Our customer commitments

The Customer Charter sets out our commitments to you

We will

  • continue to develop online services and provide up-to-date information about our services
  • aim to acknowledge online applications and tell you what happens next
  • use plain English
  • keep your information secure as safeguarding your personal data and protecting your privacy is important to us
  • respond to direct enquiries posted on our Facebook and Twitter accounts directly within two working days and if we know this is not possible, we will tell you when you can expect a full response
  • if we promise to call you back, we will aim to do this within one working day unless we advise you of a different timescale
  • if we arrange to visit you we will aim to be punctual wherever possible and carry identification cards
  • when you contact us by email or letter we will aim to respond within ten working days. If we are unable to do this we will tell you when you can expect a response

Service commitments to you

Building control

We will:

  • aim to check full plans applications within 15 working days of receiving a valid application
  • respond to reports of a dangerous structure within two hours 

Cemeteries

We will:

  • respond to a request for a burial service within an average of five working days

Complaints

We will:

  • acknowledge a complaint within five clear working days of receiving it and provide a full response within 20 clear working days

Council Tax, business rates and invoices

We will:

  • respond to enquiries within an average of ten working days

Customer Services

We will:

  • aim to answer calls within an average of three minutes (except at specific peak periods)
  • take the time to answer as many of your enquiries within one call
  • aim to see a minimum of 90% of customers within 20 minutes at our Customer Service Desks

Electoral services

We will:

  • aim to process all applications for registration and absent votes (outside of the annual canvas in the autumn) within ten working days 

Freedom of information

We will:

  • respond to an information request within 20 clear working days of receiving it

Fly tipping

We will:

  • aim to remove fly tipped waste on public land within three working days of being reported

Graffiti

We will:

  • remove offensive graffiti in public places within an average of four working hours

Homelessness

We will:

  • provide an out-of-hours emergency service for those who may be homeless
  • provide a Housing Options duty officer during office hours
  • provide a Housing Options interview in an average of ten working days for anyone who is threatened with homelessness within two months

Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit

We will:

  • aim to process all new applications within an average of ten calendar days from the date we receive all the information
  • aim to process 90% of applications for Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) within an average of two working days 

Housing list

We will:

  • process housing applications within an average of 15 working days

Licences

We will:

  • aim to respond to licence applications within an average of five working days
  • aim to determine licence applications within an average of six weeks

Lifeline

We will:

  • install new Lifeline equipment for urgent cases within an average of two working days and all cases within an average of five working days

Noise nuisance

We will:

  • respond to a complaint about noise nuisance within an average of 48 hours

Parking

We will:

  • aim to process all applications for season tickets, permits and visitor vouchers within an average of five working days from the date we receive the completed application

Paying our bills

We will:

  • pay all creditors within the agreed timescales

Planning

We will:

  • aim to acknowledge a complaint about an alleged planning breach within two working days and advise you how we intend to deal with the matter within 20 working days of receiving the complaint
  • aim to call you back within one working day if our duty planning officer is unavailable when you call with a planning enquiry
  • aim to acknowledge written requests for pre-application advice within three working days. A full written response to be sent within 20 working days if a meeting isn't required. If a meeting is required, a full written response will be sent within ten working days after the meeting 

Private housing

We will:

  • aim to contact you within an average of two working days to let you know how and when we will deal with your complaint

Recycling and waste collection

We will:

  • return to empty a missed bin by the end of the next working day if it is reported within 24 hours
  • respond to requests for unwanted bulky waste collections in an average of five working days