HYNDBURN Council bosses have welcomed an Audit Commission rep-ort which rates the borough's customer services as "fair" and says it has a "promising" chance of improving them.
The verdict was delivered by inspectors who gave the council's customer services one star out of a possible three.
Inspectors recognised measures the council had put in place to improve its facilities and also suggested ways in which these could be further improved.
- Involving people in setting standards for the council's services.
- Developing a strategy to make services easier to use.
- Including customer services in the way the council measures its performance.
This week, council leader Peter Britcliffe said: "We are very pleased with the report as we got a mark of fair for our customer services.
"It was recognised that financial problems had held us back in the past but also that we had a promising chance to improve. I think we did very well in this inspection and it shows we can still improve the services we offer."
Tom Keena, senior manager for the Audit Comm-ission, said: "The council has a clear commitment to improving its access to services. It has plans for a contact centre and a better website and is looking at better ways of using its buildings and ensuring they provide effective access for customers.
"It is increasing its understanding of local communities and what they want from the council. It now needs to make sure it can deliver its programme of improvements."
Inspectors also found that:
- There was a general trend of improvement across all of the council's services.
- The council tried hard to include people when designing its services.
- Customers had reported recent improvements to access in services.
- Improvements were being made by working with other authorities and groups.
- The council had refurbished many of its offices to make them more user-friendly.
- Council newsletters took care to consider equality and diversity issues.