Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Venue: The Forum, Moat Lane, Towcester, Northants NN12 6AD

Contact: Emma Faulkner / Lesley Farrell, Democratic and Elections  Email: democracy@cherwellandsouthnorthants.gov.uk/01295 221534

Items
No. Item

55.

Declarations of Interest

Members are asked to declare any interest and the nature of that interest which they may have in any of the items under consideration at this meeting.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

56.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 78 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 15 January 2020.

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 15 January 2020 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

57.

Urgent Business

The Chairman to advise whether they have agreed to any items of urgent business being admitted to the agenda.

 

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

58.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive communications from the Chairman.

Minutes:

There were no Chairman’s announcements.

59.

Affordable Housing

Housing Services Manager Jacqueline Brooks, Strategic Housing Officers Will Anstey and Paul Brunige will attend the meeting to give the Committee an update on Affordable Housing.

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)      That the presentation be noted.

 

Minutes:

The Committee considered a presentation from Strategic Housing Officers, regarding Affordable Housing in the district.

 

The presentation covered the definition of Affordable Housing; the different products currently available; Planning Policy linked to the provision of Affordable Housing; the amount of Affordable Housing delivered in the last five years; and planned work for the coming year.

 

In response to questions from the Committee regarding viability calculations, the Assistant Director – Wellbeing advised that the “Three Dragons” viability software had been used for viability assessments for around 10 years. Developers provided cost information to the team, and the software produced a response based on the information. The Assistant Director – Wellbeing added that external consultants may be appointed on some occasions to help verify the information provided.

 

With regard to the move to a unitary council for West Northamptonshire, the Strategic Housing Officers advised that there were currently 198 people on the South Northamptonshire Council housing register. Daventry District Council had approximately 800 people on their register, however there was different criteria in use. The exact number of people on the register for Northampton Borough Council was not known, but it was believed to be higher than 800.

 

In response to questions regarding housing needs surveys, the Assistant Director – Wellbeing explained that they were a resource intensive process, and even in cases where a housing need was identified, it did not guarantee that a development would be brought forward. A more targeted approach would be used in the short term, with work being carried out in conjunction with registered partners.

 

The Committee thanked the Strategic Housing Officers for the presentation and requested that a progress report on housing needs be scheduled during the next Municipal Year.

 

Resolved

 

(1)       That the presentation be noted.

 

60.

Information Rights Policy pdf icon PDF 148 KB

The Assistant Director: Customers and Corporate Services will give an update on the Information Rights Policy.

 

A briefing note, including the policy, is attached for information.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)      That the briefing note and policy be noted

Minutes:

The Committee considered a briefing note from the Information Governance and Performance Manager, that outlined the Information Rights Policy.

 

In introducing the briefing note, the Assistant Director – Customers and Corporate Services explained that following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations in 2018, a policy was required in relation to the processing of residents data, and residents rights regarding the data held about them.

 

In response to questions from the Committee, the Assistant Director – Customers and Corporate Services explained that very few enquiries were made by residents in relation to data held about them. The type of data held about a resident was dependent on the services they accessed. It was not possible to delete information that formed part of a statutory record, such as Council Tax records or Housing Benefit claims.  

 

Resolved

 

(1)       That the briefing note and policy be noted

61.

Quarterly Performance, Risk and Finance Report - December 2019 pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Report of Assistant Director: Customers and Corporate Services and Strategic Business Partner and Deputy Section 151 Officer.

 

Purpose of report

 

This report summarises the Council’s Performance monitoring position as at the end of the reporting month.

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

 1.1        To note the monthly Performance Monitoring Report.

 

1.2       To note that the Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report is considered by Cabinet on a quarterly basis.

 

1.3       To review and comment on the performance update for December (Appendix 2)

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)      That the monthly Performance Monitoring Report for December 2019 be noted

 

(2)      That it be noted that the Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report is considered by Cabinet on a quarterly basis.

 

 

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report from the Assistant Director – Customers and Corporate Services and Strategic Business Partner, that detailed performance, risk and finance monitoring as at the end of December 2019.

 

With regard to indicator SNC 1.2.1, percentage of waste recycled and composted, the Assistant Director – Customers and Corporate Services advised the Committee that it was reporting amber for December but green for year to date due to collections having been suspended over the Christmas period. Going forward, the indicator would be profiled more pragmatically, to account for seasonal changes.

 

Resolved

 

(1)       That the monthly Performance Monitoring Report as at the end of December 2019 be noted

 

(2)       That it be noted that the Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report is considered by Cabinet on a quarterly basis.

 

(3)       That, having given due consideration, no items be identified for further review at this time.

 

 

62.

Scrutiny Annual Report 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 61 KB

Report of Executive Director: Resources (Monitoring Officer).

 

Purpose of report

 

This report presents the draft Scrutiny Committee Annual Report for 2019/20. 

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

1.1          To consider the draft Scrutiny Committee Annual Report 2019/20

 

1.2         To delegate authority to the Executive Director – Resources (Monitoring Officer), in consultation with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee, to finalise the areas highlighted in the report, and to make any other changes requested by the Committee, prior to its submission to Council

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)      That the draft Scrutiny Committee Annual Report for 2019/20 be noted.

 

(2)      That authority be delegated to the Executive Director – Resources (Monitoring Officer), in consultation with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee, to finalise the areas highlighted in the report, prior to its submission to Council.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the draft Scrutiny Annual Report for 2019/20.

 

The Constitution required the Committee to report their work to full Council on an annual basis. The report summarised the key areas of work undertaken during the municipal year.

 

The Executive Director – Resources (Monitoring Officer) advised the Committee that this would be the last annual report they would be required to produce, due to the move to a unitary council from May 2021.

 

The Committee commented that, in preparation for the move to unitary, it may be useful for each partner council to provide a report on current scrutiny practice, in order to assist the transition and set up of scrutiny in the new authority.

 

Resolved

 

(1)       That the draft Scrutiny Committee Annual Report for 2019/20 be noted.

 

(2)       That authority be delegated to the Executive Director – Resources (Monitoring Officer), in consultation with the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee, to finalise the areas highlighted in the report, prior to its submission to Council.

63.

Review of Committee Work Plan pdf icon PDF 70 KB

Democratic and Elections Officers will give an update on progress regarding subjects raised at previous Committee meetings (appendix 1, attached).

 

The Committee to consider the indicative work programme (appendix 2, attached).

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)      That, subject to an update from the Healthy Communities Manager being scheduled to discuss the recently approved new posts of Healthy Communities Strategy Officer and Town Centre Manager, the indicative work programme be noted.

 

(2)      That responses be provided to the Committee regarding the questions raised in relation to Towcester Youth Coffee House, and the Community Infrastructure Levy.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the indicative work programme, and updated topic sheet.

 

In relation to the broadband topic, Councillor David Harries reported that Gigaclear, an internet service provider, was now working with residents in Upper Heyford to carry out a survey regarding possible broadband provision. When the results were known, Councillor Harries would report them to the Committee.

 

With regard to the Climate Change working group, Councillor Richard Dallyn reported that a renewable energy expert had recently attended Planning Committee to offer advice in relation to solar panels on buildings, and the amount of power they can provide to the national grid. Councillor Dallyn commented that the information could be useful for the working group. The Chairman of the Committee advised that she had already requested that Felicity Parker, the Project Officer supporting the working group, make enquiries with Western Power as the energy distributor for the district, to invite a relevant officer to a meeting of the working group to discuss this further.

 

In relation to questions raised at the previous meeting of the Committee, regarding the new posts of Healthy Communities Strategy Officer and Town Centre Manager, the Committee requested that they be provided with follow up information in light of the comments they had made about these posts. The Committee requested that the Healthy Communities Manager be invited to a future meeting to give an update.

 

The Committee requested that further information be provided to them regarding Section 106 Agreements and the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), concentrating particularly on how CIL worked. This followed a recent query to officers from a member of the Committee, who had been told that the Regulation 123 list had changed since the introduction of CIL in South Northamptonshire in 2016.

 

In response to the queries, the Executive Director – Resources advised the Committee that the Section 106 aspect would be covered by the work of the S106 working group. The first meeting of the working would be to draft a scoping document, which would detail exactly what the group would be looking at and what the aim of the review would be.

 

With regard to the CIL query, the Executive Director – Resources suggested that the subject be added to the agenda of an all Member briefing session, as the information would be useful to all Members, not just the Scrutiny Committee.

 

Following the written question submitted to the December 2019 Full Council meeting and consideration of the new Community Funding Panel delegation levels at full Council in February 2020, the Committee requested an update relating to grant awards made to the Towcester Youth Coffee House. Significant funding had been awarded in order to refurbish the building, but it had not yet reopened. The Committee queried who was responsible for monitoring grant awards and progress of funded projects.

 

The Executive Director – Resources (Monitoring Officer) advised the Committee that the Community Funding Panel would be reviewing the progress of projects awarded grants in April 2020, and this would include the Towcester  ...  view the full minutes text for item 63.