Agenda and minutes

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

Contact: Committee Services  Tel: 01362 656870

Items
No. Item

108.

Minutes (Agenda Item 1) pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 15 September 2011.

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on 15 September 2011 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

109.

Apologies (Agenda Item 2)

To receive apologies for absence. 

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Mr Byrne, Mr C Carter, Mr Childerhouse, Mr Gilbert, Mrs Jolly and Mr Kiddle-Morris.

110.

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:

The following declarations were made:

 

Lady Fisher    Personal and Prejudicial interests in Minute Nos 62/11 and 63/11 (O&SC), 41/11 (Moving Thetford Forward Board), and138/11 (Planning Committee) relating to her husband’s family interests in matters on the proposed Thetford Urban extension, and stone curlews.

 

Mr Cowen      Personal interest in Minute Nos 63/11 and 77/11 (O&SC) and Item 12 of the Council Agenda and a Personal and Prejudicial interest in Minute No 151/11 (Planning Committee) items (m) and (n) – all by virtue of being an architect in practice in the District.

 

Mrs Steward  Personal interest in Council Agenda Item 12 by virtue of being a Norfolk County Council Cabinet member.

 

Mr S Rogers  Personal and Prejudicial interest in Minute No 151/11 (Planning Committee) item (m) as it was his own planning application.

 

111.

Chairman's Announcements (Agenda Item 4)

Engagements List – Chairman

 

15th September, 2011 – 26th October, 2011

 

 

Date

Event

Host

15th September, 2011

Funeral of Alfred Harvey – Watton Town Councillor

 

16th September, 2011

Speech Day, Thetford Grammar School

Dr. Jimmy Altham, Chairman of Governors

18th September, 2011

Civic Service to commemorate the Anniversary of the Battle of Britain

Lord Mayor of Norwich, Councillor Jenny Lay

19th September, 2011

Norfolk County Scout Council Annual General Meeting

Norfolk County Scout Council President, Richard Jewson

24th September, 2011

30th Annual Joan Mann Special Sports Day

Colonel Christopher J. Kulas, Commander, 100th Air Refueling Wing and Colonel John T. Quintas, Commander, 48th Fighter Wing

29th September, 2011

Organ Recital

Mayor of Wisbech

30th September, 2011

Civic Service to Commemorate 650 years of the Lay Magistracy in Great Yarmouth

Chairman of the Great Yarmouth Bench and his Deputies, Richard Howard

2nd October, 2011

Service of Celebration and Thanksgiving

All Saints’ Church, Necton

2nd October, 2011

Civic Service

Chairman and Lady of South Holland District Council, Councillor Michael Seymour and Mrs. Pauline Seymour

3rd October, 2011

Shipdham Wind Turbine Meeting

Shipdham Parish Council

5th October, 2011

Official Launch of the Older People’s Forum

Breckland Council

6th October, 2011

Launch of Breckland Book Festival

Breckland Council

9th October, 2011

Evensong Service to Celebrate 650 years of Magistracy

 

14th October, 2011

Reception

Chairman of Broadland District Council, Councillor Mrs. Claudette Bannock

21st October, 2011

Lord-Lieutenant’s Youth Fellowship Award 2011 Presentation

Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk, Richard Jewson JP

24th October, 2011

Justice Service

High Sheriff of Norfolk, Mrs. Charles Holloway

 

Engagements List – Vice-Chairman

 

 

Date

Event

Host

18th September, 2011

Battle of Britain Commemoration Service

Mayor of Thetford, Councillor Dereham Mortimer

9th October, 2011

Suffolk Harvest Festival – a service of Praise and Thanksgiving

Mayor of St. Edmundsbury, Councillor Christopher Spicer

 

 

Minutes:

Members were reminded that a workshop on ‘New Ways of Working’ would follow the Council meeting.  Copies of the Members’ Training Diary had been handed out for information.

 

The Chairman drew attention to the list of engagements he had attended on behalf of the Council and particularly remarked on the Sports Day held on 24 September where he had participated in the assault course with great enjoyment.

 

He asked for volunteers to join him in making up a Breckland quiz team for the Forest Heath Chairman’s Charity quiz night on 25 November 2011.

 

Finally he mentioned his sadness at the impending closure of the shop and post office in his Necton Ward.

 

112.

Cabinet Minutes (Agenda Item 5) pdf icon PDF 120 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 18 October 2011.

Minutes:

(a)       Release of Rough Sleeper Funding (Minute No 72/11)

 

The Leader of the Labour Group was delighted at the Cabinet decision to drawn down funds and hoped they would be used in a sensitive and compassionate way.

 

(b)       Draft Corporate Plan 2011-2015 (Minute No 74/11)

 

RESOLVED that the Corporate Plan 2011-15 be adopted and the Leader of the Council and the Chief Executive be given delegated authority to sign off the Corporate Plan 2011-2015 by 31 October 2011, subject to final proofing.

 

(c)        Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 18 October 2011 be adopted.

 

113.

Overview and Scrutiny Commission Minutes (Agenda Item 6)

113/07a

Confirmed Minutes of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 1 September 2011. pdf icon PDF 88 KB

Minutes:

These Minutes were on the Agenda in error as they had already been adopted at the Council meeting held on 15 September 2011.

113/07b

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 6 October 2011 pdf icon PDF 829 KB

Minutes:

(a)       Attendance

 

It was noted that Mr Sharpe had been omitted from the list of Members also present.

 

(b)       Draft National Planning Framework (Minute No 77/11)

 

An Independent Member hoped that the Council would be very wary of how it interpreted the new regulations, particularly in relation to sustainable development.  He was concerned that under the new arrangements rural areas were under the greatest potential threat.

 

The Leader of the Council reassured him, saying that the Council had good policies in place.

 

(c)        Adoption

 

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

 

114.

Planning Committee Minutes (Agenda Item 7)

114/07a

Confirmed minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 5 September 2011 pdf icon PDF 108 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the Minutes of the Planning Committee held on 5 September 2011 be adopted.

 

114/07b

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 3 October 2011 pdf icon PDF 92 KB

Minutes:

(a)       Attendance

 

It was noted that Mr Martin had been omitted from the list of Members also present.

 

(b)       Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 3 October 2011 be adopted.

 

115.

General Purposes Committee Minutes (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 71 KB

Unconfirmed Minutes of the General Purposes Committee meeting held on 21 September 2011.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the General Purposes Committee meeting held on 21 September 2011 be adopted.

 

116.

Appeals Committee Minutes (Agenda Item 9) pdf icon PDF 69 KB

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Appeals Committee meeting held on 7 September 2011.

Minutes:

(a)       Minutes (Minute No 29/11)

 

The Chairman of the Appeals Committee noted that the amendment to Minute No 23/11 should read “… had been convicted of no offences.”

 

(b)       Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Appeals Committee meeting held on 7 September 2011 be adopted.

 

117.

Audit Committee Minutes (Agenda Item 10) pdf icon PDF 83 KB

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Audit Committee meeting held on 30 September 2011.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Audit Committee meeting held on 30 September 2011 be adopted.

 

118.

Standards Committee Minutes (Agenda Item 11) pdf icon PDF 68 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the meeting of the Standards Committee held on 11 October 2011.

Minutes:

(a)       Update on Proposed Changes (Minute No 64/11)

 

A Member asked if the changes to the Standards regime would mean that membership of other bodies would no longer constitute an Interest.

 

The Leader of the Council advised that the details were not yet known.  Once the Bill was passed there would be a two month transition period during which the Council would consider new policy.

 

(b)       Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Standards Committee meeting held on 11 October 2011 be adopted.

 

119.

Moving Thetford Forward Board Minutes (Agenda Item 12) pdf icon PDF 129 KB

To note the Minutes of the Moving Thetford Forward Board meeting held on 22 September 2011.

Minutes:

(a)       Financial Report (Minute No 38/11)

 

With regard to the abortive costs mentioned in the final paragraph, a Thetford Member thought that it had not been made clear in the Minutes that the officer had gone on to say that a proportion of the money could be recouped if the bus station was sold.

 

The Leader of the Council confirmed that that would be clarified at the next Board meeting.

 

The same Member agreed with the Leader about the façade of the Anchor Hotel (mentioned at the bottom of page 78).  He said that officers from English Heritage strongly supported its retention.

 

A Board Member advised that a good conservation architect had been retained to work on the project and should be able to design something to retain the street character.  He then went on to note some inaccuracies on pages 76 and 79 which would also be amended at the next Board meeting.

 

Another Thetford Member who had attended the meeting said that the draft image shown at the meeting, to replace the façade, had not been good.  He also mentioned that there was dismay amongst Thetford residents at the contemptuous dismissal of the Parish Poll result by some members of the Board.

 

The Leader of the Council clarified that English Heritage did not support the retention of the Anchor Hotel which had no historical value, but they did want the replacement street scene to be in keeping with the area.

 

(b)       Adoption

 

RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Moving Thetford Forward Board meeting held on 22 September 2011 be adopted.

120.

Youth Council Minutes (For Information)(Agenda Item 13) pdf icon PDF 236 KB

To note the Youth Council Cabinet minutes for the meeting held on 20 September 2011.

Minutes:

Councillor Green presented the Youth Council Minutes and advised that 14 new Youth Councillors had been selected and that all Members were invited to a Welcome event to be held on 3 November 2011.

 

The Minutes of the Youth Council meeting held on 20 September 2011 were noted.

 

121.

Review of Polling Districts, Polling Places and Polling Stations 2011 (Agenda Item 14) pdf icon PDF 66 KB

Report of the Assistant Director for Democratic Services.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Panel presented the report.

 

The Leader of the Council congratulated the Panel for its good work and said that democracy was important and polling stations needed to be in the right place.

 

He went on to say that the Council also supported the Boundary Commission’s proposals for the new Parliamentary Constituencies of Thetford and Swaffham and Broadland and Dereham.  The recommendations were good for the people of Norfolk and of Breckland in particular.

 

He sought approval to write in support of the proposals on behalf of the Council.

 

A Swaffham Member supported the Leader’s comments and said there was broad support for the reduction of the number of MPs and it should be commended and recommended.

 

RESOLVED to delegate authority to the Leader of the Council to write to the Boundary Commission in support of its proposals, on the Council’s behalf.

 

A Member from the Labour Group said that from their point of view the proposal to hold a review every five years was excessive, especially in view of the expense.

 

The Leader of the Labour Group agreed and said that in the current economic climate public spending should be strictly regulated.

 

On a local level, he thought that the Polling Panel had done a good job.  He had been asked to comment as a Ward Representative and he was content with the Dereham proposal.  However, with regard to Scarning he had concerns about moving the polling station to the village hall.  He acknowledged that it was the most appropriate building, but the majority of the population lived on the estate close to the school and were able to walk to the polling station there, whereas to access the village hall would require the use of some form of transport.   As the main driver was to encourage more people to vote the move might prove counter-productive.

 

The Ward Representative for Newton by Castle Acre was also concerned and suggested that the situation should be monitored during the next election and if there was a disparity in the travel distance for residents an effort should be made to try to provide a polling station within their own Ward.

 

RESOLVED to approve:

 

(1)               The relocation of the polling station for Scarning Ward from the Primary School to the Village Hall;

(2)               The combination of Thetford Guildhall Polling Districts SADA and SADB;

(3)               The creation of two new polling districts in the Dereham Central Ward (Dereham Central South and Dereham Central East) and the renaming of the current Dereham Central Polling District to Dereham Central West; and

(4)               The creation of two new polling stations in the two new Polling Districts of Dereham Central South and Dereham Central East.

 

122.

Independent Remuneration Panel (Agenda Item 15) pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Report of the Assistant Director of Democratic Services.

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented the report and advised Members that South Holland would like the Breckland Panel to consider allowances for both Authorities.

 

In response to a question it was clarified that there was no assumption that the Panel would make the same level of awards to both authorities.

 

RESOLVED to agree to Breckland Council’s Independent Remuneration Panel reviewing the current South Holland District Council’s Members Scheme of Allowances in line with the requirements of The Local Authorities (Members’ Allowances)(England) Regulation 2003.

 

123.

Nominations for Committee and other Seats (Agenda Item 16)

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

Minutes:

It was announced that the Leadere of the Labour Group, Mr R Goreham was stepping down from that position and would be replaced by Mr T Jermy.

 

  • Mr Jermy would replace Mr Goreham as a member of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission and the Member Development Panel.

 

  • Mr Clark would replace Mr Jermy on General Purposes Committee.

 

A Labour Member thanked Mr Goreham for his unstinting dedication and for having carried out the duties of Leader of the Group for over eight years.  She was sure that all Members would join in congratulating Mr Goreham on his new full-time position at the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital.

 

All Members applauded the announcement and many wished to add their own comments.  Among them were:

 

The Chairman of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission said that he had learned a lot from working closely with Mr Goreham.  He was fair and balanced and really had the interests of constituents at the forefront of his thinking.

 

The Chairman of the Member Development Panel thanked Mr Goreham for all his hard work on the Panel and said he was a man that cared passionately about democracy.

 

The Leader of the Council added his personal thanks to Mr Goreham for the close working relationship they had shared and for all his hard work as Leader of the Labour Group.

 

Mr Goreham responded with thanks from the bottom of his heart.  He said it had been a pleasure and a privilege to lead the Labour Group for the last eight years.  There was an element of respect and co-operation across the Council which was very good and should continue.  He wished Mr Jermy all the best and was sure that he would grow into a good leader.

 

123/07a

Parish Representation on Standards Committee

While the exact provisions on Standards in the Localism Bill are still under review, it does seem clear that the existing Standards Committee will need to be able to operate for a period of some months yet to clear up any remaining complaints, in accordance with the present transitional provisions.

 

The terms of office of the three parish members, Brian Rayner, Janice Smith and Alexander Sommerville, need therefore to be confirmed to extend to May 2012, in line with the two independent members, although the Standards Committee work may end earlier than that.

 

It is therefore RECOMMENDED that the terms of office of all three parish members be extended to May 2012 in respect of the existing legislation.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the terms of office of all three parish members on the Standards Committee be extended to May 2012 in respect of the existing legislation.