Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Thursday, 14 October 2021 7.00 pm

Venue: Premier Suite, South Entrance, Kempton Park Racecourse, Staines Road East, Sunbury-on-Thames, TW16 5AQ

Contact: Gary Lelliott  Email: g.lelliott@spelthorne.gov.uk

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

Items
No. Item

439/21

Disclosures of Interest

To receive any disclosures of interest from Councillors in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct for Members.

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest.

440/21

Minutes pdf icon PDF 418 KB

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the Council meeting held on 15 July 2021.

Minutes:

The minutes of the Council meeting held on 15 July 2021 were agreed as a correct record.

 

441/21

MoD Employer Recognition Gold Award

Canon Peter Bruinvels will be invited to present the Armed Forces Covenant, Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award to Councillor R Sider BEM.

Minutes:

Canon Peter Bruinvels presented the Armed Forces Covenant, Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award to Councillor R Sider BEM.

442/21

Presentation of Chaplain's badge

To present the Mayor’s Chaplain with the badge of office.

Minutes:

The Mayor’s Chaplain was presented with the badge of office by his Worshipful the Mayor of Spelthorne Borough Council, Councillor I Harvey.

443/21

Announcements from the Mayor

To receive any announcements from the Mayor.

Minutes:

The Mayor made the following announcements:

 

Due to the volume of business tonight I will keep my Mayor’s announcements brief.

 

The Mayoress and I have attended numerous events since the last Council meeting in July, and a list of these has been published.

 

Of particular note is that the weekend before last the Mayoress and I attended the annual twinning event with our French twin town of Melun, for their “Brie Fete”. We were joined by representatives of their other twin districts from Stuttgart, Germany and Crema, Italy. It was an excellent but busy weekend and we were made to feel very welcome. Whilst there we all signed a “reaffirming of friendship” accord between the districts, but given that at the time French fishermen were threatening to blockade our return journey, we were slightly sceptical. Overall, it was a thoroughly enjoyable weekend and it is a shame that more Members did not join us; hopefully Cllr Doran, in her Mayoral year will lead a larger contingent.

 

I wish to thank the Mayors’ Trustees for confirming the prime Mayoral charities are East to West and Ashford Youth Club which are entirely consistent with my previously announced focus on young people and their mental health. We can now finalise fund raising for these. I should also point out that we will also be hosting events in support of those suffering and their families, that may be practical, confidential and supportive rather than just find raising. I have support from education and other professionals for these practical initiatives.

 

In the next week or two we also expect to announce the date of the Mayors’ Ball and the Mayors Church Service, which will have a Christmas theme.

 

We are also finalising dates for a pre Christmas film show at Shepperton Studios and a visit to the James Bond set at Pinewood in the spring.

 

I would ask that as many as possible support these events for these worthy causes.

 

 

 

444/21

Motion to Replace the Leader and Deputy Leader of the Council

The following motion has been submitted in accordance with Standing Order 16:

 

“This Motion proposes:

 

1.    That this Council removes Cllr. Nichols as Leader and Cllr Sexton as Deputy Leader of the Council forthwith; and

 

2.    That following the removal of Cllr Nichols as Leader and Cllr Sexton as Deputy Leader, Cllr Boughtflower be appointed Leader, and Cllr Mooney be appointed Deputy leader and as per the constitution they will become chair and vice-chair of the policy and resources committee respectively.”

 

Proposer: Councillor J Boughtflower

Seconder: Councillor S Mooney

Supported by (in accordance with Standing Order 20.1): Councillor R Sider, Councillor T Harman, Councillor N Islam, Councillor R Chandler, Councillor M Madams, Councillor V Leighton, Councillor R Barratt, Councillor C Barratt, Councillor N Gething and Councillor M Attewell.

Minutes:

This motion was withdrawn prior to the commencement of the meeting.

445/21

Announcements from the Leader

To receive any announcements from the Leader.

Minutes:

The Leader made the following announcements:

 

In August the Council announced that the inquiry into the Waterfront Hotel scheme would commence in September after the appointment of an independent investigator via the Local Government Association. We can now update that, Yinka Owa, the appointed investigator has already completed her background work and is now at the stage where she will begin interviewing the initial list of individuals that she has selected. As the inquiry continues Yinka will be seeking wider input from interested persons. Yinka Owa, has over 22 years' experience of working in Local Government legal and governance roles including being a Director of Law and Governance and Monitoring Officer for a London Borough.

 

Following the decision of the Community Wellbeing and Housing Committee, Spelthorne will be welcoming up to five families under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy scheme, providing medium-term support and accommodation for people who had been working with UK forces in Afghanistan. The accommodation will be sourced through private landlords and the scheme is being fully funded by Central Government.

 

The Mayor officially opened the White House, the Council’s newhomeless facility in Ashford which provides specialist accommodation for single homeless people. The development comprises 27 en-suite rooms with shared kitchens, four self-contained studio flats, as well as outside space. Social housing provider Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing have been appointed to manage the facility, providing an experienced team of staff with 24-hour on-site cover. 

 

As part of the Local Plan process, we are asking residents and other stakeholders to suggest areas they would like considered for protection as Local Green Space. Spaces that achieve the LGS designation will be protected in the new Local Plan in a similar way to Green Belt. The consultation will run for at least six weeks and won’t close before the 15th of November.

 

We are welcoming applications for funding through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) for local projects and improvements. CIL is money raised from new development to help fund the infrastructure needed to alleviate the impacts of extra homes. CIL funds are used for either local infrastructure or wider strategic infrastructure. We expect applications to come from statutory infrastructure providers and not-for-profit organisations such as state schools, community groups and registered charities. The deadline for this round of applications is the 31st March 2022. Decisions will be made by local spending boards, made up of ward councillors for each area in the Borough.

 

The seventh annual Spelthorne Business Plan Competition final was held on the 23rd of September at BP’s headquarters in Sunbury-on-Thames. Six finalists pitched in a Dragons’ Den style final for a chance to win £3,500 and a year’s package of business support to help them get their business started. The standard of the presentations was extremely high and after much deliberation first place was awarded to Shannon McBride for her business idea ‘Magic Elephant Ltd’, a wellbeing consultancy.

 

Our continued efforts to create a cleaner, greener and more colourful Borough were recognised  ...  view the full minutes text for item 445/21

446/21

Announcements from the Chief Executive

To receive any announcements from the Chief Executive.

Minutes:

Three weeks ago I spoke at a national Excellence in Local Government conference. My presentation centred on the adaptation Spelthorne has undergone to survive the pandemic to keep residents at the very heart of everything we do.

 

Delegates heard how Spelthorne, having secured a national transformation award for efficiency and effectiveness, rapidly mobilised colleagues and resources to ultimately support more than 17,000 of our most vulnerable residents - throughout the gruelling past 18 months of Covid.

 

What astonished delegates was our ability to sustain a 99% rent collection rate for our commercial portfolio income stream throughout the most profound economic shock this country has ever experienced - securing the authority over £51 million, preserving and enhancing service provision that our residents rely on with a net contribution to frontline services of over £10.6 million per annum.

 

Whilst the impact of the pandemic is far from over - with demand for support forecasted to rise with the end of the furlough scheme and tenancy evictions now permitted - I’m nevertheless pleased to report that a good number of services are already operating at near pre-covid levels including our community centres Older People Actively Living (OPAL) services. The resumption of full-time reception opening hours heralds a degree of post-covid normality giving added choice for our residents to access those services.

 

As we embark on our 10th major resident’s consultation since early 2020, this time to garner input into the formulation of our budget for 2022/23, it is a timely reminder that our residents first focus has never ebbed.

 

Earlier this week, our purpose built single homeless facility welcomed its first temporary resident. It was immensely humbling to hear colleagues describe this momentous occasion as the highlight of a career in local government housing spanning over 30 years.

 

I cannot be prouder of the astonishing commitment, care and compassion our authority displays day-in, day-out in pursuit of keeping our residents safer, healthier and supported.

 

To all in this chamber and to colleagues rank and file, I thank you for your part in making Spelthorne a truly special place.

 

447/21

Questions from members of the public pdf icon PDF 285 KB

The Leader, or his nominee, to answer any questions raised by members of the public in accordance with Standing Order 13.

Minutes:

The Mayor reported that, under Standing Order 14, eleven questions had been received from a member of the public.

 

1.            Question from Mr A McLuskey

 

Why, given that the Building Regulations department have passed the cladding at West Plaza as being in conformity with national rules, is the insurance company unwilling to cover the flat dwellers in the development?”

 

Response from the Leader, Councillor L Nichols

 

Thank you for your question Mr McLuskey.

 

The responsibility of Spelthorne Building Control, like all Building Control bodies, is to ensure that developments comply with the necessary legislation, principally the Building Regulations 2010 and the Building Act 1984.

 

As you have been advised by the Council’s Building Control Manager, the works carried out on site to construct the West Plaza development complied with the relevant legislative requirements at the time of the development process, as well as those which apply today.

 

The Council’s Environmental Health team routinely provide information to the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government about tall buildings which may be of concern with regards to their external cladding. They also liaise with the Surrey Fire and Rescue Service, who are responsible for the enforcement of Fire Safety Orders.

 

Surrey Fire and Rescue Service carried out an inspection of the West Plaza in February 2021 and found the fire safety provisions to be adequate, based on the information available to them at that time. They did, however, request further documentation regarding the cladding and insulation from the managers of the building. Since receiving this information, the Fire Officer has required the West Plaza management to make amendments to the fire safety system (which have been completed) and future works to be undertaken to the cladding and insulation system.

 

Your question as to why insurance companies are unwilling to cover flat dwellers in these circumstances is, I’m afraid, something I cannot answer. This is a matter for their own underwriters and any questions in this regard should therefore be addressed directly to the companies concerned.

 

2.            Question from Mr A McLuskey

 

Why did the Environmental Health department give permission for an Industrial Kitchen (sic) to operate on the top floor of the block with all the attendant fire risks that involves?

 

Response from the Leader, Councillor L Nichols

 

Thank you for your question, Mr McLuskey.

 

As you have previously been advised, the Council’s Environmental Health Officers have no powers to prevent a retail food business from preparing food in a residential premises, provided they comply with food safety and hygiene regulations. All food businesses are required under the Food Safety Act to register their business wit the local Environmental Health Services, so that local authorities can ensure they are inspected. The Council cannot refuse such a registration application, although in certain circumstances such businesses may separately require planning permission. When undertaking an inspection of any such food businesses, our Environmental Health team would also enforce any health and safety requirements. However, any fire safety risks associated with any part of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 447/21

448/21

Petitions

To receive any petitions from members of the public.

 

The following petition, which has received over 1,000 signatures in accordance with Standing Order 15, will be presented to Council:

 

“Prevent tower-block developments in the Staines Conservation Area or overlooking the riverfront, and spread the planning housing growth target more evenly across the borough.”

Minutes:

Council considered the following petition, which had received over 1,000 signatures in accordance with Standing Order 15.

 

“Prevent tower-block developments in the Staines Conservation Area or overlooking the riverfront, and spread the planning housing growth target more evenly across the borough.”

 

Resolved that the petition be referred to the Environment and Sustainability Committee for further consideration.

 

 

 

Council agreed to adjourn the meeting at 20:27

The meeting reconvened at 20:40

 

 

449/21

Adoption of revised Members' Code of Conduct pdf icon PDF 179 KB

To approve the Members’ Code of Conduct, as recommended by the Members’ Code of Conduct Committee on 4 February 2021.

 

Attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered the adoption of the Local Government Association Model Code of Conduct, as recommended by the Members’ Code of Conduct Committee on 4 February 2021.

 

It was proposed by Councillor R. Sider BEM and seconded by Councillor T. Fidler and

 

resolved that adopt the Local Government Association Model Code of Conduct.

450/21

Amendment to the Members' Allowances Scheme for 2021-22 pdf icon PDF 211 KB

To consider the recommendation of the Independent Remuneration Panel on an amendment to the Members’ Allowances Scheme in respect of awarding a Special Responsibility Allowance to members of the Development Sub-Committee.

 

Attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council considered the following amendments to the Members’ Allowances Scheme 2021/22:

 

1.    To pay a Special Responsibility Allowance of £2000 each, to the members of the Development Sub-Committee; and

2.    To remove the ‘one Special Responsibility Allowance only’ rule from the Scheme.

 

It was proposed by Councillor L. Nichols and seconded by Councillor H. Harvey that the Council only vote on Part 1 of the recommendations and defer a decision on Part 2. This was agreed.

 

Councillor Boughtflower asked for a recorded vote on the motion to pay the Special Responsibility Allowance of £2000 each to the members of the Development Sub-Committee.

 

Councillor

For

Against

Abstain

Harvey I

X

 

 

Doran S

X

 

 

Attewell

 

X

 

Barnard

X

 

 

Barrett C

 

X

 

Barrett R

 

X

 

Bateson

X

 

 

Beardsmore

 

 

X

Beecher

X

 

 

Boughtflower

 

X

 

Brar

X

 

 

Buttar

X

 

 

Chandler

 

X

 

Doran J

X

 

 

Dunn R

X

 

 

Dunn S

X

 

 

Fidler

 

X

 

Gething

 

X

 

Gibson

X

 

 

Grant

 

 

X

Harvey H

X

 

 

Islam

 

X

 

Lagden

 

 

X

Leighton

 

X

 

McIlroy

 

X

 

Mitchell

 

X

 

Mooney

X

 

 

Nichols

X

 

 

Noble

 

 

X

Rybinski

X

 

 

Sexton

X

 

 

Sider

X

 

 

Siva

 

 

X

Smith-Ainsley

X

 

 

Spoor

X

 

 

Vinson

X

 

 

 

 

For – 20

Against – 11

Abstain – 5

 

 

Resolved that a Special Responsibility Allowance of £2000 to be paid to each member of the Development Sub-Committee.

451/21

Annual Review of Complaints pdf icon PDF 126 KB

To note a report from the Monitoring Officer on an annual review of complaints investigated by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman.

 

Attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council considered a report from the Monitoring Officer on an annual review of complaints investigated by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman.

 

It was proposed by Councillor T. Fidler and seconded by Councillor R. Smith-Ainsley and resolved to note the report.

 

 

452/21

Committee appointments

To appoint Councillor S Mooney and Councillor S Buttar to the Development Sub-Committee, following their nomination at the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 4 October 2021.

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor L. Nichols and seconded by Councillor H. Harvey and

 

resolved to appoint Councillor S. Mooney and Councillor S. Buttar to the Development Sub-Committee, following their nomination at the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 4 October 2021.

 

453/21

Appointment of a representative Trustee pdf icon PDF 582 KB

To consider a request from Margaret Pope Education Charity (MPEC) to appoint a representative trustee.

 

Nomination to follow.

 

To consider a request from the Ashford Relief In Need Charities (ARIN) to withdraw the Council’s appointed trustees.

 

ARIN’s formal request is attached.

Minutes:

1.    The Council considered a request from Margaret Pope Education Charity (MPEC) to appoint a representative trustee.

 

It was proposed by Councillor J. Boughtflower and seconded by Councillor T. Mitchell and

 

resolved that Councillor S. Mooney be appointed as a Council representative trustee to serve on the Margaret Pope Education Charity.           

 

 

2.    The Council considered a request from the Ashford Relief In Need Charities (ARIN) to withdraw the Council’s appointed trustees.

 

It was proposed by Councillor R. Sider BEM and seconded by Councillor C. Barnard and

 

resolved that the Council withdrew their appointed trustees after the current appointments of Councillor R. Sider BEM and Councillor T. Harman ended.

 

It was proposed by Councillor T. Fidler and seconded by Councillor N. Gething and

 

resolved that a letter be issued from the Council to the Ashford Relief in Need Charities expressing the Council’s continued support.

454/21

Update on joint arrangements - Spelthorne Joint Committee pdf icon PDF 126 KB

To agree the constitution for the Spelthorne Joint Committee.

 

Attached.

Minutes:

The Council considered a report on proposed amendments to the Spelthorne Joint Committee Constitution following decision by Surrey County Council.

 

It was proposed by Councillor L. Nichols and seconded by Councillor J. Sexton and

 

resolved that the amendments to the Spelthorne Joint Committee Constitution as set out in the report be approved.

455/21

Counter-Fraud, Bribery and Corruption Strategy pdf icon PDF 325 KB

To consider the recommendation of the Audit Committee to adopt the proposed changes to the Counter Fraud, Bribery and Corruption Strategy for adoption.

 

The report and draft strategy, as considered by the Audit Committee, are attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council considered the recommendation of the Audit Committee to adopt the proposed changes to the Counter Fraud, Bribery and Corruption Strategy for adoption.

 

It was proposed by Councillor J. Boughtflower and seconded by Councillor T. Fidler and

 

resolved that the proposed changes to the Counter Fraud, Bribery and Corruption Strategy be adopted.

456/21

Report from the Leader of the Council pdf icon PDF 86 KB

To receive a report on the work of the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee and the Development Sub-Committee.

 

Attached.

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council, Councillor L. Nichols, presented the report of the Corporate Policy and Resources meeting held on 04 October 2021, which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

457/21

Report from the Chair of the Community Wellbeing and Housing Committee pdf icon PDF 228 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

Attached.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Community Housing and Wellbeing Committee, Councillor S. Dunn, presented the report of the Community Housing and Wellbeing Committee meeting held on 28 September 2021 which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

Councillor H. Harvey asked that the report be amended to the following:

 

At present the Council has no policy in place to enable the purchase of properties for specific local needs such as large properties or properties adapted to meet the needs of the disabled. Knowle Green Estates will be responsible for any acquisitions.

 

Councillor S. Mooney asked a question of Councillor S. Dunn in respect of the Search Moves Partnership Review.

 

Councillor S. Dunn advised that she would answer in writing as this was a Part II exempt report.

 

 

 

458/21

Report from the Chair of the Administrative Committee pdf icon PDF 191 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

To follow.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Administrative Committee, Councillor T. Mitchell, presented the report of the Administrative Committee meeting held on 7 October 2021 which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

459/21

Report from the Chair of the Economic Development Committee

The Economic Development Committee noted the reports.

Minutes:

The Economic Development Committee only noted the reports that were put before them at the meeting held on 21 September 2021, so there was no Chairman’s report to note.

 

460/21

Report from the Chair of the Environment and Sustainability Committee pdf icon PDF 196 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

Attached.  A further report relating to the committee on 6 October 2021 will follow.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Environment and Sustainability Committee, Councillor I. Beardsmore, presented the report of the Environment and Sustainability Committee meetings held on 23 August 2021, 14 September 2021 and 6 October 2021, which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

461/21

Report from the Chair of the Neighbourhood Services Committee pdf icon PDF 100 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

Attached.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Neighbourhood Services Committee, Councillor A. Brar, presented the report of the Neighbourhood Services Committee meeting held on 9 September 2021 which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

Councillor R. Barratt asked if Councillor A. Brar could advise Council on the current level of fly tipping instances recorded and whether they had reduced following lock down for COVID-19.

 

Councillor A. Brar advised that she would put her answer in writing to Councillor R. Barratt.

 

Councillor R. Barratt asked if Councillor A. Brar would be able to update Council on the performance of the Commercial Trade Waste Company.

 

Councillor A. Brar advised that she would put her answer in writing to Councillor R. Barratt.

 

Councillor R. Barratt asked if Councillor A. Brar could advise Council on the joint working between Surrey Environment Partnership and the Joint Waste Solutions Team.

 

Councillor A. Brar advised that she would put her answer in writing to Councillor Barratt.

 

Councillor S. Mooney asked Councillor A. Brar if she shared her concern over the issue of domestic abuse and would she ensure, moving forward, that this  would be included in the Community Safety Report.

 

Councillor A. Brar advised that she would put her answer in writing to Councillor Mooney.

 

 

 

It was proposed by Councillor R. Smith-Ainsley and seconded by Councillor I. Beardsmore that Standing orders by suspended until close of business and this was agreed by Council.

 

 

The meeting was adjourned.

 

Councillor T. Mitchell left the meeting

 

 

 

 

462/21

Report from the Chair of the Audit Committee pdf icon PDF 190 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

To follow.

Minutes:

The meeting was reconvened

 

 

The Chairman of the Audit Committee, Councillor J. Boughtflower, presented the report of the Audit Committee meeting held on 29 July 2021 which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

463/21

Report from the Chair of the Licensing Committee pdf icon PDF 8 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

To follow.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Licensing Committee, Councillor R.W. Sider BEM, presented his report which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

464/21

Report from the Chair of the Planning Committee pdf icon PDF 183 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

Attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Planning Committee, Councillor T. Lagden, presented his report of the Planning Committee meetings held on 15 September 2021 and 13 October 2021, which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

465/21

Report from the Chair of the Standards Committee pdf icon PDF 7 KB

To receive the report from the chair on the work of the committee.

 

Attached.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Standards Committee, Mr. Ian Winter, presented his report which outlined the matters the Committee had decided since the last Council meeting.

 

466/21

Motions pdf icon PDF 155 KB

To receive any motions from Councillors in accordance with Standing Order 16.

 

Motion 1 – Government planning reforms

 

In the forthcoming government planning reforms, this council believes that planning works best when developers and the local community work together to shape local areas and deliver necessary homes, and therefore calls on the government to protect the right of communities to object to individual planning applications.

 

Proposer: Councillor R Sider BEM

Seconder: Councillor C Barnard

 

Motion 2 – Decision of the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 5 July 2021, as detailed in minute 214/21.

 

This motion is in relation to the decision by Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 5 July quoted from the Publicly available Minutes Point 214/21, title “Establishment of Task Group” with related announcement in a Spelthorne News Release on 20 August titled “Update on Waterfront Inquiry” the following Points being subject of this motion:

 

3.  in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to finalise the terms of reference for the inquiry which are to be based upon the terms of reference set out in the report at Appendix B;

4.   in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to amend the terms of reference as considered appropriate as the inquiry develops or as recommended by the investigator;

5.   in consultation with the review group, to authorise the Chief Executive to appoint the investigator; and

6.   in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to appoint any replacement investigator if the original investigator appointed can no longer act.”

 

This motion is in three parts, with the request that each part be subject to a recorded vote:

 

a)    The Terms of Reference for the independent investigation that formed part of the announcement on 20 August 2021 have been deemed unfit for the purposes of the Waterfront Enquiry and as such a request has been put to the Review Group, headed by the Leader Lawrence Nicholls, for the Terms of Reference to be revised in consultation with the Councillors for Staines, Staines South and Riverside and Laleham, and in consideration of the Attached Terms of Reference.

 

b)    The Chief Executive shall be required to recuse himself from any involvement in determining the new Terms of Reference or taking any part in the independent investigation other than co-operating fully with the investigator and instructing his staff and any relevant advisors/consultants to do the same. This Motion Part b) of Motion 1 arises from concerns related to the Chief Executive having any involvement in the Inquiry, other than to give evidence to it, given his central role in the Waterfront Development Project which is the subject of this Waterfront Inquiry.

 

The Full Council to approve in advance whatever modifications are required to be made to the Constitution to facilitate the above, specifically, and only in relation to the independent investigation into the Waterfront Development Project.

 

c)    The person appointed to conduct the independent investigation shall have access to  ...  view the full agenda text for item 466/21

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with Standing Order 16 the Council received three written Notices of Motions.

 

 

Motion 1 – Government planning reforms

 

In the forthcoming government planning reforms, this council believes that planning works best when developers and the local community work together to shape local areas and deliver necessary homes, and therefore calls on the government to protect the right of communities to object to individual planning applications.

 

Proposer: Councillor R Sider BEM

Seconder: Councillor C Barnard

 

The motion was carried

 

Motion 2 – Decision of the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 5 July 2021, as detailed in minute 214/21.

 

This motion is in relation to the decision by Corporate Policy and Resources Committee on 5 July quoted from the Publicly available Minutes Point 214/21, title “Establishment of Task Group” with related announcement in a Spelthorne News Release on 20 August titled “Update on Waterfront Inquiry” the following Points being subject of this motion:

 

3.  in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to finalise the terms of reference for the inquiry which are to be based upon the terms of reference set out in the report at Appendix B;

4.   in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to amend the terms of reference as considered appropriate as the inquiry develops or as recommended by the investigator;

5.   in consultation with the review group, to authorise the Chief Executive to appoint the investigator; and

6.   in consultation with the Review Group, to authorise the Chief Executive to appoint any replacement investigator if the original investigator appointed can no longer act.”

 

This motion is in three parts, with the request that each part be subject to a recorded vote:

 

a)    The Terms of Reference for the independent investigation that formed part of the announcement on 20 August 2021 are not comprehensive enough to guarantee that all possible aspects are fully investigated. The Review Group, comprising Cllrs Nichols, Barnard and Noble, are instructed to revise the Terms of Reference to incorporate all the points requested by the Councillors for Staines, Staines South and Riverside and Laleham and detailed in their email dated 24 September 2021. The Council further notes that the Independent Investigator is prepared to accept these additions and requires that the revised Terms of Reference are published without delay.

 

b)    The Review Group are instructed to ensure that the Chief Executive shall have no involvement in the conduct of the Inquiry or its Terms of Reference, and will ensure that the Principal Lawyer undertakes the cooperation with all requests for information and cooperation from Council staff. The Councill notes the public concern that is associated with the Chief Executive having any involvement in the Inquiry, other than to give evidence to it, given his central role in the Waterfront Development Project which is the subject of this Waterfront Inquiry.

 

c)    The person appointed to conduct the independent investigation shall have access to any or all documentation and/or personnel he/she feels  ...  view the full minutes text for item 466/21

467/21

General questions pdf icon PDF 257 KB

The Leader, or his nominee, to answer questions from Councillors on matters affecting the Borough, in accordance with Standing Order 15.

Minutes:

The Mayor reported that three general questions had been received, in accordance with Standing Order 14, from Councillors R.W. Sider BEM, N Gething and R Barratt.

 

1.         Question from Councillor Robin Sider BEM

The South and South East in Bloom awards attract hundreds of entries each year in this prestigious competition, and once again Spelthorne has achieved gold awards for Sunbury Walled Garden in the small park category, with the judge commenting ‘ How impressed I was with by the amazing, beautiful and very attractive gardens, maintained to a very high standard ‘,  and the Staines, Ashford and Sunbury Cemeteries receiving similar accolades for their work  in their respective category.  That said, will the Leader join me in congratulating Head of Neighbourhood Services and her team for these outstanding achievements, and agree with me, that these awards demonstrate the passionate care that employees have in portraying the borough at its very best for the benefit of its residents.

 

Response from the Leader, Councillor L Nichols

Thank you Cllr Sider., I would certainly like to join you in congratulating the Neighbourhood Services Team for their hard work and commitment in achieving these prestigious awards, and I am sure that our fellow Councillors will wish to do the same.

 

I am aware that these awards are not easily achieved and when you consider that the borough achieves these year-on-year this clearly demonstrates the passionate care that employees have in presenting the borough at its very best.

 

The high standards seen by those judging the Sunbury Walled Garden and our Cemeteries are there for our residents and visitors to enjoy all year round and do, as you have said, improve our environment for all to enjoy.

 

Well done to all who have made a difference and made Spelthorne a Gold winner again in the South & South East in Bloom Awards.

 

2.         Question from Councillors N Gething and R Barratt

Can the leader please tell this chamber and the residents of Spelthorne, when the five Independent Disciplinary Committee members will be announced?

 

Can the leader also announce a date when this public committee will first meet to cover its responsibilities, although it may not have matters at this time to discuss?

 

Lastly can the leader inform us of how Spelthorne residents will be informed of the workings of this committee and its purpose, as it is a platform for our residents to make complaints if required.

 

Will the Leader agree that this should be announced in the next edition bulletin magazine?

 

Response from the Leader, Councillor L Nichols

In accordance with the terms of reference of the Investigations and Disciplinary Committee, as set out in the Council’s Constitution, all Councillors form a panel and are eligible to serve on the Committee. As and when a committee is required to sit a panel of five councillors will be selected by Group Leaders on a proportional basis.

 

As there is currently no business for this committee no selections have been made and no meeting will be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 467/21