Agenda and minutes

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

Contact: Democratic Services  Tel: 01362 656870

Items
No. Item

52/17

Minutes (Agenda item 1) pdf icon PDF 150 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 23 February 2017.

Minutes:

With regard to Minute No 29/17 (Chairman’s Announcements), the word ‘dessert’ was changed to ‘desert’ and under Minute No. 38/17 (Budget Setting, Medium Term Plan & Capital Strategy), the letter ‘e’ had been omitted from Councillor Clarke’s surname.

 

Subject to the above amendments the Minutes of the meeting held on 23 February 2017 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

53/17

Apologies (Agenda item 2)

To receive apologies for absence. 

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Bambridge, Gilbert, Gould, P Hewett, T Hewett, Stasiak and Taylor.

54/17

Declaration of Interests (Agenda item 3)

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.

55/17

Chairman's Announcements (Agenda item 4) pdf icon PDF 51 KB

To include the following presentations:

Minutes:

The Chairman was pleased to announce the following presentations:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

.  

55/17a

Charter Plus Award

Presentation by Tom Fitzpatrick, representing EELGA.

Minutes:

The Chairman introduced Cllr Tom FitzPatrick, the Leader of North Norfolk District Council and the Chairman of the East of England Local Government Association (EELGA) who was in attendance to present the Charter Plus award for member development.  This accreditation was the highest recognition that the EELGA could bestow as it demonstrated that Breckland Council had a strong commitment in supporting its Elected Members by meeting their learning and development needs.

 

The Chairman of the EELGA stated that Breckland was an exemplar Council as it had actually exceeded Charter Plus standard and had been accredited as one of the top three authorities in the region alongside a County and a Unitary Council.  He congratulated the Council for gaining Charter Plus status for the third time in succession before presenting the award to the Chairman of Member Development, Councillor Ian Sherwood.

 

Councillor Ian Sherwood said that he had great pleasure to receive the award on behalf of the Council.  He conveyed his thanks to both Anthony Hodson-Curran, the Council’s Development Co-ordinator and Leanne Neave for all their hard work and dedication which demonstrated that even with little resource a great deal could still be achieved.

55/17b

Fundraising Crohn's and Colitis UK

Presentation from Crohn’s and Colitis UK to the Executive Member for People and Information.

Minutes:

Councillor Webb, the Executive Member for People & Information had great pleasure in presenting a certificate to staff from the Customer Services Team on behalf of Crohn’s and Colitis UK for their fundraising effort over the Christmas period.  £2,212 had been raised for this particular charity as well as another similar amount for Alzheimer’s UK.

56/17

Leader's Announcements (Agenda item 5)

To receive a verbal update from Councillor Nunn, Leader of the Council.

 

Minutes:

The Leader provided Members with an update on the following matters:

 

·         A47 – the Highway’s Authority had started its consultation.  Breckland Council would compile a co-ordinated response; involvement from all Members would be welcomed.

 

·         Market Town Initiatives – meetings had been had with all five Town Councils, a number of quick wins together with some very long strategic aims had been flagged up.  The Secretary of State was now putting more pressure on District Councils to work with towns but Breckland was already one step ahead.

 

·         Unsightly sites – this project was now moving forward.  Members were encouraged to identify such sites within their Wards.

 

·         Neighbourhood Plan – Yaxham had moved forward with its Neighbourhood Plan; this would most probably be the first of many.

 

·         Corporate Peer Review – Members were encouraged to ask questions in relation to the recommendations in the LGA Corporate Peer Review report at Agenda item 16.

57/17

Questions on Notice under Standing Order No 6 (Agenda item 6)

Minutes:

None.

58/17

Questions without Notice under Standing Order No 7 (Agenda item 7)

Minutes:

Councillor Crawford asked the Leader a question about the car parking initiative in Thetford as a number of Councillors both from the Town Council and the District Council had requested a review.  The Leader pointed out that a car park survey had already taken place and the documentation was available in the St George’s Room for Members to view.  Anecdotal evidence had been gathered; therefore, Officers had been asked to examine the evidence and establish the way forward through the Committee process.

 

Councillor Clarke asked a question in relation to the Council’s reduction to the affordable housing element in the Local Plan.  In response, the Leader advised that the original 40% target was very seldom met and had led to many appeals.  Officers had suggested a 25% affordable housing target which could be achieved.  Councillor Wilkin, the Chairman of Planning Committee, pointed out that reducing the affordable housing target would alleviate the delays in development.

 

59/17

Cabinet Minutes (Agenda item 8) pdf icon PDF 75 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 21 March 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 21 March 2017 be adopted.

60/17

Overview and Scrutiny Commission (Agenda item 9) pdf icon PDF 85 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 16 February 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 16 February 2017 be adopted.

61/17

Planning Committee (Agenda item 10) pdf icon PDF 146 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 6 March 2017.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the now confirmed Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 6 March 2017 be adopted.

62/17

Committee of the Licensing Authority (Agenda item 11) pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Committee of the Licensing Authority meeting held on Wednesday 22 March 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Committee of the Licensing Authority held on 22 March 2017 be adopted; subject to the functions listed on page 46 of the agenda pack being amended by the insertion of the words ‘to monitor’ at the beginning of bullet points four and five and the insertion of the words ‘to investigate’ at the beginning of bullet point six.

63/17

Licensing Committee (Agenda item 12) pdf icon PDF 71 KB

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Licensing Committee meeting held on 22 March 2017.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Licensing Committee meeting held on 22 March 2017 be adopted.

64/17

Governance & Audit Committee (Agenda item 13) pdf icon PDF 121 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Governance and Audit Committee meeting held on 24 February 2017.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Governance & Audit Committee meeting held on 24 February 2017 be adopted.

65/17

Review of Local Standards Arrangements (Agenda item 14) pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Report of the Executive Director – Strategy & Governance (Monitoring Officer)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Manager for Governance presented the report which proposed the adoption of a revised set of Local Arrangements for dealing with Standards Complaints.

 

The current arrangements had been in place for more than 5 years and these revised proposals had been designed to streamline the process enabling complaints to be dealt with in a timely and efficient manner. The key changes were highlighted in Section 2 of the report.

 

A number of minor changes had been suggested to the Code of Conduct one of which, under section 2.4.1, that had been recommended by an external person, was that the gifts and hospitality value of £100 was too high and should be reduced to £50.  Members felt that the current level of £100 was appropriate but did propose a change to the wording of the paragraph as follows: “You must, within 28 days of receipt, notify the Monitoring Officer in writing of any gift, benefit or hospitality with a value of £50 which you have accepted or have been offered as a member from any person or body other than the Authority.

 

Members also proposed amendments to, Appendix B – the sanctions listed at ‘At the end of an investigation’ to read: “Withdrawal of certain facilities or services from the member including access to Council premises and/or IT facilities so long as it does not interfere with access to Council meetings”. The same amendment would apply to the Hearing procedures at Appendix D (at sanction 7).

 

Councillor Crawford welcomed the revised proposals.

 

RESOLVED that subject to the aforementioned amendments the revised set of Local Arrangements for dealing with Standards Complaints be approved.

66/17

Cambridge Norwich Tech Corridor (CNTC) (Agenda item 15) pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Report of the Executive Member Growth and Commercialisation.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Executive Member for Growth & Commercialisation presented the report which concerned the acceptance of a £200k award from the Norfolk Business Rates Pool (BRP) on behalf of the Cambridge Norwich Tech Corridor (CNTC) Partnership as part of a funding package to support a two year CNTC delivery programme.

 

Members were informed that the £200k BRP monies would be match funded with contributions from Norfolk CNTC partners to create a £600k pot of money.

 

Breckland’s contribution of £37.5k would be funded from the Organisational Development Reserve. 

 

Members were recommended to accept the £200k award.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1.    the BRP award of £200k, to support the delivery of the Cambridge Norwich Tech Corridor delivery programme be accepted;

 

2.    the amount of £37.5k from the Organisational Development Reserve be allocated as a contribution to the match funding required to draw down the BRP award;

 

3.    subject to the satisfactory completion of all necessary legal and contractual due diligence, any negotiation with the funding body that arises from that process, and being satisfied that the project remains in the best interests of the Council and the Breckland District, the Chief Executive in consultation with the Leader be given delegated authority to sign the grant award contract and proceed with the project; and

 

4.    the authority for Breckland Council to finance manage the programme, up to a programme budget of £600k, on behalf of the CNTC Partnership be granted.

67/17

LGA Corporate Peer Review Report (Agenda item 16) pdf icon PDF 52 KB

Report of the Leader of the Council.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader presented the final report following the LGA Corporate Peer review for both Breckland Council and South Holland District Council in December 2016.

 

The report was very positive, and included some key recommendations on page 3 (page 95 of the agenda pack).

 

Having been through the Peer Review, Councillor Jermy had found the process quite fascinating but had been surprised by the second key recommendation and although in agreement wondered how the Council proposed to capture questions and comments received from residents.  He felt that a mechanism should be put in place to enable everyone to see the results.  He mentioned the ‘Could We Should We’ exercise as an example.

 

The Chief Executive was already looking into this matter. 

 

Referring to page 60 of the report (98 in the agenda pack), the Executive Member for Finance felt that it was important to be mindful of the capacity of the Corporate/Exec, Management Team and other officers.  The Leader agreed and felt that it was important to ensure that the Council's processes were streamlined.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1.    the content and recommendations of the LGA Corporate Peer Review Challenge report be noted; and

 

2.    the Chief Executive in consultation with the Leader develop an action plan arising from the report.

68/17

Nominations for Committee and other Seats (Agenda item 17)

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

Minutes:

RESOLVED that Councillor Newton be replaced by Councillor Hollis on the Planning Committee and Councillor Taylor be appointed as the substitute.

69/17

Amendments to the Constitution (Agenda item 18)

Minutes:

See Minute No. 65/17 above.

70/17

Any other items which the Chairman decides are urgent (Agenda item 19)

NOTE: No other business is permitted unless by reason of special circumstances, which shall be specified in the minutes, the Chairman is of the opinion that the items(s) should be considered as a matter of urgency.

Minutes:

None.