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  • Agenda

    (Reconvened 22 October 2020), Council - Thursday, 29 October 2020 6.00 pm

    Venue: Skype video conference

    Contact: Gill Scott  Email: g.scott@spelthorne.gov.uk

    Link: Members of the public may hear the proceedings by tuning into the Council's YouTube channel

    Items
    No. Item

    1.

    Apologies for absence

    To receive any apologies for non-attendance.

    2.

    Disclosures of Interest

    To receive any disclosures of interest from those Councillors present at this reconvened meeting, who were not present at the meeting held on 22 October 2020, in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct for Members.

    3.

    Motions

    To consider those motions received from Councillors in accordance with Standing Order 19 which were adjourned from the meeting held on 22 October 2020.

     

    Motion 3

     

    “This Council notes: The publication by Government of the White Paper, Planning for the Future on 6 August 2020, which set out proposals on reforms to the planning process for the future.

     

    This Council believes:

    1.    That existing planning procedures, as currently administered by our own team, allow for local democratic control over future development, and give local people a say in planning proposals that affect them.

    2.    That proposals for automatic rights to build in growth areas, and increase permitted development rights, risk unregulated growth and unsustainable communities.

    3.    That local communities must be in the driving seat on shaping the future of their communities, and local determination of the planning framework and planning applications play an important part in this process.

     

    And this Council resolves to:

    1.    Take part in the consultation on the planning proposals, and to make representations against the proposals as outlined in this motion.

    2.    Write to and lobby our Member of Parliament, urging him to oppose these proposals and to circulate the reply to members.

    3.    Highlight its concerns over these proposals with the public and local residents.

     

    This Council is concerned that the proposals seek to:

    1. Reduce or remove the right of residents to object to applications near them.

    2. Grant automatic rights for developers to build on land identified for growth.

    3. Remove section 106 payments for infrastructure and their replacement with a national levy.

     

    The vast majority of planning applications are given the go ahead by local authority planning committees, with permission granted to around 9 out of 10 applications.
    And research by the Local Government Association has said that there are existing planning permissions for more than one million homes that have not yet been started.

     

    This Council further notes: The Royal Institute for British Architects called the proposals shameful and which will do almost nothing to guarantee delivery of affordable, well-designed and sustainable homes. RIBA also said that proposals could lead to the next generation of slum housing. The reforms are opposed by the all-party Local Government Association, currently led by Conservative Councillors.”

    Proposed by Councillor B.B. Spoor

    Seconded by Councillor T. Fidler

    Motion 4 - disallowed

     

    Motion 5


    "According to the Royal College of Physicians an estimated 40,000 deaths a year in the UK are linked to air pollution, with engine idling contributing to this. Engine idling can release 150 balloons worth of exhaust emissions in just one minute.

     

    As stated by the RAC “(t)hese fumes contain a number of harmful gasses including carbon dioxide, which is bad for the environment and contributes towards climate change, as well as a range of other harmful gasses including nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons which are linked to asthma and other lung diseases.”

     

    As a Council that wishes to improve air quality across the borough, this council herewith decides to:-

     

    a)  ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

    4.

    Questions on Ward Issues pdf icon PDF 183 KB

    The Leader, or his nominee, to answer a question from Councillor S. Dunn on an issue in her Ward, adjourned from the meeting held on 22 October 2020. The written response provided in advance of the adjourned meeting is attached.

     

    Question from Councillor S. Dunn

     

    “Sunbury Leisure Centre Pool has been closed indefinitely since Lockdown.  We have been liaising with Officers to ensure that residents can be informed of updates and we understand more information from a structural report will be due in early November. Once the report establishes the findings and exact costings, to return Sunbury Leisure Centre Pool to full operation, a timeline can be published.

     

    In the meantime, can this Administration agree with us that Sunbury Leisure Centre is an important Community asset and commit to investment to reopen the facility as early as possible including future proofing to improve the Centre for many years to come”

    5.

    General questions pdf icon PDF 389 KB

    The Leader, or his nominee, to answer questions from Councillors on matters affecting the Borough, adjourned from the meeting held on 22 October 2020.

    The written responses provided in advance of the adjourned meeting are attached.

     

    Question 1 – Councillor Robin Sider BEM

     

    “Will the Leader and members of the council join me in congratulating the Council on being awarded the  ‘Silver Award ‘ as part of  the Ministry of Defence Employers Recognition Scheme, an award for organisations that pledge, demonstrate and advocate support to the Armed Forces community, and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant. And will the council also note  the hard work undertaken by Kamal Mehmood, the council’s Armed Forces Partnership Manager and the Council’s  Communication team in order to achieve such a high and prestigious award.”

     

    Question 2 – Councillor Robin Sider BEM

     

    “The annual South and South east in Bloom competition is designed to encourage councils, residents and businesses to work together to improve the local environment and make towns and cities greener and cleaner for everyone. That said, will the Leader and all members of this council join me in congratulating Head of Neighborhood Services and her staff on achieving  a magnificent result by way of   Staines, Ashford and Sunbury cemeteries  all being  awarded gold, and the  Sunbury Walled Garden  also striking  gold in the Small Park category.”

     

    Question 3 – Councillor Dick Smith-Ainsley

     

    “In the announcements made by the Leader at his first council meeting on 30th July he stated the following regarding Task Groups:-

     “Full details of this group (a Multi-Party Task Group on Governance) and all the other Task Group will be published in the next few days.”

     

    Since then all efforts to find out the details of these Task Groups has been met with a wall of silence. 

     

    Why, two and a half months after he promised the details is the Leader deliberately withholding this information?” 

     

    Question 4 – Councillor Dick Smith-Ainsley

     

    “Leader of Spelthorne Borough Council Cllr John Boughtflower has made various statements which have been published on the council web site.  

     

    He stated on 17th August "When elected as leader, I promised that there would be an increase in cross-party working and, just over a month on, this administration is demonstrating that actions speak louder than words.”

    At the same time the Deputy Leader, Cllr McIlroy stated with regard to the New Local Plan working party "Not only will this be the first of the new administration's promised cross-party engagement groups but, as it regards the New Local Plan which is so important to residents, it is arguably one of the most significant working groups for our Borough. This group will lead the way to prove co-operative working over politics for the benefit of our residents. 

     

    The emphasis on “co-operative working over politics for the benefit of our residents”  is significant.

     

    Can the Leader explain why he has decided to deliberately exclude every single member of the United Spelthorne Group, which is the second largest  ...  view the full agenda text for item 5.

    6.

    Exempt Business

    To move the exclusion of the Press/Public for the following item, in view of the likely disclosure of exempt information within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985 and by the Local Government (Access to information) (Variation) Order 2006.

     

    7.

    Recommendations of the Cabinet pdf icon PDF 108 KB

    To consider the recommendations of the Cabinet from its meeting on 23 September 2020 in relation to the following two items:

    7a

    Replacement of Spelthorne Leisure Centre pdf icon PDF 224 KB

    Reason for partial exemption

    Appendix 5 to the report contains exempt information within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985 and by the Local Government (Access to information) (Variation) Order 2006 Paragraph 3 – Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information) and in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information because, disclosure to the public would prejudice the financial position of the authority in the tendering process for a developer to build the new leisure centre, allowing tenderers to know the Council’s estimated costs and budget for this development.  This in turn prejudices the Council by (i) distorting the tendering process and (ii) prejudicing the opportunity for the Council to get the most financially advantageous deal for building the new centre.

     

    Additional documents:

    7b

    Exempt Report - Victory Place Construction Costs - Key Decision

    Reason for exemption

    This report contains exempt information within the meaning of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985 and by the Local Government (Access to information) (Variation) Order 2006 Paragraph 3 – Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information) and in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information because, disclosure to the public would prejudice the financial position of the authority in agreeing final financial and contract terms with the preferred bidder. If the bids were to be made public then it may make the Council vulnerable to a renegotiation with the preferred bidder.