Agenda and minutes

Council - Tuesday, 6 October 2020 6.30 p.m.

Contact: Inge Booth 

Link: View the Live Stream of the meeting here

Items
No. Item

C/40

Chairman's Introduction

Minutes:

Following confirmation that the live stream of the meeting had commenced, the Chairman welcomed everyone to the virtual meeting.  He referred to the new Government legislation allowing councils to conduct remote meetings and explained in detail to all taking part, and for the benefit of members of the public observing, the procedures for the meeting.  The Chairman then asked the Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) to carry out a roll call, during which all Members present indicated by which means they were taking part and confirmed that they were able to see (where practicable) and hear all Members participating in the meeting.  The Chairman referred to officers present who would introduce themselves when asked to address the meeting.  In addition, the Chairman took the opportunity to advise Members that he proposed to take Agenda Item No.16 – Notices of Motion - immediately following Agenda Item No.10 – Annual Procurement Update 2019/20.

C/41

Minutes pdf icon PDF 497 KB

To authorise the Chairman to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 28 July 2020.

Minutes:

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That the Chairman be authorised to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 28 July 2020.

C/42

Emergency Non-Executive Decisions pdf icon PDF 281 KB

To receive the following Emergency Non-Executive Decisions taken by the Chief Executive in accordance with Part 3 of the Council’s Constitution 3. (B 1) (1.1) and to note any spending outside any budgetary provision:-

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Whilst the need for decisions to be taken in a timely manner during the Covid-19 pandemic was accepted, assurance was sought with regard to the re-introduction of meetings of the Lake Administration Committee.  The Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) explained that business was now being transacted through virtual meetings and that a meeting of the Lake Administration Committee had successfully taken place on 2 October 2020.  Both she and Councillor Doug Rathbone, Chairman of the Lake Administration Committee further explained that both of the emergency decisions relating to encroachments on Lake Windermere had been taken in consultation with the Chairman, thereby maintaining a close link to the Committee.

 

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)        the following Emergency Non-Executive Decisions taken by the Chief Executive in accordance with Part 3 of the Council’s Constitution 3.(B 1) (1.1) be received:-

 

(a)        013 02-09-20 Installation of a New Traditional Wooden Jetty to High Cunsey Farm, Windermere;

 

(b)        014 02-09-20 Encroachment Application to Install a New Wooden Jetty and Three Mooring Posts at Townhead, Windermere; and

 

(b)        015 02-09-20 HR Flexible Retirement 04-2020; and

 

(2)        any spending outside any budgetary provision be noted.

C/43

Public Participation

Any member of the public who wishes to ask a question, make representations or present a deputation or petition at this meeting should apply to do so by no later than 0:01am (one minute past midnight) two working days before the meeting.  Information on how to make the application can be obtained by viewing the Council’s Website www.southlakeland.gov.uk or by contacting the Committee Services Team on 01539 733333.

 

(1)        Questions and Representations

 

            To receive any questions or representations which have been received from members of the public.

 

(2)        Deputations and Petitions

 

            To receive any deputations or petitions which have been received from members of the public.

Minutes:

M/s Jemima Longcake was connected to the meeting and introduced by the Chairman.

 

M/s Longcake, speaking as a representative for the Children’s Society, addressed Council with regard to Agenda Item No.16 – Notices of Motion – and Councillor Suzie Pye’s Notice of Motion on Poverty.

 

She explained that she was leading on the Cumbria Children’s Society Branch ‘Strengthening the Safety Net’ campaign, engaging in discussions with local councils to analyse the resources available for families in crisis and support in improving these where necessary.  She informed Council that she had been invited to speak at this meeting on the back of discussions with some Council Members who had assisted her to get a better picture of the resources available in South Lakeland.  M/s Longcake was keen to continue in these discussions and to support the Council wherever possible.  Despite the County as a whole not having an officially recognised crisis support scheme according to The Children’s Society’s records, M/s Longcake pointed out that there were a number of well-designed systems to offer support to those who needed it most.  The proposal to declare a poverty emergency was one that The Children’s Society fully supported if the steps were taken to effectively create systems that prevented any family, child, or individual from falling through the net in a time of crisis.

 

M/s Longcake said that the Society’s data showed that 27% of children were living in poverty in the wider County.  On a basic level, The Children’s Society defined this as being unable to afford the basic necessities of food, clothing, and shelter.  This could mean that they and their families were left struggling to pay rent, pay for school supplies, or to put food on the table.  Despite this, the only borough to have declared a poverty emergency so far had been Barrow.  For South Lakeland District Council to declare its own would, M/s Longcake believed, be an immeasurably positive step, if actions followed through.  The Children’s Society defined ideal poverty support as something that ‘CARES’.  That was that it focussed on being child-friendly and accessible to all, as well as referral friendly, eligibility aware, and strategic in its leadership, meaning that councils should be responsible, and held accountable for taking care of their constituents in a way that fulfilled the aforementioned needs.

 

M/s Longcake had one question, which was what would this declaration mean in terms of the area’s response to poverty?

 

The Chairman thanked M/s Longcake for her contribution and explained that, once disconnected from the meeting, she was welcome to listen to the debate on the motion via the live stream of the event.

C/44

Declarations of Interest and Dispensations

To receive declarations by Members of interests in respect of items on this Agenda and to consider any dispensations.

 

Members are reminded that, in accordance with the revised Code of Conduct, they are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests or other registrable interests which have not already been declared in the Council’s Register of Interests.  (It is a criminal offence not to declare a disclosable pecuniary interest either in the Register or at the meeting.)

 

Members may, however, also decide, in the interests of clarity and transparency, to declare at this point in the meeting, any such disclosable pecuniary interests which they have already declared in the Register, as well as any other registrable or other interests.

 

If a Member requires advice on any item involving a possible declaration of interest which could affect his/her ability to speak and/or vote, he/she is advised to contact the Monitoring Officer at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

Minutes:

The Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) referred to her recent briefing note to Members on interests with regards to Agenda Item No.8 - Local Government Reform and Devolution.  She explained to Members that a dispensation has been granted to all Members with regard to allowances in respect of matters relating to Local Government Reform and Devolution for a period of four years.

 

The Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) informed Council that, for Agenda Items Nos.8 and 17 – A590 Cross-a-Moor Junction Improvement, councillors who were dual-hatted, i.e. District Councillors and County Councillors, would have an Other Registrable Interest under the Code of Conduct.  Following the advice in the note circulated, the other registrable interest would be recorded and, unless any Member considered themselves to be biased or predetermined, they could speak and vote on both items.

 

Members having been asked, no other declarations of interest were raised in respect of any of the items on this Agenda.

C/45

Local Government Act 1972 - Excluded Items

To consider whether the item in Part II of the Agenda should be considered in the presence of the press and public.

Minutes:

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That the item in Part II of the Agenda be dealt with following the exclusion of the press and public.

C/46

Chairman's Announcements pdf icon PDF 89 KB

To receive announcements by the Chairman (a list of official engagements attended by the Chairman is attached).

Minutes:

The Chairman drew attention to his list of formal engagements which was attached to the Agenda.

C/47

Size of and Seats to be allocated to Political Groups on Committees pdf icon PDF 212 KB

To agree the size of and seats to be allocated to Political Groups on Committees following recent resignations from the Council (report to follow).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Further to C/27 (2019/20) and following recent resignations from the Council, the Legal Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) presented a report seeking Council’s agreement on the size of and seats to be allocated to Political Groups on Committees, based on the Council’s current Membership of 48.  In addition, she sought agreement that there would be no changes to current Chairmen and Vice-Chairmen of Committees.

 

The Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) informed Council that a review had been carried out in accordance with the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 and that meetings had taken place with the Group Leaders and Councillor Judy Filmore, Green Party Member, the proposed allocation attached to the report having been informally agreed.  Subject to approval of the recommendations, all Group Leaders had agreed to notify the Monitoring Officer of the required changes in committee membership.

 

Councillor Giles Archibald, Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder, moved the recommendations contained within the report, thanking officers involved in this complex matter and to the other Group Leaders and Councillor Judy Filmore for their willingness to engage.  He was seconded by Councillor Tom Harvey, Leader of the Conservative Group, who agreed with Councillor Archibald that this had resulted in a fair and equitable outcome.

 

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)        the size of and seats to be allocated to the political groups on committees be approved as set out below:-

 

Committees subject to political balance

 

 

Liberal Democrat

Conservative

Labour

Green Party Member

Committees (64 places)

40

9

4

 

Audit (6)

4

2

0

0

Human Resources (9)

5

3

1

0

Licensing Regulatory (15)

10

4

1

0

Overview and Scrutiny 13)

8

4

1

0

Planning (14)

8

4

1

1

Standards (7)

4

2

1

0

 

Committees not subject to political balance

 

 

Liberal Democrat

Conservative

Labour

Green Party Member

Committees (31 places)

20

9

2

 

Lake Administration (24 Members in total  16 District Councillors)

10

5

1

0

Licensing (15)

10

4

1

0

 

(2)        the number of seats on the Overview and Scrutiny Committee be increased from 12 to 13 and the number of seats on the Audit Committee be reduced from 7 to 6;

 

(3)        the required amendments to the Constitution be delegated to the Monitoring Officer; and

 

(4)        the Chairmen and Vice-Chairman of Council and Committees remain unchanged.

C/48

Exploration of Local Government Reform and Devolution pdf icon PDF 299 KB

To consider Local Government Reform and devolution, including the initial exploration of evidence to substantiate a high level case for a new unitary council for the area comprising the three districts of South Lakeland, Barrow and Lancaster.

Minutes:

Councillor Giles Archibald, Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder, presented a report, explaining that in anticipation that Government might call for proposals for the reorganisation of local government, it was being proposed that the Council worked jointly with Barrow Borough and Lancaster City councils to explore further evidence to substantiate a case for the area of the three districts to form a Unitary Authority.  The report indicated that the development of a high level case would be an initial step, enabling the three councils to explore and describe the benefits of a cross county boundary proposal, based squarely on the functioning economic geography and health footprint of the Morecambe Bay area.  It would enable the councils to present an option to Government, demonstrating how a unitary council would be an effective driver of economic, social and environmental benefits for the area’s residents, businesses and visitors, realise the strategic potential of the area and enable transformation of public services.

 

In moving the recommendations contained within the report, Councillor Archibald informed Members that, a number of months previously, he had been called to a meeting with the then Minister Jake Berry and other leaders in Cumbria to discuss possible devolution and the reorganisation that would be required in order to achieve a devolution deal.  Councillor Archibald explained the current situation, several meetings later.

 

The Government had indicated that it would publish a White Paper, probably in the New Year, which would lay out the conditions for reorganisation and devolution.  The Government had made it clear that, if an area had general and strong agreement to a reorganisation structure, it could request permission to move ahead prior to the publication of the White Paper.  In technical detail, the Council had to ask for the Secretary of State to send to it a letter asking it to submit a high-level case.   That letter had gone in from the County Council asking for that permission to submit a case.  The County Council Cabinet had decided to submit a bid for a unitary Cumbria.  Given this decision and preliminary indications from Government, the districts in Cumbria had been developing their ideas as to alternative unitary structures.  There was no agreement among the districts and Councillor Archibald felt that, if bids were requested today, there could be at least four different unitary structures submitted.

 

It was Councillor Archibald’s own view that this was not a good time to be discussing reorganisation.  He believed that focus should be on the current Covid-19 crisis and that the Council should be putting all its spare resources into assisting businesses and its most vulnerable residents.  This discussion about re-organisation was both distracting and somewhat divisive.  It was also not good timing as it was not yet known what would be in the White Paper, nor the Government’s plan for adult social care.  In addition, the Council lacked detail on what devolution might mean for it.  It had to be recognised, though, that the Government might push towards reorganisation, in which  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/48

C/49

Corporate Financial Update Quarter 1, 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 268 KB

To consider the corporate financial update for Quarter 1, 2020/21.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented the Corporate Financial Monitoring report for Quarter One of 2020/21, highlighting the Council’s expenditure and income during the first three months of the financial year, but also including current projections of expenditure for the remainder of the year and officers’ planned actions to ensure a balanced budget by the end of the financial year.  The report also detailed virement requests in relation to the Community Housing Fund, Next Steps Accommodation Programme and South Lakeland House/Kendal Town Hall.  The report further sought approval for the continuation of the emergency decision to increase counterparty limits for Money Market Funds to £10m for the remainder of 2020/21.

 

Councillor Jarvis drew attention to an error in the information contained within the report in the section on the Collection Fund, at paragraph 3.5.3.  The Council expected to collection £44.5m of business rates during 2020/21 and retained 40% of the income, so the total value of the reduction was £300,000, and not £85,000 as shown.

 

Councillor Jarvis explained how the Council’s financial position had been made more complex by Covid-19, with an estimated loss of £1.7m income in Quarter 1 of the current financial year and spend around £300,000 more than originally budgeted.  During the quarter, it had become clear that Covid-19 would have a major impact, so budgets had been revised and approved by Cabinet and Council in June 2020.  Overall, it was estimated that the impact of Covid-19 on the total cost of services in 2020/21 would be £800,000 higher than the £2.1m approved in June 2020, but it was expected that the recently approved Sales, Fees and Charges compensation grant from the Government would reduce the impact by around £1.4m to £1.5m overall.  While it was impossible to clearly split the impact of Covid-19 from the normal business as usual costs, an overspend of £69,000 was currently projected for normal service costs.  The impact of Covid-19 and delays in recovery action had resulted in higher levels of debt compared to previous years.  Recovery action had now restarted and it was expected that new recovery posts should help the position.

 

Councillor Jarvis pointed out how the Council had not been distracted by the Covid-19 pandemic and had continued to monitor and control its budget and expenditure, and he thanked officers for their work during this busy time.

 

Councillor Jarvis moved the recommendations contained within the report and was seconded by Councillor Robin Ashcroft, Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder.  Councillor Ashcroft felt that the report demonstrated remarkable achievements in difficult times and stressed the importance of maintaining the finances of the Council during the current crisis.

 

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)        the contents of the report and Appendices 1 to 3 be noted; and

 

(2)        the following be approved:-

 

(a)        the continuation of the increase in counterparty limits for Money Market Funds to £10m for the remainder of 2020/21; and

 

(b)        the virements set  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/49

C/50

Annual Procurement Update 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 145 KB

To consider progress across the procurement function over the past 12 months and an updated Procurement Schedule.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented a report which provided an update on progress across the procurement function, a review of activity in the financial year 2019/2020 and a review of the 2020/21 procurement schedule.  He welcomed the Council’s new Procurement Specialist, Gillian Flowers, who had taken up the post in January 2020.

 

The Procurement Team had been busy over the past 12 months supporting the delivery of a large number of procurement exercises for goods and services, the Procurement Schedule for 2019/20 having listed 92.  Of these exercises, 45 had been completed, with 14 showing as “work in progress”, two “scope for change” and 31 being carried forward to the 2020/21 Schedule.  The Team had led the successful procurements for a number of important projects, including playgrounds, Kendal Markets, consultancy, ICT, Grange Lido and Kendal Town Hall.  The Team continued to work closely with the Corporate Asset Manager and the Council’s Property Services Provider (Lambert Smith Hampton) to delivery property-related procurement projects covering servicing and work contracts.  This contract would be reviewed later in the year.

 

The Council’s Constitution had permitted officers to conduct and conclude the contracting processes without further approval providing it was in line with the Procurement Schedule, to be approved by Council at least annually.  There was still a requirement to comply with Forward Plan requirements on all contracts prior to contract award.  Where a procurement process was over budget then approval would still be required in accordance with the Financial Procedure Rules.  Where an officer sought approval for a waiver or exemption under the Contract Procedure Rules this was also included in the Procurement Schedule.  An updated Procurement Schedule for 2020/21 was attached at Appendix 1 to the report and included some additional procurement exercises to those approved in February 2020.

 

A Contract Review Board, comprising officers from the Legal, Governance and Democracy Team and the Finance Team, including Procurement, had been formed.  The Board’s work had included identifying contracts impacted by Covid-19, with reports to Cabinet as required, the review of the use of certain frameworks to ensure value for money and working closely with officers from across the Council to understand requests for waivers and exemptions and to limit their use wherever possible.  The emphasis of this Board was to focus on value for money.

 

A Commissioning Strategy had been prepared and approved by Council in July 2020 which would complement the Procurement Strategy.  The Procurement Specialist was currently reviewing the Procurement Strategy in line with the Commissioning Strategy as a golden thread, and was also seeing how it fitted into the procurement guidance within the Constitution.

 

The report referred to challenges in the future.  As the UK left the EU, it was envisaged that there would be changes to the Procurement Regulations, initially in terms of thresholds, but eventually in terms of regulation and accountability.  The Public Contracting Regulations 2015 would stay in place in the mean-time.  The Council’s procurement portal, the Chest, was one of those that  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/50

C/51

Notices of Motion

The following Notices of Motion have been given in accordance with Paragraph 11.1 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure:-

 

“South Lakeland District Council

 

(i) acknowledges the efforts that this council has made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and promote renewable energy particularly in its economic plans for South Lakeland in partnership with Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Cumbria Action For Sustainability (CAfS) and more recently Kendal Citizens’ Jury which is tasked with writing recommendations which will combat the effects of Climate Change;

 

(ii) further recognises

 

           that very large financial setup and running costs involved in selling locally generated renewable electricity to local customers result in it being nearly impossible for local renewable electricity generators to do so,

           that making these financial costs proportionate to the scale of a renewable electricity supplier’s operation would enable and empower new local businesses in South Lakes, or councils such as the existing Cumbria County Council or any successors, to be providers of locally generated renewable electricity directly to local customers, and

           that revenues received by new local renewable electricity providers could be used to help improve the local economy, local services and facilities and to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions;

 

(iii) accordingly resolves to support the Local Electricity Bill, supported by 201 MPs which, if made law, would establish a Right to Local Supply which would promote local renewable electricity supply companies and co-operatives by making the setup and running costs of selling renewable electricity to local customers proportionate to the size of the supply operation; and

 

(iv) further resolves to

 

           inform the local media of this decision, and

           write to local MPs (both of whom have pledged support for the Bill) to indicate SLDC support for the Bill and write to the organisers of the campaign for the Bill, Power for People, (at 8 Delancey Passage, Camden, London NW1 7NN or info@powerforpeole.org.uk) expressing its support.”

 

(signed by Councillor Judy Filmore)

 

“I move that our Council pass a motion declaring a Poverty Emergency, and explore the feasibility of setting up a Poverty Truth Commission, working closely with our Morecambe Bay partners. This will aid our aim of tackling the root causes of poverty and inequalities, which is critical to the success of our Council Plan.”

 

(signed by Councillor Suzie Pye)

Minutes:

In accordance with Paragraph 11.1 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure, two notices of motion had been put to Council.

 

The first notice of motion had been put by Councillor Judy Filmore:-

 

“South Lakeland District Council

 

(i) acknowledges the efforts that this council has made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and promote renewable energy particularly in its economic plans for South Lakeland in partnership with Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Cumbria Action For Sustainability (CAfS) and more recently Kendal Citizens’ Jury which is tasked with writing recommendations which will combat the effects of Climate Change;

 

(ii) further recognises

 

           that very large financial setup and running costs involved in selling locally generated renewable electricity to local customers result in it being nearly impossible for local renewable electricity generators to do so,

           that making these financial costs proportionate to the scale of a renewable electricity supplier’s operation would enable and empower new local businesses in South Lakes, or councils such as the existing Cumbria County Council or any successors, to be providers of locally generated renewable electricity directly to local customers, and

           that revenues received by new local renewable electricity providers could be used to help improve the local economy, local services and facilities and to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions;

 

(iii) accordingly resolves to support the Local Electricity Bill, supported by 201 MPs which, if made law, would establish a Right to Local Supply which would promote local renewable electricity supply companies and co-operatives by making the setup and running costs of selling renewable electricity to local customers proportionate to the size of the supply operation; and

 

(iv) further resolves to

 

           inform the local media of this decision, and

           write to local MPs (both of whom have pledged support for the Bill) to indicate SLDC support for the Bill and write to the organisers of the campaign for the Bill, Power for People, (at 8 Delancey Passage, Camden, London NW1 7NN or info@powerforpeole.org.uk) expressing its support.”

 

In moving the motion, Councillor Filmore informed Council that Community Renewable Energy generated less than 0.5% of the United Kingdom’s generating capacity; it’s potential was immense.  Councillor Filmore referred to all the money paid for electricity bills and the thought of that money instead going to local community owned utilities.  She further raised the potential for knock on benefits to the local economy: new jobs; resilience and recovery.  She pointed out that this Bill was about more clean local energy and helping stop climate change, whilst creating local economic strength and resilience.  Councillor Filmore believed that, the Bill, if made law, would transform the nation’s energy system and mean that the benefits of a nation-wide surge in clean community energy could be reaped.  She urged Council to support the Local Electricity Bill being heard in Parliament.

 

Councillor Dyan Jones, Climate Emergency and Localism Portfolio Holder, seconded the motion.  She stressed that local, renewable energy, accessible and affordable to communities in a manner that supported green regrowth,  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/51

C/52

Representation on Outside Bodies 2019/20 and 2020/21

Further to C/18 (2019/20) and, more recently, resignations from the Council, to consider the appointment of a Substitute Member on the North West Local Authorities Employers’ Organisation for the remainder of 2020/21.

Minutes:

Council was being asked to consider the appointment of a Substitute Member on the North West Local Authorities Employers’ Organisation for the remainder of the year further to Minute C/18 (2019/20) and, more recently, resignations from the Council.  Councillor Giles Archibald, Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder, proposed that Councillor Philip Dixon, Customer and Commercial Services and People Portfolio Holder, be appointed to the role and was seconded by Councillor Robin Ashcroft, Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder.

 

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED – That Councillor Philip Dixon be appointed as the Council’s Substitute Representative on the North West Local Authorities Employers’ Organisation for the remainder of 2020/21.

C/53

Leader's Announcements and Cabinet Question Time (30 Minutes)

To receive announcements from the Leader and, in accordance with Paragraphs 10.2 and 10.3 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure, to deal with any questions to the Leader and/or Portfolio Holders on any topic which is within the jurisdiction or influence of the Council and is relevant to their Portfolio.  Any Member who poses a question will be entitled to ask one supplementary question on the same topic.

 

Members are encouraged to give 24 hours’ written notice of questions to the Monitoring Officer of questions to be raised under the Agenda Item.  If no notice is received, then the Portfolio Holder can reserve the right to give a written answer.  Where written notice of questions has been given, these will be taken first.  Should a Member wish to ask more than one question, questions should be listed in order of priority.  If more than one Member sends in a question, these will be taken in alphabetical order of Members’ names, alternated from meeting to meeting.  Each question and each response is restricted to three minutes.

Minutes:

The Leader, Councillor Giles Archibald, addressed Council, referring to news earlier in the day that daily new Covid-19 cases had risen dramatically day on day to over 14,000 new cases.  The incidence of Covid-19 cases in South Lakeland was also increasing.

 

Councillor Archibald said that these were are extremely stressful times and he commended and thanked all Members for the leadership and commitment which they were demonstrating in their local communities during this crisis.  Councillor Archibald also wished to recognise the tremendous work carried out by officers in housing the homeless, paying grants, re-organising business rates and protecting the vulnerable.  On behalf of all councillors, he thanked officers for their continued engagement and excellence, and asked the Chief Executive and Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) to pass this on.  Councillor Archibald also wished to recognise the terrific collaboration so far with the County and the towns and parishes.  Collaborative working, he believed, was critical and Councillor Archibald was grateful for the collegiate, can-do attitude of all tiers of local government.  Councillor Archibald further praised South Lakeland’s residents, who were respecting the guidelines in towns, wearing masks and social distancing.

 

Councillor Archibald finally took the opportunity to confirm that the Council’s job was to support the Government measures and to provide whatever assistance it could Central Government.  These were testing times for all, and the Council was ready to be tested.

 

In accordance with paragraphs 10.2 and 10.3 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure, the following written questions had been submitted to the meeting:-

 

From Councillor Tracy to Councillor Philip Dixon, Customer and Commercial Services and People Portfolio Holder - Following the change in COVID-19 restrictions to allow outside playgrounds to open, can you tell us how successful the re opening of our play parks has been?

 

Councillor Dixon responded, informing Members that the re-opening of play parks had been 100% successful.  Councillor Dixon expressed thanks to those officers who had worked tirelessly to enable 60 parks to open on 4 July 2020.  He believed that the Council’s parks and open spaces were vital, especially after a lengthy period of lockdown.  He asked Members to contact either himself or officers if they were aware of any problems in this regard, stressing the need for parks to remain open.

 

From Councillor Eamonn Hennessy to Councillor Dyan Jones, Climate Emergency and Localism Portfolio Holder - Can Cllr Jones provide an update regarding the levels of interest in the Community Climate Change Fund?

 

Councillor Jones informed Members that there had been a good amount of interest in the Fund, with a total of 19 applicants.  This indicated the level of interest from communities and a desire to carry out projects where they lived and worked.  Councillor Jones explained that the Council was focussed on its residents’ and businesses’ wellbeing and its commitment was to ensure that South Lakes was the best place to live, work and explore.  There was, however, no denying that these were challenging times.  The Climate Action Plan  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/53

C/54

Minutes of Meetings

To receive Chairmen’s comments (if any notified) in respect of the minutes of the Committee meetings held between 8 June and 10 July 2020.

Minutes:

No comments or questions had been received in respect of the minutes of committee meetings held between 8 June and 10 July 2020.

C/55

Questions to Chairman of the Council or Chairman of any Committee or Sub-Committee

To deal with any questions under Rule 10.6 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure, of which due notice has been given and/or the Chairman allows as a matter of urgent business and which are in relation to any matter over which the Council has powers or duties or which affect the area.

Minutes:

No questions had been received under Rule 10.6 of the Council’s Rules of Procedure.

C/56

Urgent Decisions

In accordance with Paragraph 17.3 of the Access to Information Procedure Rules, to receive details of any urgent Executive Decisions, if any, taken since the last scheduled meeting of Council on 28 July 2020.

Minutes:

No urgent Executive Decisions had been taken since that last meeting of the Council on 28 July 2020.

C/57

Press and Public

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12 A of the Act as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006 by virtue of the Paragraph indicated.

 

Note –

 

For the benefit of the public viewing the virtual meeting, the Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder explained that the open session of the meeting would now close and the live stream cease.

 

The meeting producer confirmed that the live stream had ended.

 

Members disconnected from the Part I session and moved into the Part II private session.  A roll call was taken, all Members still present at the meeting confirming that they were able to see (where practicable) and hear all Members participating in this part of the meeting and that there was nobody present in the room with them nor any recording devices nearby.  Councillors Ben Berry, Michael Cornah, Gill Gardner, Rachael Hogg, Helen Irving, Janette Jenkinson, Jon Owen, Brian Rendell and Shirley-Anne Wilson had already left the meeting.

C/58

A590 Cross-a-Moor Junction Improvement

To consider funding arrangements for the junction improvements.

Minutes:

Councillor Robin Ashcroft, Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder, presented a report seeking approval to enable the funding package for the A590 Cross a Moor Junction Improvement Scheme to be secured and the legal agreements made so that scheme delivery could proceed.  Councillor Ashcroft provided additional details on developments which had taken place following the report having been written and published.

 

Councillor Ashcroft, having moved the recommendations contained within the report, was seconded by Councillor Janet Willis, a Furness Peninsula Ward Member, who stressed the importance of the scheme in the delivery of the South Lakeland Local Plan and to local residents.

 

Members echoed support and were keen for the scheme, which would assist in the delivery of affordable housing and allow free flow of traffic between Barrow and Ulverston, to move forward.

 

The Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) drew attention to the fact that the revision to the funding arrangements was not simply to be noted, drawing attention to the need for Council to approve amendments to the Capital Programme, as well as virements and further amendments to the budget as necessary.

 

No Member having raised concern when asked by the Chairman, it was

 

RESOLVED - That

 

(1)        the revision to the funding arrangements for the scheme be noted;

 

(2)        the amendments to the Capital Programme for 2020/21 and 2021/22 to accommodate the level of income and expenditure now associated with the Council’s contribution to the scheme, including provision for the underwriting mechanism, be approved; and

 

(3)        the Finance Lead Specialist (Section 151 Officer), in consultation with the Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder, be authorised to:-

 

(a)        vire resources from the Right to Buy capital receipt in the event that expenditure need materialises from the underwriting mechanism; and

 

(b)        make further amendments to the Council’s budget in the event additional external funding is secured for the scheme.