Agenda for Policy & Resources Committee (pre 2015) on Friday, 11th July, 2014, 2.00pm

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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Hove Town Hall

Contact: Ross Keatley  Acting Democratic Services Manager

Media

Items
No. Item

23.

Procedural Business

    (a)         Declaration of Substitutes: Where Councillors are unable to attend a meeting, a substitute Member from the same Political Group may attend, speak and vote in their place for that meeting.

     

    (b)        Declarations of Interest:

     

    (a)         Disclosable pecuniary interests not registered on the register of 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.

     

    (c)         Exclusion of Press and Public: To consider whether, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted, or the nature of the proceedings, the press and public should be excluded from the meeting when any of the following items are under consideration.

     

    NOTE: Any item appearing in Part Two of the Agenda states in its heading the category under which the information disclosed in the report is exempt from disclosure and therefore not available to the public.

     

    A list and description of the exempt categories is available for public inspection at Brighton and Hove Town Halls.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    (a)          Declarations of Substitutes

     

    23.1    Councillor Robins was present in substitution for Councillor Lepper, and Councillor Davey was present in substitution for Councillor Shanks.

     

    (b)          Declarations of Interest

     

    23.2    There were no declarations of interests in matters listed on the agenda.

     

    (c)          Exclusion of Press and Public

     

    23.3    The Committee considered whether the press and public should be excluded from the meeting during the consideration of any of the items listed on the agenda.

     

    23.4    RESOLVED: That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the items contained in part two of the agenda.

24.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 142 KB

    To consider the minutes of the meeting held on 12 June 2014 (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    24.1    The minutes of the meeting held on 12 June 2014 were approved as a correct record of the proceedings and signed by the Chair.

25.

Chair's Communications

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    25.1    The Chair stated that the meeting would be webcast live and would be capable of repeated viewing.

     

    25.2    The Chair announced that Item 32 – City Plan Part One – Changes Arising from Examination Process had been deferred from the agenda.

     

    25.3    The Chair stated that since the last meeting the Council had received several awards for its work and thanks were extended to Officers, partners and colleagues for their dedication in achieving excellence. The Scrutiny Team gained recognition from the Centre of Public Scrutiny at the Good Scrutiny Awards and they were the winner in the ‘Involvement, Insight & Impact’ category for the Trans Scrutiny work. Stonewall had recently named the organisation the top Council for tackling homophobia and bi-phobia in schools; noting the partnership work and the work of ‘Allsorts Youth Project’. Furthermore the week prior to the meeting the Royal Town Planning Institute praised the organisation for the joint work with neighbouring authorities on Duty to Cooperate. This was the the fifth award won by the Planning Department in the last three years.

     

    25.4    The Chair stated that the Council had also been successful in attracting funding: the Volks Railway had won a successful first-round bid from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) – money from which would be used to restore and upgrade the facilities. Detailed plans would now be drawn up for submission of a bid for round two; the HLF had awarded the Council a development grant of £96,000 to develop the scheme further.

     

    25.5    The Chair stated that the Royal Pavilion & Museums had been awarded over £2 million and Major Partner Museum status by Arts Council England. This recognised 21 museums across the country that had demonstrated excellence and ambition. Over the next three years the Arts Council’s investment of over £2 million would enable the Royal Pavilion & Museums to provide a cultural experience for more people. Highlights would include new exhibitions and arts programmes and there would also be extensive new volunteering and skills development opportunities; more collections online; and bold and imaginative use of the museum’s treasures to inspire learning and creativity among local community groups, children and young people.

     

    25.6    Finally, the Chair stated the Greater Brighton City Region was to benefit from £52.4M of investment through the Local Enterprise Partnership, which would boost the shared local economy and support jobs, infrastructure and transport. The Council would receive significant funding for key developments in Brighton & Hove, namely Circus Street, Preston Barracks and Valley Gardens – helping to build on the status as the third best location in UK for business investment.

26.

Call Over

    (a)          Items (29 – 48) will be read out at the meeting and Members invited to reserve the items for consideration.

     

    (b)          Those items not reserved will be taken as having been received and the reports’ recommendations agreed.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    26.1    The following items were reserved for discussion:

     

    Item 29           Treasury Management Policy Statement End of Year Review

    Item 30           Targeted Budget Management (TBM) 2014/15 Month 2

    Item 32           Budget and Corporate Plan Preparation

    Item 34           Annual Performance Update 2013/14

    Item 35           Minimum Buying Standards fir Catering Contracts

    Item 38           Shared Lives (Tender Contract)

    Item 39           Cash in Transit Contract

    Item 40           Hove Town Hall, South End, Office Option

    Item 41           Portslade Sports Centre – Future Management Arrangements

    Item 42           Stanmer Park Master Plan & Application for Heritage Lottery Fund Grant Funding

    Item 46           Stanmer Park Master Plan & Application for Heritage Lottery Fund Grant Funding – Exempt Category 3

     

    26.2    The Acting Democratic Services Manager confirmed that the items listed above had been reserved for discussion, and that the following reports on the agenda, with the recommendations therein, had been approved and adopted:

     

                Item 31           Waivers of Contract Standing Orders

    Item 36           Home to School Special Needs Pupils Transport and Other Social Care Transport Contract

    Item 37           Procurement of Waste and Recycling Contract

    Item 43           Disposal of 18 Market Street

    Item 47           Disposal of 18 Market Street – Exempt Category 3

27.

Public Involvement pdf icon PDF 47 KB

    To consider the following matters raised by members of the public:

     

    (a)      Petitions: to receive any petitions presented by members of the public to the full council or as notified for presentation at the meeting by the due date of the 30th June 2014;

     

    (b)      Written Questions: to receive any questions submitted by the due date of 12 noon on the 4th July 2014;

     

    (i)        Public Question from Adrian Morris concerning the Aquarium Arches (copy attached).

     

    (c)      Deputations: to receive any deputations submitted by the due date of 12 noon on the 4th July 2014.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    27.1    The Chair noted that there was one public question, as listed in the agenda papers, from Mr. Adrian Morris concerning the Aquarium Terraces. The Chair invited Mr. Morris to put his question:

     

    27.2    Mr. Morris asked:

     

    “The Aquarium Terraces, above Madeira Drive, are in a chronic state of neglect and decay with empty units, broken windows, boarded up areas, a half painted boardwalk, tattered flags and areas with rubbish.  As we approach the summer season, it’s a blight on the seafront. What action has the Green Council taken in putting pressure on the owners of the Terraces to bring about repairs and improvements?”

     

    27.3    The Chair responded:

     

    “The freehold of this site is owned by the Council.  A 150 year lease was granted in 1998 which is now held by an investment company.  The company directors are based abroad and communication is via their UK agent. Under the terms of the lease, the leaseholders are responsible for maintaining the property in good repair.

    The Council has consistently and regularly contacted the leaseholder’s agent requesting rectification of the ongoing and accruing disrepair but to no avail.  The Council has now served a preliminary notice on the leaseholders requiring them to address a range of repairs. To date this notice has been ignored. The Council are therefore preparing to serve a formal schedule of dilapidations on the leaseholders, accompanied by a notice to forfeit (terminate) their lease. However, the leaseholders have the right to apply to the Court for relief from forfeiture (termination) of their lease.”

     

    27.4    By way of a supplementary question Mr. Morris asked:

     

    “Can this Green Council explain why they have not been proactive and taken action sooner themselves; or through the management agent?”

     

    27.5    The Chair noted he would respond to Mr. Morris in writing after the meeting, and this response would be included in the formal minutes as set out below.

     

                Over the last two years the councils managing agents have been consistently proactive in contacting the tenants to insist that various repairs are carried out, and originally such requests were met. However, over the last nine months the agents requests have been ignored despite follow up attempts to press for repairs to be carried out. The agents will continue to take a proactive approach to remedying the position but ultimately their hands are tied under law hence the Council’s planned course of action regarding serving a formal schedule of dilapidations accompanied by a notice to forfeit their lease.”

     

    27.6    The Chair noted that no other petitions, public questions or deputations had been received for the meeting.

28.

Member Involvement pdf icon PDF 46 KB

    To consider the following matters raised by councillors:

     

    (a)      Petitions: to receive any petitions submitted to the full Council or as notified for presentation at the meeting by the due date of the 30th June 2014;

     

    (b)      Notices of Motion: to consider any Notices of Motion referred from Council or submitted directly to the Committee.

     

    (i)         Food Banks in the City – Notice of Motion referred from the Council meeting held on the 8th May 2014 (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    28.1    The Chair noted that there was one Notice of Motion, as listed in the agenda, which had been referred from the Council meeting held on 8 May 2014. He recognised the role of food banks in tackling food poverty, and was pleased the motion had been supported at Council. There were currently ten food banks in the city which were run by local and independent groups responding to local demand and this had increased from only two 2013. The Council had a tripartite approach to food poverty, and worked in partnership with others by commissioning grants and delivering some services directly. The Chair stated that he was minded not to call for a report, and focus attentions on addressing the issues at hand.

     

    28.2    Councillor Randall noted his support for Brighton and Hove Foodshare which ran weekly food banks. Food banks were not just important to address food poverty, but also served as a means of access for individuals with other social needs. This was also a means to ensure individuals were in receipt of benefits they were entitled to, and provide opportunities for digital learning.

     

    28.3    Councillor Morgan acknowledged the work that had already been undertaken and asked that a report be bought forward to demonstrate the commitment of the Council to look at the matter in a much broader sense. The Chair noted that he had recently written to the managers of all the large supermarkets in the city and asked for their support in thus work.

     

    28.4    The Chair then put the matter to the vote:

     

    28.5    RESOLVED:

     

    i)             That the Committee note the Notice of Motion; and,

     

    ii)            That the Committee request a full Officer report be bought to a later meeting for consideration.

29.

Treasury Management Policy Statement (incorporating the Annual Investment Strategy) End of Year review 2013/14 pdf icon PDF 107 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (to follow).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)           That Policy & Resources Committee endorses the key actions taken during the second half of 2013/14 to meet the treasury management policy statement and practices (including the investment strategy) as set out in this report.

     

    2)           That Policy & Resources Committee notes that the approved maximum indicator for investment risk of 0.05% has been adhered to and the authorised limit  and operational boundary have not been exceeded.

    Minutes:

    29.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to the Treasury Management Policy Statement 2013/14 – End of Year Review. The 2013/14 Treasury Management Policy Statement (TMPS) practices and schedules were approved by the Committee on 21 March 2013. The TMPS set out the role of Treasury Management; whilst the practices and schedules set out the annual targets and methods by which those targets would be met. The TMPS included the Annual Investment Strategy (AIS) which set out the key parameters for investing Council cash funds and was approved by Council on 28 March 2013 and amended on 12 December 2013. Good practice recommended that Members receive biannual reports and reviews, and endorse the treasury management actions during the year.

    29.2    Councillor Sykes thanked Officers for the report, and welcomed the prudent management of the organisation’s finances. He supported the establishment of the Municipal Bonds Agency in view to it creating competition in public sector borrowing.

    29.3    Councillor A. Norman noted the consistent high standard of the work undertaken by Officers; she went on to add that she also welcomed the creation of the Municipal Bonds Agency to provide local authorities more opportunities to borrow. In response to a query the Executive Director for Finance & Resources explained that the minimum capital raising requirement had been met for the Municipal Bonds Agency, but the agency was still requesting further contributions. The TBM report listed at Item 30 on the agenda would give the Executive Director authority, in consultation with the Leader and Leaders of the Oppositions Groups, to allocate additional funding as more information came forward.

    29.4    Councillor G. Theobald welcomed the creation of the agency as means to allow local authorities to be more proactive.

    29.5    Councillor Hamilton noted that he agreed with the comments made by Councillor A. Norman and added that internal audit had provided ‘substantial assurance’ in January 2014.

    29.6    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    29.7    RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee endorses the key actions taken during the second half of 2013/14 to meet the treasury management policy statement and practices (including the investment strategy) as set out in this report.

     

    2)        That the Committee notes that the approved maximum indicator for investment risk of 0.05% has been adhered to and the authorised limit and operational boundary have not been exceeded.

30.

Targeted Budget Management (TBM) 2014/15 Month 2 pdf icon PDF 124 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            That the Committee note the total forecast outturn position for the General Fund, which is an overspend of £6.031m. This consists of an overspend of £5.851m on council controlled budgets and an overspend of £0.180m on the council’s share of the NHS managed Section 75 services.

     

    2)            To agree the transfer of £0.500m recurrent risk provision to Adult Social Care following the decision not to progress a Local Authority Trading Company, thus reducing the forecast overspend to £5.531m.

     

    3)            That the Committee note that there is a further £1.890m of as yet unallocated risk provision that could be used to mitigate against this overspend.

     

    4)            That the Committee note the forecast outturn for the Housing Revenue Account (HRA), which is an underspend of £0.029m.

     

    5)            That the Committee note the forecast outturn position for the Dedicated Schools Grant which is an overspend of £0.007m.

     

    6)            That the Committee note the forecast outturn position on the capital programme.

     

    7)            That the Committee approve the following changes to the capital programme.

     

    i)             The variations and reprofiles in Appendix 3 and the new schemes as set out in Appendix 4.

     

    8)            That the Committee delegate authority to the Executive Director of Finance & Resources in consultation with the Chair of Policy & Resources Committee and the Opposition Leaders to commit a maximum of £50,000 capital expenditure as an investment in the Municipal Bonds Agency subject to the conditions set out in paragraph 3.15.

    Minutes:

    30.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to Targeted Budget Management (TBM) 2014/15 (Month 2). TBM was a key component of the Council’s overall performance monitoring and control framework; the report set out the forecast outturn position (Month 2) on the Council’s revenue and capital budget for the financial year 2013/14. The position indicated significant pressures across social care budgets; however, it was noted that there were many months remaining in which to take mitigating actions or develop other recovery measures to improve the position and reduce potential risks.

    30.2    Councillor Sykes thanked Officers for the report, and recognised the significant pressures outlined in it. It was noted that the Council would be expected to make savings in the region of £25m as part of the 2015/16 budget, and it was hoped the forecast position in relation to Adult Services and Children’s Services would improve and reduce the pressure on the 2015/16 budget.

    30.3    Councillor A. Norman thanked Officers for their continued commitment to the organisation, but went on to note her concerns that underspend in the 2013/14 budget had been turned around. Reference was made to the comments in conclusion at paragraph 6.1 of the report, and queried if the decision taken at the last Committee to not progress a Local Authority Trading Company would be revisited. Councillor A. Norman added that the Conservative Group had been unsuccessful in convincing the other political groups look more at market assessments; she noted that other proposed savings in relation to partnership and commissioning had not come started coming forward, and the percentage of uncertain ‘value for money’ savings was 50%.

    30.4    In response to queries from Councillor A. Norman the Executive Director for Finance & Resources agreed that in previous in years the organisation had successfully reduced an early forecast overspend; however, the scale of that challenge was substantially greater at this point in time. It was not recommended that the Committee revisit the previously proposed Local Authority Trading Company for Adult Social Care, but alternative proposals needed to be developed and it was important there be a focus on Adult and Children’s Services. Some of the solutions, in terms of commissioning, were much more long term and would need more planning; therefore these were not explicit as they would be difficult to implement this financial year.

    30.5    The Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing stated, in response to Councillor A. Norman, that Officers were meeting with the Department for Communities & Local Government (DCLG) in relation to potential innovations with private sector housing.

    30.6    Councillor Morgan noted that, whilst the early forecast overspend was higher than the previous year, the Council had addressed this through the financial year, but he added he was cautious not to down play the risk to the authority. He stated he did not agree with market assessments, but agreed that there were alternative ways to do things that could not be delayed until after the local election in 2015. Councillor Morgan went on to note the reference in the report to the underachievement of some car parks in the city, and asked that if the road works on King’s Road were to continue through the summer the area be kept as tidy and presentable as possible due to the prominent seafront location: the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing agreed to pick this matter up.

    30.7    Councillor G. Theobald asked specific question in relation to level of trade union contributions made by the Council; in response the Executive Director for Finance & Resources explained there were options to negotiate a different level. There was currently a budget pressure in HR in relation to trade unions, but these were long standing arrangements that would need addressing.

    30.8    Councillor Davey noted that, despite some underspend, the car parking revenue was doing well; this was combined with increasing numbers of visitors to the city.

    30.9    Councillor Hamilton noted that finance management in Children’s Services had been very good in recent years, and he felt confident that the forecast overspend would be managed by the end of the financial year.

    30.10  The Chair noted his concerns that the budget pressures in Adult’s and Children’s services was growing; there was an acknowledgment that social care was one of the most significant budgetary pressures, and the administration was seeking a moderate increase in Council Tax to address this. He expressed concern in relation to overconfidence that the forecast overspend would be adjusted through the financial year.

    30.11  Councillor A. Norman commended the talent of the Executive Leadership Team, and she appealed to all Members to very carefully consider their advice very carefully.

    30.12  The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    30.13  RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee note the total forecast outturn position for the General Fund, which is an overspend of £6.031m. This consists of an overspend of £5.851m on council controlled budgets and an overspend of £0.180m on the council’s share of the NHS managed Section 75 services.

     

    2)        To agree the transfer of £0.500m recurrent risk provision to Adult Social Care following the decision not to progress a Local Authority Trading Company, thus reducing the forecast overspend to £5.531m.

     

    3)        That the Committee note that there is a further £1.890m of as yet unallocated risk provision that could be used to mitigate against this overspend.

     

    4)        That the Committee note the forecast outturn for the Housing Revenue Account (HRA), which is an underspend of £0.029m.

     

    5)        That the Committee note the forecast outturn position for the Dedicated Schools Grant which is an overspend of £0.007m.

     

    6)        That the Committee note the forecast outturn position on the capital programme.

     

    7)        That the Committee approve the following changes to the capital programme.

     

    i)          The variations and reprofiles in Appendix 3 and the new schemes as set out in Appendix 4.

     

    8)        That the Committee delegate authority to the Executive Director of Finance & Resources in consultation with the Chair of Policy & Resources Committee and the Opposition Leaders to commit a maximum of £50,000 capital expenditure as an investment in the Municipal Bonds Agency subject to the conditions set out in paragraph 3.15.

31.

Waivers of Contract Standing Orders pdf icon PDF 78 KB

32.

Budget and Corporate Plan Preparation pdf icon PDF 145 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            Note the resource and expenditure projections for 2015/16 and the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) projections set out in the body of the report and appendices 1 to 5.

     

    2)            Instruct the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to develop budget proposals for 2015/16, for submission to Policy & Resources Committee for consideration, comprising:

     

    ·                a 5.9% increase in the Brighton & Hove element of the council tax which would trigger a referendum in accordance with Chapter IVZA of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 and associated regulations; and

     

    ·                a substitute budget assuming a 2% threshold council tax increase  that would come into effect if a referendum rejected a proposed 5.9% increase in council tax.

     

    3)            Require budget proposals to be developed by ELT alongside the creation of a new Corporate Plan for 2015-19, ensuring strong links between the Medium Term Financial Strategy and service and business planning. 

     

    4)            Agree the approach to consultation, engagement and scrutiny as set out in section 5 of this report, which will be designed to shape the new Corporate Plan and Medium Term Financial Strategy as well as the 2015/16 Budget.

     

    5)            Agree the proposed approach to reviewing the Council Tax Reduction Scheme as set out in paragraphs 3.15 to 3.20.

     

    6)            Note the resource projections for the capital investment programme as shown in appendix 5.

    Minutes:

    32.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to the Budget and Corporate Plan Preparation. The report began the planning process for the 2015/16 budget alongside the longer term development of the Council’s next Corporate Plan which would run until 2019. The report set out closer integration the Council’s long term service and financial planning with a clearer focus on commissioning for outcomes for residents. Central Government deficit reduction measures were in the region of 50% complete both in terms of timescales and the value of expenditure reductions. Any changes to Central Government as a result of the May 2015 parliamentary election and any improvement in the national economic forecast were expected to make only a very marginal difference to the scale of funding facing local government. The budget gap was projected to be between £21.2m and £25.4m for 2015/16 and a further £67.2m over the following four years.

    32.2    Councillor Sykes thanked Officers for the report and welcomed the consultation process outlined in the report. He stated the position of the Administration would constitute a less than inflation increase in Council Tax over the life of the administration. A referendum on a 5.9% Council Tax rise was considered to be the right option for the city, and he refuted the positions put forward by both opposition parties.

    32.3    Councillor A. Norman noted her view that it would not be a good use of Officers time preparing the detail of a budget with a 5.9% Council Tax increase on the basis that the proposal would be defeated at Budget Council. She noted the proposed amendment put forward by her group, which she was seconding, in relation to a Council Tax freeze and added that there would no significant change to the funding situation from Central Government regardless of the outcome of the 2015 General Election. In response to Councillor A. Norman’s specific question about New Homes Bonus the Executive Director for Finance & Resources noted she would respond outside of the meeting.

    32.4    Councillor Morgan noted that he had agreed to work with the Administration constructively in relation to the difficult financial situation, but he had wanted any discussions to take place before the matter became highly politicised. He went on to add that many of the poorest individuals and families would not feel the benefits of the level of increase to Council Tax proposed by the Administration, and that a policy of addressing the Central Government reduction in the grant fund to local authorities through increased Council Tax was not sustainable. The position of the Labour & Co-Operative Group would be to launch a ‘fairness commission’ for 12 months through the existing policy and scrutiny teams in the Council. Councillor Morgan stated that a Labour Central Government would make a difference locally with measures such as increased devolution of funding, and finally added that the Labour amendment he proposed called for a threshold increase to Council Tax.

    32.5    The Chair stated that the intention had been to allow all parties as much time as possible to openly discuss budget proposals, and the position of the Administration sought to protect the poorest family that would be the hardest hit by the reduction in Central Government Funding. A freeze in the rate of Council Tax would permanently weaken the Council Tax base and reduce the worth of any future increases. Both the Conservative and Labour parties had committed themselves to further funding reductions post-2015, and this would create greater pressure on services. The Chair also stated that the public would welcome the debate, and hoped the Committee could also consider the consultation elements outlined in the report.

    32.6    Councillor Sykes noted that it was positive the Council would be discussing the 2015/16 budget this early, and noted he had already met with the finance spokespersons from both the Conservative and Labour Groups.

    32.7    Councillor Davey noted the use of the LEP as the most significant source for funding for major projects, and noted that the Council needed to present itself as a credible partner in this environment.

    32.8    Councillor G. Theobald noted the Shadow Secretary of State for the DCLG had been clear at the recent LGA conference there would be no additional funding for local government under a Labour led Central Government. He noted that local authorities needed to look at doing things different, and he commended the approach taken by the Executive Director for Finance & Resources. The Conservative Group were happy to work with other parties in the interests of the city, and their position remained to reduce the budget based on a Council Tax freeze – as set out in their proposed amendment.

    32.9    Councillors Robins noted the additional areas discussed in the report and recommendations and hoped there could be more cross-party collaboration on these matters.

    32.10  Councillor Hamilton noted he was seconding the amendment on behalf of the Labour & Co-Operative Group. In response to a question he raised the Executive Director confirmed that those in receipt of Council Tax Benefits were liable for a proportion of the total amount payable, therefore, if the rate increased so would the proportion. Regardless of the outcome of the vote on the amendments and recommendations Officers would be able to work up a range of proposals for Members to consider.

    32.11  The Chair then put the Labour amendment to recommendation 2.2 (as set out below) to the vote:

                “Instruct the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to develop budget proposals for 2015/16, for submission to Policy & Resources Committee for consideration, based on a 2% increase in Council Tax.”

    32.12  The amendment was not carried.

    32.13  The Chair then put the Conservative amendment to recommendation 2.2 (as set out below) to the vote:

                “Instruct the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to develop budget proposals for 2015/16, for submission to Policy & Resources Committee for consideration, based on a Council Tax freeze.”

    32.14  The amendment was not carried.

    32.15  The Chair then put recommendations 2.1 and 2.3 to 2.6 to the vote and these were agreed.

    32.16  The Chair then put the substantive recommendation 2.2, as outlined in the report, to the vote, and this was not carried.

    32.17  The Chair then proposed an amended recommendation 2.2 as set out below and put this to the vote:

                “Instruct the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to develop budget proposals for 2015/16, for submission to Policy & Resources Committee for consideration.”

    32.18  The proposed amendment was carried.

    32.19  It was clarified to the Committee that Officers would work up proposals with a view to giving consideration to the different positions of each of the three political groups.

    32.20  RESOLVED: That the Committee

    1)        Note the resource and expenditure projections for 2015/16 and the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) projections set out in the body of the report and appendices 1 to 5.

     

    2)        Instruct the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to develop budget proposals for 2015/16, for submission to Policy & Resources Committee for consideration.

     

    3)        Require budget proposals to be developed by ELT alongside the creation of a new Corporate Plan for 2015-19, ensuring strong links between the Medium Term Financial Strategy and service and business planning. 

     

    4)        Agree the approach to consultation, engagement and scrutiny as set out in section 5 of this report, which will be designed to shape the new Corporate Plan and Medium Term Financial Strategy as well as the 2015/16 Budget.

     

    5)        Agree the proposed approach to reviewing the Council Tax Reduction Scheme as set out in paragraphs 3.15 to 3.20.

     

    6)        Note the resource projections for the capital investment programme as shown in appendix 5.

33.

City Plan Part One - Changes arising from Examination Process pdf icon PDF 198 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    That Policy & Resources Committee:

     

    1)           Approve the proposed modifications to the City Plan Part One set out in Appendix 2 that represent a major shift in policy in the City Plan.

     

    2)           Note the remaining proposed modifications set out in the Full Schedule (Appendix 3) and authorise that the Head of Planning and Public Protection may make any necessary minor amendments to the Full Schedule prior to public consultation;

     

    3)           Approve a nine week period of public consultation on the Full Schedule of Proposed Modifications to the Submission City Plan Part One (along with new/ updated supporting documents) commencing 25th July 2014;

     

    4)           Authorise the Head of Planning and Public Protection to agree any further draft “main modifications” to the City Plan Part One 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 City Plan Part One the draft modification shall be referred by the Head of Planning and Public Protection to the Policy and Resources Committee for approval.

     

    5)           Approve the following studies as supporting evidence for the City Plan and further Development Plan Documents (summarised in Appendix 4):

    ·         Sustainability Appraisal

    ·         Appropriate Assessment Update

    ·         Health and Equalities Impact Assessment Update

    ·         Transport Assessment Update

    ·         Exceptions and Sequential Test Update (flood risk)

    ·         Draft Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment 2014 update

    ·         Urban Fringe Assessment Study

    ·         Assessment of Housing Development Needs Study: Sussex Coast Housing Market Area, May 2014

    ·         Housing Implementation Strategy

    ·         Addendum to the Infrastructure Delivery Plan

    Minutes:

    33.1    This item was deferred.

34.

Annual Performance Update 2013/14 pdf icon PDF 89 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            That Committee notes the areas of highlighted performance.

     

    2)            That Committee authorises officers to take the necessary measures to maintain progress and tackle issues of concern highlighted in the report.

    Minutes:

    34.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to the Annual Performance Update 2013/14. The report reviewed the performance progress of the authority during 2013/14. The report showed progress in the areas of success against the corporate plan and the Council’s organisational health measures, and how well the priorities in the Sustainable Community Strategy were being delivered. The report also provided an explanation of the reinvigoration of the organisation around the principles of performance management.

    34.2    Councillor Sykes thanked Officers for the clear and useful report; he noted the level of indicators at green and amber in the report and the general trend upwards. The exceptions in the report were being addressed, but the process was also important for gaining an understanding of why the Council was off target, and what appropriate measures could be taken.

    34.3    In response to Councillor Morgan the Assistant Director for Education & Inclusion explained that the work being undertaken in relation to Maths underachievement in the city included increased funding for a Maths Project; secondments of high quality Maths Teachers to push standards and sharing good practice. There was also work with the two universities in the city and some changes to the use of the Pupil Premium which it was hoped would have an impact.

    34.4    Councillor A. Norman drew particular positive attention to: the recording of crimes; GCSE results, and the standards of early year’s child provision. She expressed her concerns in relation to the performance gap of young people in receipt of free schools meals. In response to a question the Head of Strategy & Projects explained there was incomplete information in relation to the number of missed collections due problems in the service for the first nine months of the year, and the priorities of the service had been to address the high call volume. Since the situation had improved the monitoring of missed collections was now being accurately recorded.

    34.5    The Executive Director for Finance & Resources responded to a further question from Councillor A. Norman and stated that there were ongoing concerns in relation to the levels of staff sickness. There were new measures in place, but it was too early to know if these had been successful at this time – assurance was provided that the organisation was taking this matter very seriously.

    34.6    Councillor Davey noted that there was a general trend of improvement in air quality across the city, and gave example of the improvements in Lewes Road; he also welcomed the cross-party support for the low admissions zone. He drew attention to successful bids in collaboration with the bus company and noted there were planned improvement works to North Street.

    34.7    In response to Councillor Robins it was explained that the number of allotment plots had stayed the same, but there had been work undertaken to review the number of people on the waiting list; there were also new initiatives such as micro plots being introduced.

    34.8    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    34.9    RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee note the areas of highlighted performance.

     

    2)        That the Committee authorises Officers to take the necessary measures to maintain progress and tackle issues of concern highlighted in the report.

35.

Minimum Buying standards for catering contracts pdf icon PDF 127 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)           That Policy & Resources Committee – Agree that the proposed minimum buying standards, as set out in Appendix 1, be specified in the council’s future procurement of catering contracts.

     

    2)           Grant delegated authority to the Executive Director Finance & Resources to take all necessary measures to implement the recommendation at 2.1.

    Minutes:

    35.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to Minimum Buying Standards for Catering Contracts. Minimum Buying Standards (MBS) for catering contracts had been developed to deliver the Corporate Procurement Strategy aim ‘to ensure value for money is achieved whilst the council operates as a “responsible procurer” taking account of social, economic and environmental impacts’. Approval was sought to adopt these standards across Council catering contracts.

    35.2    The Chair noted that when this had been rolled out in schools the uptake of school meals had increased.

    35.3    Councillor Sykes described this piece of work as fantastic, and thanked the work of Officers and the Food Partnership; he hoped the rest of the Committee would be able to support the recommendations. He noted that the full list of standards was set out in the report, and in some instances this had been able to help achieve cost reductions.

    35.4    Councillor A. Norman noted her support for the report, and stated that the Food Partnership had done some excellent work. It was important the Council take a lead to support local farmers and producers.

    35.5    Councillor G. Theobald noted his enthusiasm for this work, and his support for the report.

    35.6    The Chair then put the recommendations to the vote.

    35.7    RESOLVED: That the Committee:

    1)        Agree that the proposed minimum buying standards, as set out in Appendix 1, be specified in the Council’s future procurement of catering contracts; and,

     

    2)        Grant delegated authority to the Executive Director for Finance & Resources to take all necessary measures to implement the recommendation at 2.1.

36.

Home to School Special Needs Pupils Transport and Other Social Care Transport Contract pdf icon PDF 87 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Children’s Services (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    That Policy and Resources Committee:

     

    1)            Approves the procurement of a framework agreement for home to school transport for pupils with special educational needs and other transport for vulnerable children and adults on behalf of social care teams, for a term of four years from 1 September 2015 to 31 August 2019;

     

    2)            Grants delegated authority to the Executive Director of Children’s Services to carry out the procurement of the framework agreement referred to in 2.1 above including the award and letting of the framework agreement.

    Minutes:

    36.1    RESOLVED: That the Committee:

     

    1)            Approve the procurement of a framework agreement for home to school transport for pupils with special educational needs and other transport for vulnerable children and adults on behalf of social care teams, for a term of four years from 1 September 2015 to 31 August 2019;

     

    2)            Grant delegated authority to the Executive Director of Children’s Services to carry out the procurement of the framework agreement referred to in 2.1 above including the award and letting of the framework agreement.

37.

Procurement of Waste and Recycling Contract pdf icon PDF 77 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    That the Policy & Resources Committee grants delegated authority to the Executive Director, Finance & Resources to approve the procurement and award of a contract for the supply of commercial waste refuse disposal and recycling services to the council with a term of up to a maximum of four (4) years.

    Minutes:

    37.1    RESOLVED: That the Committee grants delegated authority to the Executive Director, Finance & Resources to approve the procurement and award of a contract for the supply of commercial waste refuse disposal and recycling services to the council with a term of up to a maximum of four (4) years.

38.

Shared Lives (Tender contract) pdf icon PDF 88 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Adult Services (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    That Committee approves the tendering of the Shared Lives and Kinship services through an approved procurement process during the financial year 2014-15 for the subsequent three to five years (i.e. contract period April 2015 to March 2018 with an option to extend by up to a further two years).

     

    That delegated authority is granted to the Executive Director of Adult Services to approve the award of a contract to the successful bidders following recommendations of the tender evaluation panel and consultation with the Lead Member for Adult Social Care and Health.

    Minutes:

    38.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Adult Services in relation to Shared Lives – Tender Contract. The report sought approval to award a contract for the provision of the Shared Lives and Kinship scheme for three years from 1 April 2015; the Council would have an option to extend the contract period by a maximum of two years.

    38.2    In response to Councillor G. Theobald the Executive Director for Adult Services noted that the Committee had been in receipt of emails from the Grace Eyre Foundation; she provided assurance that the foundation had been involved in the consultation process, and Officers were happy to facilitate further dialogue if required.

    38.3    Councillor A. Norman noted that she had received correspondence from the foundation; however, she was assured by the response from the Executive Director and that the concerns expressed would be properly addressed.

    38.4    The Chair added that the dialogue had already been taking place, but that not all the community were aware; the new contract would also only apply to new placements.  

    38.5    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    38.6    RESOLVED:

                1)      That Committee approves the tendering of the Shared Lives and Kinship services through an approved procurement process during the financial year 2014-15 for the subsequent three to five years (i.e. contract period April 2015 to March 2018 with an option to extend by up to a further two years).

     

                2)      That delegated authority is granted to the Executive Director of Adult Services to approve the award of a contract to the successful bidders following recommendations of the tender evaluation panel and consultation with the Lead Member for Adult Social Care and Health.

39.

Cash in Transit Contract pdf icon PDF 79 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    That the Policy & Resources Committee note the urgency action taken by the Executive Director Finance & Resources after consulting the Chair of the Policy & Resources Committee.

    Minutes:

    39.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to the Cash in Transit Contract. Due to the early termination of the foregoing cash in transit and ancillary services contract it had been necessary to award a new contract for a term of two years with immediate effect to ensure business continuity and minimise the risk to cash and cheques collected across the Council and the subsequent impact on cash flow. The report set out urgency action taken by the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in accordance with Part 6.2 A 7(2) of the constitution.

    39.2    The Chair noted that he had been fully briefed at the time, and was satisfied the Council had taken all appropriate steps to minimise risk.

    39.3    Councillor A. Norman noted that the action of the Executive Director was entirely appropriate, but queried the increased cost of the new contract. In response the Executive Director explained that until recently the previous contractor had provided a good service; however, it was considered that the risk to the service outweighed the reduction in costs of the contract.

    39.4    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    39.5    RESOLVED: That the Committee note the urgency action taken by the Executive Director Finance & Resources after consulting the Chair of the Policy & Resources Committee.

40.

Hove Town Hall, South End, Office Option pdf icon PDF 87 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)           That Policy & Resources Committee approve the refurbishment of the south end of Hove Town Hall as specified in paragraph 3.5 of this report.

     

    2)           That the Executive Director Finance & Resources be granted delegated authority:

     

    (i)            to commence appropriate engagement and negotiations with potential service providers and organisations, in relation to the proposed refurbishment referred to in paragraph 2.1 above; and

     

    (ii)          to grant leases to such service providers and organisations on such terms as the Director considers appropriate.

    Minutes:

    40.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources in relation to Hove Town Hall, South End, Office Option. The report outlined an alternative proposal for the south end of Hove Town Hall; namely the conversion of the first floor spaces into an office which could be occupied by other external public or private service organisations that had potential synergies with existing council services to promote collaborative working.

    40.2    Councillor G. Theobald stated that it was sensible to collocate with partners, but he still questioned if Hove Town Hall was the right location to do this. He agreed with the disposal of King’s House, but he did not think investing the proceeds into the renovation of Hove Town Hall was the correct way option. A location such as Sussex House might be more appropriate for offices and Hove Town Hall could be considered as a site for a school.

    40.3    Councillor Morgan noted the decision in relation to sale of King’s House and the renovation of Hove Town Hall had already made and he did not believe it needed to be revisited. He supported collocation, and asked if there were ways to provide grant relief to third sector organisation and partners through accommodation arrangements.

    40.4    In response to Councillor Peltzer-Dunn the Executive Director for Finance & Resources explained that the report sought delegated authority to engage with those potentially interested in the space and the additional investment and borrowing that was not within the scope of the original recommendation. It was also confirmed that benchmarking work had been undertaken and Officers were confident a competitive market rate could be achieved.

    40.5    Councillor Randall provided assurance that Officers were discussing all possibilities with partner organisations.

    40.6    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    40.7    RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee approve the refurbishment of the south end of Hove Town Hall as specified in paragraph 3.5 of this report.

     

    2)        That the Executive Director for Finance & Resources be granted delegated authority:

     

    (i)        to commence appropriate engagement and negotiations with potential service providers and organisations, in relation to the proposed refurbishment referred to in paragraph 2.1 above; and

     

    (ii)       to grant leases to such service providers and organisations on such terms as the Director considers appropriate.

41.

Portslade Sports Centre - Future Management Arrangements pdf icon PDF 85 KB

    Joint report of the Executive Director of Children’s Services and the Assistant Chief Executive (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            That the Committee gives approval to undertake a procurement process to seek an external operator to manage Portslade Sports Centre.

     

    2)            That the Committee grants delegated approval to the Executive Director of Children’s Services to

     

    (i)            appoint an external operator on a six year management contract from 1st April 2015 to be coterminous with the citywide Sports Facilities Contract

     

    (ii)        grant an extension to the management contract for a period of up to five years should it be required in order to be coterminous with the citywide Sports Facilities Contract.

    Minutes:

    41.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director for Children’s Services in relation to Portslade Sports Centre – Future Management Arrangements. The report set out the options for the future management arrangements of Portslade Sports Centre following discussions with Portslade Aldridge Community Academy and the Aldridge Foundation.

    41.2    Councillor Randall noted he hoped third sector providers could be considered.

    41.3    In response to Councillor Hamilton the Sports Facilities Manager explained that the charges were currently comparable with the other sports facilities in the city and broadly in line. In terms of price protection there was a mechanism in the current contract for increases only in line with inflation; any greater increase would need to be agreed by the relevant Committee – which in this instance was the Economic Development & Culture Committee. It was Officers intention to use the same mechanism in this contract.

    41.4    Councillors Robins noted his support for Option 3 in the report.

    41.5    In response to Councillor Peltzer Dunn it was clarified that recommendation 2.2 in the report would allow for a ten year contract to be extended for an additional 5 years if the Council wished; this was the same provision in the existing sports facilities contracts.

    41.6    The Chair then put the recommendation to the vote.

    41.7    RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee gives approval to undertake a procurement process to seek an external operator to manage Portslade Sports Centre.

     

    2)        That the Committee grants delegated approval to the Executive Director of Children’s Services to:

     

    (i)        Appoint an external operator on a six year management contract from 1 April 2015 to be coterminous with the citywide Sports Facilities Contract

     

    (ii)     Grant an extension to the management contract for a period of up to five years should it be required in order to be coterminous with the citywide Sports Facilities Contract.

42.

Stanmer Park Master Plan & Application for Heritage Lottery Fund Grant Funding pdf icon PDF 101 KB

    Joint report of the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing and the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            That the Committee agrees the approach outlined in this report to apply for grant funding for the Stanmer Project which includes the submission of a Stage 1 Parks for People application in August 2014 and a Heritage Grant in October 2014.

     

    2)            That the Committee notes the funding requirements for the project and agrees in principle the ring fencing of the match funding identified in this report and to explore options to meet the shortfall in match funding.

     

    3)            That the committee delegates authority to the Executive Director of Environment, Development & Housing and the Executive Director of Finance & Resources to oversee the completion of the Stage 1 funding bids and to sign off the final documents prior to submission to HLF.

     

    4)            That the committee agrees in principle to the relocation of the City Parks Depot out of Stanmer Park and authorises officers to continue to look into alternative locations and funding options for the relocation.

    Minutes:

    42.1    The Committee considered a joint report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources and the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing in relation to the Stanmer Park Master Plan & Application for Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Grant Funding. The report proposed to submit a HLF grant application to help deliver the Masterplan once finalised. The report also: summarised the progress made to date on the project; sought approval to progress the HLF bid; set out the proposed governance arrangements to oversee the delivery and sought permission to consult on the Master Plan.

    42.2    The Chair noted that the South Downs National Park was a key partner in this work, and were committed a permanent base at the site.

    42.3    Councillor Sykes noted the significance of the site, and the number of heritage assets it contained. He felt the plan was very robust, but noted there were still some matters, such as the relocation of the depot, to be fully thought through.

    42.4    In response to Councillor G. Theobald it was explained that the ‘Long Barn’ was considered one of the key buildings on the site, and close work with the national park was being undertaken as the building was considered to have the most potential to generate income. Following a further query the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing explained that all sites were kept under review where there had been unlawful encampments and these considerations would be part of the masterplan arrangements.

    42.5    The Chair then put the recommendations to the vote.

    42.6    RESOLVED:

    1)        That the Committee agrees the approach outlined in this report to apply for grant funding for the Stanmer Project which includes the submission of a Stage 1 Parks for People application in August 2014 and a Heritage Grant in October 2014.

     

    2)        That the Committee notes the funding requirements for the project and agrees in principle the ring fencing of the match funding identified in this report and to explore options to meet the shortfall in match funding.

     

    3)        That the committee delegates authority to the Executive Director of Environment, Development & Housing and the Executive Director of Finance & Resources to oversee the completion of the Stage 1 funding bids and to sign off the final documents prior to submission to HLF.

     

    4)        That the committee agrees in principle to the relocation of the City Parks Depot out of Stanmer Park and authorises officers to continue to look into alternative locations and funding options for the relocation.

43.

Disposal of 18 Market Street pdf icon PDF 72 KB

    Report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources (copy attached).

    Additional documents:

    Decision:

    1)            That the Committee authorise the disposal of 18 Market Street to the purchaser identified at the sale price agreed.

     

    2)            That the Committee note that the capital receipt received may be used for reinvestment to provide an ongoing income stream to support the council’s Corporate Plan and Medium Term Financial Strategy and this will be subject to a future report to this Committee.

    Minutes:

    43.1    RESOLVED:

     

    1)        That the Committee authorise the disposal of 18 Market Street to the purchaser identified at the sale price agreed.

     

    2)        That the Committee note that the capital receipt received may be used for reinvestment to provide an ongoing income stream to support the council’s Corporate Plan and Medium Term Financial Strategy and this will be subject to a future report to this Committee.

44.

Appointment to the Fire Authority

    To appoint a representative to the Fire Authority following Councillor Rufus’ resignation.

     

    Note: The appointment currently falls to Green Group and Councillor Deane has been nominated.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    44.1    The Chair noted that the nomination from the Green Group was Councillor Deane, and formally put this to the vote.

     

    44.2    RESOLVED: That Councillor Deane be appointed as a representative on the Fire Authority.

45.

Items Referred For Council

    To consider items to be submitted to the 17th July 2014 Council meeting for information.

     

    In accordance with Procedure Rule 24.3a, the Committee may determine that any item is to be included in its report to Council.  In addition, each Group may specify one further item to be included by notifying the Chief Executive no later than 10.00am on the 7th July 2014 (the eighth working day before the Council meeting to which the report is to be made), or if the Committee meeting takes place after this deadline, immediately at the conclusion of the Committee meeting.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    45.1    There were no items referred to the Council meeting on 17 July 2014.

46.

Stanmer Park Master Plan & Application for Heritage Lottery Fund Grant Funding - Exempt Category 3

    Appendix 2 to the joint report of the Executive Director for Environment, Development & Housing and the Executive Director for Finance & Resources, listed as Item 42 on the agenda (circulated to Members only).

    Minutes:

    46.1    RESOLVED: That the information contained in the appendix be noted.

47.

Disposal of 18 Market Street - Exempt Category 3

    Appendix 2 to the report of the Executive Director for Finance & Resources, listed as Item 43 on the agenda (circulated to Members only).

    Minutes:

    47.1    RESOLVED: That the information contained in the appendix be noted.

48.

Part Two Minutes - Exempt Category 3

    To consider the part two minutes of the meeting held on the 12th June 2014 (circulated to Members only).

    Minutes:

    48.1    RESOLVED:  That the Part 2 minutes of the last meeting held on 1 May 2014 be approved as a correct record of the proceedings and signed by the Chair.

49.

Part Two Proceedings

    To consider whether the items listed in Part Two of the agenda and decisions thereon should remain exempt from disclosure to the press and public.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    49.1    RESOLVED: That the information contained in the appendix, Items 46 & 47, relating to the reports listed at items 42 & 43 on the agenda and the minutes of the last meeting item 44 remain exempt from disclosure to the press and public.

 


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