Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Tuesday, 26 April 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 meeting on YouTube 

Media

Items
No. Item

399.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Boothby, Findlay, Gibbens, O’Shea and H Williams.

400.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 142 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meetings held on 22 & 24 February 2022.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

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

 

RESOLVED – the minutes of the meetings held on 22 & 24 February 2022 be confirmed and signed by the Mayor.

401.

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.

402.

Mayor's Communications

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

Minutes:

The Mayor reported on events attended throughout March and April.

403.

Questions

To deal with questions under Council Procedure Rule number 14.

 

(a)        Question from Councillor R Allen to the Executive member for Planning:

 

            Following on from Cllr Boothby’s question to Council on 25 January 2022, can the lead member provide me with an updated position on the following points as of 26 April 2022:

 

i.              Spend YTD on consultants and temporary staff cover

ii.             Provide an update on recruitment for all vacant positions within the planning and enforcement function

iii.            Confirm the number of planning applications received awaiting verification

iv.           Confirm the number of planning applications awaiting decision split between minor and major

v.             Spend YTD on planning appeals

vi.           Confirm the number of planning applications approaching, at or past their target decision date (ie at risk of appeal for non-determination).

 

Response from the Executive member for Planning:

 

Councillor Allen, thank you for your question. I know that updates have been provided to the Planning Committee and at the Leaders’ meetings on this matter but I am happy to provide some statistics for you as requested. I am pleased to report the number of outstanding applications is reducing and would like to thank the team for all their hard work on achieving this.

 

i.              Spend YTD on consultants and temporary staff cover

 

To be reported through the normal budget reporting cycle

 

ii.             Provide an update on recruitment for all vacant positions within the planning and enforcement function

 

Of the nine professional planner roles in development management, three are occupied by permanent staff. Three more have been offered and have accepted and are awaiting paperwork to be completed. This leaves three vacant. Vacancies are being covered by interim staff and contracts.

 

Of the four professional planner role sin enforcement, one is occupied on a part time basis and two more are occupied full time by permanent staff. One role remains vacant and is being covered by an interim member.

 

Of the five professional planner roles in policy, three are occupied by permanent staff. One has been offered and accepted and is awaiting paperwork to be completed. This leaves one vacant. Vacancies are being covered by interim staff and contracts.

 

Of the six professional roles in major projects, five are occupied by permanent staff. One has just become vacant following retirement of the post holder.

 

Of the five support officer roles, there is one vacancy being covered by a member of staff from within the team and a temporary member of staff has been brought in to backfill.

 

iii.            Confirm the number of planning applications received awaiting verification

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were ten applications not including TPOs and pre-apps awaiting validation.

 

iv.           Confirm the number of planning applications awaiting decision split between minor and major

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were 52 outstanding major applications (not including those with a resolution to grant awaiting S106)

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were 115 outstanding minor applications (not including those with a resolution to grant awaiting S106)

 

As of  ...  view the full agenda text for item 403.

Minutes:

(a)        Question from Councillor R Allen to the Executive member for Planning:

 

            “Following on from Cllr Boothby’s question to Council on 25 January 2022, can the lead member provide me with an updated position on the following points as of 26 April 2022:

 

i.              Spend YTD on consultants and temporary staff cover

ii.             Provide an update on recruitment for all vacant positions within the planning and enforcement function

iii.            Confirm the number of planning applications received awaiting verification

iv.           Confirm the number of planning applications awaiting decision split between minor and major

v.             Spend YTD on planning appeals

vi.           Confirm the number of planning applications approaching, at or past their target decision date (ie at risk of appeal for non-determination).”

 

Response from the Executive member for Planning:

 

“Councillor Allen, thank you for your question. I know that updates have been provided to the Planning Committee and at the Leaders’ meetings on this matter but I am happy to provide some statistics for you as requested. I am pleased to report the number of outstanding applications is reducing and would like to thank the team for all their hard work on achieving this.

 

i.              Spend YTD on consultants and temporary staff cover

 

To be reported through the normal budget reporting cycle

 

ii.             Provide an update on recruitment for all vacant positions within the planning and enforcement function

 

Of the nine professional planner roles in development management, three are occupied by permanent staff. Three more have been offered and have accepted and are awaiting paperwork to be completed. This leaves three vacant. Vacancies are being covered by interim staff and contracts.

 

Of the four professional planner role sin enforcement, one is occupied on a part time basis and two more are occupied full time by permanent staff. One role remains vacant and is being covered by an interim member.

 

Of the five professional planner roles in policy, three are occupied by permanent staff. One has been offered and accepted and is awaiting paperwork to be completed. This leaves one vacant. Vacancies are being covered by interim staff and contracts.

 

Of the six professional roles in major projects, five are occupied by permanent staff. One has just become vacant following retirement of the post holder.

 

Of the five support officer roles, there is one vacancy being covered by a member of staff from within the team and a temporary member of staff has been brought in to backfill.

 

iii.            Confirm the number of planning applications received awaiting verification

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were ten applications not including TPOs and pre-apps awaiting validation.

 

iv.           Confirm the number of planning applications awaiting decision split between minor and major

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were 52 outstanding major applications (not including those with a resolution to grant awaiting S106)

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were 115 outstanding minor applications (not including those with a resolution to grant awaiting S106)

 

As of 1 April 2022 there were 300 outstanding other applications (not including  ...  view the full minutes text for item 403.

404.

Leader of the Council's Position Statement

Welcome to our first formal meeting of Council since the Easter break. Tonight’s agenda covers three key items of formal business. The council’s Housing Asset Management Strategy, which sets out our approach to the management of our current stock of council properties across the borough; a report on progressing urgent works to Bradgate Stables in Groby, an important Grade II listed building; and a report covering the off street parking places order to address technical changes arising from updated national regulations that come into force from 31 May 2022.

 

I have set out some other key items of note.

 

Ukraine

 

I am pleased to confirm the council has welcomed the first guests from Ukraine, who have been arriving on both the family visa and through the Homes for Ukrainian sponsorship schemes. The borough officers have provided advice and support to both sponsors and guests, ensuring everything is done to help them settle into their homes. Property inspections are close to being completed for those people who have offered accommodation to support guests.

 

The community response has been amazing, with donations to Feed the Hungry (a local charity) who are now directly supporting Ukrainian guests with essential goods and also support groups being established to connect people. I would like also to extend my thanks to local businesses who have also been helping, for example with Hinckley and Rugby Building Society helping to support people on family visas.

 

We have a number of HBBC staff volunteering and supporting Feed the Hungry. I recently visited their base in Hinckley with Sharon Stacey, Director of Community Services, to see at first hand the tremendous work the charity and its volunteers are doing to help the people of Ukraine.

 

MIRA investment

 

I am delighted to confirm that the legal agreements between HBBC, the LLEP and MIRA have finally all been agreed to enable significant investment into new, low carbon infrastructure to support research and development initiatives at MIRA Technology Park Enterprise Zone. A visit for all members is being lined up for early summer now that COVID restrictions have been lifted and we have lighter evenings.

 

Events

 

I am pleased to confirm that the council, working with its partners, will be offering a fabulous events offer throughout the spring and summer. Plans for Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, that will include a special Proms in the Park performance are well underway. Our Cultural Services and Communications teams will keep you updated on the event details.

 

HBBC – a platinum awarded council

 

I am delighted to confirm that the council has been recognised nationally as one of a distinguished number of councils as a Platinum council for its support for the Big Jubilee Lunch, as part of the official celebrations for Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

 

Burbage Common open day

 

A fun-packed day for the whole family is promised when Burbage Common holds its annual open day on Sunday, 8 May.

 

The area around the visitor centre at the Leicester Road  ...  view the full agenda text for item 404.

Minutes:

In his position statement, the Leader referred to:

 

·         Support for Ukraine

·         MIRA investment

·         Events planned as part of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations

·         The council being recognised as a Platinum Council for its support for the Big Jubilee Lunch

·         Burbage Common open day

·         Tourism within the borough including the opening of Gruffalo Adventure Land at Twycross Zoo, the Battlefield Centre and Triumph Motorcycle Museum

·         Business grants

·         Council tax energy rebate

·         Local plan and neighbourhood plans

·         Hinckley National Rail Freight Interchange consultation.

405.

Minutes of the Scrutiny Commission pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To receive for information only the minutes of the Scrutiny Commission meeting held on 31 March 2022.

Minutes:

The chairman of the Scrutiny Commission presented the minutes of the last meeting.

406.

Council Housing Asset Management Strategy pdf icon PDF 409 KB

To present the five year council housing asset management strategy.

 

This report was considered by the Scrutiny Commission at its meeting on 31 March. The minutes of that meeting are attached at item 9.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the council housing asset management strategy. During discussion, the following points were made:

 

·         Alternative solutions to gas boilers would be investigated in future

·         Energy efficiency would be a priority, including ensuring double glazing was in good condition

·         A tenants conference was planned for September, to which councillors would be invited.

 

It was moved by Councillor M Mullaney, seconded by Councillor Bray and

 

RESOLVED – the council housing asset management strategy be approved and the action plan noted.

407.

Urgent works at Bradgate Stables pdf icon PDF 402 KB

To consider a strategy to address issues with the building at Bradgate Stables, including the use of enforcement powers.

Minutes:

Members received a report which sought agreement of a course of action and strategy to address the works required at Bradgate Stables. The historical value of the building was noted and a member visit was suggested, along with the taking of photographs for the council’s archives. It was moved by Councillor Bill, seconded by Councillor Cartwright and unanimously

 

RESOLVED – The course of action and strategy for Bradgate Stables be agreed, including the use of enforcement powers, in particular:

 

(i)            The presentation of an urgent works schedule and specification to the owner be approved, giving notice that the council intends to carry out the specified urgent works;

 

(ii)          The serving of the Urgent Works Notice upon the owner be approved, should no clear commitment to the works being undertaken voluntarily be provided;

 

(iii)         The serving of the abovementioned Urgent Works Notice be delegated to the proper officer;

 

(iv)         Appointment of the required professional services to complete the urgent works in default be approved, with the appointment delegated to the proper officer upon expiry of a seven-day period from the serving of the Urgent Works Notice and following no clear commitment to the works being undertaken voluntarily being provided;

 

(v)          Acceptance of the grant offer from Historic England to underwrite 80% of the costs for the completion of the urgent works be approved.

408.

Off Street Parking Places Order pdf icon PDF 391 KB

To seek agreement to vary the off street parking places Order 2014 following updated regulations.

Minutes:

A variation to the council’s Off Street Parking Places Order 2014 was considered following implementation of the Civil Enforcement of Road Traffic Contraventions (Approved Devices, Charging Guidelines and General Provisions) (England) Regulations 2022. This was be an administrative matter and presented no change to the customer. It was moved by Councillor Bray, seconded by Councillor Nichols and

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            The proposed variation to the Off Street Parking Places Order be approved;

 

(ii)          Implementation of the variation and authority to make any necessary additional adjustments to the wording of the variation order be delegated to the Director (Environment & Planning) and the Director (Corporate Services) in consultation with the Executive member for car parks.

409.

Motions received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 17

409a

Motion from Councillor P Williams, seconded by Councillor Webber-Jones

This Council notes that the UK is the only country in Europe to still use the first past the post (FPTP) system for general elections aside from Belarus.

 

Created in the 1800s when the electoral choice was between the aristocratic Tories and Whigs and women were denied the right to vote, FPTP is structurally undemocratic. It means millions of votes do not matter, millions of votes are wasted, both “safe seats” and tactical voting are commonplace, and seats won in Westminster often bear little relationship to votes cast. In short, it is an archaic rigged system. How can Britain of the 2020s move forward when, in some constituencies, the same party has won every election since those constituencies were created in 1832?

 

There is an alternative voting system. It is called proportional representation (PR). More than 80 nations around the world already elect their legislatures this way, including in Scotland, in Wales and in the Republic of Ireland. Why? Because it is far fairer and proportional.

 

Council therefore resolves to write to Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to call for an end to first past the post, to end minority rule, and we support the introduction of a form of proportional representation for parliamentary general elections in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

Minutes:

“This Council notes that the UK is the only country in Europe to still use the first past the post (FPTP) system for general elections aside from Belarus.

 

Created in the 1800s when the electoral choice was between the aristocratic Tories and Whigs and women were denied the right to vote, FPTP is structurally undemocratic. It means millions of votes do not matter, millions of votes are wasted, both “safe seats” and tactical voting are commonplace, and seats won in Westminster often bear little relationship to votes cast. In short, it is an archaic rigged system. How can Britain of the 2020s move forward when, in some constituencies, the same party has won every election since those constituencies were created in 1832?

 

There is an alternative voting system. It is called proportional representation (PR). More than 80 nations around the world already elect their legislatures this way, including in Scotland, in Wales and in the Republic of Ireland. Why? Because it is far fairer and proportional.

 

Council therefore resolves to write to Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to call for an end to first past the post, to end minority rule, and we support the introduction of a form of proportional representation for parliamentary general elections in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.”

 

Discussion ensued on whether different voting systems led to more stable governments and on fairness for the voter.

 

It was moved by Councillor P Williams, seconded by Councillor Webber-Jones and

 

RESOLVED – Council writes to Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, to call for an end to first past the post, to end minority rule and to support the introduction of a form of proportional representation for parliamentary general elections in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

409b

Motion from Councillor Pendlebury, seconded by Councillor Sheppard-Bools

Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council notes that March is Cerebral Palsy awareness month.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes that tens of thousands of people living with Cerebral Palsy across England, including in this borough, do not enjoy a common standard of access to services because of a postcode lottery.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes that access to vital support services for children living with Cerebral Palsy and their families is imperative to transforming their life chances.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes the recommendations of the Commons Education Select Committee’s report on SEND for including Cerebral Palsy specifically within that framework and commits to working with relevant bodies, including Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission to further this aim in this local authority.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council calls on the Department for Health and Social Care, Department for Education and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities to make funding available to Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council for the upskilling of both the clinical and educational workforce in the needs of those living with Cerebral Palsy.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes the role of third sector and independent providers in delivering support to Cerebral Palsy services and resolves to do everything in its power to support them by:

 

1.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector and independent providers delivering Cerebral Palsy support services for Hinckley & Bosworth on the council’s website and social media.

 

2.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector and independent providers delivering Cerebral Palsy support services in Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council’s publications.

 

3.    Committing to offer Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council’s employees training on Cerebral Palsy awareness from Action Cerebral Palsy.

 

4.    Encouraging health and education workers in the Hinckley & Bosworth area to take up training in this area offered by Action Cerebral Palsy.

 

5.    Writing to the MPs for the borough area asking them to raise the issue of provision of support services for children living with Cerebral Palsy and to meet with Action Cerebral Palsy.

Minutes:

“Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council notes that March is Cerebral Palsy awareness month.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes that tens of thousands of people living with Cerebral Palsy across England, including in this borough, do not enjoy a common standard of access to services because of a postcode lottery.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes that access to vital support services for children living with Cerebral Palsy and their families is imperative to transforming their life chances.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes the recommendations of the Commons Education Select Committee’s report on SEND for including Cerebral Palsy specifically within that framework and commits to working with relevant bodies, including Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission to further this aim in this local authority.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council calls on the Department for Health and Social Care, Department for Education and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities to make funding available to Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council for the upskilling of both the clinical and educational workforce in the needs of those living with Cerebral Palsy.

 

Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes the role of third sector and independent providers in delivering support to Cerebral Palsy services and resolves to do everything in its power to support them by:

 

1.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector and independent providers delivering Cerebral Palsy support services for Hinckley & Bosworth on the council’s website and social media.

 

2.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector and independent providers delivering Cerebral Palsy support services in Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council’s publications.

 

3.    Committing to offer Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council’s employees training on Cerebral Palsy awareness from Action Cerebral Palsy.

 

4.    Encouraging health and education workers in the Hinckley & Bosworth area to take up training in this area offered by Action Cerebral Palsy.

 

5.    Writing to the MPs for the borough area asking them to raise the issue of provision of support services for children living with Cerebral Palsy and to meet with Action Cerebral Palsy.”

 

During discussion, the cost of training employees as a result of this motion was questioned. The difference in healthcare levels across the country was also raised.

 

It was moved by Councillor Pendlebury, seconded by Councillor Sheppard-Bools and unanimously

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)            Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council calls on the Department for Health and Social Care, Department for Education and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities to make funding available to Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council for the upskilling of both the clinical and educational workforce in the needs of those living with Cerebral Palsy;

 

(ii)          Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council notes the role of third sector and independent providers in delivering support to Cerebral Palsy services and resolves to do everything in its power to support them by:

 

a.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector and independent providers delivering Cerebral Palsy support services for Hinckley & Bosworth on the council’s website and social media

 

b.    Promoting the work of Action Cerebral Palsy and third sector  ...  view the full minutes text for item 409b

409c

Motion from Councillor M Mullaney, seconded by Councillor Sheppard-Bools

This motion has been withdrawn.

Minutes:

This motion was withdrawn before the meeting.