Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Tuesday, 23 February 2021 6.30 p.m.

Contact: Inge Booth 

Link: View the live stream of the meeting here

Items
No. Item

C/87

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.

C/88

Minutes pdf icon PDF 247 KB

To authorise the Chairman to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meetings of the Council held on 8 December and 15 December 2020.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Chairman be authorised to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meetings of the Council held on 8 and 15 December 2020.

 

C/89

Emergency Non-Executive Decisions pdf icon PDF 237 KB

To receive the following Emergency Non-Executive Decision 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:

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

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)        the Emergency Non-Executive Decisions (018 -31-12-20 Local Restrictions Business Grants) and (019 – 18-01-20 Business Support Grants (National Restrictions – January) taken by the Chief Executive in accordance with Part 3 of the Council’s Constitution 3.(B 1) (1.1) be received; and

 

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

C/90

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:

No questions, representations, deputations or petitions had been received from members of the public in respect of this meeting.

C/91

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations by Members of interests in respect of items on this Agenda and to note the dispensations granted to Members by the Monitoring Officer, in consultation with the Independent Person, for a period of four years.

 

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:

RESOLVED – That the following declarations of interest and dispensations be noted:-

 

(1)   dispensations provided in the previous year by the Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) and the Independent Member under Part 3 of the Council’s Constitution, Responsibility for Council Functions, paragraphs 2.7 and 4.12 for a four year period for items relating to Agenda Item Nos 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15;

 

(2)   that Councillors Ben Berry, Roger Bingham, Stephen Coleman, Brian Cooper, Tom Harvey, Kevin Lancaster and Doug Rathbone declared disclosable pecuniary interests in Agenda Item No 10 and would be disconnected from the meeting for the full item;

 

(3)   That Councillors John Holmes and Susanne Long declared disclosable pecuniary interests in Agenda Item No 10, by virtue of the fact that they were the Council’s nominated Directors on the Board of South Lakes Housing. Councillor John Holmes requested permission to speak on this item as the constitution allows, following which both Councillors John Holmes and Susanne Long would be disconnected for the remainder of the item;

 

(4)   That Councillor Gill Gardner declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in Agenda Item No 11 and would be disconnected from the meeting for the full item; and

 

(5)   that the Legal, Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer), for transparency, declared a personal interest in Agenda Item No 11 as a Trustee of the War Widows’ Association which forms an exempt group under the proposed Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme.

 

NOTE – Due to a technical issue with Microsoft Teams, Councillor Stephen Coleman briefly left and then re-joined the meeting before continuing with the Agenda for the meeting.

C/92

Local Government Act 1972 - Excluded Items

To consider whether the items, if any, in Part II of the Agenda should be considered in the presence of the press and public.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That it be noted that there are no excluded items on the Agenda.

C/93

Chairman's Announcements

To receive announcements by the Chairman.

Minutes:

The Chairman, informed Members that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic he had attended no official engagements.

C/94

Local Government Reform - Proposal for the Bay Area

To receive a verbal update on Local Government Reform.

Minutes:

Councillor Giles Archibald, Leader of the Council provided a verbal update on Local Government and the Proposal for the Bay Area. He informed Members that an informal meeting, with all Members invited was to be organised for the following week and that the Council had received a letter outlining the consultation from the Secretary of State. The Leader added that due to the complexity of the situation, some time was required to consider and discuss the letter with other Cumbrian Leaders.

 

Councillor Archibald informed Members that the Proposal for the Bay Area had been one of four bids to go through to the consultation process, with the Government consulting on the Bay and Northern Cumbria solution, but also the proposals put forward by Carlisle and Eden and on the proposal that had been put forward by Allerdale and Copeland. He added that the unitary Cumbria proposal from Cumbria County Council had also been taken through to the consultation process and that the Council had been asked to give its opinion on proposals relating to North Yorkshire.

 

Councillor Archibald informed Members that the consultation period was being hosted on an online platform by the Government and was to end at midnight on 19 April 2021. He added that links would be sent out to all members and that the Government would be undertaking consultation with local stakeholder and any person or organisation wishing to express a view. Councillor Archibald emphasised the importance of drawing opinions from the widest possible reach across the district and encouraging participation from residents.

 

Councillor Archibald informed Members that the Draft Consultation Response was to be brought to Cabinet and Council and that the links to and copies of all the relevant documents, including the impact assessment would be available on the Council’s website. He added that local elections for Principal Authorities were to be postponed, meaning that any Members who had been due to stand for election this year had been pushed forward to 2022 and that by-elections as well as Town and Parish Council Elections would all still go ahead.

 

In concluding his update, Councillor Archibald informed Members that he was very pleased that the Bay Proposal has been included in the consultation round and that Members would be kept up to date of any progress in the coming weeks.

C/95

Adoption of Council Plan pdf icon PDF 283 KB

To consider an update to the Council Plan 2021-2026, for adoption, as part of the Policy Framework.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council Plan sets out the Council’s vision and priorities, forms part of a suite of corporate documents and is linked closely to the Medium Term Financial Plan. These documents form part of the Council’s Policy Framework and underpin the Council’s approach to prioritisation and community leadership. The Council Plan is for the period 2021-2026 and sets out the Council’s long term vision and priorities, providing strategic direction for other plans and strategies.

 

Councillor Jonathon Brook, Deputy Leader and Housing and Innovation Portfolio Holder informed Members that the Council Plan was considered by Council every year, with the last major rewrite in 2018. The Deputy Leader highlighted the impact of Covid-19, Brexit, the carbon reduction target set by the Council, the impact of potential Local Government reorganisation and emphasised the need for refocusing as a result.

 

The Council Plan contained a number of key changes as a result of the ongoing pandemic, the climate emergency and Local Government Reorganisation which were:-

 

·        A greater emphasis on strategic alignment in the context of Morecambe Bay – expanding the areas of cooperation;

·        Giving additional impetus to the progress made on the Council’s approach to sustainability and climate change; and

·        A Greater emphasis on fairness and reducing disadvantage and inequalities – working on personal financial resilience.

 

The vision, as stated in the revised Council Plan, was, “Working together to make South Lakeland the best place to live, work and explore”. To achieve the vision, the Council’s areas of focus were:-

 

·        Working across boundaries – Delivering sustainable regional growth across Morecambe Bay;

·        Delivering a balanced community – A South Lakeland for all ages;

·        Delivering a fairer South Lakeland – A South Lakeland for everyone; and

·        Addressing the Climate Emergency – A Carbon Neutral South Lakeland.

 

Councillor Brook praised the vision of the Council Plan and emphasised the need for change and desire to build on the positive work done to update the Council Plan. He informed Members that details of the consultation could be found at Section 4 of the report and highlighted the comments made by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, which linked to the housing needs of younger people, the positive impact of older people on community groups, the local economy and charities as well as the needs of older people in the community. Further comments from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee related to the need to focus on poverty clusters across the area, Local Government Reform, Climate Change and improving mental health and wellbeing.

 

In concluding his report, Councillor Brook thanked officers for their dedication and hard work and reiterated the importance of the Council Plan as a living document to the Councils short and long term goals.

 

Councillor Brook moved the recommendations contained within the report and was seconded by Councillor Dyan Jones, Climate Emergency and Localism Portfolio Holder.

 

During discussion on the Council Plan, Councillor Archibald commended councillors and officers for their work on the Council Plan and highlighted that the document encapsulated the Councils vision to deliver excellence.  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/95

C/96

Corporate Financial Update Quarter 3 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 278 KB

To note the projected year end position based on performance to the end of Quarter 3 2020/21 and to consider a budget virement request.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented the third quarter financial monitoring report of 2020/21. The report provided the projected year-end positon based on performance to the end of Quarter 3 2020/21 and officers planned actions to ensure a balanced budget by the end of the financial year.

 

In presenting the report in detail, the Portfolio Holder highlighted Appendix 1, which set out the revenues variances to date. Additional costs and loss of income for the remaining year had been expected to be £1.29m; the total expected service cost of the pandemic was £3.486m.  The Portfolio Holder detailed the claims to date, made under the Government’s Sales, Fees and Charges Support Scheme, adding that it was expected that a further claim for the remainder of 2020/21 would bring the total to £1.747m, which had reduced the total service cost of the pandemic to £1.569. Overall, at the end of Quarter 3, budget monitoring had identified a forecast business as usual year-end overspend of £65k. The Portfolio Holder informed Members that any future carry forwards would be considered carefully, due to the impact on the deficit.

 

Appendix 2 set out the position on the Capital Programme. The capital budget for 2020/21, approved by Council in February 2020 had been £22.083m. The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder highlighted a request for the re-profiling of £4.678m which had been set out at paragraph 3.2.3 as well as a Virement request for £314,000 to be transferred from reserves to the 2021/22 revenue budgets to fund the Community Led Housing Officer post and capacity grants.

 

Councillor Jarvis highlighted to Members, the inclusion of a fourth recommendation to the report which sought to transfer any unspent funds from the Councillor Locality budget to the Personal Finance Resilience Reserve at year end.

 

Appendix 3 provided an overview of the Council’s investments and highlighted that they had performed well against market expectations, with all investments performing in excess of their benchmarks.

 

Councillor Jarvis, in closing, said that the report highlighted that this Council was financially well-managed, running a balanced budget whilst continuing to deliver services and invest in improvements to the way it carried out business. He thanked the Finance Lead Specialist (Section 151 Officer) and the Finance Team for their work in producing the report.

 

During discussion on the Item, Members expressed their support and thanks for the hard work of officers. Councillor Jarvis, in responding to a request to consider moving any unspent budgets of Councillors who have resigned to allow the fellow ward Councillors to use the unspent budgets if possible before the deadline, agreed to provide a written response after consulting with Officers. Further discussion on this item highlighted the impact of Covid-19 and hopes that the Government would cover all costs for Local Councils throughout the pandemic to ensure they were not left to recover from the impact of the pandemic without support.

 

RESOLVED – That:-

 

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

 

(2)   the re-profiling of the Capital  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/96

C/97

Council Tax Discount and Premia pdf icon PDF 178 KB

To consider the amended proposals for Council Tax Discount and Premia.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Note – a number of Councillors declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in this item. The following Councillors were disconnected from the meeting for the remainder of the discussion and voting on the item:- 

 

·        Councillors Ben Berry;

·        Roger Bingham;

·        Stephen Coleman;

·        Brian Cooper;

·        Tom Harvey;

·        Kevin Lancaster; and

·        Doug Rathbone.

 

Note - Councillors John Holmes and Susanne Long, declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in this item by virtue of the fact that they had been nominated by South Lakeland District Council as Directors to South Lakes Housing, requested to remain in the meeting and Councillor John Holmes requested to speak on the item, after both Councillors would be disconnected from the meeting for the discussion and voting on the item.

 

Note – As the Chairman, Councillor Stephen Coleman had declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in this item, the Vice-Chair, Councillor Pete McSweeney took over as Chairman for the remainder of the item.

 

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder highlighted the decision from the November Cabinet meeting, where three sets of changes where agreed. These included an increase to the Council Tax premium on properties empty for more than two years, a reduced discount period for unoccupied and unfurnished properties from six months to one month and the removal of the 100% relief for Council Tax for 12 months for properties undergoing major repairs and structural alterations. The three changes were subject to a 6 week consultation period, during which 93 responses were received.   The consultation period returned reasonable support for the increase in Council Tax on empty properties, but strong resistance to the proposal to reduce the Council Tax discount on unoccupied and unfurnished properties from six months to one month. Many landlords had felt that this provided an inadequate period between rentals and that the 28 day period was insufficient to undertake refurbishment works. As a result, the Council now proposed to allow the unoccupied and unfurnished discount to apply for up to 3 months.

 

The final proposal, linked to major repair and structural alteration, saw the majority of respondents opposed to the change. However, the impact of this change needs to be considered against the overall cost of issuing this discount overall and the proposal still appears to be a fair reflection of the limited financial saving through reducing council tax compared to the overall costs of renovation and repairing properties.

 

In concluding his report, the Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder explained that the overall financial impact of these changes had been small, the overall cost of the reliefs by £57,000 with the Council’s share being £6,000, the overall benefit for the Council over the next financial year reduces from £49,000 to £43,000. He reminded Members that these changes had been driven by the desire to get fairness between Council Tax payers, ensuring that the reliefs had gone to those that need them most, to simplify the processes and reduce work for officers; and to get empty properties back into long-term use.

 

Councillor Jarvis moved the recommendations contained within  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/97

C/98

Review of the Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme 2021 pdf icon PDF 299 KB

To consider whether the current Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme is the most appropriate for this Council for the financial year commencing 1 April 2021.

Minutes:

Note – Councillor Gill Gardner declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in this item and was disconnected from the meeting.

 

Note – Linda Fisher, Legal Governance and Democracy Lead Specialist (Monitoring Officer) declared a personal interest in this item of business by virtue of the fact that she was a Trustee of the War Widows Association.  She remained in the Chamber during the discussion and voting on the item, although with no voting rights as an officer of the Council.

 

 

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder highlighted the South Lakeland District Council was one of a limited number of Councils to offer up to 100% Council Tax relief and that around 10% of properties benefitted from the scheme. After considering the options for change, it was expected that the current scheme would continue unchanged for the financial year of 2021/22. This was with the exception of applying the annual upratings and other minor income and capital disregards, and treatment of persons from abroad aligned to other means tested benefit schemes.

 

The Portfolio Holder added that this was not something that the Council had to do, but was something the Council had chosen to do with continual cross party support for the scheme.

 

Councillor Jarvis moved the recommendations contained in the report and was seconded by Councillor Suzie Pye, Health, Wellbeing and Financial Resilience Portfolio Holder, who was also proud to be associated with an authority which went beyond its statutory obligation when it came to helping the most vulnerable in society, alleviating poverty and tackling inequality in South Lakeland. The Council remained one of only 36 authorities to offer a fully-funded Council Tax Reduction scheme for working age claimants, which was not cheap. Councillor Pye felt it to be value for money, and allowed people to manage, to flourish and to thrive.

 

Members echoed what had been said and thanked the Finance Team for putting together a balanced budget to enable the Council to offer this Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme.

 

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

 

RESOLVED – That:-

 

(1)   the current Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme it being the most appropriate scheme for this Council for the financial year commencing 1st April 2021 subject to the Operational Lead Case Management in consultation, be approved and adopted, with the Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder being authorised to:-

 

(a)   make all necessary updates to this Council’s Council Tax Reduction Scheme to comply with any statutory requirements that may be issued by central government;

 

(b)   make all necessary amendments to the Council’s Council Tax Reduction Scheme to uprate the allowances and premiums in accordance with the HB Circular A1/2021 regarding annual upratings issued in January 2021 by the Department of Work and Pensions; and

 

(c)   publish the updated scheme in accordance with the Local Government Finance Act 2012.

C/99

2021/22 to 2025/26 Budget pdf icon PDF 383 KB

Note – In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and the consequential change to the Council’s Rules of Procedure, this item will automatically be subject to a recorded vote in respect of the adoption of the Budget and on any amendments proposed at the meeting.

 

To consider the recommendations from Cabinet to determine the Council’s Budget for 2021/22 onwards, including fees and charges, the Capital Programme, the Pay Policy and the Chief Finance Officer’s Advice on the Robustness of Estimates and the Adequacy of Reserves.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented the 2021/22 to 2025/26 Five Year Draft Budget. He advised Members that while the document was a final version, the impact of the pandemic meant the situation was changing on a regular basis. The expected outcome was that the Council would be in a position to deliver the priorities set out in the Council Plan within its resources. The Portfolio Holder highlighted comments from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee who agreed the budget report but added a rider, that they accepted the sensitivity of car park charging, and given the current situation and the fact that it had been 8 years since last raised there is little option. This would enable the statutory requirement to agree a balanced budget and to set the appropriate Council Tax level for 2021/22.

 

The Customer Connect programme had substantially reduced future budget deficits. However, the Covid-19 pandemic has had a fundamental impact on the Council’s financial position. The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder explained that although the Government had introduced a number of one-off grants to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 as part of the local government settlement, these were insufficient to cover the full extent of the additional costs and income lost due to the pandemic. He added that the government had also further delayed the reform of local government funding and that options were being developed to balance future budget deficits.

 

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder highlighted that whilst Officers recommended a balanced budget to Council, this provided a snapshot of the financial position of the Council due to the impact of Covid-19 and potential changes to local government funding. He added that a balanced budget would put the Council in the best place to move into the next financial year and continue to invest in our communities which had been run through a diverse and impressive programme this year. The Portfolio Holder was happy to move the recommendations in the report and reminded Members that despite the difficult and unprecedented times brought on by Covid-19 and changes to Local Government funding, that with prudent financial management, the Council was still able to fulfil its commitment to investing in communities. He thanked the Section 151 Officer and other officers in the Finance team for their continual hard work during these difficult times.

 

Councillor Jarvis was seconded by Councillor Giles Archibald.

 

Note – at this point in the proceedings (8.31 p.m.), the Chairman, Councillor Stephen Coleman left the meeting. Vice-Chairman Councillor Pete McSweeney took over as Chairman and continued the meeting.

 

In seconding the proposals, Councillor Archibald reiterated the points raised in the report on continuing to deliver on bigger projects and the importance of the continuing to deliver on ongoing projects.

 

In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and the Council’s Rules of Procedure, a recorded vote was taken on the recommendations as follows:–

 

The following Members voted in favour (30) – Councillors Giles Archibald, Robin Ashcroft, Rupert Audland,  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/99

C/100

Calculating and Setting the 2021/22 Council Tax pdf icon PDF 142 KB

Note – In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and the consequential change to the Council’s Rules of Procedure, this item will automatically be subject to a recorded vote in respect of setting the Council Tax and on any amendments proposed at the meeting.

 

To consider a report to enable the Council to calculate and set the Council Tax for 2021/22. At the time of printing the Agenda, formal confirmation of the precepts from Cumbria County Council and the Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner are awaited and, if these differ from assumptions, revised figures will be issued as soon as possible.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder, presented a report to enable the Council to calculate and set the Council Tax for 2021/22.

 

The precepts from Cumbria County Council and the Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner had been confirmed, at the values previously proposed, on the 18 and 19 February 2021 respectively.

 

As the billing authority, South Lakeland District Council was required to undertake a series of calculations in order to determine the Council Tax to be set for each parish within the District.  Once the Council Tax had been approved, Council Tax bills would be issued to each household in South Lakeland during March 2021 in accordance with the amounts set, subject to any reductions for discounts, exemptions or reliefs.

 

Councillor Jarvis proposed that the suggested Council Tax Resolution contained within Appendix 1of the report be approved. This was seconded by Councillor Giles Archibald, Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder.

 

In responding to questions raised by Members, Councillor Jarvis highlighted that there were some challenges linked to the equalisation based on how the unparished areas, however there was nothing in this year’s Council Tax proposals that would exacerbate the difficulty.

 

Note – Councillor Shirley-Anne Wilson left the meeting at 8.41 p.m.

 

In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and the Council’s Rules of Procedure, a recorded vote was taken on the recommendations as follows:–

 

The following Members voted in favour (40) – Councillors Giles Archibald, Robin Ashcroft, Rupert Audland, Pat Bell, Roger Bingham, Jonathan Brook, Helen Chaffey, Brian Cooper, Michael Cornah, Tracy Coward, Phillip Dixon, Judy Filmore, Gill Gardner, Tom Harvey, Eamonn Hennessy, Hazel Hodgson, Chris Hogg, Rachael Hogg, John Holmes, Kevin Holmes, Helen Irving, Andrew Jarvis, Janette Jenkinson, Dyan Jones, Helen Ladhams, Malcolm Lamb, Kevin Lancaster, Susanne Long, Pete McSweeney, Ian Mitchell, Jon Owen, Suzie Pye, Doug Rathbone, Brian Rendell, Matt Severn, Peter Thornton, David Webster, Ian Wharton, Janet Willis and Mark Wilson.

 

There were no votes against.

 

The following Members abstained (2), Councillor Caroline Airey and Ben Berry.

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)   It be noted that on the 17th December 2020, under powers delegated under Paragraph 3.1 of Part 3 of the Council’s Constitution , the Finance Lead Specialist (Section 151 Officer) calculated the Council Tax Base for the financial year 2021/22 by means of an Administrative Decision:-

 

(a)   For the whole of the District as 45,396.81 (Item T in the formula in Section 31(B) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 (”the Act”), as amended); and

 

(b)    For each part of the Council’s area:

ALDINGHAM

566.02

LAMBRIGG

42.90

ANGERTON

7.78

LEVENS

577.23

ARNSIDE

1,158.05

LINDALE AND NEWTON IN CARTMEL

427.87

BARBON

135.46

LONGSLEDDALE

41.13

BEETHAM

875.18

ALLITHWAITE AND CARTMEL

904.46

BLAWITH & SUBBERTHWAITE

139.69

LOWER HOLKER

713.47

BROUGHTON EAST

146.07

LOWICK

123.90

BROUGHTON WEST

440.58

LUPTON

88.55

BURTON IN KENDAL

618.40

MANSERGH

77.01

CARTMEL FELL

245.30

MANSRIGGS

20.46

CASTERTON

173.86

MIDDLETON

52.05

CLAIFE

233.26

MILNTHORPE

717.66

COLTON

486.37

NATLAND

518.68

CONISTON

467.10

NETHER STAVELEY  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/100

C/101

Treasury and Capital Strategy 2021/22 to 2025/26 pdf icon PDF 251 KB

To consider the Treasury Management Strategy for 2021/22 – 2025/26 and the Capital Strategy for 2021/22 – 2033/34.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Andrew Jarvis, Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented a report setting out the Council’s Treasury Management Strategy for 2021/22 to 2025/26 and the Capital Strategy for 2021/22 to 2033/34 which were expected to be approved by Council on 23 February 2021. The report had been updated to reflect the 2021/22 Budget and Capital Programme. The Portfolio Holder informed Members that the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet had recommended the report for approval.

The strategies fulfilled five key legislative requirements relating to the setting of prudential indicators, the Council’s Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Policy, the Treasury Management Strategy Statement the Investment Strategy and the Capital Strategy, details of which were provided.

The Portfolio Holder made reference to the significant changes to the economic situation which included the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the UK economy and GDP levels, the current Bank of England interest rate of 0.1%, significant increases in public borrowing and the uncertainty and risk surrounding Brexit. He went on to explain two temporary modifications to the Council’s investment strategy relating to counterparty limits, the first allowing the very large sums received from Government for the Covid-19 grants to be lodged with the Council’s principle banker. The second the counter party limit for Money Market funds was increased from £5m to £10m and proposed that both of the changes are made permanent.

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder added that it was proposed that a new local prudential indicator for internal borrowing be introduced. He noted that the capital strategy remained relatively unchanged from last year with the long-term view of possible capital expenditure being taken which had helped the Council improve the quality of decision making and prioritisation of certain expenditures.

Councillor Jarvis commended the prudent and professional approach to the Treasury Management Strategy which included diverse list of projects. He highlighted the importance of publishing the both strategies which improved transparency and moved the recommendations contained within the report and was seconded by Councillor Jonathan Brook, Deputy Leader and Housing and Innovation Portfolio Holder.

During discussion Members highlighted the importance of both strategies and commended the detailed and thorough nature of the annual review. Councillor Jarvis responded and emphasised the significant duty to ensure that Council funds were prudently managed.

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

 

RESOLVED – That the followed be approved:-

 

(1)   the Treasury Management Strategy, Capital Strategies and the authorised and operational borrowing limits within the report;

 

(2)   the permanent increase to £10m of the limit for investing with individual Money Market Funds and the disregarding of Government Covid funds when applying the counterparty limit to the Council’s Bankers NatWest; and

 

(3)   the introduction of a new local prudential indicator for internal borrowing.

C/102

Procurement Schedule 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 132 KB

To consider the Procurement Schedule for 2021/22.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder, Councillor Andrew Jarvis, reported that since April 2016, the Council’s Constitution had permitted officer 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. 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.

 

The Procurement Schedule for 2021/22 was attached at Appendix 1 to the report and had also been considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet. Cabinet had recommended the Procurement Schedule 2021/22 to Council for approval.

 

Councillor Jarvis proposed the recommendation contained in the report and this was seconded by Councillor Lamb.

 

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

 

RESOLVED – That:-

 

(1)   The Procurement Schedule for 2021/22 attached at Appendix 1 are approved; and

 

(2)   The changes to Procurement in line with Brexit, be noted.

 

Note- Councillor Caroline Airey left the meeting at this stage, 9.08 p.m.

C/103

Updates to the Council's Constitution pdf icon PDF 194 KB

To consider the proposed updates to the Council’s Constitution.

Minutes:

Councillor Phillip Dixon, Customer and Commercial Services and People Portfolio Holder presented the report. He emphasised how valuable the constitution was to the Council and added that in order to make the constitution more nimble and alongside the amendments set out in the report, it was proposed to set up a constitutional working group, with all Group Leaders invited.

 

Councillor Dixon proposed the recommendations set out in the report and was seconded by Councillor Helen Ladhams who reminded Members how important good governance and regular checks on the constitution were to the Council.

 

Member discussion raised initial concerns with the amendments and additional delegation to officers but had been alleviated by the proposal to set up a constitutional working group.

 

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

 

RESOLVED – That:-

 

(1)   the proposed amendments to the Constitution outlined in paragraphs 3.2, 3.3, 3.4 and 3.5 be noted;

 

(2)   that the Monitoring Officer will make any additional consequential changes to the constitution to take account of these proposals if agreed by Council be noted;

 

(3)   the establishment of a Constitutional Working Group to comprise of the Leaders of the Political Parties, Cllr Filmore and the Customer and Communities Portfolio Holder be agreed;

 

(4)   the Monitoring Officer be authorised, to make all necessary changes to the Constitution to bring into effect the changes to Job Titles relating to Customer Connect; and

 

(5)   all consultation responses received to date regarding amendments to the constitution will be considered by the Monitoring Officer and a further report will be brought to the March 2021 Council meeting be noted.

 

Note – In accordance with the Council’s Constitution, Part 4, Rule 8 (Rules of Procedure), a motion to continue the meeting past 9.30 p.m. was moved by the Chairman, seconded by Councillor Ladhams.

 

Note – It was moved by the Chairman to take a brief comfort break, returning at 9.30 p.m. and was seconded by Councillor Ladhams.

 

Note – The following Councillors left the meeting at 9.21 p.m. during the proposed adjournment:-

 

(1)   Councillor Ben Berry;

(2)   Councillor Roger Bingham;

(3)   Councillor Michael Cornah;

(4)   Councillor Hazel Hodgson;  

(5)   Councillor John Holmes; and

(6)   Councillor Helen Irving.

C/104

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 of the Council, Councillor Giles Archibald, addressed Council and began by thanking Members for their contributions over the last year and the commitment to both the role of Councillor and to the community. Councillor Archibald moved on and thanked both NHS and all other key workers who had put themselves at risk throughout the pandemic and informed Members that he planned to write a letter, to the NHS, third sector and charity workers, thanking them for their work during the pandemic.

 

Councillor Archibald referred to Local Government Reform and highlighted the ongoing change to how the Council worked, he encouraged Members to sign up for My Account and requested that Members, as leaders in the community, advised the public to do so as well. He moved on to thank all officers for their continued hard work.

 

The Leader recognised the strain, that the hard work throughout the pandemic had put on officers and highlighted that some projects had been reprioritised. He advised Members that the Council wished to curb the use of paper agendas and recommended using the corporate email network and Mod.Gov to receive both public and private agendas. The Leader recognised the time and resources taken up in producing paper copy agendas and added that Officers were no longer receiving paper copies. In concluding his address to Council, the Leader encouraged Members to contact officer to ensure that any remaining Locality Budgets were used before the deadline.

 

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

 

From Councillor Judy Filmore to Councillor Dyan Jones, Climate Emergency and Localism Portfolio Holder- I learnt on a recent Council training on Climate Change that one of the highest percentage of carbon emissions in the UK comes from transport at 28%. Our Council relies on charging private cars to use our car parks in order to provide a substantial income towards our services. Instead of reducing carbon emissions, it seems we are reliant on carbon emissions continuing at the same rate.  What are your thoughts on how we can as a Council resolve this conundrum?

 

Councillor Dyan Jones responded, highlighting that any reduction in vehicle emissions was dependent on the number of electric vehicles on the road which in turn relied on access to electric vehicles. She added that the Council’s current car parking fee structure was based on providing spaces to all vehicles.

 

Councillor Jones stated that an improvement in access to electric vehicles wasn’t in the Councils control but that the Council remained committed to providing electric vehicle charging points across the district. The Portfolio Holder highlighted the Government mandate to end the sale of Internal Combustion Engine Vehicles by the end of 2030 and the sale of Hybrid vehicles by 2035. She moved on and highlighted that an approximate 40,000,000 vehicles were on the road in the country, and with government advisors recommending a ban on new diesel lorries no later than  ...  view the full minutes text for item C/104

C/105

Minutes of Meetings

To receive Chairmen’s comments (if any notified) in respect of the minutes of the Committee meetings held between 12 October and 15 December 2020.

Minutes:

No comments or questions had been received in respect of the minutes of committee meetings held between 12 October and 15 December 2020.

C/106

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/107

Urgent Decisions

In accordance with the Constitution, to receive details of any urgent Executive Decisions taken, if any, since the last scheduled meeting of Council on 15 December 2020, and to consider any urgent non-executive decisions, if necessary.

Minutes:

No urgent Executive Decisions had been taken since that last meeting of the Council on 15 December 2020.

C/108

Emergency Delegated Executive Decisions pdf icon PDF 296 KB

To note the following Emergency Delegated Executive Decisions taken by the Chief Executive in accordance with the Leader’s decision noted by Cabinet at CEX/104 (2019/20):-

Additional documents:

Minutes:

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

 

RESOLVED – That the following Emergency Delegated Executive Decisions taken by the Chief Executive, in accordance with the Leaders decision noted by Cabinet at CEX/104 (2019/20), be noted:-

 

(1)        013 31-12-20 Local Restrictions Business Grants; and

 

(2)        014 18-01-21 Business Support Grants (National Restrictions January).

 

Appendix 1 pdf icon PDF 103 KB

Appendix 2 pdf icon PDF 406 KB