Agenda and minutes

Venue: Anglia Room, The Conference Suite, Elizabeth House, Dereham

Contact: Committee Services  Tel: 01362 656870

No. Item


Minutes (Agenda item 1)


Minutes of the Meeting held on 16 December 2010 (Agenda item 1a) pdf icon PDF 138 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 16 December 2010.



The Minutes of the meeting held on 16 December 2010 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Minutes of the Special Meeting held on 11 January 2011 (Agenda item 1b)

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 11 January 2011.


Additional documents:


Subject to Mr C Jordan being added to the list of apologies, the Minutes of the Special meeting held on 11 January 2011 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Apologies (Agenda item 2)

To receive apologies for absence. 


Apologies for absence were received from Mesdames J. Ball, K. Fisher, T. Hewett, S. Matthews and P. Quadling and Messrs G. Bambridge, M. Fanthorpe, P. Hewett, T. Lamb, D. Myers, S. Rogers, N. Wilkin, D. Williams and the Chief Executive, Mr. T. Huggins.



Declaration of Interest (Agenda item 3)

Members are asked at this stage to declare any interests pertinent to items on this agenda.


The Members’ Code of Conduct requires that declarations include the nature of the interest and whether it is personal or prejudicial.


Mr P. Claussen and Mr W. Smith declared a personal and prejudicial interest in Minute No. 9/11 of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 6 January 2011 – Choice Base Lettings – in relation to them being Non-Executive Directors on the Anglia Revenues Partnership Board.



Chairman's Announcements (Agenda item 4)

(Including the engagements of the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman.)


Members were encouraged to stay after the meeting to attend a Census Briefing which was being presented by Mr Paul Walmsley, the Area Manager for the Office of National Statistics.


The Chairman reminded Members of the English Heritage Training day that was being held on 8 February 2011 which would be of particular interest to those who were on the Development Control Committee.  The training day included a 45 minute walk about in Dereham viewing the historic areas/buildings in the town and would also include how the historic environment played an important part in the planning process.


The Chairman was pleased to announce that eight members had volunteered to take part in a sponsored slim; all proceeds would go towards the Young Carers in Norfolk.  Members were encouraged for sponsorship.


Engagements List – Chairman

16th December, 2010 to 26th January, 2011






107th Birthday Celebrations for Mr. Edward Williams – resident of Great Ellingham



Cabinet Minutes - 11 January 2011 (Agenda item 5) pdf icon PDF 143 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 11 January 2011.


With regard to Minute No 7/11 (Budget Setting) a copy of the report and appendices from the Head of Finance are attached for Members’ information.

Additional documents:


a)           Site Specific Policies and Proposals Development Plan Document 2001-2026 – Proposed Submission Document (Minute No. 6/11)


This item had been previously agreed at the Special Council meeting held on 11 January 2011 (Council Minute No. 4/11 refers).


b)           Budget Setting Report (Minute No. 7/11)


The Executive Member for Corporate Resources took the opportunity to thank the S151 Officer and his team for putting together a budget which allowed the Council to continue to provide good quality and affordable services to Breckland residents.  It had been a somewhat taxing year for budget setting as there had been much speculation regarding the scale of the likely reduction in the settlement figure until the draft was finally announced on 13 December 2010.  Recognising that the settlement figure was to be considerably reduced as the Government scaled back public expenditure to meet the deficit, the Council had been working hard to find new ways of making efficiency gains.


As a result of prudent fiscal management over the last decade, the Council had found itself well placed to meet the financial challenges ahead.  Breckland Council had the foresight to recognise that the previous Governments borrowing levels were unsustainable; the prospect of an inevitable settlement reduction year on year and new ways of working and delivering services was essential moving forward.


Breckland Council had been at the forefront of change in the way it conducted its business and had always been proactive to ensure it delivered value to the local taxpayer.  Breckland Council proudly boasted to having the lowest council tax of any district in the country.  This had been achieved through a variety of measures which other councils were only now waking up to, such as its Commercial Property portfolio, sharing services with other districts like the Anglia Revenues Partnership, reducing costs through relocation of offices and most recently the sharing of a Chief Executive with South Holland Council.


The Council would endeavour to continue to drive down the cost of service provision to avoid an impact on front line services.  With the aforementioned appointment of a shared Chief Executive, a shared management team process was being put in place with the two authorities that would make considerable savings.


The Head of Finance provided Members with a presentation which covered all key points and the recommendations within the report.  The report had been based on the draft local government grant settlement issued on 13th December 2010.  Any changes to the final settlement were likely to be insignificant based on past experience.  He was happy to take any questions.


The report required a number of recommendations to be approved which included the council tax rate for a Band D property before the formal council tax setting in February.

Breckland Council started the financial year needing to find an efficiency of £167,980 to balance the budget.  It had exceeded this target and had managed to increase reserves by £278,230 by taking measures detailed in Section 3 of the report which included a budget challenge day  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.


Overview and Scrutiny Commission - 6 January 2011 (Agenda item 6) pdf icon PDF 104 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 6 January 2011


RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 6 January 2011 be adopted.



Development Control Committee - 13 December 2010 (Agenda item 7) pdf icon PDF 74 KB

Confirmed minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 13 December 2010.


In acknowledgement that it was the Development Services Manager’s last Full Council meeting before his retirement at the end of the week, the Chairman of the Development Control Committee took the opportunity to give a short farewell speech.  She said that Phil Daines had been a pleasure to work with and had found him to be unfailingly courteous, helpful and approachable and he would indeed be much missed.


In response, Mr Daines thanked everyone who had been supportive of him and his Team over the years.  He paid particular thanks to Elizabeth Gould, the Chairman of the Development Control Committee, Paul Claussen, the Executive Member for Planning, Health & Housing and Mark Stokes, the Deputy Chief Executive who were all members of the Contract Monitoring Board, for the way discussions had taken place and for how the Board worked.  He also thanked Capita Symonds for the past 18 months and Members for their support.  He said that his job had been very enjoyable and interesting and belied the notion that working in one place for so many years was boring.  He genuinely was retiring and would not be coming back as a consultant.  He conveyed his thanks to Nigel Wilkin, the Vice-Chairman of the Development Control Committee, who had presented him with a gift that had been signed by all Members. From a planning and building control point of view, he knew there would be interesting times ahead and he commended the Planning and Building Control Team, which would be led by Keith Eccles, who he held in high regard, and wished everyone the very best of luck for the future.


The Chairman said that she had tried retiring last year but to no avail as she was now even busier than before.




RESOLVED that the confirmed Minutes of the Development Control Committee meeting held on 13 December 2010be adopted.



Development Control Committee - 5 January 2011 (Agenda item 8) pdf icon PDF 111 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 5 January 2011.


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Development Control Committee meeting held on 5 January 2011 be adopted.



General Purposes Committee - 12 January 2011 (Agenda item 9) pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on 12 January 2011.


a)           Local Joint Consultative Committee – Breckland HR Policy Review Timetable (Minute No. 5/11(a)


Referring to the procedural issues highlighted at point 3 of the above Minute, the Opposition Leader felt that protocols should be strictly observed.  He pointed out that he, as a Member of the Member Development Panel, had found that a decision that should have been made by the Panel had been approved by CMT.  What was even more perplexing was that no-one in attendance at this particular meeting knew who CMT were.  A Member said that CMT meant a management of bodies; therefore, it was entirely allowed to make decisions.  The Leader did not agree with this terminology and agreed with the Opposition Leader’s concerns.


RESOLVED that an email be sent to all Members explaining who sat on the Corporate Management Team (CMT).<1>


b)           Adoption of Schedule 3 to the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 and Section 27 of the Policing and Crime Act 2009 (Minute No. 9/11)




1)           Schedule 3 of the Local Government Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1982 as amended by Section 27 of the Policing and Crime Act 2009 be adopted, and these provisions which apply to the Breckland District Council area come into force on 1 April 2011 as ‘the first appointed day’;


2)           a fee be set for applications for Sexual Entertainment venues, the amount of that fee to be calculated by the Principal Licensing Officer and set by the General Purposes Committee; and


3)           a policy be drawn up on sexual entertainment venues, to be drafted by the Principal Licensing Officer and subject to public consultation and General Purposes Committee approval.


c)            Adoption


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the General Purposes Committee meeting held on 12 January 2011 be adopted.



Audit Committee - 14 January 2011 (Agenda item 10) pdf icon PDF 101 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Audit Committee held on 14 January 2011.


a)           Treasury Management Strategy Report 2011/12 (Minute No. 3/11)




1)           the Prudential Indicators and Limits for 2011/12 to 2013/14, as contained within Appendix A of the report, including the Authorised Limit Prudential Indicator for 2010/11 – 2013/14 be approved;


2)           the statement setting out the Council’s Policy on the Minimum Reserve provision (MRP) as contained within Appendix A of the report be approved;


3)           the Treasury Management Strategy 2011/12 to 2013/14 and the Prudential Indicators contained within Appendix B of the report be approved;


4)           the Investment Strategy for 2011/12 as contained in the Treasury Management Strategy (Appendix B of the report) and the detailed criteria included in Annex B1 and B2 of the report be approved; and


5)           the Treasury Management Policy at Appendix B3 of the report be approved.


b)           Appointment of Independent Member of the Committee (Minute No. 11/11)


RESOLVED that the constitution of the Audit Committee be increased by one to allow for the appointment of an additional independent person co-opted onto the Committee as a non-voting member (6 members & two substitutes – politically balanced, plus 2 non-voting lay advisers appointed by the Committee).


c)            Adoption


RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Audit Committee meeting held on 14 January 2011 be adopted.



Standards Committee - 4 January 2011 (Agenda item 11) pdf icon PDF 57 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Standards Committee held on 4 January 2011.


a)           Abolition of the Standards Regime (Minute No. 6/11)


RESOLVED that, as from May 2011, the Standards Committee membership be reduced to eight: two Independent Members, three Parish Councillors and three District Councillors.


b)           Adoption


RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Standards Committee meeting held on 4 January 2011 be approved.



Youth Council Cabinet Minutes - 14 December 2010 (For Information) (Agenda item 12) pdf icon PDF 140 KB

To note the Youth Council Cabinet minutes for the meeting held on 14 December 2010.


The Minutes of the Youth Council meeting held on 14 December 2010 were noted.



Change to Development Control Committee Cycle (Agenda item 13) pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Report of the Director of Corporate Resources.

Additional documents:


The Member Services Manager presented the report which requested a change to the Development Control Committee meetings timetable from a three weekly to a four weekly cycle.


RESOLVED that the change to a four weekly Development Control Committee meeting cycle be approved.



Nominations for Committee and other Seats (Agenda item 14)

To receive nominations for any changes to Committee and other seats from political groups.