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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 1

Contact: Democratic Services Tel: 01684 272021  Email:  democraticservices@tewkesbury.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

13.

Announcements

When the continuous alarm sounds you must evacuate the building by the nearest available fire exit. Members and visitors should proceed to the visitors’ car park at the front of the building and await further instructions (staff should proceed to their usual assembly point). Please do not re-enter the building unless instructed to do so.

 

In the event of a fire any person with a disability should be assisted in leaving the building.

Minutes:

13.1           The evacuation procedure, as noted on the Agenda, was taken as read.

13.2           The Chairman welcomed Councillor B C Calway to the meeting. Councillor Calway was in attendance, as Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, to introduce Item 7 – Performance Management – Quarter 4 2012-13.

14.

Declarations of Interest

Pursuant to the adoption by the Council on 26 June 2012 of the Tewkesbury Borough Council Code of Conduct, effective from 1 July 2012, as set out in Minute No. CL.34, Members are invited to declare any interest they may have in the business set out on the Agenda to which the approved Code applies.

Minutes:

14.1           The Committee’s attention was drawn to the Tewkesbury Borough Council Code of Conduct which was adopted by the Council on 26 June 2012 and took effect from 1 July 2012.

14.2           The following declarations were made:

Councillor

Application No./Item

Nature of Interest (where disclosed)

Declared Action in respect of Disclosure

J R Mason

Item 8 – Designation of Neighbourhood Plan Areas

Member of Winchcombe Town Council and did sit on the Working Group that was charged with forming the Plan.

Would speak and vote.

Ms A E Ricks

Item 8 – Designation of Neighbourhood Plan Areas

Member of Churchdown Parish Council.

Would speak and vote.

14.3           There were no further declarations made on this occasion.

 

15.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 26 KB

To approve the Minutes of the meeting held on 5 June 2013.

Minutes:

15.1           The Minutes of the meeting held on 5 June 2013, copies of which had been circulated, were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.  

16.

Items from Members of the Public

To receive any questions, deputations or petitions submitted under Rule of Procedure 12.

 

(The deadline for public participation submissions for this meeting is 27 June 2013)

Minutes:

16.1           There were no items from members of the public on this occasion.  

17.

Six Month Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 31 KB

To consider the Committee’s Six Month Forward Plan.  

Subject To Call In:: No - Item to Note.

Decision:

That the Committee’s Six Month Forward Plan be NOTED, subject to an amendment to the item entitled ‘Review of Human Resources Strategy’, to be considered in November, to read ‘…to the review from the Joint Core Staff Consultative Group.  

Minutes:

17.1           Attention was drawn to the Committee’s Six Month Forward Plan, circulated at Pages No. 5-9. Members were asked to consider the Plan.

17.2           Referring to Page No. 7, Review of Human Resources Strategy, a Member indicated that the narrative against the item should read ‘Joint Staff Consultative Group’ rather than ‘Joint Core Consultative Group’. The Member was advised that this would be amended and accordingly it was

Action By: BS

18.

Performance Management - Quarter 4 2012-13 pdf icon PDF 43 KB

To receive, and respond to, the findings of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee following that Committee’s consideration of the Council’s performance for Quarter 4 of 2012/13 and the Direction of Travel report.

Subject To Call In:: No - Item to Note.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the Overview and Scrutiny Committee’s comments on the Performance Management report for Quarter Four of 2012-13 and the Direction of Travel report be NOTED.

Minutes:

18.1           The report of the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, circulated at Pages No. 10-34, asked Members to consider the Council’s performance against a range of non-financial and financial indicators, projects and financial assessments, and through that, to challenge and manage the Council’s performance.

18.2           In introducing the report, the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Councillor B C Calway, indicated that Appendix A set out the questions that had been asked by Members of his Committee in respect of performance management; Appendix B set out the Direction of Travel as considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee; Appendix C set out his Committee’s observations about the Direction of Travel; Appendix D set out the Financial Budget Summary Statement for Quarter 4 of 2012/13; and Appendix E attached the Capital Monitoring Statement for Quarter 4 of 2012/13. Referring particularly to Appendix A, Pages No. 18 and 19, the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee explained that, in terms of absence management, the Committee had recognised that there had been significant improvement within the last quarter of the year. Members were pleased that this seemed to be attributed to the actions within the new Absence Management Policy which had been put into place following a scrutiny review and had been effective from 1 October 2012. It was anticipated that performance would continue to improve into 2013/14. In terms of recycling, the Committee had recognised that, although the recycling rate seemed to have plateaued slightly, the Authority did still have the second highest recycling rate in the County. Officers understood that there was a need for a new impetus regarding recycling rates and the Overview and Scrutiny Committee would receive a presentation regarding the ‘Sights on 60’ campaign at its meeting on 9 July. Referring to the issue of flytipping, the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee explained that this had been discussed by his Committee on a number of occasions and he would be looking to ensure this issue was examined by a Working Group in due course.

18.3           Referring to Appendix B, Direction of Travel, the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee indicated that the Committee had noted the improved performance in time taken to process new benefit claims in 2012/13 and it was hoped that the efficiencies introduced would lead to continued improvement in 2013/14. In respect of the Direction of Travel for ‘Development’, Members were concerned that all three indicators listed had failed to achieve their targets in 2012/13. It was noted that decisions had been made not to fill a Planning Officer post that had been made vacant due to maternity leave and that a part-time Planning Officer had been working on the Joint Core Strategy since January 2013. Members were also advised that the systems review of planning should lead to further efficiencies as customers would be able to ‘self-serve’ far more which would help manage the resources required in the department. The Development Control Manager was currently looking at  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Designation of Neighbourhood Plan Areas pdf icon PDF 41 KB

To approve the designation of neighbourhood plan areas covering the Parishes of Churchdown and Innsworth; and Winchcombe and Sudeley.

Subject To Call In:: Yes - No action to be taken prior to the expiry of the call-in period.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the designation of Neighbourhood Plan areas covering the Parishes of Churchdown and Innsworth; and Winchcombe and Sudeley be APPROVED.  

Minutes:

19.1           The report of the Planning Policy Officer, circulated at Pages No. 35-42, set out information about two areas that had asked to be designated as Neighbourhood Plan areas. Members were asked to approve the designation of Neighbourhood Plan areas covering the Parishes of Churchdown and Innsworth; and Winchcombe and Sudeley.   

19.2           The Committee was advised that, in 2011, the Localism Act had introduced a new level of planning at neighbourhood level through the preparation and adoption of a Neighbourhood Development Plan. A Neighbourhood Development Plan was a statutory community-led framework for guiding the future development and growth of an area. The Plans related to the use and development of land and associated social, economic and environmental issues. Neighbourhood Development Plans would be subject to full public engagement, examination and a public referendum and, once adopted, would form part of the statutory development plan alongside the Joint Core Strategy and the Tewkesbury Borough Plan.

19.3           There were five key stages to Neighbourhood Planning: defining the neighbourhood – this was the first formal stage in the process where local people would decide how they wanted to work together and then the body preparing the Plan would apply to the Local Planning Authority for the area to be designated; preparing the Plan – local people would prioritise their ideas and draw up their plans following some ground rules; independent check – an independent examiner would check the Plan met the right basic standards and, if it did not, would recommend changes; community referendum – the local Council would organise a referendum on any Plan that met the basic standards, if more than 50% of people voting supported the Plan it would be brought into force; and legal force – once a Plan was in force it carried real weight and decision-makers were then obliged to consider proposals for development in the neighbourhood against the Neighbourhood Plan. In Tewkesbury Borough, as it was fully Parished, Town or Parish Councils were the body that would lead the preparation of a Neighbourhood Development Plan.

19.4           Members were advised that, to date, three applications for designation had been received. However one of those, Down Hatherley, Norton and Twigworth, was still subject to publicity/consultation so would not be ready to go forward for consideration by the Executive Committee until after 26 July 2013. In terms of the responsibility of Local Planning Authorities in this situation, Members were advised that there was a statutory duty to advise or assist communities in the preparation of Neighbourhood Development Plans and to take Plans through a process of independent examination. These responsibilities were detailed within the Localism Act and included: designating the area of the Neighbourhood Development Plan; advising or assisting communities in the preparation of a Neighbourhood Plan; checking a submitted Plan met legal requirements; arranging for the independent examination of the Plan; determining whether the Plan met the basic conditions and other legal requirements; arranging a referendum to ensure the local community had the final say on whether a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

Action By: DD

20.

Tewkesbury Borough Plan pdf icon PDF 38 KB

To recommend to Council that the preparation of the Tewkesbury Borough Plan is commenced by formally notifying interested parties that the Council intends to prepare a Plan and inviting representations on what the Plan ought to contain; and to delegate authority to the Development Group Manager, in consultation with the Lead Member for Built Environment, to prepare and approve exhibition material and background documentation.

Subject To Call In:: No - Recommendation to Council

Additional documents:

Decision:

That it be RECOMMENDED TO COUNCIL:

1.    that preparation of the Tewkesbury Borough Plan is commenced by a) formally notifying interested parties that the Council intends to prepare the Plan and b) inviting them to make representations on what the Plan ought to contain; and

2.    that authority be delegated to the Development Group Manager, in consultation with the Planning Policy Reference Panel, to prepare and approve exhibition material and background documentation to enable people to meaningfully engage in the consultation.

Minutes:

20.1           The report of the Planning Policy Officer, circulated at Pages No. 43-49, set out how the Council would fulfil its statutory duty to prepare a Development Plan. Members were asked to recommend to Council that preparation of the Tewkesbury Borough Plan was commenced by a) formally notifying interested parties that the Council intended to prepare the Plan and b) that they were invited to make representations on what the Plan ought to contain; and that authority be delegated to the Development Group Manager, in consultation with the Lead Member for Built Environment, to prepare and approve exhibition material and background documentation to enable people to meaningfully engage in the consultation.

20.2           Members were advised that the report related to the preparation of the Tewkesbury Borough Plan. The Joint Core Strategy would set out the strategic framework; below that would be the Local Planning Policies and the local allocations for development. To fulfil this, and to address Borough-specific planning issues, the Council would need to prepare a Tewkesbury Borough Plan. The Plan was important for the Borough’s continued growth and prosperity; the coordination of housing development and infrastructure provision; and to reduce the potential for development to be approved on appeal in locations that the Council did not consider suitable. The preparation of a Plan had to include early and meaningful engagement and collaboration with neighbourhoods, local organisations and businesses. A wide section of the community should be proactively engaged so that, as far as possible, local plans reflected a collective vision and a set of agreed priorities for the sustainable development of the area including those contained in any Neighbourhood Plans that had been made. The report currently before Members sought to set out the process of preparing a Plan and to gain Council approval to involve the public on what issues the Plan should address.

20.3           During the discussion which ensued, a Member expressed the view that he was anxious that a Borough Plan should be meaningful to local people and that it was essential that it followed the National Planning Policy Framework. Another Member indicated that she was not comfortable with the proposal that the consultation on the Joint Core Strategy and the Borough Plan be combined. She felt this would lead to confusion from residents who would not understand the difference between the two documents. In addition, she expressed concern about the leaflet on the Borough Plan, which was appended to the report, which she felt seemed rushed and did not tell people what the purpose of the Plan was. She also felt that the leaflet contained too much ‘planning’ speak. In response a number of Members indicated that they were happy to run the consultation in tandem with the Joint Core Strategy but there was some concern over the planning terms used and Members were reassured that the Council’s Communications Officer would be asked to look at the documents to ensure they were set out in a way that was accessible to all. In terms  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.

Action By: DD

21.

Review of Sandbag Policy pdf icon PDF 30 KB

To approve and adopt the revised Sandbag Policy.  

Subject To Call In:: Yes - No action to be taken prior to the expiry of the call-in period.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the revised Sandbag Policy be APPROVED and ADOPTED.  

Minutes:

21.1           The report of the Residential Services Manager, circulated at Pages No. 50-60, attached a revised Sandbag Policy which Members were asked to approve and adopt.

21.2           Members were advised that, on 6 March 2013, the Executive Committee had considered a Motion which had been referred from Council that ‘this Council reviews its Policy regarding the current criteria with the distribution of sandbags in flooding emergencies’. The Committee decided that the Flood Risk Management Group should carry out a review of the current criteria for the distribution of sandbags in flooding emergencies; and that its findings should be reported to the Executive Committee for consideration at its meeting in July 2013. The Flood Risk Management Group had set up a Sub-Group which had met twice in May and had agreed a revised Policy. That Policy had been considered by the Flood Risk Management Group prior to being considered by the Executive Committee.

21.3           The Sub-Group had agreed that it wanted to ensure clarity and consistency in the process of giving sandbag assistance and also that the Parish and Town Councils would be best placed to ensure that their area was resilient in times of flooding. The draft revised Policy was attached to the report at Appendix 2 and sought to build on those issues as well as considering the speed of response by the Council in the event of an emergency. Parish and Town Councils at key strategic locations were consulted with and all Councils that were contacted had shown enthusiasm about being involved. Whilst some had questions, no one had refused to be part of it. The proposed new Policy had been compared to what had been delivered during the flooding emergencies in November and December 2012 and it had been found that the new Policy should help to ensure sandbags were delivered more quickly and at a lower cost than previously. Contact had been made with builders’ merchants and Parishes and all had been happy with the principle of what the Policy contained and how that would be delivered in times of emergency.

21.4           During the discussion which ensued, a Member felt it should be borne in mind that, whilst it was great that the bags would be available throughout the Borough, the sand to fill them would have to be obtained from a builders’ merchant and they were not usually open outside of office hours. In response, she was advised that this was a very important point and some Parishes had offered to act as sites for sand and sandbags so that they could be collected locally. A Member indicated that the Prior’s Park Neighbourhood Project had facilities for the storage of sandbags and it would be happy to help with filling them. Other Members indicated that Minsterworth, Innsworth and areas of Coopers Edge, Brockworth had all been subject to flooding on occasion and it was hoped that they would be included on the list at Appendix 2 to the report.

21.5           A Member offered his  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

Action By: DD

22.

Business Continuity pdf icon PDF 23 KB

To approve the revised Corporate Business Continuity Plan and associated action plan; and to delegate authority to the Chief Executive to make textual amendments to the Plan following implementation of the Organisational Review.  

Subject To Call In:: 1. Yes - No action to be taken prior to the expiry of the call-in period. 2. No - Ongoing matter.

Additional documents:

Decision:

1.      That the revised Corporate Business Continuity Plan, and associated action plan, be APPROVED, subject to an amendment at Appendix 1, Annex G, to change reference to ‘Star FM’ to’ Breeze FM’.

2.      That authority be delegated to the Chief Executive to make textual amendments to the Plan following implementation of the Organisational Review.

Minutes:

22.1           The report of the Director of Resources, circulated at Pages No. 61-85, asked Members to approve the updated Corporate Business Continuity Plan and action plan in order to assist business recovery should the Authority be faced with a major incident at the Council Offices. 

22.2           Members were advised that the Corporate Business Continuity Plan aimed to build organisational resilience to ensure that the Council was able to provide critical services during an emergency that caused disruption to usual working conditions. This was separate from the Council’s Business Continuity planning although there were some commonalities. Regular review and testing of the Plan would help the Council to prepare for potential disasters / emergencies and minimise disruption if an incident were to occur.

22.3           The current Corporate Business Continuity Plan had been produced in 2009 and a review had therefore been undertaken to ensure it remained relevant to current service delivery; that key service continuity risks had been identified; that corporate contact details were correct and up-to-date; and that key contacts for office tenants, outside services and organisations had been identified. Any amendments or additions were highlighted on the revised Plan appended to the report at Appendix 1. In order to further strengthen the Council’s business continuity arrangements an action plan had been developed and this was appended to the report at Appendix 2. The biggest single change to the Plan had been that it had previously focused on the loss of the Council Offices, however, over recent years it had become clear that there were other significant events that could cause the Plan to be instigated such as a flu pandemic, severe weather, loss of utilities and loss of ICT and communications systems etc.

22.4           Particular attention was drawn to Pages No. 71 onwards which set out the corporate contact list. Members were advised that this would change from 5 August when the new organisational structure was implemented and this was the reason that the recommendation referred to a delegation to the Chief Executive to make textual amendments to the Plan as required. 

22.5           Members were generally of the view that this was a good report and Plan. However it was noted that the Audit Committee had previously asked for the reference to Star FM to be changed to Breeze FM as Star FM no longer existed. This amendment had not been made prior to the report being published for this meeting of the Executive Committee but Officers confirmed that the amendment would be made should the Executive Committee agree to approve the Plan.

22.6           Accordingly it was

Action By: DR CE

23.

Separate Business

The Chairman will move the adoption of the following resolution:

 

That under Section 100(A)(4) Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded for the following items on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.

Minutes:

23.1           The Chairman proposed, and it was

RESOLVED:         That, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items on the grounds that they involve the likely discussion of exempt information as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act. 

24.

Separate Minutes

To approve the separate Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 5 June 2013.

Minutes:

24.1           The separate Minutes of the meeting held on 5 June 2013, copies of which had been circulated, were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.  

25.

Funding for Collapsed Bank Repairs - Rear of Blackberry Grove, Bishop's Cleeve

(Exempt –Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 –Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information))

 

To recommend to Council the approval of extra funding to stabilise collapsing banks on either side of the watercourse adjacent to the A435 and rear of Blackberry Grove, Bishop’s Cleeve.

Minutes:

(Exempt –Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 –Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information))

25.1           The Committee recommended to Council that the extra funding to stabilise collapsing banks on either side of the watercourse adjacent to the A435 and rear of Blackberry Grove, Bishop’s Cleeve be approved.