Venue: The Breckland Conference Centre, Anglia Room, Elizabeth House, Walpole Loke, Dereham, NR19 1EE
To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on 6 June 2022.
The minutes of the meeting held on 6 June 2022 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
To receive apologies for absence.
An apology for absence was received from Councillor Hewett.
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.
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.
Non-Members Wishing to Address the Meeting
To note the names of any non-members who wish to address the meeting.
The Chairman welcomed non-Members to the meeting.
Chairman's Announcements (If Any)
On behalf of the residents of Breckland, the Chairman conveyed his thanks to the Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service who had worked in incredible conditions over the past few days. He also extended his thanks to voluntary organisations such as the Red Cross and 4x4 Rescue who had also supported the terrible fire within Ashill, and gave recognition in how the community had rallied round and supported each other.
He pointed out that Breckland Officers continued to work together with the Parish Council to provide support to those impacted by the fire.
Breckland Community Funding Applications (Standing Item)
To consider the grants put forward (if any).
Councillor Webb, the Executive Member for Health and Communities informed Members that nine Bursary applications had been awarded as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations and was proud to support those people in moving forward with their development.
A total of £27,871 had been awarded in the recent Inspiring Communities match funding round which aimed to support community projects. A number of examples were highlighted:
· £1462 had been awarded to Carbrooke Millennium Green to restore wildflower areas along with the maze for children.
· £5000 had been awarded to Dereham Baptist Church to support the running of the debt centre.
· £5000 had been awarded to Dereham Hockey Club for the planting of boarders.
· £4974 had been awarded to Prison Start to provide support to ex-offenders.
Councillor Webb said that the next round would commence from 15 September and Ward Members were encouraged to support applications from their community groups.
Councillor Cowen thanked the team in assessing the grants and added that the award to Caston Village Hall would help to maximise the use of the Hall for the residents of the village.
Councillor Crane also added her thanks and encouraged Members to visit Carbrooke Millennium Green as it was a lovely place to visit.
Councillor Bambridge said that the Community funding would support first responders in a remote area towards a 5-mile radius of Foxley and Brisley.
Report of Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic and Operational Planning.
Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic and Operational Planning presented the report that sought approval for the publication of the pre-submission (Regulation 19) Partial Review of the Local Plan.
It was explained that the Policy INF03 included a requirement for the Council to undertake a partial review of the plan with regard to housing, non-travelling gypsy and travellers, accessibility of homes standards and economic development.
Following the adoption of the Plan in November 2019 a range of options that were available in respect of the Review of the Plan had been considered by Cabinet in June 2020.
There were a number of other considerations that had emerged since the Council had resolved to undertake a Full Review of the Plan in June 2020 including the need for a clearer understanding of the implications of Covid 19, the continued uncertainty on the standard housing requirement, an updated National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and announcements on First Homes, as well as the publication and consultation on proposals for reform of the planning system in England (Planning for the Future) which had been due in August 2020.
Following receipt of representations, it was intended that the Local Plan would then be submitted for examination and in order to ensure compliance with the provisions of policy INF03 this would be no later than the end of November 2022.
1) To approve publication of the pre-submission (Regulation 19) Partial Review of the Local Plan.
2) To not approve publication of the pre-submission (Regulation 19) Partial Review of the Local Plan.
Reasons for Recommendation(s)
Thepreparation ofa LocalPlan wasa statutoryrequirement and must follow a statutory procedure, including public consultation and examination.
1) that the publication of the Local Plan partial review as set out at Appendix A of the report be approved;
2) to publish and invite representations upon the local plan partial review document together with the integrated assessment of the Breckland local partial review for a six-week period in accordance with Regulation 19 of the Town and Country Planning (Local Planning) (England) Regulations2012 be agreed;
3) that the appropriate period for the full update the Local Plan review should cover the period 2021 - 2046.
Report of Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic and Operational Panning.
Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic and Operational Planning presented the report that sought Cabinet approval for a revised Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) in respect of plan making and Development Management.
It was explained that the Statement of Community Involvement was required to be updated to include legislative changes. A total of 141 representations had been received from 23 consultees.
Councillor Birt noted that the report highlighted that the business sector ranged in size from the self-employed, smaller businesses and to larger organisations. As a self-employed person himself he had not been contacted in his business capacity to understand how he could get involved in planning. He asked how this group of people would be targeted to ensure they were involved.
The Planning Policy Manager stated that he would ask those from small businesses or self-employed to contact the Council to ensure that they were kept in the loop. The Director for Planning and Building Control added that traditionally those from smaller businesses or those that were self-employed had not been engaged, however, he would work closely with colleagues within Regeneration to identify those smaller businesses to ensure that such communication was put in place.
The Chairman added that the Chamber of Commerce and Federation of Small Businesses would hold a database of the small businesses and suggested that they could offer support and share information. It was agreed that contact would be made with these groups.
Councillor Cowen stated that since Covid, working from home had become acceptable and as a result business rates were not required therefore such data would not be available. He urged the Regeneration Team to communicate with small businesses so that knowledge could be shared once the Local Plan had been finalised.
1) To approve a revised Statement of Community Involvement in respect of plan making and Development Management.
2) To not approve a revised Statement of Community Involvement in respect of plan making and Development Management.
Reason for Recommendation:
The Preparationof aLocal Plan and effective community engagement in the planning process wasa statutoryrequirement. Plansmust beunderpinned by an appropriate evidence base, inclusive of an SCI, much of which was required at an early stage of the preparation process to inform future decisions over development strategies and allocations.
RESOLVED that the Statement of Community Involvement be approved and adopted in respect of plan making and Development Management.
Report of Councillor Phil Cowen, Executive Member for Finance, Revenue and Benefits and Councillor Paul Claussen, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development & Growth.
Councillor Philip Cowen, Executive Member for Finance, Revenue and Benefits presented the report that recommended to Full Council that the proposed update to Breckland’s Local Discretionary Rate Relief (LDRR) Policy and recognised Snetterton Heath Employment Zone (SHEZ) as a ‘Growth Location’ be approved.
He explained that in common with other local authorities Breckland Council introduced a local discretionary rate relief scheme in 2019 and just short of £190k had been granted. He added that since 2019, Breckland had been successful in attracting funding to enhance the provision of electrical infrastructure to both Thetford and Snetterton, thereby unleashing potential for significant growth in employment within the District.
The report built upon that success and had expanded the potential for rate relief across three additional strands:
· The addition of enhanced provision for businesses seeking to relocate to or expand within identified growth locations, for example the Snetterton Heath Employment Zone (SHEZ)
· Amending the assessment criteria for awarding relief, and
· Updating the 2019 policy to reflect legislative changes
Having developed the infrastructure that would see the increase in electricity supply, it was imperative that Breckland sought to compete on a more equal footing with other parts of the region, to remain competitive in the marketplace and realise the potential of those infrastructure investments.
Councillor Claussen, the Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth added that it allowed the area to be more competitive in attracting businesses to the District which was vital.
Councillor Birt asked how it would measure the effect and interventions of businesses that moved to the area. He also asked if businesses should be encouraged to align with Breckland Policies on NetZero 2035 rather than national policy.
The Assistant Director for Economy and Growth said that the policy developed in 2019 encouraged significant investment, and by building on this policy it would help to create new jobs, floorspace and possibly achieve a higher wage bracket and provide significant benefit to the economy.
The Chairman added that the detail would be considered by Officers and the Deputy Leader on where best to provide support to businesses. Ultimately, it was key to ensure that businesses were aware that the Council was there to support them and open growth and investment opportunities.
Councillor Sherwood said that whilst Breckland had its own NetZero 2035 policy businesses and individuals were also being encouraged to consider their own policy.
Councillor Borrett added that by investing in the substation to bring power into businesses had shown the Council’s commitment to bring businesses to Breckland.
1) Recommend to Council that the updated LDRR Policy be adopted as proposed.
2) Recommend to Council that the existing LDRR Policy be updated in a different manner to that suggested.
3) Recommend to Council that they do not update the existing LDRR Policy.
Reasons for Recommendation:
The proposed amendments to the existing LDRR Policy will increase the attractiveness of the district as a destination for businesses to locate and grow
Recognising places such as Snetterton Heath Employment ... view the full minutes text for item 68/22
Report of Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic & Operational Planning.
Councillor Sarah Suggitt, Executive Member for Strategic Operational Planning presented the report that asked Members to "make" the New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan as part of the statutory Development Plan for Breckland and update the district policies map with the relevant policies.
The New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan was designated in 2017 and following formal public consultation and an independent examination, a referendum was held on the 8July. There was a turnout of 44% with 92% in favour to support the New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan.
Councillor Suggitt also read a statement from Councillor Askew, who was delighted to endorse the recommendation and thanked the Neighbourhood Plan Team and Breckland Council Officers.
Councillor Bambridge and Councillor Webb both fully endorsed the recommendations and commended the work that had been undertaken.
1) Council agrees to “make” the New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan and be “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 of 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 policiesmap.
2) Council does not make the New Buckenham 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 Act1998).”
Reasons for Recommendation:
It was recommended that Members endorse Option 1 as there was a positive vote in favour for ‘making’ the New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan through a Referendum and there was considered to be compliance, rather than being incompatibility, with European obligations and Human Rightsconventions.
1) New Buckenham Neighbourhood Plan be confirmed, 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 PurchaseAct be published;
3) New Buckenham Parish Council and any other prescribed persons to meet the requirements of paragraph (10) of section 38A of the 2004 Planning and Compulsory PurchaseAct be advised; and
RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL that:
4) the Breckland District Policies Map to meet the requirements of paragraph 9 Town and Country (Local Planning) (England) Regulations2012 be amended.
Report of Councillor Paul Claussen, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth.
Councillor Claussen, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economic Development and Growth presented the report that sought approval to undertake the necessary steps to submit an investment plan for UK Shared Prosperity Funding and the operation of that fund in Breckland from 2022/23 to 2024/25.
The funding of £1,621,471 had been provided by the Government that supported and would be used to support local place and skills. The investment plan would look to support the following five key themes, which in turn also supported the Council’s Corporate objectives. The key themes were:
· Breckland Skills
· Future Breckland & Town Centre Investments
· Low Carbon Regeneration
· Inspiring Communities
· Business Support & Cluster Development
Andrew Holdsworth, the Assistant Director for Economy and Growth provided a brief presentation that gave further information of the proposal.
Councillor Wilkinson felt it was a vital piece of work and looked forward to seeing it develop.
Councillor Birt asked for further detail in regard to the comment made within the report of Low Carbon Regeneration and asked what series of interventions had been set and how much it would cost.
Councillor Claussen informed Councillor Birt that the information could not be supplied at the moment and that the detail would follow.
Councillor Cowen welcomed the report and felt it naturally followed on from a previous report (agenda item 10) and would enable to drive investment and attract new business, enterprise and technology and how to develop businesses that took advantage of low energy investment.
The Assistant Director for Economy and Growth said that a full business case was yet to be designed but it was hoped to bring in specific expertise to allow solutions to decarbonise. Feedback from businesses had been received and had indicated that they would be willing to make co-investments if technical expertise could be sought.
Councillor Borrett was pleased that the Government had allocated £1.6m for investment within the District.
The Chairman shared his appreciation to the Assistant Director and his Team and thanked the businesses that had engaged. The Government had recognised that District Councils were best placed to distribute the funding where it was needed and would go some way to provide the Council with the support growth and change.
Councillor Morton asked when Members would see the final submission. It was noted that the information would be shared in due course.
1) To approve the recommendations.
2) To seek a different investment approach to the one proposed.
3) Do nothing.
Reasons for Recommendation
Agreeing to the proposed investment approach will enable the Council to benefit from significant investment in local priorities. It will allow us to develop a work programme, with partners, based around a few core priorities which link to evidenced needs and opportunities. It will allow the development of detailed delivery plans and interventions over time and retain a degree of flexibility and fluidity to respond to needs as they arise.
1) the proposed approach to utilising UK Shared Prosperity in Breckland, and recommend to Council to accept all ... view the full minutes text for item 70/22
To note the minutes of the Anglia Revenue and Benefits Partnership Joint Committee meeting held on 21 June 2022.
The minutes of the Anglia Revenue and Benefits Partnership Joint Committee meeting held on 21 June 2022 were noted.
To note the date of the next meeting of Cabinet will be held on Monday 19th September in the Carnegie Rooms, Cage Lane, Thetford, IP24 2EA.
There will be an opportunity for public to ask questions of the Cabinet from 9.30am, and the main meeting will commence at 10.00am.
The arrangements for the next meeting on Monday 19 September in the Carnegie Rooms, Cage Lane, Thetford IP24 2EA were noted. There would be an opportunity for the public to ask questions of the Cabinet from 9.30am, and the main meeting would commence at 10.00am.