Agenda and minutes

Council - Tuesday, 22 February 2022 6.30 pm

Venue: De Montfort Suite, Hinckley Hub. View directions

Contact: Rebecca Owen, Democratic Services Manager on 01455255879 or email  rebecca.owen@hinckley-bosworth.gov.uk 

Note: See media below to watch the meeting on YouTube 

Media

Items
No. Item

334.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors C Allen, Boothby, Cope, O’Shea and H Williams. Councillor Cartwright had sent apologies for anticipated late arrival.

335.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 199 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 25 January 2022.

Minutes:

It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor J Crooks and

 

RESOLVED – the minutes of the meeting held on 25 January be approved and signed by the Mayor.

336.

Declarations of interest

To receive verbally from Members any disclosures which they are required to make in accordance with the Council's code of conduct or in pursuance of Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992. This is in addition to the need for such disclosure to be also given when the relevant matter is reached on the Agenda.

Minutes:

No interests were declared at this juncture.

337.

Mayor's Communications

To receive such communications as the Mayor may decide to lay before the Council.

Minutes:

The Mayor informed members of recent events that he had attended.

338.

Leader of the Council's Position Statement

Mr Mayor, Members, I rise to present my Leader’s statement at this annual Budget Council.

 

As you will note, we have a full suite of budget reports that will set out the general fund budget for 2022/23, our council tax and fees and charges, along with our housing revenue account for 2022-23 and capital programme over the next few years. I would like to express my thanks to my Executive member for Finance and all officers engaged in pulling the budgets and reports together. These establish a firm financial basis for the Council to continue with effective service delivery in 2022/23. These have been fully considered by the Scrutiny Commission.

 

It is clear from the direction of travel from the government that they are placing the responsibility on local taxpayers to raise funds to support local services, which we have had to reflect in the budget. This council has had year on year cuts in government support so we are left in no other position than to raise funds locally to support and protect our vital services.

 

Also on the agenda is the refreshed corporate plan which I, and all political group leaders, have inputted into. This sets out the framework and ambition for the council going forward. This was also considered by the Scrutiny Commission at its last meeting.

 

We also have a report on the outcomes of the code of conduct review which has been considered by the Ethical Governance and Personnel Committee and resulted in the new model code of conduct attached with the agenda. Finally, on the agenda tonight is a report on the community governance review, which is an exercise where the parish electoral arrangements are reviewed.

 

I have set out below other key updates for interest.

 

Climate change strategy

 

Members will recall our refreshed climate change strategy was adopted at last Council. This builds on the work we started in our first strategy and sets to mobilise all parts of the Council to prioritise cutting carbon emissions. We have now publicised this plan to all of our communities, businesses and stakeholders.

 

Our five key themes which are key to meeting the council’s 2030 carbon neutral target and onto carbon zero by 2050 are building and land use, transport, waste, community and economy.

 

I would like to remind members of the key successes the council has already delivered on since first declaring a climate emergency in 2019. This includes:

 

·         Trialling a fully electric refuse collection service

·         Installing 24 electric vehicle charging points in Hinckley town centre with additional planned for Market Bosworth, Barwell and Earl Shilton

·         Implementing climate friendly measures to council events

·         Switching lights in council buildings over to LED and scrapping the use of single use plastics

·         Extending hybrid working to reduce staff travel

·         Planting hundreds of trees, including in council housing developments, and securing external sponsorship to plan the first six tiny forests in sites across Hinckley, with the other five being planted within the next month

·         Securing energy efficiency grants for  ...  view the full agenda text for item 338.

Minutes:

In presenting his position statement, the Leader referred to the Climate Change Strategy, the 2022 events calendar, the Crescent and the Rural Conference, about which he asked that members be sent a reminder.

 

In relation to climate change, a member asked that the authority provides advice and support to parishes and villages to install electric vehicle charging points.

339.

Minutes of the Scrutiny Commission pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To receive for information only the minutes of the Scrutiny Commission meetings held on 27 January and 10 February 2022.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The chairman of the Scrutiny Commission presented the minutes for information.

340.

Pay policy statement pdf icon PDF 389 KB

To present the HBBC pay policy statement for 2022/23.

 

This report was considered by the Scrutiny Commission at its meeting on 10 February. A copy of the minutes of that meeting are attached at item 9.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members received the HBBC pay policy statement for 2022/23. Officers were thanked for their work on the report. It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor Lynch and

 

RESOLVED – the HBBC pay policy statement for 2022/23 be approved.

341.

Budget reports

The budget reports were considered by the Scrutiny Commission at its meeting on 10 February. A copy of the minutes of that meeting are attached at item 9.

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the general fund budget 2022/23, the housing revenue account budget  2022/23, fees & charges 2022/23, capital programme & capital strategy and treasury management & prudential indicators. It was noted that the decision on the calculation of council tax 2022/23 would be deferred to the Extraordinary meeting of Council on 24 February. The finance team was thanked for its work on the budget.

 

During discussion, the following requests were made:

 

·         A report to the Scrutiny Commission on the costs of providing the garden waste service, given the subscriptions did not cover the costs

·         Regular updates to the Scrutiny Commission in relation to the council’s wholly owned company, on which members welcomed the progress made

·         Future budget reports fully explore and explain the climate change implications.

 

Councillor Cartwright entered the meeting at 7.43pm.

 

It was moved by Councillor Lynch and seconded by Councillor Bray that the budget reports be approved.

341a

General fund budget 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 621 KB

To seek approval of the 2022/23 general fund revenue budget.

 

The following amendments, as previously circulated to members, should replace those paragraphs of the report highlighted:

 

Page 45 (note at foot of table 1)

**         The main changes to the 2022/23 budget as reported to Scrutiny Commission are that due to business rates growth on the NNDR1 this has changed deficit on the general fund to a transfer to the general fund of £464,625 as opposed to a transfer from the general fund of £174,115. This has meant the 12.9% general fund target has been achieved, with a transfer from reserves of £325,000 to support the general fund’s position, as opposed to £580,000 in the report presented to the Scrutiny Commission on 10 February 2022. The medium term outlook is still indicating a risk of a significant budget gap developing post 2022/23 if there is a business rates reset as part of the fair funding review expected for 2023/24.

 

3.41    The budget proposed for 2022/23 is achieving 12.9& general fund balance in relation to net expenditure against a target of 15% (£1.67m). This target is in place to leave a buffer for unexpected or unplanned pressures. Savings of £228,000 would be needed to be made in 2022/23 to achieve 15%. To achieve the 12.9% forecast, £325,000 of earmarked reserves are being released to the general fund to support cost pressures. Without the use of the earmarked reserve, the target would have fallen to 10%, which is considered too low a safety margin.

 

3.42    This should have been deleted as it repeats 3.41.

Minutes:

In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014, voting on this motion was recorded.

 

Councillors Bill, Bray, Cartwright, J Crooks, W Crooks, Findlay, Flemming, Gibbens, Glenville, Hodgkins, Hollick, Lynch, L Mullaney, M Mullaney, Nichols, Pendlebury, Sheppard-Bools, Walker, Webber-Jones and P Williams voted FOR the motion (20);

 

Councillors R Allen, Collett, Cook, Ladkin, Morrell, Roberts and Smith voted AGAINST the motion (7);

 

Councillors Furlong and Lay abstained from voting.

 

The motion was therefore declared CARRIED and it was

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            The general fund budget for 2021/22 and 2022/23 be approved;

 

(ii)          The special expenses area budget for 2021/22 and 2022/23 be approved;

 

(iii)         The proposed one-off movement in the 2021/22 budget be approved;

 

(iv)         The proposed movement in general fund reserves and balances for 2021/22 and 2022/23 be approved;

 

(v)          The 2022/23 garden waste charge of £35 be approved;

 

(vi)         An investment of up to £100,000 in the council’s wholly owned company to assess new opportunities for income growth be approved.

341b

Calculation of council tax for 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 463 KB

To seek approval of council tax for 2022/23.

 

This item will be deferred to an Extraordinary meeting of Council to be held on Thursday, 24 February.

Minutes:

This item was deferred to the Extraordinary meeting to be held on 24 February 2022.

341c

Housing revenue account budget 2022-23 pdf icon PDF 435 KB

To seek approval of the 2022/23 housing revenue account budget, including the housing repairs account.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            The rent policy for 2022/23 be approved;

 

(ii)          The revised housing revenue and housing repairs account budgets for 2021/22 be approved;

 

(iii)         The housing revenue and housing repairs account budgets for 2022/23 be approved;

 

(iv)         The proposed movement in reserves be approved.

341d

Fees and charges 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 413 KB

To present the proposed scale of fees and charges for 2022/2023.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – the fees and charges for 2022/23 be approved.

341e

Capital programme 2021-22 to 2024-25 and capital strategy pdf icon PDF 450 KB

To seek approval of the capital strategy and capital programme for 2021/22 to 2024/25.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            The capital strategy be approved;

 

(ii)          The capital programme for 2021/22 to 2024/25 be approved;

 

(iii)         The growth bids and savings detailed in the report be approved.

341f

Treasury management strategy and prudential indicators 2021/22 to 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 544 KB

To present the prudential indicators and expected treasury operations.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            The prudential indicators and limits for 2021/22 to 2024/25, including the authorised limit prudential indicator, be approved;

 

(ii)          The minimum revenue provision (MRP) statement be approved;

 

(iii)         The treasury management report appended to the report be approved.

342.

Corporate Plan 2022 - 2025 pdf icon PDF 374 KB

To seek endorsement for the refreshed corporate plan for 2022 to 2025.

 

This report was considered by the Scrutiny Commission at its meeting on 10 February. Minutes of that meeting are attached at item 9.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members received the corporate plan 2022 – 2025. It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor Bill and unanimously

 

RESOLVED – the refreshed corporate plan 2022 to 2025 be approved.

343.

Code of conduct review pdf icon PDF 374 KB

To consider adoption of a new code of conduct.

 

This report was considered by the Ethical Governance & Personnel Committee at its meeting on 2 February. An extract from the minutes of that meeting is attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The draft Member Code of Conduct was presented to Council. In response to a member’s question, it was hoped that parish councils would adopt the same Code of Conduct but reiterated that the decision was for each town or parish council to make.

 

It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor Webber-Jones and unanimously

 

RESOLVED – the Code of Conduct as amended for local use be adopted to take effect from 1 April 2022.

344.

Community Governance Review pdf icon PDF 373 KB

To seek approval of the terms of reference for the 2022 Community Governance Review.

 

A revised annexe containing electoral forecasts is attached. This has been revised following a formatting error which resulted in some of the figures being transposed.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the terms of reference for the proposed Community Governance Review. It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor Cartwright and unanimously

 

RESOLVED – the Community Governance Review and associated terms of reference be approved for publication and consultation.