Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: The Breckland Conference Centre, Anglia Room, Elizabeth House, Walpole Loke, Dereham, NR19 1EE

Media

Items
No. Item

89/21

Minutes pdf icon PDF 275 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on 20 September 2021.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 20 September 2021 were confirmed as a correct record.

90/21

Apologies

To receive apologies for absence. 

Minutes:

An apology was received from Councillor Mark Robinson.

91/21

Urgent Business

To note whether the Chairman proposes to accept any item as urgent business, pursuant to Section 100(B)(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Minutes:

None.

92/21

Declaration of Interests

The duties to register, disclose and not to participate for the entire consideration of the matter, in respect of any matter in which a Member has a disclosable pecuniary interest are set out in Chapter 7 of the Localism Act 2011.  Members are also required to withdraw from the meeting room as stated in the Standing Orders of this Council.

 

Minutes:

None.

93/21

Non-Members Wishing to Address the Meeting

To note the names of any non-members who wish to address the meeting.

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed all non-members present to the meeting.

94/21

Chairman's Announcements (If Any)

Minutes:

Nothing to report.

95/21

Breckland Community Funding Applications (Standing Item)

To consider the grants put forward (if any). 

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Housing, Health and Communities informed Members that there were not any funding applications to report.

 

96/21

Reference from the Overview and Scrutiny Commission

To consider the following report which was discussed at the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 28 October 2021:

96/211

Call-in of the Cabinet Decision on the Local Plan Review pdf icon PDF 327 KB

Report of Councillor Paul Claussen, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth introduced the report that would consider the recommendation from the Overview and Scrutiny Commission made on the 28 October.

 

The Executive Director of Delivery and Place, Rob Walker, reported that at a previous meeting of Cabinet (20 September 2021) Cabinet resolved to undertake a Single Policy Partial Review of Policy INF03, in parallel with a Substantive Review of the whole Local Plan.  He informed Members that following consideration of the report by Cabinet and in line with the Council’s Constitution the decision made by Cabinet would constitute as the final decision.

 

He advised that the Options were listed within the report, together with the advantages, disadvantages, and risks of each option, and that the recommendation from Officers at Option 1, outlined within the report, would see the completed partial review by Quarter 1 2023 and a Substantive Review by Q4 of 2027 (6 years).

 

Councillor Hewett said that he had listened with interest to the concerns raised at the Overview and Scrutiny Commission meeting, and asked what comfort the Cabinet Members could take that the Neighbourhood Plans in place would continue to hold weight and there would not be a ‘cliff-edge’ in 2024.

 

The Director of Planning and Building Control, Simon Wood stated that Neighbourhood Plans continued to be an important part of the development plan process.  The Neighbourhood Plans were prepared by the community groups, and it was important that the plans continued to be up to date, and any newly created Neighbourhood Plans (2 years or less) would carry full weight.

 

The Executive Director added that the Local Plan would not automatically go out of date and that there would not be a ‘cliff edge’ and could still be relied upon.  The current Local Plan and emerging policies would continue to remain in place whilst the substantive review would be carried out.

 

Councillor Webb said that she had been involved in meetings with residents when setting the current Local Plan and asked how long the Council spent in consultation with residents when the previous plan had been set.  Members heard that whilst the precise figure was not known the Local Plan took seven years to complete and local groups were engaged throughout that process.

 

Councillor Suggitt asked why Option 1 (6-years) would be the best option and if Option 2 (3-years) was considered what would that mean for public consultation.

 

Members heard that the advantage of the 6-year period would be an established period to allow sufficient resource to complete a substantive review.

 

Councillor Sherwood explained that communities would have an opportunity to input into the review and by opting for the shorter timeframe would not allow that chance.  He asked how important the 5-year land supply was for the Council.

 

Members heard that the five-year housing supply was the dominant factor that established weight with the Local Plan.  Without this, applications for housing would be assessed via national policy rather than a local position and therefore  ...  view the full minutes text for item 96/211

97/21

HR Policy Amendments pdf icon PDF 235 KB

Report of Councillor Ian Sherwood, Executive Member for People, Communications & Governance.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for People, Communications and Governance, Councillor Ian Sherwood presented the report that recommended amendments to the Council’s performance-related policies following Covid-19 and the end of the shared arrangement with South Holland District Council (SHDC).

 

Options

 

Option 1: Implement the amendments to all policies and related procedures, as set out in this report (recommended).

 

Option 2: Do nothing

 

Reasons for Recommendation

 

To ensure the Council’s performance-related policies are fit for purpose, supporting and enabling a high-performance work culture.

 

To enable the Council to manage performance and support employees in an agile working environment, post Covid 19.

 

RESOLVED that the proposed amendments to the Council’s performance-related policies and associated procedures be approved.

 

98/21

Update on Breckland 2035 Sustainability Programme pdf icon PDF 134 KB

Report of Councillor Ian Sherwood, Executive Member for People, Communication and Governance and Lead Member for Climate Change.

Minutes:

The Executive Member for People, Communication and Governance, and the Lead Member for Climate Change, Councillor Ian Sherwood, presented the report that provided Members with a six-monthly update on the progress made against the Breckland 2035 Sustainability Strategy.

 

He was thrilled with what the Council had achieved since a climate emergency was declared in 2019.  The report covered in detail what the Council had achieved and had set out to do using an allocated £525,000 of one-off funding from reserves to support the delivery.

 

Councillor Bambridge thanked the Council for the Community Green Grant to Lyng Village Hall that allowed the installation of batteries to store the self-generated electricity.

 

Councillor Wickerson asked if Swaffham would be included within the potential sites identified for possible tree planting with the Woodland Trust.  Councillor Sherwood explained that sites around Swaffham had been included and he hoped to have further information on a substantial woodland project in due course.

 

Councillor Kybird also thanked the Council on behalf of Croxton Parish Council who had received a grant to install an electric vehicle charging point at the village hall.  He also explained that the Gressenhall Workhouse Museum was establishing an exemplar community tree planting scheme complimentary to the Woodland Trust.

 

Councillor Birt had noted that within the report engagement with the Leisure provider was underway and asked if further details could be shared on that.  He went on to ask what the timescale would be to receive the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that measured carbon footprint and queried the pathway to achieve net-zero in 2035.  The Head of Strategic Policy advised that he had previously responded to Councillor Birt in regard to the Key Performance Indicators and a commitment had been made to annually publish the Council’s carbon footprint which was a separate report and not part of the Council’s KPIs.  Work was underway with the leisure provider to with on plans to enable the leisure centres to take action to reduce their carbon footprint. The Leader reminded Councillor Birt that the Leisure Centres where not in the direct control of the Council and any work undertaken needed to be done in partnership with Parkwood.

 

Councillor Morton asked how projects would be selected from the Community Renewal Fund (CRF).  The Head of Strategic Policy said that through the Norfolk Climate Change Partnership a join application had been made across Norfolk for funding from the CRF to deliver two feasibility studies, one looking at hydrogen generation for haulage and one on community heating schemes.

 

Councillor Hewett was pleased that grants had been given and were changing lives of communities and in particular allowed children to care for the environment.

 

Cabinet Members noted the content of the report.

99/21

Quarter 2 financial performance report 2021-22 pdf icon PDF 127 KB

Report of Councillor Philip Cowen, Executive Member for Finance, Revenue and Benefits.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Finance, Revenues and Benefits, Councillor Philip Cowen presented the report that provided detailed information on the forecast full year financial performance for revenue, capital and treasury of the Council as at 30 September 2021.  It also included a new section on information on the balanced sheet management which would highlight potential risks to the financial sustainability.

 

Councillor Hewett sensed that Breckland Council were not alone in terms of the short to mid-term financial position and that it was shared wider afield.  He commended the Executive Member and his team for a sensible report.

 

Members noted the content of the report and the appendix.

100/21

Q2 21/22 Performance report pdf icon PDF 205 KB

Report of Councillor Mark Robinson, Executive Member for Customer, Digital and Performance.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Housing, Health and Communities presented the report on behalf of the Executive Member for Customer, Digital and Performance.  The report provided Members with an overview of the Council’s performance for the period between 1 July to 30 September 2021.

 

Members noted the content of the report.

101/21

Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy and Financial Penalty Policy. pdf icon PDF 142 KB

Report of Councillor Alison Webb, Executive Member for Housing, Health and Communities.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Housing, Health and Communities, Councillor Alison Webb, presented the report that sought approval to implement the Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy and a Financial Penalty Policy.

 

Councillor Hewett felt it would be a good way forward to work with landlords to ensure that the districts residents were safe and secure in rented properties.

 

Councillor Morton asked if all private accommodation had been covered by licensing.  Members heard that a stock provision survey would be carried out and all accommodation would be covered by licensing.

 

Options:

1)    Approve the Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy and the Financial Penalty Policy and approve that delegation is given to the Executive Director responsible for Housing, in consultation with the relevant Portfolio Holder, to amend the Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy and the Financial Penalty Policy in line with future changes in legislation and guidance.

 

2)    Do nothing and do not approve the policies or the delegation.

 

Reasons for Recommendation(s):

1)    To ensure that the Private Sector Housing Team has the widest range of tools available to it for tackling poor and dangerous practice in the private housing sector. 

2)    To send out a clear message to both landlords and tenants that Breckland Council takes seriously the health and wellbeing of its residents.

 

RESOLVED that:

1)    the Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy be approved.

 

2)    the Financial Penalty Policy be approved.

 

3)    delegation be given to the Executive Director responsible for Housing, in consultation with the relevant Portfolio Holder, to amend the Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy and the Financial Penalty Policy in line with future changes in legislation and guidance.

 

102/21

Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan - Making (Adoption) of the Neighbourhood Plan pdf icon PDF 234 KB

Report of Councillor Paul Claussen, Deputy Leader and Executive Member forEconomic Development and Growth.

 

For information the link to Appendix A, the Referendum version of the Neighbourhood Plan, can be found at: https://www.breckland.gov.uk/media/19329/Saham-Toney-Neighbourhood-Development-Plan-2019-2036-Referendum-Version/pdf/Saham_Toney_Neighbourhood_Plan_Referendum_Version_-_final_version_optimized.pdf?m=637673219372900000

 

Minutes:

The Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth, Councillor Paul Claussen, presented the report that recommended to “make” the Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan as part of the Statutory Development Plan for Breckland.

 

Councillor Bambridge congratulated Saham Toney on producing the Neighbourhood Plan.

 

Councillor Birt also added his congratulations but asked which document the Cabinet would be using as whilst an offer for a clean version had been made, the version on the website had typographical errors.  The Executive Director for Place assured that the clean version would be used.

 

Councillor Borrett read a statement from Councillor Helen Crane, a Ward Member of Saham Toney that also congratulated the Parish on an outstanding accomplishment.

 

Options:

There are two options for Members to consider:

Option 1 – Council agrees to “make” the Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan and is “made” as part of the statutory Development Plan for Breckland Council, as required by paragraph (4)(a) of section 38A of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 as “….more than half those voting to have voted in favour of the plan…”, and to undertake the required publication, advise the Parish Council and other prescribed persons and subsequently update the district policies map.

 

Option 2 – Council does not make the Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan where “…it considers that the Plan would breach, or would otherwise be incompatible with any EU obligation or any of the Convention Rights (within the meaning of the Human Rights Act 1998).”

 

Reasons for Recommendation:

 

It is recommended that members endorse Option 1 as there was a positive vote in favour for ‘making’ the Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan through a Referendum and there is considered to be compliance, rather than being incompatibility, with European obligations and Human Rights conventions.

 

RESOLVED that:

1)    the Saham Toney Neighbourhood Plan, as written at the time of the referendum, be “made” as part of the statutory Development Plan for Breckland Council, as required by paragraph (4)(a) of section 38A of the 2004 Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act (Option1)

2)    the decision as required by paragraph (9) of section 38A 2004 Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act be published

3)    Saham Toney Parish Council be advised and any other prescribed persons about this, to meet the requirements of paragraph (10) of section 38A of the 2004 Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act

RECOMMENDATION to FULL COUNCIL:

4)    To amend the Breckland District Policies Map to meet the requirements of paragraph 9 Town and Country (Local Planning) (England) Regulations 2012.

103/21

Anglia Revenues and Benefits Partnership pdf icon PDF 121 KB

To note the minutes of the meeting of the Anglia Revenues and Benefits Joint Partnership held on 21 September 2021.

Minutes:

The minutes of the Anglia Revenues and Benefits Joint Partnership held on 21 September 2021 were noted.

104/21

Next Meeting

To note that the date of the next meeting of Cabinet will be held on 10 January 2022 at 9.30am in the Anglia Room, Breckland Conference Centre, Elizabeth House, Walpole Loke, Dereham, NR19 1EE.

Minutes:

The arrangements for the next meeting on 10 January 2022 at 9.30am in the Breckland Conference Centre at Elizabeth House, Walpole Loke, Dereham were noted.

105/21

Exclusion of Press & Public

To consider passing the following resolution:

 

“That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and the public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A to the Act”.

 

PART B – ITEM FROM WHICH THE PRESS AND THE PUBLIC ARE EXCLUDED 

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED that under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.

 

106/21

Material Recycling Facility (MRF) recycling arrangements

Report of Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Planning, Leisure and Contracts.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Planning, Leisure and Contracts, Councillor Sarah Suggitt, presented the report that asked Members to consider extending the current arrangements for the processing and sale of mixed dry recyclables collected by Councils in Norfolk. The contract was currently delivered by a joint venture company contract with Norse Environmental Waste Services Ltd (NEWS). The arrangement was between all seven Waste Collection Authorities in Norfolk (i.e., the District, City and Borough Councils) and the County Council in its role as a Waste Disposal Authority.

 

RESOLVED to amend and extend the current joint venture company contract with NEWS for three years from 2024 to 2027 and amend the contract to a variable gate fee based on actual costs from October 2021 be approved.