Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - Deanes. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services Team 

Link: Video Recording

Items
No. Item

82/18

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Bowyer, Capon and McCormick.

83/18

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

Councillor Reid declared an interest in relation to agenda item 12 (Proposals for the Policy and Budget Framework), in that she owned a vacant property.

84/18

Office of Deputy Mayor for the year 2019/20

To note that Councillor Still has deferred the position of Deputy Mayor for the 2019/20 year. 

 

Members are asked to note that Councillor Tilbury is the next senior Member who has indicated his willingness to take up the role.

Minutes:

Resolved:  To note that the position of Deputy Mayor for the 2019/20 municipal year remains vacant.

85/18

Minutes of the meeting held on 13 December 2018 pdf icon PDF 295 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 13 December 2018, as amended and recirculated immediately prior to the meeting, were confirmed as an accurate record and signed by the Mayor.

86/18

Announcements

Minutes:

The Mayor announced that his Charity Concert – Travel the World, would be held on 2 March 2019 and his charity lunch would be held on 27 March 2019.

87/18

Questions from members of the public

To receive and answer any questions from the public.

(Questions must be received in writing by Democratic Services no later than noon on Tuesday 26 February 2019)

Minutes:

From:        Sheila Peacock – Basingstoke Transition Network

 

Question

Basingstoke Transition Network asks Councillor Hayley Eachus, as portfolio holder for the environment, how the Council will deliver its commitments on climate change without funding for a full-time equivalent Climate Change Officer. At present the post is part-time because it was held by two job-sharers, one of whom has left and not been replaced.

 

The 2018 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states baldly that global warming must be kept below 1.5 deg C above present levels to avoid the most harmful effects, and that political action at all levels is needed. The Government’s Clean Growth Strategy (April 2018) says the country needs to de-carbonise its economy; but that needs to work to local level.  The Council has already signed the Climate Local Commitment; but real reductions in CO2 output need lifestyle change. This is where the Climate Change Officer comes in.   2017 Council policy on Climate Change, Pledge 2, says "The Council will support and encourage residents, community groups and businesses to reduce their carbon emissions across the Borough", so there is work in Green Week, home energy efficiency, low-carbon planning for the new housing estates, transport strategy, and fulfilling commitments in the Local Plan. Also, in waste and recycling, incinerating plastic is adding fossil-fuel CO2 to the atmosphere, so the Climate Change Officer should help increase recycling rates and reduce wasteful use of plastic, and work to attract recycling businesses to the town’s industrial estates, making recycling cheaper for the Council.

 

For all these reasons we believe that the Climate Change Officer role should be expanded and ask why it has not been made up to a whole FTE (or more) in the 2019 budget. How will the Council show significant commitment to reducing climate change while making a 50% cut in the Climate Change Officer post?

 

Answer – Cabinet Member for Regulatory Services and the Environment

 

The council is absolutely committed to continuing with the delivery of the climate change strategy.

 

As part of the work to develop Horizon 2050, local residents told us how important it is to them to collectively focus efforts on environmental sustainability, improving air quality and investing in renewable energy sources, green spaces and green infrastructure.

 

We recognise the importance of this area of work but also that it is a cross-cutting theme across the organisation, rather than the responsibility of any single post. There are a wide range of internal services engaged in delivery, who are each leading on their contribution to the strategy, including the efficiency of council owned assets, considering options to reduce emissions and improve air quality, developing community based initiatives such as LED Light installation and initiatives to increase cycling and improve access.  In addition, the waste contract places specific requirements on the contractor to help increase recycling within the borough.  We have a whole waste team of officers that also work alongside me in relation to recycling.

 

We are currently pulling together information on  ...  view the full minutes text for item 87/18

88/18

Petitions

To receive petitions.

(Notice of petitions must be received in writing by Democratic Services, no later than noon on Tuesday 26 February 2019)

Minutes:

No petitions were received.

89/18

Resignations and appointments pdf icon PDF 98 KB

a) to receive resignations from Committees and to make any necessary re-appointments

 

 

b) to receive resignations from Outside Bodies and to make any re-appointments and (ii) fill any existing vacancies.

 

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

1)            That Councillor Reid be re-appointed to serve on Kala the Arts.

 

2)            That Councillor S Bound be appointed to fill the vacancy on Relate North Hampshire.

90/18

Calendar of Meetings 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 44 KB

In view of the delay of the all-out council elections, the calendar of meetings approved by Council on 18 October 2018 has been reviewed.

 

Council are asked to agree the following changes:

 

Annual (Mayor Making) Council moved from 23 May 2019 to 9 May 2019

Additional Cabinet meeting - 14 May 2019

Additional Development Control Committee - 15 May 2019

 

All other dates remain unchanged.

Minutes:

Resolved: That the amended calendar of meetings be approved.

91/18

Horizon 2050: The journey to 2050 pdf icon PDF 734 KB

 

Recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019

 

That Council adopt the Horizon 2050 vision ahead of adoption by Basingstoke Area Strategic Partnership in March 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council moved the recommendation, seconded by Councillor Rhatigan.

 

Resolved:    

 

That the Horizon 2050 vision be adopted, ahead of adoption by Basingstoke Area Strategic Partnership in March 2019.

92/18

Property Investment Strategy - Annual Property Plan 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 412 KB

Recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019.

 

That Council agree that if necessary investment funds available for the Property Investment Strategy can be increased by up to £5 million funded from property receipts.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Property and Development moved the recommendation and explained that of the £30 million investment allocation, £5 million remained for investment.  A further £5 million was sought if required, should a suitable opportunity for investment be identified.  Additional investment funds would be reinstated by the sale of existing poorly performing assets.

 

The recommendation was seconded by Councillor Tate.

 

During debate some members expressed views which opposed the increase in funds whilst others considered it sensible to have funds available should an investment opportunity be identified.  Some members raised concern regarding the lack of residential investment opportunities.

 

The Cabinet Member for Property and Development responded to the concerns and comments raised and suggested a report be provided to the Audit and Accounts Committee in relation to residential investment opportunities.

 

Resolved:

 

That if necessary, investment funds available for the Property Investment Strategy can be increased by up to £5 million funded from Property receipts.

93/18

Proposals for the Policy and Budget Framework - 2019/20 Budget Report pdf icon PDF 6 MB

Report of the Head of Financial Services (S151 Officer) and recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report which provided a summary of the Cabinet’s revenue and capital budget proposals for 2019/20, provided the Chief Finance Officers statutory statements on the robustness of the estimates, adequacy of reserves and estimate of business rate income for the Business Rate Retention Scheme and set out the formal 2019/20 Council Tax Resolution and Council Tax charges.

 

The Leader of the Council moved the recommendation, seconded by Councillor Tate.

 

Group leaders were invited to give their annual budget speeches to the council which covered a wide range of issues.

 

Following a full debate on the budget, a recorded vote was taken on the recommendation.

 

Resolved:  That Council

 

note:

 

1)            The Chief Finance Officer’s (Head of Financial Services) statutory report regarding the robustness of the estimates and the adequacy of reserves detailed in section 12 of the report.

 

2)            That £394,700 of 2018/19 budget carry-forwards have been included in the 2019/20 budget for the Wordpress Website, Residents Survey, Local Plan, Smart City Initiatives and Leisure Park Development and this will reduce the 2018/19 budget accordingly.

 

3)            That the Head of Financial Services on the 3 January 2019 calculated the Council Tax base for the whole council area at 65,768.8 Band D equivalents and for dwellings in those parts of its area to which a parish precept relates as per Appendix 10 of the report.

 

4)            The county, police and fire authority precepts detailed in Appendix 11 of the report.

 

5)            That as the billing authority, the Council has not been notified by any major precepting authority that its relevant basic amount of Council Tax for 2019/20 is excessive and the billing authority is therefore not required to hold a referendum, in accordance with section 52ZK of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

 

6)            The risks and sensitivities within the financial forecasts highlighted in section 3 of Appendix 7 of the report.

 

7)            That the final Local Government Grant Settlement for 2019/20 is £2.133 million of New Homes Bonus Grant, nil Revenue Support Grant and the requirement to pay a tariff of £170,000 through the retained business rates mechanism has now been removed.

 

agree:

 

8)            That for the purposes of section 35 (2) (d) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, any expenses incurred by the Borough Council in the financial year 2019/20 in performing functions in a part of the district which elsewhere in the district are performed by a Parish Council, shall not be special expenses of the Borough Council.

 

9)            That its relevant basic amount of Council Tax for 2019/20 (£121.42 at Band D) reflects a £5.00 (4.29%) increase which is not excessive in accordance with principles approved under Section 52ZB of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

 

approve:

 

10)         The net Council Tax requirement of £7.986 million for 2019/20 and the revenue estimates and contributions to and from reserves as summarised in Appendix 1 of the report and supported by the detailed supporting budget papers.

 

11)         The Medium Term Financial Forecast, as  ...  view the full minutes text for item 93/18

94/18

Treasury Management Strategy 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 301 KB

Report of the Head of Financial Services (Section 151 Officer) and recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Finance, Service Delivery and Improvement introduced the report which set out the Treasury Management Policy Statement and proposed Treasury Management Strategy for 2019/20 which set the framework and limits for the delivery of the council’s Treasury Management Strategy.

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance, Service Delivery and Improvement moved the recommendation, seconded by Councillor Izett.

 

Resolved:

 

1)        To note:

 

                 i.             That the Treasury Management Policy Statement (set out in Appendix 1 of the report) remains unchanged.

 

               ii.             The new Treasury Management Risk Indicators set out in section 5 of Appendix 2 of the report).

 

              iii.             The Chief Finance Officer (Head of Finance) comments on the level of risk set out in Section 13 of the report.

 

2)        That the Treasury Management Strategy for 2019/20 (set out in Appendix 2 of the report) be approved.

95/18

Capital Strategy and Investment Strategy (Non-Treasury) for 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 319 KB

 

Report of the Head of Financial Services (Section 151 Officer) and recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Finance, Service Delivery and Improvement introduced the report which set out the new Capital Strategy for 2019/20 and Investment Strategy (Non-Treasury) for 2019/20.

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance, Service Delivery and Improvement moved the recommendation, seconded by Councillor Izett.

 

Resolved:

 

1)            That the Chief Finance Officer (Head of Financial Services and Section 151 Officer) comments on the level of risk set out in Section 7 of the report be noted.

 

2)            That the Capital Strategy for 2019/20 (Appendix 1) be approved, which includes:

 

i.          the Prudential Indicators for 2018/19 to 2021/22

ii.         the Authorised Limit for External Debt of £50 million for 2019/20 (as set out in the prudential indicators) and

iii.        the Annual Minimum Revenue Provision Statement for 2019/20

 

3)            That the Investment Strategy (Non-Treasury) for 2019/20 (Appendix 2 of the report) be approved.

96/18

Notices of Motion

None

Minutes:

There were no Motions.

97/18

Questions to Chair of Cabinet and/or a committee

To receive questions from members in relation to the minutes of the meetings detailed below:

 

Committee

Meeting Date

Cabinet

4 December 2018

Audit and Accounts Committee

10 December 2018

Development Control Committee

12 December 2018

Council

13 December 2018

Community Environment Partnerships Committee

19 December 2018

Development Control Committee

9 January 2019

Economic Planning Housing Committee

10 January 2019

Cabinet

15 January 2019

Scrutiny Committee

22 January 2019

Audit and Accounts Committee

28 January 2019

Community Environment Partnerships

30 January 2019

Cabinet

5 February 2019

 

 

Minutes:

There were no questions in relation to the meetings listed below:

 

Committee

Meeting Date

Cabinet

4 December 2018

Audit and Accounts Committee

10 December 2018

Development Control Committee

12 December 2018

Council

13 December 2018

Community Environment Partnerships Committee

19 December 2018

Development Control Committee

9 January 2019

Economic Planning Housing Committee

10 January 2019

Cabinet

15 January 2019

Scrutiny Committee

22 January 2019

Audit and Accounts Committee

28 January 2019

Community Environment Partnerships

30 January 2019

Cabinet

5 February 2019

 

98/18

Questions from Members of the Council on notice

Minutes:

 

Question

 

From:            Councillor M Westbrook

 

Can the Portfolio Holder for Regulatory Services and the Environment please explain the rationale for choosing the site at ‘Land East of Ringway West’ as a location to install a new battery storage facility? The land in question is included within the SHELAA, however it notes that ‘Due to the elevated position of the site, it is important that any scheme is of a high quality design due to its prominence’.

 

The leasing out of land to a company to create income for the council is to be welcomed to support services for our residents and we all want to see new energy saving technologies brought to Basingstoke, but does the Portfolio Holder not agree that installing what could be 4 metre high shipping containers in a prominent position on one of the main gateways to our Town, may be seen as inappropriate in this location and possibly contrary to our Local Plan?

 

Answer:        Cabinet Member for Regulatory Services and the Environment

 

In 2017, council officers were approached by Ecotricity, a company with strong green credentials and who were seeking to identify a suitable site upon which to locate a battery storage facility; and which was considered by the company to have positive features in its ability to support supply to the grid but in a method which would have an environmentally low impact.

 

Officers met with Ecotricty and some possible sites were tabled which included the Thornycroft site. This site was considered by Ecotricity as likely to be the most suitable, however they advised that they were also considering other sites in private ownership.  There was  acknowledgement by officers and Ecotricity that there  would need to be significant research and detailed feasibility work, of matters relating to exact siting, container design, access, noise, environmental and landscape considerations.

 

This is council owned land if we did not want it to get as far as a planning application it wouldn’t.  Further, as the site was within the SHELAA, it was acknowledged that the remainder of the site (the Battery facility only occupying a relatively small portion of the total site area) might have housing or other suitable use potential.

 

Officers and Ecotricity did discuss, informally, possible occupational terms  which would of course require approval via the council’s standing orders and delegation procedures.

 

However having said all that in 2018, Ecotricity advised officers  it was unlikely  they would consider the Thornycroft site further as it was no longer their preferred site option, to date we have not had their unequivocal confirmation that they no longer wish to pursue the Thornycroft site. Their final position is awaited but officers views are that they will unlikely pursue the Thornycroft site.

 

If any planning application ended up coming forward it would be premature to second guess the outcome of such a future application.  Any application would be assessed against the councils local plan which is supportive of low carbon initiatives and sets out the criteria to be applied  ...  view the full minutes text for item 98/18