Agenda for Council on Thursday, 22nd October, 2015, 4.30pm
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Agenda and minutes
Venue: The Brighton Centre
Contact: Mark Wall, Head of Democratic Services 291006
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Declarations of Interest
(a) Disclosable pecuniary interests;
(b) Any other interests required to be registered under the local code;
(c) Any other general interest as a result of which a decision on the matter might reasonably be regarded as affecting you or a partner more than a majority of other people or businesses in the ward/s affected by the decision.
In each case, you need to declare
(i) the item on the agenda the interest relates to;
(ii) the nature of the interest; and
(iii) whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest or some other interest.
If unsure, Members should seek advice from the committee lawyer or administrator preferably before the meeting.
31.1 There were no declarations of interest in matters appearing on the agenda.
To approve as a correct record the minutes of (a) the Special Meeting held on the 16th July and (b) the last ordinary Council meeting held on the 16th July 2015 (copies attached).
32.1 The minutes of the Special meeting held on the 16th July 2015 were approved and signed by the Mayor as a correct record of the proceedings;
32.2 The minutes of the last ordinary meeting held on the 16th July 2015 were approved and signed by the Mayor as a correct record of the proceedings.
To receive communications from the Mayor.
33.1 The Mayor informed the council that she had to announce the death of former Labour Councillor Gill Sweeting who served for 22 years as an elected Member, was Mayor and was appointed as an Honorary Alderman of the city in July 2007. She had also been informed of the death of Mr. John Broadley, Former Mayor of Hove (1987-88) who was also a former Leader of Hove Borough Council. She wished to convey the council’s deepest sympathy to their families, friends and former colleagues. The Mayor then asked everyone present to stand for a minute’s silence as a mark of respect.
33.2 The Mayor then offered the Council’s congratulations to the Revenues & Benefits Teams who had again retained their Customer Service Excellence award following an annual review which included testing on 57 individual criteria. The Revenues and Benefits teams passed on every single one. The Mayor then invited Mike Masters to come forward to accept the award on behalf of the Teams.
33.3 The Mayor then offered the Council’s congratulations to the City Parks Projects Team for The Level who won the “Bees Needs” award for work to attract bees and other pollinating insects and plants. The award for innovation was supported by Defra and the National Pollinator Strategy and was awarded by the Tidy Britain Group as part of the annual Green Flag awards. The Mayor then invited The Level Garden Manager and members of the City Parks Project Team to come forward to collect the award.
33.4 The Mayor then stated that the Council’s congratulations went to Francesca Iliffe, Sustainability Officer in Planning Projects Team, who had been given the Soil Association Catering Mark Champion Award. She had been recognised by the Soil Association for her excellent work in the city over many years to facilitate a more sustainable food system, working in the Planning Service with the Food Partnership to spread good practice through all council departments. The Mayor noted that in addition to this award, in October Francesca was invited to an International Climate Change Conference in Germany to share the council’s good practice and track record with the Food Partnership in increasing urban food growing through effective Planning.
33.5 The Mayor then invited Francesca Iliffe, to come forward to collect the award.
33.6 The Mayor offered the Council’s congratulations to the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership for winning the Silver Sustainable Food Cities Award. Brighton & Hove became the first and only place in the country to be named a Silver Sustainable Food City; setting the benchmark high for cities across the UK and recognising the city’s pioneering approach to food. The award recognised the achievements of the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership and their collaborative work over the last 12 years with partners in the city including the Council, Public Health, local sustainable food business and the thousands of volunteers involved in community food projects across the city.
33.7 The Mayor stated that she would like to present the award this to Vic Borrill, the inspirational Director of the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership, and invited her to come forward to accept the award.
33.8 The Mayor stated that she understood that the Health & Wellbeing Board at its meeting on Tuesday had agreed to endorse the St Mungo’s Charter for Homeless Health and for the Chair to sign the Charter on behalf of the Board. She therefore wished to invite Councillor Yates as the Chair to come forward and sign the Charter in front of the council.
33.9 Finally, the Mayor invited all Members to attend the Remembrance Services taking place in the city in 2015. On Remembrance Sunday 8th November in Brighton the following services would be held:
· 11 am at Old Steine War Memorial Garden, the Service will be followed by a March Past in the Old Steine and there will be a sherry reception in the Mayor’s Parlour at Brighton Town Hall.
· A wreath laying ceremony will take place at 11.00 am at the Easthill Park Memorial, Portslade.
· A Parade will leave Hove Town Hall at 2.10p.m and proceed to the War Memorial, Grand Avenue, Hove, for a wreath-laying ceremony. From there the Parade will process to All Saints Church for a full Service of Remembrance beginning at 3pm.
Extract from the proceedings of the Policy & Resources Committee meeting held on the 15th October 2015 (to be circulated), together with a report of the Monitoring Officer (copy attached).
34.1 The Mayor noted that the report on the review of the Council’s Constitution had been referred from the Policy & Resources Committee for approval and called on Councillor Morgan to introduce the report.
34.2 Councillor Morgan formally moved the report.
34.3 The Mayor noted that there were no other speakers and that the recommendations had been formally moved and put them to the vote.
(1) That the proposed changes to the Council’s constitution set out in paragraphs 3.2 to 3.4 (Procedure for Dismissing Certain Statutory Officers), 3.5 to 3.6 (Appointment of Chief Executive to be on the recommendation of the Appointments and Remuneration Panel), 3.9 (terms of reference of the Health & Wellbeing Board), 3.12 (Sustainable Community Strategy), 3.13 (Policy & Resources Committee Terms of Reference) and 3.15 to 3.16 (Contract Standing Orders) be approved;
(2) That the Acting Chief Executive and Monitoring Officer be authorised to take all steps necessary or incidental to the implementation of the changes agreed by Policy & Resources Committee and Full Council respectively and that the Monitoring Officer be authorised to amend and re-publish the Council’s constitutional documents to incorporate the changes.
(3) That the changes come into force immediately following Council approval.
To receive the recommendations of the Appointments Panel on the appointment of the Chief Executive. Report of the Interim Executive Director for Finance & Resources (to be circulated following the final interviews for the post on the 20th October 2015).
35.1 The Mayor noted that the report on the appointment of the Chief Executive had been referred from the Appointments Panel and called on Councillor Morgan as Chair of the Panel to introduce the report.
35.2 Councillor Morgan stated that it was his happy duty to move the recommendation that Mr. Geoff Raw be appointed as the Council’s new Chief Executive and Head of Paid Service. He stated that Geoff needed no introduction having served as the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing and more recently as the Acting Chief Executive. He believed that Geoff would prove to be an outstanding Chief Executive and continue to bring benefits to the city such as City Deal and the Greater Brighton Economic Board.
35.3 Councillor G. Theobald stated that the Conservative Group fully supported the recommendation to appoint Geoff Raw as the new Chief Executive. He had a difficult task ahead but one that he hoped Geoff would take forward.
35.4 Councillor Mac Cafferty stated that he wished to echo the comments of the two Group Leaders and to thank those officers including Sue Moorman involved in the appointment process. He also wished to thank the Chair of the Panel and other panel members and felt that they had worked well together and made a very good recommendation.
35.5 The Mayor stated that the recommendation to appoint Mr. Geoff Raw as the Chief Executive and Head of Paid Service had been moved and put it to the vote.
(1) That Mr. Geoff Raw be appointed as the Chief Executive and Head of Paid Service;
(2) That the salary for the post be set at £150,000 per annum;
(3) That the appointment take effect from the 23rd October 2015;
(4) That the Interim Executive Director of Finance & Resources, after consultation with the Leader of the Council, be authorised to take all steps necessary or incidental to implementation of the appointment, including any detailed terms or administrative arrangements that may be outstanding.
35.7 The Mayor then offered her congratulations on his appointment and invited the Chief Executive to address the Council.
35.8 The Chief Executive thanked the Council and noted that it was likely to be the only occasion whereby he was able to address the meeting. He stated that he was deeply honoured to have been given the role and noted that it was a long way to come for a boy from a pit village school in the North East of England. He felt privileged to be able to serve all Members of the Council and was determined to give it his all. He had received many personal messages of congratulations and would try to respond to them over the next few days. He wanted to thank the members of the Appointment Panel and the officer team that supported the panel during a thorough and exhausting process. He offered his commiserations to the other candidates and his thanks to his ELT colleagues. He also wished to give his special thanks to his wife, Sue who had made their home in the city despite having to commute to London regularly herself and was sure she would keep his feet firmly on the ground. He was both excited and ambitious for the Council and was looking forward to meeting the challenges ahead.
Note: During consideration of the item, Mr. Raw vacated his seat as Acting Chief Executive and left the room.
To receive petitions and e-petitions.
Petitions will be presented by Members and/or members of the public to the Mayor at the meeting.
36.1 The Mayor invited the submission of petitions from councillors and members of the public. She reminded the Council that petitions would be referred to the appropriate decision-making body without debate and the person presenting the petition would be invited to attend the meeting to which the petition was referred.
36.2 The Mayor invited Mr. R. Heale to present an e-petition requesting the council to hold the i360 developer to account. The Mayor noted that Mr. Heale was not in attendance and therefore the petition would be referred directly to the Policy & Resources Committee on the 3rd December 2015 for consideration.
36.3 Mr. S. Parry presented a combined paper and e-petition with 321 signatures concerning the need for Neighbourhood Policing to be maintained.
36.4 Councillor Cobb presented a petition with a 100 signatures requesting that the council seek to ensure that Brighton College funds the replacement of elm trees that had to be felled on its grounds.
36.5 The Mayor thanked the petitioners and noted that each petition would be referred to the relevant committee for consideration.
A list of public questions received by the due date of 12noon on the 15th October will be circulated separately as part of an addendum at the meeting.
37.1 The Mayor reported that two written questions had been received from members of the public and invited Mr. Furness to come forward and address the council.
37.2 Mr. Furness asked the following question; “Regarding the loss of approximately 14 mature elm trees in the Westbourne area of Hove recently, as a result of the sheer irresponsibility of the proprietors of St. Christopher's School in storing elm logs infected with Dutch Elm Disease, for which no prosecution was pursued, could you please enlighten us, Councillor Mitchell, as to whether the aforementioned school has offered any recompense towards the removal and replacement of these trees?”
37.3 Councillor Mitchell replied; “Thank you very much for your question Mr Furness. It is indeed very sad that we have lost 14 elm trees in the Westbourne area and this highlights how devastating the effects of Dutch elm disease can be. The outbreak was the consequence of healthy trees on the grounds of St. Christopher’s school being cut back for maintenance some two years ago. Unfortunately the cut offs were kept on the school grounds rather than removed and these became a breeding ground for the beetle that causes the spread of Dutch elm disease. When street trees became infected in the area officers carried out an investigation and quickly found the source of the outbreak, unfortunately ten of our street trees were infected and had to be cut down to contain the outbreak. The school was upset by the fact that their premises were the source of the outbreak and have cooperated fully with the council to contain the disease. We have cleared and destroyed all of the wood that has been infected and are keeping a close eye on the area. It is a credit to our specialist parks officers and those vigilant members of the public that we have managed to protect the biggest collection of elm trees in the country. In this case, although the loss of trees is very sad, it looks as if our response plan has worked to contain that outbreak. Parents from the school have been in touch with officers about opportunities to raise funds for replacement trees. In cases like this we don’t pursue individuals or organisations to recover costs because we don’t want to put people off reporting outbreaks, if people are concerned they will have to pay costs then they may choose to depose of any infected wood irresponsibly and that would put our whole collection at greater risk. If Dutch elm disease or any disease is suspected in trees we want people to report it to us straight away.”
37.4 Mr. Furness asked the following supplementary question; “And yet Councillor Mitchell I saw you on the TV the other night and you quite properly said that people who allow dogs to foul on the pavements will receive on the spot fines, I believe from a contracted out private company. Could you tell me please if this is a case of double standards because trees across this city are being needlessly destroyed at an alarming rate the council will not even defend the application by the Sussex University to appeal against the destruction of another 1500 trees including elms? Our city has the grace to be declared a United Nations biosphere, I have yet to have heard of any administration of this council that promotes that properly that would be a huge tourist boost, would bring income in to this city as would be advertising the fact that we have the world collection of elms, not the national, the world collection of English elms. Could you please tell me Councillor Mitchell when, one, do you intend to take this seriously our designation as a biosphere and two, when are you going to get a grip on the so called agricultural department?”
37.5 Councillor Mitchell replied; “Thank you for your supplementary question and I think you have answered your own question Mr Furness. We do have a world collection of which we are very proud of elm trees and it is because of the expertise that has built up within our arboricultural team shared with our neighbouring councils that we have managed to achieve this. These beetles are born on the winds from the west and we have done a lot of work with our neighbouring authorities to the west to help them contain outbreaks and they have jointly support us.”
37.6 The Mayor thanked Mr. Furness for his questions and invited Mr. Hawtree to come forward and address the council.
37.7 Mr. Hawtree thanked the Mayor and asked the following question, “Would Councillor Morgan please tell us what plans he has to increase the art-gallery provision in Hove and Brighton so that we can match, and perhaps even eclipse, the splendid galleries which bring visitors to Chichester and Eastbourne, and indeed recently to the new Jerwood in Hastings?”
37.8 Councillor Morgan replied, “Thank you Mr Hawtree, we work with Hastings and other councils in a good network of art gallery provision along the coast in co-operation rather than competition. We do indeed already have excellent art gallery provision in the city including for example Fabrica and we’ll work with them to continue their success.”
37.9 Mr. Hawtree asked the following supplementary question, “My question is could we not be making more use of Hove museum upon which half a million pounds was spent not so very long ago to bring it up in standard and therefore with this in mind rather than losing a potential museum could a cross party group explore the means of attracting outside funding for Hove Carnegie Library?”
37.10 Councillor Morgan replied, “As you rightly point out it was a manifesto commitment of the previous administration one that that administration failed to deliver on. Our focus will be on preserving the city’s museums, libraries and the royal pavilion for future generations before we embark on anything new.”
37.11 The Mayor thanked Mr. Hawtree for his questions and noted that this concluded the item.
A list of deputations received by the due date of 12noon on the 15th October 2015 will be circulated separately as part of an addendum at the meeting.
38.1 The Mayor reported that one deputation had been received from members of the public and invited Ms. S. Betts as the spokesperson for the deputation to come forward and address the council.
38.2 Mr. A. Buckingham thanked the Mayor and stated that unfortunately Ms. Betts was unable to attend the meeting and that as one of the founding directors of the Real Junk Food Project he was standing in for her. He stated that the aim of the project was to have a permanent base from which to serve meals and feed those people in the city who were unable to provide themselves with at least one good meal a day. At present they were able to provide meals two days a week and it was hoped that the council could help to find suitable premises that could be used for 7 days a week throughout the year.
38.3 Councillor Morgan stated that he wished to pay tribute to the work of the project and that he fully supported its objectives to address inequality and ensure health and wellbeing of those in need, as well as managing sustainability. He had asked officers to contact Ms. Betts and to arrange to meet and discuss how the council might be able to help meet their aspirations and enable them to tackle poverty in the city.
38.4 The Mayor thanked Mr. Buckingham for attending the meeting and speaking on behalf of the deputation. She explained that the points had been noted and the deputation would be referred to the Economic Development & Culture Committee for consideration. The persons forming the deputation would be invited to attend the meeting and would be informed subsequently of any action to be taken or proposed in relation to the matter set out in the deputation.
38.5 The Mayor noted that there were no other deputations and therefore concluded the item.
Petitions to be debated at Council. Reports of the Monitoring Officer (copies attached).
(a) A Permanent Local Archaeology and History Display in Brighton Museum – Lead Petitioner Ms. F. Briscoe;
(b) Build our City an Ice Arena – Lead Petitioner Master S. Keywood.
39.1 The Mayor stated that the council’s petition scheme provided that where a petition secured 1,250 or more signatures it could be debated at a Council meeting. She had been notified of two such petitions which had sufficient signatures to warrant a debate and therefore would call on the lead petitioner to present their petition before opening the matter up for debate.
39.2 The Mayor then invited Mr. Rudling as President of the Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society to come forward and present the petition.
39.3 Mr. Rudling thanked the Mayor and presented the petition which called on the Council to provide space and resources for a permanent display dedicated to the story of Brighton and Hove for the benefit of local residents and visitors. He confirmed that the petition had over 3,000 signatures from residents and visitors and hoped that consideration would be given to restoring the display space that had been removed in 1998 without any consultation.
39.4 Councillor Robins thanked Mr. Rudling for attending the meeting and presenting the petition. He also wished to thank the Archaeological Society for its active support throughout the city. He stated that the council was committed to supporting the promotion of Brighton and Hove’s history and noted that it had worked with society over the last 3 years on various projects. However, there was a need to consider the cost of proving a suitable permanent display area when the council faced unprecedented financial challenges. He therefore hoped that the successful working arrangements could continue but was unsure that a permanent display area could be located at the Brighton Museum.
39.5 Councillor Peltzer Dunn stated that there was an important consideration to be made in that the past should be recognised and information made available to future generations. He therefore hoped that a positive response to the petition would be forthcoming at the committee meeting.
39.6 Councillor West stated that he was disappointed by Councillor Robins’ response and believed that there was a need for such a display at the Brighton Museum. It was important to engage people’s interest in the city’s history and suggested that funding should be sought to enable a display to be provided.
39.7 Councillor Robins stated that he was very happy to explore options with officers and the Society and hoped that a way forward may be found.
39.8 The Mayor thanked Mr. Rudling for attending the meeting and noted that the recommendation was to refer the petition to the Economic Development & Culture Committee for consideration and put it to the council to agree.
39.9 RESOLVED: That the petition be referred to the Economic Development & Culture Committee for consideration at its next meeting.
39.10 The Mayor then invited Master S. Keywood to come forward to present a petition requesting the provision of an ice rink in the city.
39.11 Master Keywood thanked the Mayor and stated that he had a combined paper and e-petition with over 2,000 signatures calling on the council to build in ice arena in the city. He stated that Brighton and Hove was behind other leading cities such as Manchester, Nottingham and Telford all of which had their own ice arenas. He believed this had to be addressed and provision made within the city rather than leaving residents to have to travel to other arenas. He also drew attention to the council’s SR21 Policy and suggested that an arena could be included in any future major development within the city.
39.12 Councillor Morgan thanked Master Keywood for presenting the petition and acknowledged the campaign that he was instrumental in taking forward. He had been disappointed when the proposed development at Black Rock had not come to fruition and he was keen to learn how other cities had been able to secure ice arenas for their areas. He was aware that an ice arena was an expensive consideration for any proposed development but would happily explore that if a developer came forward. In the meantime he hoped that Master Keywood enjoy the temporary ice rink that was to be at the Royal Pavilion again during the Christmas period.
39.13 Councillor Druitt stated that having been able to previously enjoy ice-skating as a young person; he hoped that Master Keywood would continue with his campaign and that it would see the realisation of an ice arena in the city in the future. He fully supported the petition and hoped to discuss the matter further at the committee meeting.
39.14 Councillor G. Theobald stated that he wished to congratulate Master Keywood on his petition and on coming before the council. He could recall watching the Brighton Tigers at the old stadium and was sure that all the Groups supported the concept of having an ice arena in the city. They were extremely expensive to provide but he hoped that a developer would come forward with a proposal and it would see the provision of an arena in the city in time for Master Keywood to enjoy.
39.15 Councillor Cobb stated that she fully agreed with the petition and felt that the city was behind in regard to the provision of leisure facilities and noted that technology more than 30 years ago used the heat from a swimming pool to cool the ice of an ice rink and vice versa. She was sure that technology had advanced over this time period, and suggested that the proposed King Alfred development should be able to provide such a facility to enable the inclusion of an ice-rink.”
39.16 The Mayor thanked Master Keywood for attending the meeting and noted that the recommendation was to refer the petition to the Economic Development & Culture Committee for consideration and put it to the council to agree.
39.17 RESOLVED: That the petition be referred to the Economic Development & Culture Committee for consideration at its next meeting.
A list of the written questions submitted by Members has been included in the agenda papers (copy attached). This will be repeated along with the written answers received and will be taken as read as part of an addendum circulated separately at the meeting.
40.1 The Mayor reminded Council that written questions from Members and the replies from the appropriate Councillor were taken as read by reference to the list included in the addendum which had been circulated as detailed below:
(a) Councillor C. Theobald
40.2 “Will the Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee please tell me why the Black Lion Street public toilets have recently been closed and, if this is a temporary measure, when they will reopen? Have any other public toilets been similarly closed this year?”
Reply from Councillor Mitchell, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.
40.3 As part of the budget for this financial year Council agreed to reduce the funding for public conveniences by £160,000 per year. The budget report set out that the savings would be realised through reduced opening times, reduced cleansing frequencies and some site closures.
An amendment was agreed at reconvened budget council to reduce the saving for Public Conveniences in 2015/16 only from £160,000 to £40,000.
To implement this decision made by full council the toilet in Black Lion Street was permanently closed on 1st July of this year. The reasons this site was selected for closure are that:
· Maintaining this facility cost £40,000 per year
· The site had low foot fall
· There are alternative facilities in close proximity
· The site suffered from higher levels of antisocial behavior during the hours that it was not attended.
Since its closure the service has received two complaints and only a handful of queries about its closure
In order to meet the in-year saving of £40,000 other changes that have been implemented include reducing levels of attendance at the toilets in Pavilion Gardens and removing the attendant in Norton Road toilets which are open at weekends.
(b) Councillor Miller
40.4 “Will the Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee please tell me when it is planned to reopen the historic Madeira Lift?”
Reply from Councillor Mitchell, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.
40.5 “The Madeira Lift is open from Easter to the end of September each year and is operated by the tenant of Concorde II on behalf of the council. In August this year the lift shaft and basement of Concorde II was flooded following a severe rainstorm. As a result, water got into the electrical system and the lift had to be taken out of service. Although the electrical system which directly services the lift was checked by an electrician and approved, the main supply which is owned by UK Power Networks was deemed to be non-compliant and therefore was shut down with immediate effect. This meant the lift could no longer operate as the electrical supply had been cut off. The council has now installed a new electrical supply so that the lift can operate independently. The lift will reopen to the public next season as scheduled on Good Friday 2016.”
(c) Councillor G. Theobald
40.6 “Will the Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee confirm whether or not the Council will be making a submission to the Local Government Association’s review of Trading Standards services and, if so, will there be an opportunity for Members to input into this? The review has been initiated in response to a proposal by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute for the creation of large strategic trading standards authorities funded directly from central Government.”
Reply from Councillor Mitchell, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.
40.7 “We welcome the recognition of the significance and impact of the Trading Standards Service in protecting residents and in supporting businesses. This is a central priority for us in Brighton and Hove.
We are however concerned about the number of different reviews currently running in parallel. We believe that the reviews need to work together to reach a common understanding of the issues. That way they are more likely to deliver results which will be supported by both central and local government, and which will improve the impact of the service and hence the outcomes for local residents and businesses.
We recognise the picture of significant reductions in resources over recent years, outlined in recent work from Chartered Trading Standards Institute, and the increasing postcode lottery of service provision in some parts of the country. We don’t believe that provides any reason to consider alternative delivery models outside of local government. We believe that it is vital that the Trading Standards Service remains part of local government. It makes a major contribution to delivering local priorities, in protecting residents and supporting local businesses. In doing so it achieves much more than it otherwise could by being part of the network of local government services.
Our own model, where we work closely with colleagues in East Sussex Trading Standards, by jointly authorising officers so that capacity and competency can be maintained, is one part of the solution to the current issues facing the service nationally. This helps us to ensure we can continue to provide excellent services whilst also meeting the financial challenges that face us.
Devolution may well also have a part to play in helping to shape the future of the service. It provides an opportunity to address some of the weaknesses identified whilst retaining local accountability.
In addition, in order to help address variations in service delivery or the potential for enforcement gaps, we believe that Government should build upon existing commissioning approaches. It should use both National Trading Standards and the regional Trading Standards co-ordinating groups, to channel resources to tackle any particular issues of national concern. This has already proved successful in areas such as animal feed, and in relation to tobacco control, and has scope to be developed further into other key policy areas for central government.
Abbreviations sometimes used:
BRDO = Better regulation Delivery Office (part of DBIS)
BIS = Department of Business Innovation and Skills (DBIS normally).”
(d) Councillor Sykes
40.8 “What form of sensitivity analysis was undertaken to determine whether the effect of changes to the city traffic network (inc. Lewes Road, Edward Street, Station Gateway) could materially undermine the traffic modelling that informed the Oct 14 Valley Gardens business case? Following from this, what will be the total likely revenue cost to BHCC, by financial year, of the 2015 project review, new traffic surveying in Oct 2015, fresh traffic modelling and project redesign?”
Reply from Councillor Mitchell, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.
40.9 “The independent review's concern relates not to the modelling that formed the basis of the Business Case, but to the further detailed analysis that was undertaken after submission of the Business Case to inform refinements to the Business Case scheme. (The Business Case scheme included new vehicle routes within Victoria Gardens; the current / refined scheme accommodates all vehicles within existing kerb-lines).
Due to errors discovered in the post-Business Case modelling, and the fact that modelling provided the rationale for refinements to the Business Case scheme, the independent review understandably recommends re-modelling the refined scheme. This process will either reassure that the current design proposal can accommodate vehicle demand, or identify where further refinements to the proposal are required prior to the project moving to the implementation stage.
Because the current scheme needs re-modelling, it is considered sensible to take the opportunity to update the traffic flows used in the model to reflect 2015 conditions, as recommended by the Independent Review. Since the original scheme was modelled, a number of significant changes to the surrounding network have been made, including Lewes Road, Vogue Gyratory, Edward Street and Brighton Station Gateway. Given sensitivity around the project, and the shared desire to ensure the final scheme provides the best possible outcome for Valley Gardens into the future, updating traffic flow data used in the model will provide additional reassurance that the scheme's evidence base is as strong as it possibly can be.
Beyond Valley Gardens, the updated city centre transport model (which covers an area between Seven Dials, the seafront and Lewes Rd) can also be used to test impacts of future developments, spreading the value for money achieved by the current process.
In terms of cost, gathering updated traffic data will cost approximately £30,000. Updating the city-centre model with the new data, and testing the current Valley Gardens proposal will cost a similar sum. The review has cost £12,000. It is not possible to ascertain what if any additional design work may be required as a result of the updated modelling until that process has run its course. However, given the rationale for remodelling the scheme, and the importance of getting the proposal right before it is implemented, this design work can be viewed as necessary rather than optional. Overall for gathering traffic data and modelling for Valley Gardens it is anticipated to cost an additional £70-£80k.
It is however reasonable to assume that the extent of any additional (and so redesign) design cost will be modest, given that potential issues identified by the review are constrained to isolated locations within the wider scheme proposal, and technical design has been put on hold during the review process (to protect against undertaking abortive design work).
All costs will be funded from the project's capital budget, and so have no impact on revenue. All costs will relate to the current financial year.
It should also be noted that the original modelling that the review identifies as substandard cost less that £1,000. The re-modelling is much more expensive because it is much more detailed, and so provides a stronger evidence base for the scheme.”
A list of Councillors who have indicated their desire to ask an oral question at the meeting along with the subject matters has been listed in the agenda papers (copy attached).
41.1 The Mayor noted that notification of 10 oral questions had been received and that 30 minutes were set aside for the duration of the item. She then invited Councillor C. Theobald to put her question to Councillor Mitchell.
(a) Litter Clearance A27/A23
41.2 Councillor C. Theobald asked, “At the Council meeting last March I asked the then Chairman on the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee - Councillor West - what the councillor was doing to tackle the scourge of litter along the verges of the A23 and A27 in the city. The response I received was less than helpful. By contrast in July this year Mid-Sussex Serco collected half a ton of litter from the side of the A23 as a part of a new pilot scheme working in partnership with highway maintenance company Balfore Beatty. Does this council have a similar agreement to enable litter picking from the verges of the A27 and A23 in our area and if not why not?
41.3 Councillor Mitchell replied, “Thank you Councillor Theobald for the question. Brighton and Hove City Council is responsible for the litter clearing along sections of the A27 and A23 and as those roads have a speed limit in excess of 50mph there is a requirement to provide a safe working zone for the staff carrying out the litter picking. As there is no hard shoulder the inside lane has to be closed while this work is being carried out. This traffic management must be provided by a competent contactor who is authorised to work on these roads by highways England. This work is scheduled twice a year and was last carried out at the end of April this year and is due to be completed again next month. The work has to be carried out overnight and is planned to take two nights. City Clean is talking to highways England contractors to see if they can coordinate future litter picks with any other works such as grass cutting and tunnel closures so that costs can be controlled.”
41.4 Councillor C. Theobald asked the following supplementary question, “I find this response rather disappointing given the disgusting state of the roadsides on the highway visible at the gateway into our city. Will Councillor Mitchel please give me a commitment that she will ask officers to negotiate a similar joint arrangement here, if Mid-Sussex can do it then I mean why can’t we do the same thing I mean it just seems like we aren’t doing the same as other authorities”
41.5 Councillor Mitchell replied, “I’m not 100% familiar with how Mid-Sussex does things but I must say it does sound remarkably similar to the contractual arrangements that we have with both highways England and their approved contractors”
(b) Hove Library
41.6 Councillor Mac Cafferty asked, “The closure of Hove library has been proposed again by the Labour party 12 years after it last proposed the closure using sadly some of the same specious arguments. Hove library is part of the identity of Hove; it’s loved by the residents of my ward and through-out the city. As one user has written ‘Hove library is a pivotal part of our local community and an invaluable resource’. As a testament to the love that people have for a library nearly 3000 people have now signed the petition to save Hove library and stop the completely inappropriate move of Hove library to the museum. Are the Government’s completely unjust cuts providing a convenient cover for Labour to finally close Hove library which has been in their sites for 12 years?”
41.7 Councillor Morgan replied, “Any changes to Hove library will form part of the library service review and needs analysis that is coming to the economic development and culture committee in November. Not for decision but to open consultation. Both opposition groups have been briefed on this on the financial reasons behind the proposed changes, on the opportunities to provide a better service closer to the users of Hove library and the fact that this is that what is proposed is a move not a closure. Madam Mayor, none of this prevented the Greens from pre-empting the publication of proposals and running a stall outside the library claiming that the service is being cut and Hove library being closed, not moved. This is wrong and it is damaging to the thorough and detailed work being done by officers to re-provide the service. Many of those who signed the petition last week- having been made aware of the facts- have now withdrawn their support. What will be consulted on is a new library combined with a museum and café with seven day a week access as part of a new community hub and cultural centre. One that costs less to run than the current building and one which will be sustainable for the future. Madam Mayor we will put people and services before building and I hope colleagues from across the council will do the same too.”
41.8 Councillor Mac Cafferty asked the following supplementary question, “It’s interesting to look at other Councils being run by the Labour party for example Labour run London borough of Lambeth where there has been a series of library closures in the last few weeks including a library opened by Andrew Carnegie the same man who set up Hove library for the advancement of working people. My supplementary question is the following; would the Leader of the council agree that the historic and ongoing private finance initiative payments on Jubilee library being paid up to 2028 agreed when Labour last ran the council have hamstrung our ability to pay for library facilities today?”
41.9 Councillor Morgan replied, “It’s good that Councillor Mac Cafferty recognises our award winning Jubilee Library which has won prizes over the last decade since it has opened and I pay tribute to the library service that runs it. Madam Mayor it’s astonishing that the green group are campaigning to save an environmentally inefficient 19th century building. Rather than back a sustainable modern library service for the 21st century. It’s a building that will cost nearly three quarters of a million pounds to run over the next four years money that could otherwise be invested in services for residents, that’s what I want to do. Along with other issues that they have put on the agenda this proves to me that there is no bandwagon they won’t climb on, no issue too sensitive, no opportunity too desperate that they won’t take in order to score party political points against this Labour administration. In case they haven’t noticed we are in a funding crisis, our house is on fire. They spent four years ignoring the smoke now they should stop looking for fuel to pour on the flames and help fetch some water alongside anyone who has a real and sensible intent to keep our city services going.”
(c) Dog Fouling
41.10 Councillor Janio asked, “I’m sure that all of us here today have received complaints about the increase in dog fouling across our city and public parks. Indeed it is now becoming so serious that sports and social events are often threatened with cancelation. Madam Mayor, some members may find the subject of dog poo amusing but for many residents it’s far from a joke. Madam Mayor my question to the Chairman of the Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee is; can she please let me know how many prosecutions for dog fouling within Brighton and Hove there have been over the last year?”
41.11 Councillor Mitchell replied, “The Council’s animal welfare team is a proactive one in relation to the very real nuisance of dog fouling. Figures for 2014 show 220 fouling complaint investigations and warnings from 448 individual patrols of known problem areas these include Kemp Town, Hangleton, Waterhall, Ladies Mile Nature Reserve and Woodingdean, however dog control offence are difficult to prove and enforce and reliance on animal welfare officers alone will never be enough. We have to continue working with communities. For 2015 in relation to your question there has been one prosecution resulting in a £1400 fine and one PCN £80. The new enforcement services agreed through ETS committee will included enforcement in relation to waste disposal, fly tipping, littering, fly posting and graffiti and subject to the success of this work it can be extended and I hope that it will to address issues of dog fouling. Finally officers are always pleased to help communities address this problem by supplying materials and warning notices. Recently a residence’s group in the round hill area are trialling pavement stencils encouraging people to pick up after their pets and idea imported from the Shetland isles.”
41.12 Councillor Janio asked the following supplementary question, “So what you’re trying to say is a very, very long way of saying hundreds and hundreds of complaints and one prosecution. This shocking situation can’t continue but I do have hope. In several European cities implementation of DNA profiling and subsequent testing of fouling has reduced incidents by over 80% in just a few months. It’s also, Madam Mayor, reduced numbers of abandoned dogs and has even identified animals responsible for vicious attacks. Madam Mayor, I have a simple request today, no politics in this. Will the Chairman of the ETS Committee meet with both myself and the organisation that has achieved these remarkable results with both an open mind and a view to introducing similar measures across Brighton and Hove?”
41.13 Councillor Mitchell replied, “I will certainly be interested in hearing more about it.”
(d) Budget Development
41.14 Councillor Sykes asked, “I wrote to members of the Budget Review Group in August explaining our proposals for public engagement and budget development in this critical time and this follows on from a proposal at July Policy & Resources. I got a hold of a response from Councillor Norman which was rejection- fair enough- but no response from Councillor Hamilton and I wonder if Councillor Hamilton could tell me what he understands by working together on budget development?”
41.15 Councillor Hamilton replied, “I must admit I don’t remember this email and if I have ignored it then I would never do that on purpose and I apologise for it. In regards to the consultation I think we know what’s happened about the consultation certainly I’m not sure whether Councillor Sykes is just referring to the CTR consultation or whether he’s referring to the consultation on the council tax itself so maybe he can clarify that. With regards to the first one the consultation on the first one where there was in fact a request for spending more money. We have in fact consulted everybody who is in receipt of CTR and there were paper copies available as well, it finished earlier this week and I’m very disappointed that in fact the response rate was about 2% and that was despite the Independent contacting people asking people to hurry up and get your replies in because they are needed.
41.16 With regards to the consultation that’s going to take place with regard to council tax it is rather more people so although it won’t be in fact this time be a genuine cross section we are intending to do this online this year so that anybody in the city who wants to respond can do so and there will in fact still be paper copies but before we do that as Councillor Sykes said there has been no consultation with the Budget Review Group about this yet and I have been promised by Finance Officers they will be contacting everybody who’s a member of BRG asking them how they think the consultation on council tax should proceed before any final decision on that is made.
41.17 So I apologise if I didn’t respond to something there as Councillor Sykes knows I always said we should be trying to work together, we have a massive problem to face in front and I think it’s important that we deal with it together and if I did miss an email then I apologise but never the less I hope I’ve put it right and if Councillor Sykes wants to come back and ask me something more detailed now I will be pleased to do my best to answer.
41.18 Councillor Sykes asked the following supplementary question, “I mean when I said working together on the budget I meant political parties and how Councillor Hamilton understands that. There are two left of centre parties in this chamber, they form a majority of councillors and will Councillor Hamilton work with the Greens on budget communication and engagement that challenges the ideology of austerity?
41.19 Councillor Hamilton replied, “I think we’re always -with the Budget Review Group that is- a cross-party organisation, we’re always happy to consider any suggestions that are put forward that are going to help us in trying to meet our deadline. With regards to what I’ve just said I’m told that an email has been sent about consultations for the budget so I’m very pleased to report that. With regard to the budget papers as I’m sure you are aware the Chairs of the committees have met their team members and have actually tried to draw up a four-year plan for their own departments and those are going to ELT next week on Wednesday I believe and on Friday the pink papers will be sent out for the six discussion groups which are taking place in the following ten or eleven days, so by this time next week hopefully the documents for the budget will be ready. As I say, there are six panels who deal with each committee at a time two members from each party so that is I think working together and they will be taking place very, very soon and obviously people who are there will see what’s going on and start to make their suggestions and so on and then by the end of November we hope we will then be starting to go out to consultation on the basis of whatever the comeback is from the Members of the Budget Review Group deciding how they think the consolation should take place but as I said with regards to CTR we sent out about 1600 copies and we got about a 2% response and that’s a tremendous about of money for a very small input. Therefore we think online may well be the answer but it’s up to Councillor Sykes and the Councillors from the Conservative Group as well to decide how they would like the budget consultation in regards to the residents carried out.”
(e) Housing Assets
41.20 Councillor Mears asked, “I do appreciate that the closure of Oxford street housing office in November 2014 was under the previous Administration, but nearly a year following on from the email Members received regarding the immediate closure of Oxford street as a matter of urgency I have been asking for reports at committee to understand why a housing asset paid for by tenants had been allowed to fall into such a state of disrepair that the only option was immediate closure. After two interim Heads of Housing we now have a permanent director in place. I understand a report is now being written for Housing Committee with regards to Oxford Street. Can the Chair of Housing confirm that this report will be on the agenda for the next Housing meeting?”
41.21 Councillor Meadows replied, “The council as a landlord is obliged to review all its stock to ensure it is fit for purpose now and in the future. In order to continue to make best use of housing investment and assets we have an asset management strategy and a regular stock review process. We are finalising a comprehensive housing revenue account asset management strategy to cover the period 2016-2020. The asset management will support our overall housing strategy agreed at full council earlier this year in March. This asset management strategy will also help us ensure we have the right mix of homes and other assets in the future by setting out stock viability criteria and identifying if further detailed work with communities is needed. Our outline asset management strategy priorities are investing in homes and neighbourhoods, supporting new housing supply and ensuring financial viability however there are challenges to meeting these priorities which include the age, nature and ongoing investment requirement of our housing revenue stock, the long term demographic trends and changing customer expectations, the implications of the government’s summer budget and the housing and planning bill. Residents will help shape this asset management strategy and it is currently planned to bring that strategy to a future housing and new homes committee. Oxford will form part of that and it will be coming to the next Housing and New Homes Committee for consideration.”
41.22 Councillor Mears asked the following supplementary question, “Given three options, one to invest and keep the offices open until 2023 can the Chair of Housing confirm that these two reports will be at the next Housing meeting and also the cost the Oxford street while empty, the cost of moving staff, impact on other offices, business rates, security, basic maintenance cost and cost of independent surveys and facilities design reports so that Members at Housing Committee can have a proper informed debate?”
41.23 Councillor Meadows replied, “Yes, I can confirm that all that information can be made available at the next Housing and New Homes Committee.”
(f) Children’s Centres
41.24 Councillor Phillips asked, “Does Councillor Bewick recognise that it is now almost universally accepted that what happens in childhood right from conception onwards to the age of two but also for under-fives can have a significant and lasting impact on someone’s chances of success in adulthood? Children growing up in home environments where they’re exposed to risk factors are more likely to demonstrate poor outcomes in adulthood such as propensity to commit crime, to abuse drugs or alcohol or to borrow and remain unemployed. In particular children who grow up in poverty are much more likely to experience these risk factors. So becoming impoverished adults and continuing the cycle. Does Cllr Bewick therefore agree that children’s centres are a proven method of prevention because amongst other things they use targeted evidence based effective early intervention programs?”
41.25 Councillor Bewick replied, “Can I thank Councillor Phillips for her question and yes can I associate myself with her remarks about early intervention? Madam Mayor with your permission however I’d like to take this opportunity to update all Members on where we are currently with the important review of children’s centres. For several months now a review board including parents chaired by the Director of Children’s Services has been looking at the options of how we deal with a funding shortfall in the children’s service of £846,000. That’s about 35% of the total budget for children’s centres. Now I’d like to believe that no one comes into public service to cut the number of children’s centres but I do think it’s time to level with the public that the decisions taken last year to save the children’s centre were simply kicking the can down the road. It is this Administration that now has to pick up the pieces and deal with the challenge.
41.26 There are currently 12 statutory children’s centres across the city they do fantastic work serving a population of nearly 15,000 children. An on behalf of us all I think it’s important we recognise the hard work of staff and support workers in our children’s centres they do a great job to improve outcomes for young children and reduce inequality in our city but the huge hole in the budget is real and we need imaginative solutions to ensure the most vulnerable children in our city do not lose out. In a short while a statutory consultation will open up to the community and I can inform Members that this consultation is likely to propose the closure or re-designation of five centres with seven remaining open as designated centres. This includes centres staying open in Moulsecoomb, Whitehawk, Hangleton, Hollingdean, the Tarner Children’s Centre and Portslade.
41.27 I want to assure Members however this is a genuine consultation. As I’ve said else where I welcome ideas from families, from communities including our trade unions about how we address the budget shortfall and at the same time protect the most vulnerable children in our city. Madam Mayor a full report is due to my committee on the 16th of November of which Councillor Phillips is a member.”
41.28 Councillor Phillips asked the following supplementary question, “How can Councillor Bewick justify short sighted proposals to cut the funding for children’s centres given the increasing service costs this will cause in the future? This is damaging for parents, families, children and our communities both in poverty and those who are not in poverty. How can this be cost effective in the long-term?”
41.29 Councillor Bewick replied, “I think we need to remember the local elections five months ago. The residents of this city, 30,000 more of them voted for this party than the Green party because they wanted Labour to come in and sort the mess out of the incompetent Green administration who were playing politics literally with children’s lives this time last year. From a failed referendum and as a result £690,000 of a pig and a poke budget was passed in order to get through the elections. We’re now having to pick up the mess. I think Councillor Phillips needs to recognise instead of joining the placard wielding protest which is what her party is in existence to achieve she sits down with parents and their children and she comes up with solutions so that we can meet the needs of our children in this city.”
(g) University Technical Colleges
41.30 Councillor Taylor asked, “Since 2010 fifty university technical colleges have either or have been approved nationwide offering an expected 30,000 young people the chance to choose a technical pathway. These schools are demand led with the school, university and employers co-operating to develop a technical specialism alongside traditional academic subjects. I believe that the chair of the children’s committee shares this sentiment of co-operation between employers and education providers in order to plug Brighton’s skills gap. Therefore does the Chair of the Children’s committee agree with me that not only would a UTC in Brighton and Hove be beneficial to potential students but would also compliment his skills agenda?”
41.31 Councillor Bewick replied, “I agree we should look not only at a potential UTC for the city but importantly at a new vision around 14-19 and indeed beyond vocational and technical training we need to make the city a world class centre of vocational and technical training.”
(h) Fairness Commission
41.32 Councillor Littman asked, “My initial question is very straight forward. I’d like to reiterate my support for the Administration’s decision to set up a Fairness Commission. To what extent is the Administration committed to implementing the Commission’s recommendations?”
41.33 Councillor Daniel replied, “Thank you very much for your support and yes you have been incredibly hard working in terms of supporting the Fairness Commission so thank you for that. The Fairness Commission really provides a plank for further policy work in inequalities in the city and rising inequalities. We clearly brief the fairness commission in papers to our committee around making sure that they are practical policies and in the first two meetings of the Fairness Commission they’ve had presentations which give them a scale of the budget crisis that we face as well as the scale of inequalities. So I’m confident that the commissioners will digest that information and come back with practical realistic solutions that we can work on. Not only as a city council but as a wider city partnership with our statutory partners and the community.”
41.34 Councillor Littman asked the following supplementary question, “I am very reassured by that and I agree that the commissioners we have are an excellent group of people and I have every hope that they will come up with recommendations that will help the situation but on a very specific point; last year the Labour party voted with the Conservative party to increase the council tax burden on the city’s poorest households over three times as much as the city’s other households. At that time the now Leader of the Council described this as the responsible option. My question is if the Fairness Commission disagrees that this is responsible and recognises for what it is which is utterly unfair can we be assured that the Council’s Administration will undo it?”
41.35 Councillor Daniel replied, “I don’t really think it’s fair to pre-empt any recommendations from a politically neutral Commission. However, one of the underpinning themes throughout every area that they will look out as well for reform what I hope they will come up with are practical ways we can address the cost of poverty because there is a penalty for being poor: where it comes to utilities, where it comes to bus travel, where it comes to all sorts of things. I think those are the areas that I’d expect to see some practical suggestions in certainly areas that we’re already working on behind the scenes to try and address. We can’t throw our hands in the air and not set a budget because the people in poverty are relying on us to do the right thing.”
(i) NHS Pressures
41.36 Councillor Page asked, “I hope that this is a cross party agreement that there are lots of pressures on our NHS at the moment, the hospital, doctors up in arms, nurses saying they want to leave the profession, trusts in deficit. I will put my question together so it’s one question. In these circumstances looking particularly at doctors surgeries we’ve had a series of concerns not least one surgery being immediately closed -an unprecedented situation- and there is a lot of concern in this city and I hope this isn’t jumping on one of those bandwagons that the Councillor Morgan talked about. When the Health and Wellbeing Board on Tuesday received a report from NHS England about GP’s surgeries why did the health and wellbeing board simply pass the buck to overview and scrutiny and not do its job and interrogate the lady from NHS England who was at the Health and Wellbeing Board?”
41.37 Councillor Yates replied, “Because we don’t steal jobs from other people. We have an Overview and Scrutiny Committee and an overview and scrutiny process as I made very clear. Councillor Page was there at the meeting; in fact he could have asked the question at that meeting instead of taking our time up here. It would have been very easy for us to have interrogated NHS England but we don’t interrogate people who are partners and statutory members of our own boards. I think we treat people with a little bit more respect than that in the same way that I wouldn’t ever dream to interrogate somebody coming from the Clinical Commissioning Group because they also are partners and members of the board.
41.38 It’s not a council committee there to beat people over the head it’s actually a committee there to get people to engage and join to together to deliver the sorts of engagements and the sorts of partnership working that we need to deliver a safe and effective system for delivering health and wellbeing for everyone in the council. So the reason we didn’t do it is for exactly the reason that I made clear right at the start of that meeting because I fully intended that paper to go to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee where it may be slightly more appropriate for there to be greater scrutiny and greater questioning and more in depth questioning but where they will have the time and the ability and the skills and the opportunity to do so with the consideration of the entire population.
41.39 The Health and Wellbeing Board isn’t there to attack parts of the NHS that aren’t functioning but we are concerned about it and as I made very clear there we won’t allow the loss of valuable NHS services and the threat to individuals within this city to be caused by underfunding and restriction of funding and loss of training posts. I don’t consider that to be acceptable but I also don’t consider beating somebody up when you’ve invited them to your party to be acceptable.”
41.40 Councillor Page asked the following supplementary question, “I’m sorry if Councillor Yates has misunderstood Madam Mayor. Interrogation is not an aggressive term to me it’s part of the job of a policy committee. I think the Health and Wellbeing Board is a partnership where you have doctors there so why not try and find out more on behalf of all those people worrying about the doctor’s surgeries in the city?”
41.41 Councillor Yates replied, “That’s why at the previous meeting of the Health and Wellbeing Board when the issue around the loss of GP’s surgeries and primary care facilities across the city was raised that I made a specific request that we should get NHS England and the CCG to come together and produce a report; exactly what they did. That’s why I was in communications with NHS England and the CCG outlining very specifically the information that I expected to be in the report which actually is what they provided and once they’d done that in the spirit of co-operation coming together as equal partners at that point I hand that work over and ask the Overview and Scrutiny Committee to take that on as a serious piece of work. I consider the threat to primary care to be a threat to the health of individuals across this city. ... view the full minutes text for item 41.
Call Over for Reports of Committees.
(a) Call over (items 43-49) will be read out at the meeting and Members invited to reserve the items for consideration.
(b) To receive or approve the reports and agree with their recommendations, with the exception of those which have been reserved for discussion.
(c) Oral questions from Councillors on the Committee reports, which have not been reserved for discussion.
42.1 The Head of Democratic Services confirmed that the following items on the agenda had been reserved for discussion:
Item 44 - Scrutiny Panel Report on Short-term Lets
Item 45 - Children’s Services Ofsted Inspection and Review of LSCB 2015
Item 46 - Ernst & Young Audit Results Report 2014/15
Item 47 - Living Rent
Item 48 - Housing Related Support Budget & Commissioning Report
Item 49 - Prevent – New Statutory Duty
(b) Receipt and/or Approval of Reports
42.2 The Head of Democratic Services confirmed that the following reports on the agenda with the recommendations therein had been approved and adopted:
Item 43 - Proposed Submission East Sussex, South Downs and Brighton & Hove Waste and Minerals Plan.
(c) Oral Questions from Members
42.3 The Mayor noted that there were no oral questions in relation to items that had not been reserved for discussion.
Extract from the proceedings of the Policy & Resources Committee meeting held on the 15th October 2015 (to be circulated), together with a report of the Executive Director for environment, Development & Housing (copy attached).
(1) That the responses to the consultation on the Consultation Draft Waste & Minerals Sites Plan (an extract of comments is included in Appendix 1, with a full schedule on the City Council’s website, placed in the Members’ Rooms, and in main libraries and Customer Service Centres) be noted;
(2) That the publication of the Proposed Submission Waste & Minerals Sites Plan for statutory public consultation for an eight week period commencing on 28 October 2015 (along with supporting documents) be agreed;
(3) That the document subsequently be submitted to the Secretary of State subject to no material changes being necessary, other than alterations for the purposes of clarification, improved accuracy of meaning or typographical corrections;
(4) That the Head of City Planning & Development be authorised to agree any draft ‘main modifications’ to the Sites Plan necessary to make it sound and to authorise the publication of such draft modifications for public consultation, save that should any draft modification involve a major shift in the policy approach of the Sites Plan, the draft modification shall be referred by the Head of City Planning & Development to the Policy & Resources Committee for approval;
(5) That it be noted that all modifications to the Sites Plan will be presented to the Policy & Resources Committee and Full Council in due course as part of the adoption process of the Plan; and
(6) That the following background studies as supporting evidence for the Sites Plan (see Appendix 2 for a summary), be approved:
· Sustainability Appraisal;
· Habitats Regulations Assessment;
· Strategic Flood Risk Assessment;
· Site Selection and Methodology Document;
· Schedule of Suitable Industrial Estates;
· Detailed Site Assessment Document.
Report of the Monitoring Officer (copy attached).
44.1 Councillor Robins introduced the report which detailed the response to and the Scrutiny Panel’s report on Short-term Lets (Party Houses). He stated that the Panel had worked effectively and had identified a number of actions that could be taken forward. He also wished to thank the other Panel Members for their hard work and all those that attended to give evidence and also Dexter Allan from the East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service.
44.2 Councillor Mitchell noted that the Panel’s recommendations had been accepted at the recent Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee meeting. She also noted that the issue of party houses fell under the responsibility of a number of areas and therefore it was important to share information and work collaboratively.
44.3 Councillor Phillips welcomed the report and stated that she hoped the implementation of the recommendations would help to improve matters, especially as she had received a number of complaints since May.
44.4 Councillor Morris stated that he wished to thank the Scrutiny Panel for a thorough piece of work and it was important to take residents’ views into account and find ways to address their concerns. He also referred to a recent case in the courts, Moore v Secretary of State for Local Government and suggested that legal and planning officers should look at the judgement as it may set a precedent. He also believed that more could be done and hoped that the report was the start of that process to improve matters.
44.5 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Morris on his maiden speech on behalf of the council.
44.6 Councillor Bennett stated that she also wished to thank fellow members of the Scrutiny Panel, especially ex-councillor Bowden who had been an excellent Chair. She also noted that the first monitoring report was due to be considered by the Overview & Scrutiny Committee at its next meeting.
44.7 The Mayor stated that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
44.8 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
Extract from the proceedings of the Children, Young People & Skills Committee meeting held on the 20th July 2015, together with a report of the Executive Director for Children’s Services (copies attached).
45.1 Councillor Bewick introduced the report which provided an update on the recent Children’s Services Ofsted inspection and had been referred to the council for information. He stated that he wished to thank and congratulate the Director and his team on the outcome of what had been a lengthy inspection period. There were a number of excellent comments on the service although there was also room for improvement which he hoped would be addressed. He also wished to congratulate Graham Bartlett as Chair of the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board on the overall rating of ‘Good’ for the Board.
45.2 Councillor Wealls stated that it was an important report and it was the responsibility of all councillors to consider the protection of children and a lot of good work had been undertaken in Children’s Services.
45.3 Councillor Phillips also welcomed the report and stated that more work across all parties was important if further improvements were to be made. She noted that a multi-agency hub had been established and commended the work of officers.
45.4 Councillor Taylor welcomed the commitment of all groups to move forward and improve areas and noted that all Members shared a responsibility as Corporate Parents and hoped that they would ensure they met this responsibility.
45.5 Councillor Bewick noted the comments and agreed that the result of the Ofsted inspection should be welcomed, but noted that there was room for improvement and this needed to be taken forward.
45.6 The Mayor stated that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
45.7 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
Extract from the proceedings of the Audit & Standards Committee meeting held on the 22nd September 2015, together with a report of the Interim Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copies attached).
46.1 Councillor A. Norman introduced the report which had been referred for information and stated that the Audit & Standards Committee played an important role in ensuring that the council met its financial and value for money responsibilities. She also wished to thank the Head of Internal Audit for his support and encouraged all Members to take an interest in the management of risk.
46.2 Councillor Norman also stated that she wished to thank the Democratic Services team and officers for their work in enabling the meeting to take place in the Brighton Centre.
46.3 Councillor Sykes stated that he echoed Councillor Norman’s comments on the work of committee and noted that other authorities were at risk of not meeting their statutory responsibilities in terms of financial and risk management.
46.4 Councillor Taylor stated that he had asked for the report to be referred to the council because of the need to be aware of the financial considerations and corporate responsibility. All councillors were the custodians of council tax payers’ money and there was a need to look at value for money and to review how services were provided. He hoped that the warnings of the auditors would be taken on board and action taken to address those concerns.
46.5 Councillor Morris welcomed the report and stated that he wished to thank Councillor Norman as Chair of the Committee who had been very helpful to new Members.
46.6 Councillor G. Theobald stated that he had found the audit report to be of interesting reading and noted that failure to make changes to secure longer term financial resilience was a similar message to that given in 2012/13. He also noted the reference to the high cost of services and the need to deliver value for money. He hoped that action would be taken to address these points.
46.7 Councillor Mears stated that it was an important report and noted the loss of £3.2m as a result of not taking action to address the situation with the parking collection company. She also noted that Adult Social Care had not achieved its savings targets by £2m and that there were further examples where financial management had not been in place to secure services, which reflected the previous Administration’s lack of management.
46.8 Councillor Littman noted that the previous Administration had inherited difficulties and had continued the value for money programme; but government cuts had had an warranted impact. There was a need to work together to ensure that local government was protected from further cuts.
46.9 Councillor Hamilton stated that he had been the previous Chair of the Audit & Standards Committee and he accepted the Audit report’s comments. The Committee had always worked outside of political boundaries and he hoped it would continue to do so.
46.10 Councillor A. Norman noted the comments and stated that the committee did work in a non-political environment and received regular financial updates. She suggested that if Members had concerns about service provision or financial aspects they should raise them with the members of the committee who could then consider them at future meetings. In the meantime she commended the report to the council.
46.11 The Mayor stated that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
46.12 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
Extract from the proceedings of the Housing & New Homes Committee meeting held on the 23rd September 2015, together with a report from the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing (copies attached).
47.1 Councillor Meadows introduced the report which detailed the position of the Housing Related Support Budget and the intention to have greater integration of commissioning functions to provide more effective support services. It was proposed to prioritise the rough sleepers provision and to re-tender for services on reduced budgets across all support services.
47.2 Councillor Miller welcomed the report and stated that there was a need to be creative in order to ensure services could be provided. He acknowledged that there were challenges to be met but was disappointed in the reduction of the number of beds that would be made available for rough sleepers and suggested that what appeared to be continued salami slicing of services needed to be tackled differently to ensure services could be maintained.
47.3 Councillor Mears stated that she felt all Members needed to be aware of the situation and noted that it was only now that a report on the matter had been brought to the committee, even though supporting people had been moved to Adult Care with a £10m budget. She believed that Members should be briefed and concerns addressed otherwise there would be a need to refer the matter to external audit.
47.4 Councillor Moonan stated that there was a need for services to be re-tendered and noted that St. Mungos were now providing a service for rough sleepers and further work would take place across various committees and with all partners to meet the challenges ahead.
47.5 Councillor Yates noted that the Health & Wellbeing Board had responsibility for Adult Social Care and noted that he had signed the St. Mungo’s Charter earlier in the meeting. There was a need to work with services and partner agencies across the city to address the issues being faced such as rough sleeping and homelessness.
47.6 Councillor Meadows noted the comments and stated that it was hoped to be able to provide holistic services in the future and that work would continue to find ways to meet the needs of those faced with being homeless etc.
47.7 The Mayor stated that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
47.8 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
Extract from the proceedings of the Housing & New Homes Committee meeting held on the 23rd September 2015, together with a report from the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing (copies attached).
48.1 Councillor Meadows introduced the report which outlined the key challenges and considerations in developing a Living Rent model for housing in the city. She noted that it was likely to have a material impact on the housing budget and could result in new models of delivery. As such the report was being referred to the Fairness Commission for consideration and its views would then be taken into account. She also noted that a definition of a living rent had not been set as yet, but lower rent levels would require support and it was the Administration’s intent to build over a 1,000 new affordable homes in the city.
48.2 Councillor Gibson stated that it was an incredibly complicated issue and welcomed the decision to refer the report to the Fairness Commission. It was an important issue for the city and aspects such inequalities in rent levels and home ownership needed to be considered. He noted that current rent levels in the city were preventing people from securing accommodation and that it was an issue which needed cross-party action. He therefore welcomed the Leader’s recent comments in regard to the creation of a Housing Company.
48.3 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Gibson on his maiden speech on behalf of the council.
48.4 Councillor Mears stated that there was confusion about affordable rent levels and noted that council land may be available for future housing schemes. However, she believed there was a need to look across all aspects including planning considerations if affordable housing schemes were to come to fruition.
48.5 Councillor Meadows welcomed the comments and stated that incomes were stretched to meet rent levels in the city and this had to be addressed if provision was to be made available.
48.6 The Mayor stated that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
48.7 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
Extract from the proceedings of the Neighbourhoods, Communities & Equalities Committee meeting held on the 5th October 2015, together with a report from the Director of Public Health (copies attached).
49.1 Councillor Daniel introduced the report which detailed the new general statutory ‘Prevent Duty’ for the local authority and other statutory partners. She noted that the duty applied to all areas of work in relation to protecting young people from extremism and she commended the report to all Members.
49.2 Councillor Littman welcomed the report and stated that where work made things safer it had to be supported. However, he was concerned that it might be counter-productive given that the Prevent agenda had been working well to date, with collaborative approaches with partner agencies; but he feared the new duty could lead to opposite results if it was not carefully managed.
49.3 Councillor Bell stated that he endorsed the work to date and believed the Committee was working well and thanked Councillor Daniel for bringing the matter to the council. There was a need to ensure that the council did not fail to meet its duty and to protect communities.
49.4 The Mayor noted that the report had been referred for information and therefore moved that it be noted.
49.5 RESOLVED: That the report be noted.
(a) Planning Reform. Proposed by Councillor C. Theobald (copy attached).
(b) Christmas Parking and Roadworks Suspension. Proposed by Councillor Janio (copy attached).
(c) Future Council Funding. Proposed by Councillor Morgan (copy attached).
(d) Individual Electoral Registration (IER). Proposed by Councillor Barradell (copy attached).
(e) Divest for Paris. Proposed by Councillor Greenbaum (copy attached).
(f) Syrian Refugee Crisis. Proposed by Councillor Littman (copy attached).
(a) Planning Reform
50.1 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor C. Theobald and seconded by Councillor Wealls.
50.2 Councillor Mac Cafferty moved an amendment on behalf of the Green Group which was seconded by Councillor Littman.
50.3 Councillor C. Theobald stated that the purpose of the motion was not to blame any individual member of the Planning service, but to highlight the failings that currently existed. She noted that determination of minor applications had fallen to 16% when the target was 65% and this was below the 88% achieved by Mid-Sussex. She believed that there was a need for a fundamental review of the service and hoped that this could be implemented.
50.4 Councillor Mac Cafferty noted that the Planning Team was under a huge amount of pressure. There had been changes in legislation and an increase in the level of workloads which all had an impact of the service. He believed the Green Group’s amendment would enable an action plan to be drawn up to improve delivery.
50.5 Councillor Littman stated that there were insufficient resources to meet the demand and he hoped that the amendment would be supported as a way forward.
50.6 Councillor Mitchell stated that work was already in hand to address some of the issues within the service and a peer review was due to take place. There was a need to look at what changes could be made to improve matters such as IT support and a move away from the heavily based paper system to a more flexible electronic process. She agreed that there were significant challenges but these were being addressed.
50.7 Councillor West stated that he could not support the Conservative Group’s motion and noted that he had recently contacted a planning officer to discuss two minor applications, only to find that they were struggling with two major cases and had not been able to give any time to the minor applications. There was a need to look at the resource implications and find a way to support staff.
50.8 Councillor Wares stated that improvements to the planning process were required in order to meet residents’ aspirations. He acknowledged that officers were working hard to deal with the applications but felt that the system was broken and needed to be addressed. He had examples of applicants that had followed the rules only to find that they were refused because there had not been time to discuss matters and enable changes to be made that would then enable permission to be granted. He was also concerned that Section 106 Agreements were not being implemented and that if reforms were not made then the city would suffer the consequences.
50.9 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Wares on his maiden speech on behalf of the Council.
50.10 Councillor Nemeth stated that the objective had to be to have a successful planning department, which could work with applicants and point out short-comings in applications so that changes could be made before they were given final consideration. He was aware of one couple who had spent a year trying to get their application ready which would have provided them with their dream home, but that was ultimately refused and the site remains derelict. He believed the service should be there to help people and that improvements could be made to enable staff to deliver a good quality service.
50.11 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Nemeth on his maiden speech on behalf of the Council.
50.12 Councillor Wealls stated that he was concerned for residents and for potential developers considering investing in the city. He had not been aware that a review of the service was underway and noted that the situation was unacceptable and needed to be tackled.
50.13 Councillor Peltzer Dunn stated that the council was failing to meet its responsibility to residents. He was aware of an application for an extension similar to others in the area which had been refused and whilst further advice was then obtained, several months later the applicant was still awaiting a decision. This had to be addressed and an efficient and effective service provided.
50.14 Councillor C. Theobald stated that she had not known the situation to be as bad as it was and could not understand why this council could not match other neighbouring authorities in regard to its determination of applications. She could not accept the Green Group’s amendment and hoped that the motion would be supported as there was a need for a better service.
50.15 The Mayor noted that the Green Group’s amendment had not been accepted and put it to the vote which was lost by 11 votes to 41 with one abstention as detailed below:
50.16 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote:
“This Council recognises that the ongoing problems in providing an efficient and effective planning service risk damaging relations with residents, businesses and potential investors in the city. This Council therefore, requests that the Policy & Resources Committee establishes a fundamental review of how the service is provided, looking at all potential options for its future management.”
50.17 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been lost by 19 votes to 33 with one abstention as detailed below:
50.18 The motion was lost.
(b) Christmas Parking and Roadworks Suspension
50.19 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Janio and seconded by Councillor Miller.
50.20 Councillor Mitchell moved an amendment on behalf of the Labour & Co-operative Group which was seconded by Councillor Allen.
50.21 Councillor Janio stated that the motion sought to support local businesses and to improve the local economy during the Christmas period. He hoped that it could be supported as it had in the past.
50.22 Councillor Mitchell stated that she was happy for a report to come to the Policy & Resources Committee but felt that it should also include the option to support ‘Small Business Saturday’ only. She also noted non-essential roadworks had already been planned around the Christmas shopping period.
50.23 Councillor Allen stated that the proposed level of free parking would come at a cost and this had to be considered given the council’s financial position, hence the proposed amendment to support ‘Small Business Saturday’ only. He could not support the potential loss of income which was needed to help to maintain services.
50.24 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Allen on his maiden speech on behalf of the Council.
50.25 Councillor Page stated that he could not support the motion as it would potentially lead to increase in the number of vehicles entering the city. There was a need to give consideration to the level of air quality and risks to health from vehicle emissions. He believed that there was a need for a parking review and to encourage people to use public transport or to cycle or walk rather than to drive.
50.26 Councillor West stated that a road permit scheme had been adopted which meant that a blanket ban for road closures could not be made, although officers would have indicated to the various utility companies the need to be mindful of the Christmas period when planning their work. He could not support the proposed free parking as it would make shopping harder for people and businesses alike. The parking charges supported the local economy and there was a need to be mindful of increased congestion and the effects on air quality.
50.27 Councillor Bewick stated that the Labour & Co-operative Group amendment sought to give the committee the opportunity to consider an alternative option to having free parking throughout the period in question.
50.28 Councillor Mears stated that there was a need to support small businesses over the Christmas period as well as the local economy and she believed it was the right thing to do.
50.29 Councillor Miller stated that there was a need to support small businesses as much as possible and the provision of free-parking as proposed would be welcomed by them and would result in a boost to the local economy.
50.30 Councillor Janio confirmed that he did not accept the amendment and hoped that the motion would be supported.
50.31 The Mayor noted that the Labour & Co-operative Group’s amendment had not been accepted and put it to the vote which was lost by 22 votes to 31 as detailed below:
50.32 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote:
“This Council resolves to:
1. Request that officers bring a report to the appropriate Committee which, if agreed, would introduce free parking at Norton Road, London Road, Regency Square, High Street and Trafalgar Street car parks on Small Business Saturday (5th December) and the 3 Sundays before Christmas (6th, 13th and 20th December).
2. Request that the Acting Chief Executive seeks the suspension of all non-urgent roadworks in the city centre during December.”
50.33 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been lost by 20 votes to 33 as detailed below:
50.34 The motion was lost.
(c) Future Council Funding
50.35 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Morgan and seconded by Councillor Yates.
50.36 Councillor Wealls moved an amendment on behalf of the Conservative Group which was seconded by Councillor G. Theobald.
50.37 Councillor Sykes moved an amendment on behalf of the Green Group which was seconded by Councillor Druitt.
50.38 Councillor Morgan confirmed that he would not accept either amendment.
50.39 The Mayor noted that the Conservative Group’s amendment had not been accepted put it to the vote which was lost by 19 votes to 33 with 1 abstention as detailed below:
50.40 The Mayor also noted that the Green Group’s amendment had not been accepted and put it to the vote which was lost by 11 votes to 41 with 1 abstention as detailed below:
50.41 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote
“This council notes the announcement by the Chancellor on 5th October that the revenue grant for Brighton and Hove will be withdrawn altogether, and that in 2020 the council will be able to retain all of the business rates paid within the city.
This council notes the projected budget gap of £102 million by 2019, calculated from the projected fall in revenue grant and increase in service pressures, putting the continued delivery of essential services at risk.
This council requests the Acting Chief Executive to write to the Chancellor and Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government in support of the representations being made by the Local Government Association, asking for clarity on the proposals and to bring forward the business rate changes before the removal of revenue grant funding.”
50.42 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been carried with 52 votes in favour and one abstention as detailed below:
50.43 The motion was carried.
(d) Individual Electoral Registration (IER)
50.44 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Barradell and seconded by Councillor Robins.
50.45 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote:
“This Council notes the worrying fact that the numbers of people registering to vote in the city was reduced by 7% after Individual Electoral Registration (IER) was first introduced. This Council appreciates the work officers undertook prior to the general election in helping to bring voter numbers back up to pre IER levels.
This council is, though, deeply concerned that the government propose to end the transition period of registering voters to full IER in December.
This Council therefore calls upon the acting Chief Executive Officer to write to the Government to express concern about the withdrawing of the transition phase of IER and to express concern that the premise that next year’s boundary review will be held on could be seriously flawed. We also want to encourage officers and members to continue to do all they can to ensure that Brighton and Hove residents are not disenfranchised.”
50.46 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been carried by 33 votes to 19 with 1 abstention as detailed below
50.47 The motion was carried.
(e) Divest for Paris
50.48 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Greenbaum and seconded by Councillor Sykes.
50.49 Councillor Greenbaum stated that there was a need to recognise that action had to be taken now in order to ensure the planet’s future for the next generation. She noted that scientific analysis suggested that a 2 degrees rise in the earth’s temperature was likely to result in climate change and that at present current emission levels were forecast to result in a 5 degrees rise. The question was just how much of an impact that level of increase would have on the climate and therefore any action that could be taken to help to reduce that should be taken now. She therefore hoped that councillors would support the motion.
50.50 The Mayor congratulated Councillor Greenbaum on her maiden speech on behalf of the Council.
50.51 Councillor Wealls stated that he appreciated the sentiments behind the motion but was not sure how they could be taken forward. The Pension Board’s role was to support and scrutinise the work of the Pension Fund which would look at the acceptable risks in order to generate the best return on the investments. He believed that having an investment in certain areas meant that there was an opportunity to engage with companies and seek to influence them which could lead to improvements and thereby reduce emissions etc.
50.52 Councillor Allen stated that he believed the pension fund was in a healthy position and that it would be better to await the outcome of the Paris conference before considering how to influence matters.
50.53 Councillor Littman stated that it was an important subject that should be considered by everyone as it affected the future of the world’s population. He hoped that the motion could be supported and felt that it would be a travesty if it was not fully supported.
50.54 Councillor Sykes stated that he had previously served on the East Sussex Pension Panel and had suggested pulling out of investing in fossil fuels which if it had been taken up would have saved a significant amount. He believed that action could be taken and could then enable change for the better.
50.55 Councillor Greenbaum noted the comments and stated that it was time to decide whether the council wanted to take action and noted that engaging with energy companies had not worked in the past. She felt that there was a need to be ahead of the game and this was one way of taking the lead on such an important issue.
50.56 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote
“This Council notes:
• The upcoming Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, otherwise known as “Paris 2015”, starting on November 30th.
This Council requests:
1) The Acting Chief Executive write to the Leader of East Sussex County Council requesting a position statement on the potential impact of stranded fossil fuel assets on the ESPF deficit, suggesting divestment as a way forward; and
2) That the Council’s representative on the ESCC Pensions Board maintain a strong position against fossil fuel investment on the Pensions Board and that s/he report to Council annually on progress.”
50.57 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been lost by 11 votes to 23, with 19 abstentions as detailed below:
(f) Syrian Refugee Crisis
50.58 The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Littman and seconded by Councillor Mac Cafferty.
50.59 The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote:
“This council notes:
· the ongoing and worsening Syrian refugee crisis, consisting of innocent people forced to flee their homes through the threat of war;
· Recent actions by our City to help these refugees; our status as a City of Sanctuary; and the recent offers by many local residents to take concrete action to welcome the Syrian refugees.
· The Government’s welcome plans to expand the existing Syrian Vulnerable Persons Relocation (VPR) scheme, resettling 20,000 Syrians in the next 5 years with one year’s government funding for councils.
This Council resolves to:
· Call on national government for a further increase in the number of refugees the UK is prepared to take, with proportionate and increased funding to facilitate this;
· Request a review of the practical support that can be offered locally by bringing together the private sector, voluntary and community sector and residents in partnership;
· Call on appropriate partners, including Sanctuary-on-Sea, to establish and co-ordinate a framework of support for refugees including: accommodation, education, employment, legal advice, health care and social support;
· Request that a report is brought to the Policy & Resources Committee detailing how, with partners, adequate resources can be collectively allocated to help refugees as necessary; and
Request the Acting Chief Executive to write to ministers for further financial and practical help so that the city can accommodate refugees for longer than one year where necessary.”
50.60 The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been carried by 34 votes to 19 as detailed below:
50.61 The motion was carried.
Close of Meeting
The Mayor will move a closure motion under Procedure Rule 17 to terminate the meeting 4 hours after the beginning of the meeting (excluding any breaks/adjournments).
The Mayor will put the motion to the vote and if it is
carried will then:-
(a) Call on the Member who had moved the item under discussion to give their right of reply, before then putting the matter to the vote, taking into account the need to put any amendments that have been moved to the vote first;
(b) Each remaining item on the agenda that has not been dealt with will then be taken in the order they appear on the agenda and put to the vote without debate.
The Member responsible for moving each item will be given the opportunity by the Mayor to withdraw the item or to have it voted on. If there are any amendments that have been submitted, these will be taken and voted on first in the order that they were received.
(c) Following completion of the outstanding items, the Mayor will then close the meeting.
2. If the motion moved by the Mayor is not carried the meeting will continue in the normal way, with each item being moved and debated and voted on.
3. Any Member will still have the opportunity to move a closure motion should they so wish. If such a motion is moved and seconded, then the same procedure as outlined above will be followed.
Once all the remaining items have been dealt with the Mayor will close the meeting.
51.1 The Mayor thanked everyone for attending and closed the meeting.