Agenda and minutes

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

Contact: Committee Services  Tel: 01362 656870

Items
No. Item

22.

Minutes (Agenda Item 1)

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 26 February 2009.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on 26 February 2009 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

 

23.

Apologies (Agenda Item 2)

To receive apologies for absence. 

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Mr P Balaam, Mr W Borrett,

Mr S Chapman-Allen, Mr R Childerhouse, Mr R Duffield, Mr J Gretton,

Mr P Hewett, Mr T Lamb, Mrs K Millbank, Mrs L Monument, Mr D Myers,

Mrs P Quadling, Mr M Spencer, Mrs P Spencer and Mrs L Turner.

 

24.

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.

Minutes:

As the Local Development Framework (LDF) had highlighted some difficulties of interpretation in this area, the Member Services Manager felt it would be helpful for Members to have a reminder of the rules concerning declarations of interest, as well as the distinctions between ‘personal’ and ‘personal and prejudicial’ interests which Councillors have to consider.

 

He took Members through the Code of Conduct requirements and gave some examples.   It was agreed that a note should be circulated to Members, along with the flow chart which the Standards Consultant had earlier produced on this matter.  It was confirmed that the Standards Consultant would speak to members of the LDF Task and Finish Group about this topic in more detail.<1>

 

The Member Services Manager made clear that while officers could offer advice and guidance, they would be unaware of Members’ personal circumstances and therefore the onus for any decision on interest must remain with individuals.  

 

If a Member had any cause for doubt about their circumstances in relation to any part of a debate, they should ask advice and/or leave the room.

 

He also reminded Members of the procedure itself: it was not only important to make an appropriate declaration, but also to state the type and nature of that interest (i.e. “I declare a ‘personal and prejudicial’ interest on matters concerning …. because ………. .”).

 

The following declarations of interest were then noted: 

 

Lady Fisher                 Personal and Prejudicial interest in items 11, Thetford Growth Point 30/9 (a), and (b), and 13, items relating to the Core Strategy document, and policies.

 

Mr G Bambridge        Personal interest in LDF matters by virtue of gaining part of his income from developers and builders

 

Mr A Joel                      Personal interest in Agenda item 5 item 21/09, as a member of Old Buckenham Parish Council.

 

Mr J Labouchere       Personal and Prejudicial interest in anything to do with the LDF in North Elmham by virtue of being a landowner and Personal interest in Hermitage Ward

 

Mrs D Irving                Personal interest in any LDF matters concerning Dereham by virtue of being a Town Councillor.

 

Mr R Kemp                  Personal and Prejudicial interest in LDF matters concerning Harling by virtue of being a local landowner.

 

Cllr C Bowes              Personal interest in the Core Strategy and Development Control Policies Document Report as her family have put land forward through the LDF process.

 

Mr S Askew                 Personal and Prejudicial interest in item 13 as a landowner with land put forward to the LDF adjoining the development boundary.

 

Mr P Cowen                Previous declaration on page 2, (Overview & Scrutiny Commission Minute 13/09) (Stow Bedon) and also Personal interest in agenda item 13 as an architect in practice in Breckland.

 

Mr W Smith                  Personal interest in LDF matters.

 

Mr R Kybird                 Personal and prejudicial interest in LDF matters owing to land ownership and business association.

 

Mrs T Hewett              Personal interest in LDF matters owing to land ownership.

 

Mr I Monson                Personal and Prejudicial interest due to being a member of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.

25.

Chairman's Announcements (Agenda Item 4)

(including the engagements of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman)

Minutes:

The Chairman reminded Members that there would be a lunch immediately after the meeting, followed by a Member briefing for those who had requested Presentation Skills Training.

 

Engagements List – Chairman

 

26th February, 2009 to 11th March, 2009

 

Date

Event

Host

27.2.09

Civic Reception

Town Mayor of Attleborough,       Councillor Vera Dale

1.3.09

The Justice Service

The High Sheriff of Norfolk,                        The Viscountess Knollys

 

 

Engagements List – Vice-Chairman

 

26th February, 2009 to 11th March, 2009

 

Date

Event

Host

27.2.09

Civic Reception

Town Mayor of Attleborough,      Councillor Vera Dale

 

26.

Cabinet Minutes - 24 February 2009 (Agenda Item 5)

Unconfirmed minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 24 February 2009.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

(a)               Treasury Management and Investment Strategy (Minute Item 20/09)

 

RESOLVED to approve:

 

i)                    the Prudential Indicators as Limits for 2009/2010 to 2011/12;

ii)                  the Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Statement which sets out the Council’s Policy on MRP;

iii)                the Treasury Management Strategy for 2009/10; and

iv)                the Investment Strategy 2009/10.

 

(b)               Business Competition (Minute Item 27/09)

 

i)                    The Leader of the Opposition wanted to stress the point he had made about the need for a Norfolk-wide approach to this issue, with the Council working with other Norfolk Local Authorities on a job strategy and economic development policies.

 

ii)                  This recommendation had been agreed at the Special Council meeting held on 26 February 2009.   (See Minute No. 21/09.)

 

(c)               Proposed Externalisation of Planning & Building Control (Minute Item 28/09)

 

A Member expressed discontent with the consultation process and felt that it, and the level of debate on this subject, had not been as open or accessible as it should have been.

 

The Chairman of the Development Control Committee disagreed strongly with these comments, pointing out that during the course of the decision-making process there had been various opportunities, including a very long Overview & Scrutiny meeting.  There had therefore been ample opportunity for all Members to participate in discussion on this matter.  It was felt that the Council meeting that morning was neither the time nor the place to raise matters which had already been through a lengthy decision process. 

 

The Chairman confirmed that there had been prior opportunities for debate, and reminded everyone that anything to be discussed at the Council meeting should either be new or pertinent to that day’s meeting.

 

The Leader of the Council added that various points had been raised and debated on this matter during the recent Cabinet meeting.

 

The Member, feeling that he had not had a chance to fully express his views, left the room. 

 

(d)               Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 24 February 2009 be adopted.

 

27.

Overview and Scrutiny Commission - 12 February 2009 (Agenda Item 6) pdf icon PDF 92 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 12 February 2009.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission held on 12 February 2009 be adopted.

 

28.

Development Control Committee - 26 January 2009 (Agenda Item 7) pdf icon PDF 78 KB

Confirmed minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 26 January 2009.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the confirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 26 January 2009 be adopted.

 

29.

Development Control Committee - 16 February 2009 (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 110 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 16 February 2009.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Development Control Committee held on 16 February 2009 be adopted.

 

30.

General Purposes Committee - 18 February 2009 (Agenda Item 9) pdf icon PDF 66 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on 18 February 2009.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on 18 February 2009 be adopted.

 

31.

Appeals Committee - 25 February 2009 (Agenda Item 10)

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Appeals Committee held on 25 February 2009.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Appeals Committee held on 25 February 2009 be adopted.

 

32.

Moving Thetford Forward Board - 28 January 2009 (Agenda Item 11) pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Moving Thetford Forward Board held on 28 January 2009.

Minutes:

Having declared a personal and prejudicial interest in this matter, Lady Fisher left the room.

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting of the Moving Thetford Forward Board  held on 28 January 2009 be adopted.

 

33.

Nominations for Committee and other Seats (Agenda Item 12)

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

Minutes:

(a)  Wayland Partnership

 

The appointment of Councillor C Bowes to the Wayland Partnership in place of Councillor S Askew was noted.

 

34.

Breckland Local Development Framework: Submission of Core Strategy and Development Control Policies Development Plan Document (Agenda Item 13) pdf icon PDF 199 KB

Report of the Executive Member for Planning and the Environment.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Development Services Manager introduced the presentation, praising the Planning Policy staff involved in the preparation of the LDF document.  He said that this was an excellent piece of work which had been through many stages and forms, taking into account public participation as well as other input through the various Committee processes. 

 

The presentation had been designed to highlight key points at this stage.  The document had been published on 5 January 2009 and had been available on line, as well as in libraries and Council offices across the district, for a period of six weeks.  The team had gone well beyond what had been formally required for this process, having produced documentation which also showed the evidence behind the proposals submitted.   Following a procedural check by the Inspectorate, the Coal Authority had also been consulted and confirmed they had no interest in this matter.  Copies of the document and a CD-Rom of the evidence base had had been sent to all statutory consultees. 

 

The Principal Planning Policy Officer pointed out that Breckland had received 583 representations from 94 individuals/organisations.   Comparing this with the 800 received by North Norfolk, he said that this probably reflected the way that the Breckland team had handled this project: many Breckland issues having already been processed and dealt with before publication.

 

He drew Members’ attention to three important points:

 

  • the Government Office and the Regional Planning Body had both endorsed the document;

 

  • there were no representations which had clearly demonstrated that the Council had prepared a fundamentally flawed document; and

 

  • the representations received could be explored through the Public Examination stage, when the Inspector would decide whether or not the document should be changed.

 

These points confirmed that Breckland had produced a ‘sound’ document which would go forward for public examination by the Inspectorate in July 2009.

 

A Member drew attention to the fact that of the 583 representations received, approximately two thirds had indicated that they found the document ‘unsound’ and were therefore looking for changes.  Bearing these figures in mind, he asked if the Council was legally secure in putting the document forward in this condition for someone else to work through.   He highlighted the position in relation to Attleborough, where there were unresolved concerns about drainage infrastructure.  He said he would welcome a legal view on the handling procedure.

 

The Deputy Chief Executive confirmed that officers had looked at the substance of the representations received and were satisfied that there was no reason to change the core strategy document, or the proposed route of submitting the document to the Inspectors.   He concluded by pointing out that the Inspector could challenge some of the proposals, or even suggest modifications which the Council might then be compelled to accept.  However, he confirmed that he believed the document to be good enough to submit at this stage. 

 

The Chairman then suggested that any further representations on this matter should be made direct to the team after the Council meeting.  

 

Returning to the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 34.