Venue: Virtual Meeting - Zoom Webinar. View directions
Contact: Democratic Services Team
Apologies for absence and substitutions
Cllr Capon was replaced by Cllr N Robinson.
Declarations of interest
There were no declarations of interest.
To consider any items of business, other than those shown on this agenda and which, by reason of special circumstances to be stated at the meeting, in the opinion of the Chairman, should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency.
There were no urgent items.
Minutes of the meeting held on 22nd September
The minutes of the meeting held on 22nd September were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.
Informal Update from Basingstoke Voluntary Action
In attendance: Carol Bode, BVA’s Chair of Trustees
At the invitation of the committee, Carol Bode will be attending the meeting to provide an informal update as to how BVA feel that the council has supported/or not the sector during the current pandemic.
The Chair of Trustees for Basingstoke Voluntary Action, Carol Bode addressed the committee.
It was reported that BVA had been working closely with the council since March to tackle the issues arising from the Covid pandemic.
It was noted that since March, over 30 community hubs had been co-ordinated and set up throughout the borough.
The council ran the referral helpline until August, but this was taken over by BVA upon receipt of lottery funding.
Councillors were encouraged to view the BVA Covid Impact Report.
Carol reported that the relationship with the council had been particularly strong throughout the crisis and that communication had been strengthened between the two.
In response to committee questions, the following clarification was provided:
· BVA had responded to member’s needs as requested and required, both rural and in the town;
· Carol suggested that BVA needed to research and learn why some of the community hubs were extremely busy and others not so;
· It was agreed that it would be beneficial to harness the experience of responding to the emergency and to create some form of procedure and contact directory to assist in any future incidents; and
· BVA’s priorities for the future were to continue making connections with the voluntary sector; investigating how to better share and identify needs of local residents; and maintaining sustainability.
The committee thanked Carol for the update.
Update from Lead Member of the s106 Task & Finish Group
Contact: Cllr Paul Miller
Councillor Paul Miller will provide a verbal update on the work to date of the s106 Task and Finish group.
Cllr Miller updated the committee on the work of the s106 Task and Finish group.
Prior to the meeting, Cllr Miller had circulated a revised s106 flowchart and spreadsheet itemising s106 monies held for each ward, including monies spent and those allocated but unspent .
The Executive Director of Corporate Services reported that the flowchart did not represent the current procedures in place and would need to be updated and amended.
It was suggested and agreed that an introduction to s106 and CIL monies document be produced in conjunction with the flowchart, particularly for the benefit of new members, or those with little planning experience.
The Executive Director of Corporate Services informed the committee that in addition to the task and finish group work, the Head of Planning, Sustainability and Infrastructure was conducting a review to ensure that processes were in place to accurately identify all s106 monies and to ensure that appropriate use was then made of them.
Cllr Miller reported that following a further meeting of the task and finish group he would aim to produce a s106 guidance paper for circulation to all members in early January 2021.
Contact Officer: Sue Cuerden
The report presents Scrutiny with Cabinet’s proposals for the 2021/22 Budget and Revised Medium Term Financial Strategy for 2021/22 to 2024/25 which will be subject to the required consultation period. This forms a key element of the Policy and Budget Framework.
The report attached to this paper includes an executive summary of the medium term financial forecast, the impact of Covid-19 on the council’s finances and the Cabinet’s proposals to bring the financial situation into a balanced position subject to the announcement of the Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement.
The Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement introduced the Draft Proposals for 2021/22 Budget and Revised Medium Term Financial Strategy for 2021/22 to 2024/25.
It was emphasised that the paper contained proposals and not fixed decisions, and that the member’s views and comments were perceived as vital.
The Leader of the Council commented that final decisions would only be made at conclusion of the budget consultation.
The Chair invited visiting member of the public, Mr Duncan-Jordan to speak regarding the item.
Mr Duncan-Jordan expressed concern at the proposal to cut the current number of sports attendants from six, to one mobile attendant. It was suggested that the role would prove difficult both logistically and in terms of workload for one person to cover the 6 different sports pavilions.
The Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement commented that there was a good online booking system for sports facilities and that not every instance or query would require onsite assistance. The Cabinet Member agreed to review the proposal and to consult with the relevant Portfolio Holder in the light of the concerns raised.
The following comments were made in relation to the format of the report:
· It was requested that full numbers be included within Appendix 1 rather than rounding down to zero; and
· It was suggested that the Equality Impact Assessment within Appendix 2 was of little assistance in interpreting and deciding on the proposals as they contained no quantitativeinformation. It was requested that this be amended.
The committee discussed the paper, making the following comments in relation to proposals made:
· Concern was expressed at the removal of free parking for disabled badge holders. The Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement acknowledged that the proposal was one of the most challenging, but had been introduced as a means of tackling disabled access abuse. Members were not convinced by the theory and instead suggested introduction of a time limit for disabled badge holder parking, similar to that imposed by other boroughs and counties;
· It was suggested that replacement of the shuttle bus service with a park and ride, and garden waste proposals were at odds with the council’s climate improvement commitments;
· Removal of concession for over 75’s residents parking permits was criticised as being ‘mean spirited’ given the £2,000 cost saving;
· It was suggested that removal of subsidy for pest control fees would adversely impact those that could least afford it;
· It was suggested that introduction of charges for rural car parks would drive residents to park instead on the road;
· It was suggested that reducing the grass cutting grant for parish councils would unfairly impact parishes and have the effect of being a secondary tax on rural residents. The Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement suggested that the proposal was not an attempt to pass on extra costs to parishes, but was a generic change which would have a proportionate impact on the parish grant, which councils could either chose to top up or to cut ... view the full minutes text for item 30/20
Review of Work Programme
The committee reviewed and agreed its work programme.