Agenda and minutes

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

Contact: Democratic Services  Tel: 01362 656870

No. Item


Minutes (Agenda Item 1) pdf icon PDF 264 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 12 May 2016.


The Minutes of the meeting held on 12 May 2016 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 Councillors Askew, T Carter, Cowen, Duffield, Gould, Hewett, Jolly, Newton, Stasiak, Taylor, Wassell and Webb.



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.



No declarations were made.



Chairman's Announcements (Agenda Item 4) pdf icon PDF 42 KB


The Chairman advised that Agenda Item 13 - Breckland Housing Allocation Policy, had been deferred.




Leader's Announcements (Agenda Item 5)

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



The Leader had three topics to discuss, one of which was Devolution which he would leave until Agenda Item 15.  The other two subjects were the EU Referendum and the flash flooding experienced on that day particularly in Dereham, Shipdham, Saham Toney and Watton.  The Council had managed the response to the flooding at the same time as running the referendum and the count.  The Council offices and two Polling Stations had been flooded.  Presiding Officers had struggled to get their ballot boxes to the count venue and some had been helped by the police.  The response to the flooding had been well co-ordinated with the emergency services and the count had been able to take place and be completed on time.  The Council offices had been open on the Friday and there had been minimal disruption to waste collection services.  All properties affected by flooding had been visited on the Friday.  The Leader thanked all the staff who had continued working, some of whom had been flooded themselves.


With regard to the referendum, he noted that the Customer Contact Centre had received a number of calls from residents asking what effect the result would have locally.   Residents were being given the following information:


The referendum last week saw UK voters decide that the country should leave the European Union.  Putting that decision into practice will be led at a national level by the government and is likely to take some time.  In the meantime, the UK continues to be a member of the EU and local and national policies remain in place.  Breckland, therefore, has no immediate plans to change its policies or access to its services as a result of the referendum.  The council will be working closely with other government bodies to ensure the transition to the UK being outside of the EU – and the implications of this – is carefully managed, and will consider any necessary changes to its policies at the appropriate time.


He concluded by stressing that the Council was united against hate and racism and those people that had used the referendum as a tool to be devisive.


Those comments were strongly supported by Members of all parties and they were urged to report any incidents of hate crime and to encourage their residents to do the same.


Councillor Gilbert asked Members to collate evidence of flooding problems to present to Anglian Water and the Environment Agency.


Councillor Jermy asked the Leader what Breckland could do to create more cohesive communities and the Leader responded that it was up to all Councillors to show leadership and to encourage people to report any problems.

Councillor Wilkinson asked the Leader to put his thanks to staff in writing and he agreed to pass his comments to the Chief Executive to use at the next All Staff Briefing.

Finally Councillor Turner urged Councillors to encourage their villages to adopt an Emergency Plan as the Shipdham plan had proved very worthwhile in the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 74.


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





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


Councillor Gilbert asked the Executive Member for Growth to investigate why he had not received an answer to a query he had raised three months ago with Capita, regarding a development in Watton.  He suggested that if Capita were too busy to fulfil the terms of their contract it should be terminated.


The Executive Member for Growth said he would look into the matter and he asked other Councillors to advise him if they were having similar problems.


Councillor Jermy asked the Executive Member for Growth for his assurance that there would be a full public consultation with the Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) on the Housing Allocation Policy before the Council made any changes.

The Executive Member for Growth said the Housing Allocation Policy would be discussed at the Overview & Scrutiny Commission meeting in July and he confirmed that RSLs would be consulted.


Councillor Clarke asked the Executive Member for Place for an update on the Dereham Transport Study and asked her to ensure its expeditious publication.


The Executive Member for Place did not have that information to hand.  She would send it out to all Members.




Cabinet Minutes (Agenda Item 8) pdf icon PDF 68 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 17 May 2016.


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 17 May 2016 be adopted.



Planning Committee (Agenda Item 9) pdf icon PDF 116 KB

Confirmed minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 31 May 2016.



a)       Schedule of Planning Applications (Minute No 70/16 e)


Councillor Monument requested that the word ‘gifted’ used in three places on page 31, be replaced by either ‘given’ or ‘donated’.


The Chairman of the Planning Committee said it was a term that had always been used but he would take her suggestion under advisement.


b)       Adoption


RESOLVED that the now confirmed Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 31 May 2016 be adopted.



General Purposes Committee (Agenda Item 10) pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the General Purposes Committee meeting held on 25 May 2016.


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the General Purposes Committee meeting held on 25 May 2016 be adopted.



Appeals Committee (Agenda Item 11) pdf icon PDF 69 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Appeals Committee meeting held on 18 May 2016.


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Appeals Committee meeting held on 18 May 2016 be adopted.



Audit Committee (Agenda Item 12) pdf icon PDF 117 KB

Unconfirmed minutes of the Audit Committee meeting held on 10 June 2016.


a)       Annual Report of the Audit Committee (Minute No 27/16)


RESOLVED that the content of the Annual report be approved.


b)       Treasury Management Out-turn Report (Minute No 32/16)




1.     the actual 2015/16 prudential indicators be approved; and

2.     the Treasury Management Stewardship report for 2015/16 at Appendices B and C of the report be noted.


c)       Adoption


RESOLVED that the unconfirmed Minutes of the Audit Committee meeting held on 10 June 2016 be adopted.



Breckland Housing Allocation Policy (Agenda Item 13) pdf icon PDF 85 KB

Report of Executive Member Growth

Additional documents:


This report had been withdrawn from the Agenda.



Reference from Overview and Scrutiny Commission (Agenda Item 14) pdf icon PDF 55 KB

Report of the Executive Director for Governance.


This item was considered after Agenda Item 15.


RESOLVED that, as the proposals include a directly elected Mayor, the Devolution Governance Review and final scheme is not supported.



Devolution (Agenda Item 15)

Report of the Leader of the Council.

Additional documents:


The Leader of the Council presented the report and informed Members that they had a free vote on the recommendation.


He highlighted the risks of the Council ‘walking away’ from the deal, in terms of reputation, influence, money and benefits. 


Power and funding would be devolved to the Combined Authority.  If the Council was not signed up to the deal it would not be part of the decision making process when it came to prioritising projects or deciding where funding would be spent.   As part of the Combined Authority it would be in on the debate and able to fight for the things that Breckland wanted.


Whilst the Leader did not support the proposal for a Mayor, he would be willing to accept a Mayor if it meant getting projects delivered.  He knew that he was asking Members to make a leap of faith, but he believed it was best to stay involved and work with the Partner Authorities.  He then invited questions from Members.

The Chairman advised Members that as a result of the outcome of the Referendum paragraph 12 on page 100 relating to the management of EU funding, was no longer relevant and would be removed from the final document.


Councillor Sherwood thanked the Leader for allowing a free vote.  He could not support the proposal and urged other Members to vote against it.  If the Government was serious they should offer a deal that really devolved power, this did not.


Councillor Gilbert agreed.  He thought the proposal put too much power in the hands of one person.  He did not think it was about devolving power, it was about the Government controlling one person rather than 13 Councils.


Councillor Brame asked for confirmation that if the majority of Councils supported the proposals and Breckland voted against them the deal would go ahead.  The Council would be side-lined and projects such as the Thetford Enterprise Park (TEP) might not go ahead.

The Leader of the Council confirmed that he was correct.  If the Council did not sign up to the deal and the other authorities did, the Council would be on its own.


Councillor Sharpe said that he could not sign up to the deal without knowing how much it would cost.


The Leader agreed but said that at the moment the Council was only being asked for permission to go out to consultation on the deal.  He believed that information about the cost would be available by the end of the summer, before the Council was asked to sign up to the agreement in October.


Councillor Claussen thought the Leader should be allowed to stay ‘at the table’ until October.  The money was important and if the Council was not involved in the negotiations it was unlikely that the money would be spent in Breckland.


Councillor Jermy was against the deal.  It was not democracy.  It would dilute the influence of District and County Councils and have very little added value.  He was not willing to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 84.


Nominations for Committee and other Seats (Agenda Item 16)

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


Committee Appointments


Planning Committee: vacancy (Conservative)


Overview & Scrutiny Commission: vacancy (Conservative)


Outside Body Appointments


Outside Body Appointments: vacancy – one named substitute required for the Norfolk Countywide Community Safety Partnership Sub Panel.  Councillor Lynda Turner is the co-opted District Member for Breckland Council.







Councillor M Chapman-Allen be appointed to the Planning Committee:

Councillor J Bishop be appointed to the Overview & Scrutiny Commission; and

Councillor A Stasiak be appointed Vice-Chairman of the Overview & Scrutiny Commission.



Amendments to the Constitution (Agenda Item 17)

There are 4 proposed amendments to the Constitution. These minor amendments have been made by the Monitoring Officer in line with Article 14 of the Constitution, but require Council agreement to remain in effect.


1.     Part 4B Contract Procedure Rules – Section 13 Amendment to the EU threshold figures in line with the latest published threshold figures.


New figures (£4,104,394 Supply of Goods (etc) £164,176 and Consultants £164,176)


2.     Part 4A Procedural Standing Order 21 paragraph 21.2 – change reference to include Standing Order No 8 (in place of 6)


3.     Part 3 Section F Officer Delegations – Removal of Point 13 regarding Compulsory Retirement due to changes in legislation.


4.     Part 4A Procedural Standing Order No 5 – Move Declarations of Interests from Members from item i) to item d).



RESOLVED that the four minor amendments to the Constitution set out in the Agenda, be agreed.



Any other items which the Chairman decides are urgent (Agenda Item 18)

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.