Agenda, decisions and minutes

Cabinet
Wednesday, 23rd January, 2019 6.00 pm

Venue: Shield Room, Civic Centre, West Paddock, Leyland, PR25 1DH

Contact: Dianne Scambler  Email: dscambler@southribble.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

52.

Minutes Silence

Minutes:

A minutes silence was observed for former Councillor and Mayor, Joan Lawson, who had passed away on 22 January 2019.

53.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

There were none.

54.

Minutes of meeting Wednesday, 21 November 2018 of Cabinet pdf icon PDF 92 KB

Minutes:

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

That the minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 21 November 2018 be approved as a correct record.

55.

Declarations of Interest

Members are requested to indicate at this stage in the proceedings any items on the agenda in which they intend to declare an interest. Members are reminded that if the interest is a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest (as defined in the Members’ Code of Conduct) they must leave the room for the whole of that item. If the interest is not a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest, but is such that a member of the public could reasonably regard it as being so significant that it is likely that it would prejudice their judgment of the public interest (as explained in the Code of Conduct) then they may make representations, but then must leave the meeting for the remainder of the item.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

56.

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 144 KB

Cabinet Forward Plan for the four month period 1 January - 30 April 2019 attached.

Minutes:

Decisions made (Unanimously):

 

That the forward plan be noted.

57.

Corporate Peer Challenge Action Plan and Response to External Auditors Statutory Recommendation Update pdf icon PDF 165 KB

Report of the Chief Executive attached.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED Unanimously:

 

1.    That the report, appendices and their content be noted.

 

2.    Cabinet notes that the Council is now in a position where significant actions have been taken and significant improvement has been made, and is continuing to be made, in the ongoing running of the Council.

 

3.    That following the recommendation of the Improvement Reference Group, which has completed its work, a focused peer review be carried out in October 2019.

 

 

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented a report that provided Cabinet with an overarching progress report on the actions taken and outcomes in relation to the Corporate Peer Challenge Action Plan and an update on the external auditors’ statutory recommendation.

 

The Chief Executive referred to updates within the report concerning the deletion of paragraph 1.2 and that the spelling of ‘significant’ in recommendation 2.2.

 

The Leader indicated that she would be putting forward an additional recommendation relating to inviting the Local Government Association to carry out a focussed peer review in October 2019.

 

There was a comment from the audience that the report didn’t reflect the exact discussion at the Improvement Reference Group (IRG) particulary around the words 'significant improvement'.

 

The Cabinet welcomed the progress that had been made with the Action Plan and External Auditor’s statutory recommendation. Cabinet wanted to acknowledge the hard work of officers in developing the significant actions and felt that significant progress had been made.

 

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

1.    That the report, appendices and their content be noted.

 

2.    Cabinet notes that the Council is now in a position where significant actions have been taken and significant improvement has been made, and is continuing to be made, in the ongoing running of the Council.

 

3.    That following the recommendation of the Improvement Reference Group, which has completed its work, a focused peer review be carried out in October 2019.

 

Reason(s) for decision:

 

To provide Members with an update on the work undertaken as a council to incorporate the recommendations from the Corporate Peer Challenge and the External Audit recommendations.

 

Alternative Options Considered and Rejected:

 

None.

58.

Timetable of Meetings 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 79 KB

Report of the Assistant Director of Scrutiny and Democratic Services attached.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED Unanimously:

 

That the timetable of meetings be approved.

Minutes:

The Assistant Director of Scrutiny & Democratic Services presented a report to determine the dates of the meetings of the Council, Cabinet and various committees for the 2019/2020 municipal year.

 

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

That the timetable of meetings be approved.

 

Reason(s) for the decision:

 

To enable the Council to conduct its business effectively it is important to have a carefully planned timetable of meetings in place.

 

Alternative Options Considered and Rejected:

 

None.

59.

Award of Contract for Green Links Project pdf icon PDF 543 KB

Report of the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development attached.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED Unanimously:

 

Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development in consultation with the Deputy Chief Executives and the Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Leisure to accept the MEAT for the proposed installation of the Brownedge to Hennel Lane Green Links multi use path.

Minutes:

The Director of Neighbourhoods and Development presented a report to request delegated authority to accept the most economically advantageous tender for the proposed installation of the Brownedge to Hennel Lane Green Links multi use path as part of the Council’s health and wellbeing agenda.

 

Cabinet welcomed the proactive approach to improving the health and wellbeing of our residents through the Green Links programme.  Cabinet Members referred to the report including future sustainability and whole life costs, the popularity of walking and enjoying open spaces and working with partners such as the Bridleways Association.

 

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development in consultation with the Deputy Chief Executives and the Portfolio Holder for Regeneration and Leisure to accept the most economically advantageous tender for the proposed installation of the Brownedge to Hennel Lane Green Links multi use path.

 

Reason(s) for the Decision:

 

To mitigate any risk of unforeseen circumstances delaying authority to award the contract and safeguards the scheme’s completion within the 2018/2019 capital programme.

 

Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

 

Several schemes have been considered as part of the central parks programme.  To provide a grade separated crossing of the A6 linking Bamber Bridge in the east, to the spine of Central Parks in the west.  All of these options were significantly more expensive.

60.

Council Tax Support Scheme pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Report of the Deputy Chief Executive (Resources and Transformation)/Section 151 Officer attached.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED (Unanimously):

 

1.    That Cabinet notes the legal position regarding the decision taken at Budget Council on 28 February 2018.

 

2.    That Cabinet proposes to Council that the Council Tax Support Scheme remains unchanged for 2019/2020.

 

3.    That Cabinet proposes to Council that it agrees the level of the deduction to be applied to Working Age recipients of Council Tax Support from 1 April 2019 and that this level be finalised and agreed in accordance with South Ribble’s scheme as part of the Council’s budget and council tax setting at the Council meeting on 27 February 2019.  The figure will continue within the range (between £3.00 and £5.00 per week) which was consulted upon during the introduction and implementation of the Council’s scheme.

 

4.    Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Customer and Digital in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance to make all necessary updates to this Council’s Council Tax Support Scheme to comply with any prescribed requirements that may be issued by central government.  This may be by the making of specific regulations, or by amendment to the Local Government Finance Acts of 1992, 2012 and 2017 and Government funding formulae.

 

5.    Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Customer and Digital in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance to make all necessary amendments to the Council’s scheme to uprate the allowances and premiums in accordance with the revised Housing Benefit Circular. 

 

6.    To publish the updated scheme in accordance with the Local Government Finance Act 2012 and any regulation amendments.

Minutes:

The Deputy Chief Executive (Resources and Transformation)/Section 151 Officer presented a report reviewing the Council Tax Support Scheme for 2019/2020 and clarifying the legal position. It also identified the number of policy changes following the Chancellors Autumn Statement.

 

Questions raised from outside Cabinet were:

·         How quickly the Council Tax Support Scheme can be changed?

o   The Deputy Chief Executive advised this would be subject to the consultation process and agreement by a future Cabinet and Council.

·         Increased use of bailiffs and how many of these cases related to the Council Tax Support Scheme?

o    The Deputy Chief Executive (Resources and Transformation)/Section 151 Officer undertook to provide the numbers to the Member outside the meeting.

o   He also advised that bailiff numbers are not separated to identify those on the support scheme. Detailed information would be provided in future Council Tax Support Scheme updates.

·         Have we implemented the six recommendations of the Money Advice Trust?

o   Three had been implemented and the remainder would be highlighted in future reports.

 

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

1.    That Cabinet notes the legal position regarding the decision taken at Budget Council on 28 February 2018.

 

2.    That Cabinet proposes to Council that the Council Tax Support Scheme remains unchanged for 2019/2020.

 

3.    That Cabinet proposes to Council that it agrees the level of the deduction to be applied to Working Age recipients of Council Tax Support from 1 April 2019 and that this level be finalised and agreed in accordance with South Ribble’s scheme as part of the Council’s budget and council tax setting at the Council meeting on 27 February 2019.  The figure will continue within the range (between £3.00 and £5.00 per week) which was consulted upon during the introduction and implementation of the Council’s scheme.

 

4.    Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Customer and Digital in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance to make all necessary updates to this Council’s Council Tax Support Scheme to comply with any prescribed requirements that may be issued by central government.  This may be by the making of specific regulations, or by amendment to the Local Government Finance Acts of 1992, 2012 and 2017 and Government funding formulae.

 

5.    Delegated authority be granted to the Director of Customer and Digital in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance to make all necessary amendments to the Council’s scheme to uprate the allowances and premiums in accordance with the revised Housing Benefit Circular. 

 

6.    To publish the updated scheme in accordance with the Local Government Finance Act 2012 and any regulation amendments.

 

Reason(s) for the decision:

 

To approve the Council’s Council Tax Support Scheme for the financial year 2019/20 which serves to assist citizens on a low income with the cost of council tax. 

 

Alternative Options Considered and Rejected:

 

The original consultation exercise considered a number of alternatives to reducing the amounts that claimants received in their council tax support.  These included reducing council services and increasing levels of council tax.

61.

Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider the exclusion of the press and public for the following items of business on the ground that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972.

 

By Virtue of Paragraph 3: Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information)

Condition:

Information is not exempt if it is required to be registered under-

The Companies Act 1985

The Friendly Societies Act 1974

The Friendly Societies Act 1992

The Industrial and Provident Societies Acts 1965 to 1978

The Building Societies Act 1986 (recorded in the public file of any building society, within the meaning of the Act)

The Charities Act 1993

Information is exempt to the extent that, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

 

Information is not exempt if it relates to proposed development for which the local planning authority may grant itself planning permission pursuant to Regulation 3 of the Town & Country Planning General Regulations 1992(a).

Decision:

RESOLVED Unanimously:

 

That the press and public be excluded from the meeting.

Minutes:

Decision made:  Unanimously:

 

That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during the consideration of the following item of business as it involved the discussion of information defined as exempt from publication under paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972, ‘Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information) ‘and in which the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighed the public interest in disclosing it.

 

62.

Replacement Mini-Sweeper

Report of the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development attached.

Decision:

RESOLVED Unanimously:

 

1.    That Cabinet agree the increase in allocated funds to acquire a new sweeper from within the overall approved capital programme.  This would allow for purchase, tax and delivery costs.

 

2.    Subject to the tender received being within budget allowance that the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development in consultation with the Chief Executive and Deputy Chief Executive (Resources and Transformation) be given delegated authority to award the contract.

Minutes:

The Director of Neighbourhoods and Development presented a report seeking approval to increase the capital expenditure allocated for the replacement mini sweeper in the 2018/2019 capital budget to enable the purchase of a larger 10 tonne midi sweeper.  The increase in immediate expenditure would be met from underspends in the overall vehicle replacement budget for other purchases and would remain within the existing allocation for 2018/2019. The additional costs would be recovered through future operational efficiency savings in future years.

 

Members felt that this purchase would be of great benefit to keeping the Borough cleaner, be more efficient and improve resident satisfaction further.  It was also highlighted that the selection of the vehicle followed an extensive evaluation process by those employees who use the vehicles, which was commended. 

 

Decision made (Unanimously):

 

1.    That Cabinet agree the increase in allocated funds to acquire a new sweeper from within the overall approved capital programme.  This would allow for purchase, tax and delivery costs.

 

2.    Subject to the tender received being within budget allowance that the Director of Neighbourhoods and Development in consultation with the Chief Executive and Deputy Chief Executive (Resources and Transformation) be given delegated authority to award the contract.

 

Reason(s) for the decision:

 

To enable the delivery of an enhanced service to the residents of the Borough through the addition of additional sweeping frequencies and additional flexibility in the delivery of the service.

 

Alternative Options Considered and Rejected:

 

Consideration was given to the like for like replacement of the existing mini-sweeper, however whilst this would allow service standards to be maintained it would not enable further development and enhancement of the service going forward.  Not to replace the vehicle would result in increased down time and cost of repairs.