Agenda, decisions and minutes

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Contact: Democratic Services Team 

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Items
No. Item

19/20

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

20/20

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

21/20

Urgent matters pdf icon PDF 321 KB

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.

 

Decision:

To note the mandatory Test and Trace Isolation Payments and the Local Restrictions Support Grant.

 

To grant delegated powers to the Executive Director for Corporate Services (S151 Officer) to approve the discretionary scheme for the Test and Trace Isolation Payments in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement.

 

To grant delegated powers to the Executive Director for Corporate Services (S151 Officer) to approve the discretionary scheme for Local Restrictions Support Grant in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement.

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council proposed for consideration the Covid-19: Test and Trace Support Payments and Local Restrictions Grant Report, deemed urgent due to its importance and the short notice at which government guidance had been received.

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement introduced the report which outlined details of the government scheme and proposed structure of the council’s administration of the scheme.

 

Visiting speaker Councillor McCormick addressed the cabinet and queried the delay between the government announcing the scheme on 20th September and the paper’s submission, particularly given that eligibility for payment applied from 28th September. He further requested clarity in relation to the process for members referring cases and enquiries.

 

It was clarified that whilst the announcement was made on 20th September, guidance was only received on the 1st October, with specific local authority funding clarification on 2nd October. 

 

It was further clarified that access to the schemes would be via a direct link on the website with online forms and information, and provision for one to one assistance if required.

 

Resolved:     that Cabinet

 

1)    Note the mandatory Test and Trace Isolation Payments and the Local Restrictions Support Grant.

 

2)    Grant delegated powers to the Executive Director for Corporate Services (S151 Officer) to approve the discretionary scheme for the Test and Trace Isolation Payments in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement.

 

3)    Grant delegated powers to the Executive Director for Corporate Services (S151 Officer) to approve the discretionary scheme for Local Restrictions Support Grant in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Service Improvement.

22/20

Minutes of the meeting held on 8 September 2020 pdf icon PDF 233 KB

The Chair will move that the minutes of the meeting be signed as a correct record. The only part of the minutes that can be discussed is their accuracy.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 8 September 2020 were confirmed as an accurate record and signed by the chair.

23/20

Economic Recovery Framework pdf icon PDF 605 KB

This report and appendix summarises the work carried out to date to support the emergency economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recommendation from the Leader of the Council

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the approach to economic recovery as outlined in the framework is approved.

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report summarising the work carried out to date to support the emergency economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic and which outlined a framework and approach to economic recovery.

 

The Leader of the Council explained that the report had already been reviewed and noted by Scrutiny Committee, and emphasised the importance of all understanding what the council could do to aid economic recovery within the borough and to assist local businesses to become agile and resilient.

 

Resolved:  that the approach to economic recovery as outlined in the framework is approved.

 

Reasons for the decision

 

Although the borough has a diverse economy, which will provide a certain degree of resilience, the COVID-19 pandemic will have a detrimental economic and social impact. Further research and engagement will be required to gain a deep understanding of the extent of the impact on the local economy. Ultimately the council, working with a wide range of partners, will need to adopt a flexible and proactive approach to supporting local economic recovery while looking to the longer-term and seizing the opportunities this crisis will present to refresh its overall economic growth strategy.

24/20

Planning White Paper - Consultation Response pdf icon PDF 384 KB

The Government is consulting on major reforms to the English planning system through Planning for the Future White Paper August 2020.  MHCLG are seeking comments on their three pillars of reform, with the deadline for response being 29 October 2020.  Cabinet are requested to consider the paper and agree the proposal to respond to the consultation.

Recommendation from the Cabinet Member for Planning, Infrastructure and Natural Environment

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

1)    Agree to prepare a consultation response to the MHCLG’s Planning for the Future White Paper 2020. 

 

2)    Agree that the Portfolio Holder for Planning and Infrastructure can finalise the Borough Council’s submission to government following consideration by Cabinet of the consultation Planning for the Future White Paper 2020.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Planning, Infrastructure and Natural Environment introduced the report which summarised government proposals for major reforms to the English planning system through Planning for the Future White Paper August 2020. 

It was noted that the Economic, Planning and Housing Committee had already reviewed the paper, where it had received a generally negative reception.

Visiting member Councillor Tilbury addressed the Cabinet and raised concern at the apparent dilution in importance of Neighbourhood Plans within the White Paper. 

Visiting member Cllr McCormick addressed the Cabinet and agreed with Cllr Tilbury’s comment. He urged that the council’s response include a request for increased controls in relation to standards of permitted development and the conversion of offices to residential flats.

He further requested that the Cabinet Member for Planning, Infrastructure Natural Environment’s response reflect the borough’s need for affordable housing and specifically oppose the proposal of a temporary lifting of the small site threshold for affordable housing from 40 to 50.

The Cabinet Member for Planning, Infrastructure and Natural Environment suggested that there were varying views in relation to permitted developments throughout the council, however acknowledged that there needed to be enhanced powers for local planning authorities to impose conditions to ensure sufficient quality and standards. 

It was agreed that the proposed threshold in relation to smaller sites would be opposed.

The Cabinet Member for Homes and Families suggested that the White Paper failed to address two important issues; the lack of government funding for planning, and powers for compelling developers to build, particularly given the 10,000 extant permissions currently within the borough.

The Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Property expressed concern at the proposed reduction in local influence over local planning applications, and the shifting of risk for financing of infrastructure from developers to local councils.

Resolved:     that Cabinet

1)    Agree to prepare a consultation response to the MHCLG’s Planning for the Future White Paper 2020. 

 

2)    Agree that the Portfolio Holder for Planning, Infrastructure and Natural Environment can finalise the Borough Council’s submission to government following consideration by Cabinet of the consultation: Planning for the Future White Paper 2020.

 

Reason for the decision:

The Cabinet can submit a response to the Planning for the Future White Paper separate to any technical submission from officers.  The Cabinet response has the option to be flexible, and focus on the proposed reforms of local interest, highlight any key issues, or comment on the proposed delivery of the reforms.