Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Corporate Policy and Resources Committee - Monday, 4 October 2021 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Offices, Knowle Green, Staines-upon-Thames

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

405/21

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillors Sexton, Boughtflower and Brar (substituted by Councillor H Harvey).

406/21

Minutes pdf icon PDF 262 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 5 July 2021 as a correct record.

Decision:

The minutes of the meeting held on 5 July 2021 were agreed as a correct record.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 5 July 2021 were agreed as a correct record.

407/21

Disclosures of Interest

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

Decision:

Councillor Leighton declared an interest in agenda item 4 (Stadbury Meadow Car Park) and did not participate in discussions.

Minutes:

Councillor Leighton declared an interest in agenda item 4 (Stadbury Meadow Car Park) and did not participate in discussions.

408/21

Stadbury Meadow Car Park pdf icon PDF 129 KB

This item relates to an access agreement at Stadbury Meadow car park.

 

The appendix to this report is exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 5 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

Information in respect of which a claim to legal professional privilege could be maintained in legal proceedings and information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information) and in all the circumstances the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information because disclosure to the public would prejudice both the financial affairs of the company and the Council as the information results from legal proceedings.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved that the report be noted.

Minutes:

The committee was pleased that this longstanding matter was now drawing to a conclusion.  The agreement had been signed on 21 September 2021, and outstanding matters were now being administered.

 

It was hoped that the Council had learned lessons from this matter, in particular when assessing the risks around commencing litigation.

 

Resolved that the report be noted.

409/21

Recommendations from the committees

409/21a

Acquisition of Registered Providers' Street Properties pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved that:

 

1.    The Acquisition of Registered Providers Street Properties Policy be approved; and

2.    A Capital Programme recommendation be made for 2022-23 for approval by Council in February 2022.

Minutes:

This report was making preparations for the 2022-23Capital Programme.  Knowle Green Estates would receive the assets (to be financed by loan finance from the Council) and would manage the assets. The long term viability analysis indicated that it would be viable for KGE to hold the assets (as long as appropriate purchase prices were paid).

 

There was discussion about inviting the directors of Knowle Green Estates to a future meeting of this committee or to the Community Wellbeing and Housing Committee.

 

Resolved that:

 

1.    The Acquisition of Registered Providers Street Properties Policy be approved; and

2.    A Capital Programme recommendation be made for 2022-23 for approval by Council in February 2022.

409/21b

Staines Library

This report and its appendices are exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

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 being able to undertake even-handed negotiations and finalising acceptable contract terms.

Decision:

See private decision notice.

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor C Barnard, Seconded by Councillor S Doran and resolved that the public and press be excluded during consideration of this item, in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) because it was likely to disclose 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 being able to undertake even-handed negotiations and finalising acceptable contract terms.

 

The recommendations, as set out in the report, were agreed.

 

See separate minutes.

409/21c

Proposal to Acquire Additional Car Parking by Way of a Lease – Charter Building, Uxbridge

A recommendation from the Development Sub-Committee on 20 September 2021 is attached.

 

This report and its appendices are exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

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 any lease, contract or other type of negotiation with the tenant or developer, who could then know the position of the Council.  

Decision:

See private decision notice.

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor C Barnard, Seconded by Councillor S Doran and resolved that the public and press be excluded during consideration of this item, in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) because it was likely to disclose 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 any lease, contract or other type of negotiation with the tenant or developer, who could then know the position of the Council.

 

The Committee agreed that the Council enter into a 15 year lease at Grainge’s Car Park, subject to the terms set out in the report.

 

See separate minutes.

410/21

Procurement of Mechanical Installations Service and Maintenance (for planned and responsive maintenance) pdf icon PDF 259 KB

To consider the proposed procurement processes for various contracts, to commence on 1 April 2022.

 

The appendix to this report is exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information). The public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing as it could put the Council at a competitive disadvantage in the procurement of these goods and services.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The committee approved the terms and procurement processes for the following new contracts which are scheduled to commence on 01 April 2022 for an initial contract term to be for a period of three (3) years, with the option to extend annually for a further two (2) 12-month periods, in the Council’s sole discretion, and taking into account the contractor’s performance on the contract.

 

1.    Mechanical installations maintenance services for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

2.    Electrical installations maintenance services for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

3.    General Building Reactive works for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

 

The committee:

 

      i.        delegated the approval of the appointment of the contractors to the Group Head of Regeneration and Growth in consultation with the Chair and Vice Chair of the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee.

    ii.        authorised the Head of Corporate Governance to enter into any legal documentation necessary to implement the new contracts.

Minutes:

[Councillor H Harvey joined the meeting.]

 

The performance monitoring of contractors was discussed.  Contractors’ financial statuses were also evaluated.  It was suggested that specific key performance indicators be written into the contracts, and that there be a rigorous process for monitoring them.  The Committee was reassured about the rationale for bringing some of the services ‘in-house’.

 

The Committee approved the terms and procurement processes for the following new contracts which were scheduled to commence on 01 April 2022 for an initial contract term to be for a period of three (3) years, with the option to extend annually for a further two (2) 12-month periods, in the Council’s sole discretion, and taking into account the contractor’s performance on the contract.

 

1.    Mechanical installations maintenance services for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

2.    Electrical installations maintenance services for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

3.    General Building Reactive works for Council’s municipal and residential properties 

 

The Committee:

 

      i.        delegated the approval of the appointment of the contractors to the Group Head of Regeneration and Growth in consultation with the Chair and Vice Chair of the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee.

    ii.        authorised the Head of Corporate Governance to enter into any legal documentation necessary to implement the new contracts.

411/21

Additional Short Term Funding for KGE

This report is exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

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 bidding process for the site/services by allowing other bidders to know the position of the Council.  This in turn prejudices the Council by (i) distorting the bids process and (ii) prejudicing the opportunity for the Council to acquire a site/services to enable regeneration in the Borough.

Decision:

See private decision notice.

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor C Barnard, Seconded by Councillor S Doran and resolved that the public and press be excluded during consideration of this item, in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) because it was likely to disclose 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 bidding process for the site/services by allowing other bidders to know the position of the Council. This in turn prejudices the Council by (i) distorting the bids process and (ii) prejudicing the opportunity for the Council to acquire a site/services to enable regeneration in the Borough.

 

The Committee approved an initial loan amount of £250,000, with the ability to approve further amounts, subject to it receiving a satisfactory business case from Knowle Green Estates (KGE). The Committee requested the attendance of representatives KGE’s board at a future Corporate Policy and Resources Committee.

 

See separate minutes.

412/21

Asset Management Plan - Annual Report pdf icon PDF 207 KB

This report reviews the asset management plan that was agreed on 23 September 2020.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The committee:

 

1.    noted the update on actions for Year 1.

2.    approved the new actions for Year 2 for inclusion within the overall action plan.

Minutes:

It was noted that the plan had been subjected to a significant update.

 

The Committee:

 

1.    noted the update on actions for Year 1.

2.    approved the new actions for Year 2 for inclusion within the overall action plan.

413/21

Capital monitoring (Qtr. 1 April-June) pdf icon PDF 221 KB

The capital monitoring report covers the cumulative actual expenditure to date, against the cumulative council approved capital programme budget and compares this against the latest forecast outturn from officers.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The Committee noted the current level of underspend on capital expenditure against its Capital Programme provision as at 30 June 2021 for the Council and the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee’s areas of responsibility.

Minutes:

Suggestions on the content and presentation of future reports were welcomed outside the meeting.  It was hoped that a reporting process that made best use of committee bandwidth would evolve over time.

 

A precis of questions that had been asked at other committees was provided.  The impact of Covid-19 was also mentioned.  The expenditure for the Elmsleigh Centre had been approved by the former Cabinet in February 2021.

 

The Committee noted the current level of underspend on capital expenditure against its Capital Programme provision as at 30 June 2021 for the Council and the Corporate Policy and Resources Committee’s areas of responsibility.

414/21

Revenue monitoring (Qtr. 1 April-June) pdf icon PDF 252 KB

This report provides a summary of the forecast outturn position for the financial year 2021-22 as at 30 June 2021.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The committee noted the forecast outturn for 2021/22 as at 30 June 2021 for the Council and its areas of responsibility.

Minutes:

Suggestions on the content and presentation of future reports were welcomed outside the meeting.

 

[Councillor Beardsmore left the meeting.]

 

A precis of questions that had been asked at other committees was provided.  The impact of Covid-19 was also mentioned.  There was the potential for a significant impact on the Council’s finances if its interest payments on housing delivery projects not yet completed could not be met from capital, should the moratorium on high rise developments in Staines-upon-Thames continue much longer.  This was being closely monitored.

 

The Committee noted the forecast underspend outturn for 2021/22 as at 30 June 2021 for the Council and its areas of responsibility.

415/21

Re-procurement of Property Management Contracts pdf icon PDF 370 KB

This report seeks approval of a sourcing strategy for property management contract renewals.

 

Appendix 1 to this report is exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information). The public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing as it could put the Council at a competitive disadvantage in the procurement of these goods and services.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The committee:

 

·         approved the proposed sourcing strategy for property management contract renewals (a mini-tender with the Property Management consultancies on Lot 5 of SBC’s  Professional Services Framework Agreement);

·         noted the proposed timetable for the procurement of the commercial and retail property management contracts.

Minutes:

There had been a comprehensive tendering exercise carried out.  The process for evaluating the bids that had been submitted was noted.

 

The Committee:

 

·         approved the proposed sourcing strategy for property management contract renewals (a mini-tender with the Property Management consultancies on Lot 5 of SBC’s Professional Services Framework Agreement);

·         noted the proposed timetable for the procurement of the commercial and retail property management contracts.

416/21

Sundry Debt Write Offs pdf icon PDF 200 KB

To consider debt write off requests in accordance with the council’s standing orders.

 

The appendix to this report is exempt from publication in accordance with paragraphs 1 and 2 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), because it contains:

 

Information relating to any individual and Information which is likely to reveal the identity of an individual. The information amounts to personal data and disclosure would not be in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The committee approved the sundry debt write offs set out amounting to £81,332.76.

Minutes:

The individual write off amounts were reviewed.  It was considered uneconomical to pursue the amounts owed due to the low likelihood of success.

 

The Committee approved the sundry debt write offs set out amounting to £81,332.76.

417/21

Verbal update on the corporate plan

To receive a verbal update on Spelthorne Borough Council’s corporate plan.

Decision:

The verbal update was noted.

Minutes:

The verbal update was noted.

418/21

Appointments

418/21a

Outside bodies pdf icon PDF 122 KB

To consider an appointment to the Thames Landscape Strategy Partnership.

Decision:

The committee appointed Councillor Leighton as the Council’s representative on the Thames Landscape Strategy Partnership.

Minutes:

The Committee appointed Councillor Leighton as the Council’s representative on the Thames Landscape Strategy Partnership.

418/21b

Development Sub-Committee

To consider an appointment to the Development Sub-Committee.  The composition of the sub-committee is:

 

Group

Allocation

Appointed

Conservative

3 seats

Noble

Liberal Democrat

1 seat

Nichols

United Spelthorne

1 seat

H.Harvey

Other

2 seats

Doran – Labour

Smith-Ainsley - ISG

 

 

 

 

Decision:

Councillors Mooney and Buttar were recommended to be appointed by Council to the Development Sub-Committee.

Minutes:

Councillors Mooney and Buttar were recommended to be appointed by Council to the Development Sub-Committee.

418/21c

Waterfront Hotel Investigation Review Group

To appoint a replacement for Councillor Sexton.

Decision:

No further appointments were made to the Waterfront Hotel Investigation Review Group.

Minutes:

No further appointments were made to the Waterfront Hotel Investigation Review Group.

419/21

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To consider the forward plan for committee business.

Decision:

The committee noted the forward plan.

 

It was agreed that:

 

1.    the tenancy strategy item be considered at the meeting on 15 November 2021.

2.    a full business case for the proposed Transactional Financial Service Partnership be considered at the meeting on 15 November 2021.

Minutes:

The Committee noted the forward plan.

 

It was agreed that:

 

1.    the tenancy strategy item be considered at the meeting on 15 November 2021.

 

2.    a full business case for the proposed Transactional Financial Service Partnership be considered at the meeting on 15 November 2021.

420/21

Urgent Actions pdf icon PDF 7 KB

To note those urgent actions which have been taken by the Chief Executive in consultation with the Leader since the last Corporate Policy and Resources meeting on 5 July 2021.

Decision:

The urgent actions of the Chief Executive were noted.

Minutes:

The urgent actions of the Chief Executive were noted.

421/21

Update on proposed Transactional Financial Service Partnership pdf icon PDF 149 KB

An update on the proposed transactional financial service partnership with Mole Valley District Council.

 

The chair has agreed to this item being added to the agenda in accordance with Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972 for the following reasons:

 

This report seeks to progress the proposed agreement with Mole Valley District Council as soon as possible. Delaying the agreement will impact on service resilience, the councils’ ability to recruit and retain staff, and limit any efficiencies that can potentially be made.

Decision:

The chair agreed to this item being added to the agenda in accordance with Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972 for the following reasons:

 

This report seeks to progress the proposed agreement with Mole Valley District Council as soon as possible. Delaying the agreement will impact on service resilience, the councils’ ability to recruit and retain staff, and limit any efficiencies that can potentially be made.

 

The committee noted the proposed partnership and requested that a full business case be presented at the meeting on 15 November 2021.

 

Minutes:

The chair agreed to this item being added to the agenda in accordance with Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972 for the following reasons:

 

This report seeks to progress the proposed agreement with Mole Valley District Council as soon as possible. Delaying the agreement will impact on service resilience, the councils’ ability to recruit and retain staff, and limit any efficiencies that can potentially be made.

 

Spelthorne and Mole Valley both utilised the same finance systems which removed some of the complexity around sharing resources.  Some officers were also familiar with the local arrangements of both councils.

 

It was hoped that the Committee would agree to enter into a memorandum of understanding, with various safeguards and clear exit arrangements for each council.  There was the potential for the shared service to accept other partners once it was established.

 

The intended benefits of the shared service were mentioned, including resilience and economies of scale.  There were no planned redundancies in either finance team, with the proposals being cost neutral, and both councils being in a reasonably strong financial position.

 

The Committee questioned whether there had been any learning points identified when previous shared service arrangements had failed.  It was noted that there was a clear vision for the proposed partnership.

 

[The committee agreed that the meeting should continue for a maximum of 30 minutes, in accordance with standing order 38.2.]

 

There was a good level of buy in among officers in both teams, with a desire to share and implement best practice.  The location of staff was less of an issue, now that remote working had become commonplace.

 

It was noted that whilst the timescales for creating a shared service were demanding, officers were confident that it could be delivered in accordance with the planned timeline.

 

The committee noted the proposed partnership and requested that a full business case be presented at the meeting on 15 November 2021.