Constitution
  • Karen Watt, Director of External Affairs
  • Donald Cameron, ET Support Division
  • Helen Buckley, ET Support Division
  • Joanne Ward, ET Support Division


  • Alyson Stafford, DG Finance
  • Ronnie Hinds, Non-Executive Director

Items and actions

Item 1: Welcome, Introductions, Apologies and Declarations of Interest

The Chair welcomed everyone to the Executive Board (EB) meeting, in particular, the Director for Financial Management attending in his capacity as Acting DG Finance. The Chair noted apologies from DG Finance and Mr Hinds, Non-Executive Director. There were no declarations of interest.

The EB noted the minutes from the previous meeting of 10, January 2017 and the Action Tracker.

Item 2: Financial Stewardship and Risk


Acting DG Finance updated EB on the Scottish Budget: Draft Budget 2017-18 timetable with Stage Two taking place on Wednesday, 8 February 2017. The organisation was on track to balance the 2016/17 budget.

DG Economy updated EB about the new CAP loan scheme approved by Ministers for 2016. In response to a question from Ms McKay NXD about the schedule for recovering loans, DG Economy said that the new system was due to go live on Monday, 20 February 2017. EB noted that an additional risk around the EU referendum had been added to the corporate risk register.

Item 3: Results and Outcomes

Performance and priorities Board – Refresh Remit

Acting DG Finance updated EB on work he had led to review the operation of the Performance and Priorities Board which had considered the remit, focus and approach. The Performance and Priorities Board would meet again on Tuesday, 28 February and would focus on agreeing priorities; work programme for the next 12 months; role of members; its contribution to and delivery of the SG2020 programme; and the refresh of the National Performance Framework. A further update would be given at the next EB meeting on Tuesday, 14 March 2017.

Action: Acting DG Finance

National Performance Framework Refresh

Head of Office of the Chief Statistician and Strategic Analysis updated EB on the National Performance Framework Refresh including a proposal to highlight the contribution made to delivering outcomes over 10 years of the National Performance Framework. The Executive Board noted the update and in particular that the proposal included a domestic and international focus, however a suggested 1 day conference was not agreed in favour of an incremental approach throughout the year. The chair noted the opportunity for reflection within the organisation about how best to maximise benefit from the NPF approach; and about how to extend learning and obtain feedback across relevant stakeholder communities.

Item 4: Organisational Efficiency

Europe and Constitutional Development

Director of External Affairs and Director of Strategy and Constitution updated EB on the recent Joint Ministerial Committee and Joint Ministerial Committee Plenary meetings. EB considered the implications for the organisation including preparation for Brexit and the provisions of the Great Repeal Bill which will transpose European Union law into domestic law.

Item 5: Development of People and Capability

Priorities and next steps

DG Strategy and Operations and DG Communities updated EB on work around the SG2020 programme. They noted the importance of accelerating the programme to ensure that the organisation is equipped to support delivery of the PfG and able to respond flexibly to a range of emerging challenges including those arising from the EU and wider constitutional work. Key to this was work being done to identify resources which could be released through reprioritisation of existing commitments and programmes to retain a strong focus on the PfG while identifying areas that required additional resources to intensify delivery of emerging priorities. Directors would have a critical role to play in this work as would the development of the rhythm and focus of internal communication. EB noted actions being taken to accelerate the SG2020 programme in a way that both addressed immediate priorities and had a positive impact on longer term objectives of the programme.

ET Secretariat 08 February 2017


Email: ceu@gov.scot

Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road

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