Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall - Bridge Street, Bideford, EX39 2HS. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services  Email: democratic.services@torridge.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

21.

Apologies For Absence

To receive apologies for absence from the meeting

Minutes:

Prior to the commencement of the meeting the Chair extended a welcome to newly elected Councillor John Hutchings.

 

 

Apologies for absence were received from the Head of Paid Service Mrs J Wallace and Councillors R Lock, K Davis, C Cottle-Hunkin, B Boundy,

J Langton-Lockton, J Hellyer, T Johns, R Boughton, R Hancock and

Z Gregorek.

22.

Council Minutes pdf icon PDF 57 KB

Confirmation of the Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 29 October 2018.

Minutes:

It was proposed by Councillor M Langmead, seconded by Councillor A Inch and -

 

Resolved:   That the minutes of the meeting held on 29 October 2018  be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

(Vote: For 23, Abstentions 3)

 

23.

Public Contributions

15 minute period for public contributions

Minutes:

Mr C Wileman addressed the meeting and spoke regarding his concerns about the War Memorial in Bideford.  Remembrance Day is important to him and he always tries to attend the service in the park each year.  He  said he felt the Memorial was understated; the engraving was not appropriate and the site was inaccessible to the public during Remembrance ceremonies.  The Memorial should be to remember all people who gave their lives in war and not just the people of Bideford.  He concluded by saying that the Memorial should be re-sited to a more suitable place and the inscription to be more fitting with no reference to Bideford Town Council.

 

24.

Declarations of interest

Members with interests to declare should refer to the Agenda item and describe the nature of their interest when the item is being discussed.

Minutes:

Members were reminded that declarations of interest should be made as and when the specific agenda item to which they related was under discussion.

25.

Agreement of Agenda Items Part I and II

Minutes:

There were no Part II items.

26.

To consider correspondence or other business especially brought forward by the direction of the Chair

Minutes:

The Chair had received a request from Councillor Hackett, Chair of Audit & Governance Committee, who wished to address the meeting on GDPR.

 

Councillor Hackett urged all Members to undertake the online training provided, which is available until Christmas.

27.

To answer questions submitted under Procedural Rule A9

Minutes:

There were no questions submitted under Procedural Rule A9.

 

28.

Recent Police Review

To receive an update from Supt. T Davies, Devon & Cornwall Police, on the Recent Police Review

Minutes:

Superintendent Davies told Members that levels of crime in the District had increased by 1 or 2%, albeit the increase was not as great as was being seen nationally.  He acknowledged that changes to the way crimes are now recorded did influence the statistics, but the increase did reflect a real increase, particularly in crimes such and robbery and assault.  Hidden crimes, such as domestic violence and abuse, were always difficult to capture in the statistics but they were now accounting for 1/3 of all reported crime.

 

The local Police Force continued to work effectively in a challenging environment - 80% of the work the force carries out does not relate to crime.  Project Genesis commenced approximately 18 months ago and set out to review resourcing.  Members were informed that PCSOs were only a small part of the manpower and cuts to this area would be addressed by natural wastage.  Superintendent Davies added that PCSOs were an integral part of the fabric of local policing.

 

 

Updates were given on 3 key areas:

 

County Lines – Out of area violent gangs had tried to infiltrate the District and use vulnerable children to deal drugs.  The local Police Force had thwarted their attempts to the extent that two of the biggest lines had now given up.  However, the threat was ongoing and the force remained vigilant.

 

Antisocial Behaviour - An increase in antisocial behaviour had been identified, with criminality linked to groups in town centres.  Local authorities need to work with the police to reduce the incidents.

 

Road safety – The most significant risk to public safety is road traffic collision.  The number of traffic officers will be increased and the “no excuses” team will target more dangerous driving.  Superintendent Davies sought to promote Operation Snap which encouraged drivers with dash cameras to report dangerous driving.  Speed Watch was also an initiative being developed.

 

During the ensuing discussions, Superintendent Davies acknowledged that street pastors, outreach and youth organisations played an important role in the community.  He spoke about the safeguarding measures in place to protect victims of domestic violence and abuse.

 

Superintendent Davies and Inspector Kenneally left the meeting.

 

 

 

 

29.

Adoption of a 'Statement of Licensing' Policy and Gambling Statement of Principles pdf icon PDF 79 KB

To receive the report of the Environmental Health and Community Safety Manager

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor J Hutchings declared a personal interest – Landlord of a public house in Holsworthy

 

 

The purpose of the report, presented by the Environmental Health and Community Safety Manager, was for Members to formally adopt a Statement of Licensing Policy and a revised Gambling Statement of Principles.   She explained it is a legal requirement that the documents be adopted by the Licensing Authority.

 

Councillor Brenton had concerns with regard to the prominent location of two betting shops on Bideford Quay, particularly as the risk assessment talks about consideration being given to where betting shops are placed.   This he felt would encourage gambling, particularly with young people.   He requested that the Licensing Committee and Authority give consideration to this matter.

The Environmental Health and Community Safety Manager agreed to take to Licensing Committee for review.

 

It was proposed by Councillor A Inch, seconded by Councillor K James and –

 

Resolved:

 

That the ‘Statement of Licensing’ and ‘Gambling Statement of Principles’ be formally adopted.

 

(Vote:  For – Unanimous)

 

 

30.

Localisation of Council Tax Support pdf icon PDF 232 KB

To receive the report of the Customer Support Manager

Minutes:

The Customer Support Manager presented the report, the purpose of which was:

 

1.    To update Members on the Council Tax Support Scheme for 2018/19

2.    To obtain approval for the current 2018/19 Scheme to roll over to 2019/20

3.    To obtain approval for the current Exceptional Hardship Policy to roll over to 2019/20

 

During the discussion the following points were raised :

 

·         Advertising of the Council Tax Support Scheme and exceptional hardship scheme  – it was confirmed that details are on council tax bills, website and also partner agencies are advised of the Scheme

 

·         Collection rate of council tax – TDC are in the top quartile of other authorities

 

·         Risk Management – the financial effect of a decision made by Members either to change the Scheme or not was given

 

Councillor Morrish commended the Council Tax Department, particularly with regard to responses he had received from them.

 

Recommendation 3 - Councillor S Inch directed that the membership of the Task and Finish Group to be agreed by Group Leaders.

 

It was proposed by Councillor Morrish, seconded by Councillor A Inch and –

 

Resolved:

 

      i.        That the roll over of the 2018/19 Scheme to 2019/10 be approved

 

    ii.        That the roll over of the Exceptional Hardship Policy in relation to the Council Tax Support Scheme for 2019/20 be approved

 

   iii.        That a Task & Finish Group be convened to review the ongoing suitability of the existing scheme, together with alternative options for a simplified scheme for 2020/21

 

 

(Vote:  For 25, Against 1)

31.

Appointment of Monitoring Officer pdf icon PDF 53 KB

To receive the report of the Head of Paid Service

Minutes:

The purpose of the report was to seek Member endorsement of the appointment of a Monitoring Officer, Data Protection Officer and Senior Responsible Officer for Regulatory Investigating Powers Act (RIPA).

 

Staci Dorey left the meeting for this item.

 

It was proposed by Councillor Langmead, seconded by Councillor Hicks      and –

 

Resolved:

 

That Staci Dorey be appointed as permanent Monitoring Officer.

 

(Vote:  For - Unanimous)

32.

Cycle of Committee Meeting 2019/2020 pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To receive the report of the Head of Paid Service

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Strategic Manager (Resources) presented the report, the purpose of which was for Members to approve a programme of Committee meetings for 2019/20.

 

It was proposed by Councillor Watson, seconded by Councillor Langmead and –

 

Resolved:

 

That the programme of Committee dates for 2019/20 attached to the report be approved.

 

(Vote:   For – Unanimous)

33.

Heart of the South West - Joint Committee - Council Update pdf icon PDF 100 KB

To receive the report of the Head of Paid Service

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Strategic Manager (Resources) explained that the purpose of the report was to summarise the progress made by the Committee over recent months in key areas of activity, and to set out actions proposed in the coming months.   As part of this report there are specific recommendations for Council to consider.

 

When presenting the report Members were referred to the recommendations, and advised that the contribution for 2019/20 would be a modest sum of £1,400.

 

Councillor Whittaker addressed the meeting in support of the recommendations.

 

Councillor Hicks, although in support, raised concerns with regard to the Local Industrial Strategy.  He asked that future development  be kept under review, by those from this Authority who attend the meetings, to ensure that all districts be included.

 

Brexit Resilience Opportunities Group - Councillor Christie asked that Grant funding figures are made available as to how much money the Torridge area had received from the EU.   The Strategic Manager (Resources) agreed to make enquiries into this matter.

 

It was proposed by Councillor Whittaker,  seconded by Councillor Watson and –

 

Resolved:

 

a.    That the progress report setting out the work of the Heart of the South West (HotSW) Joint Committee since its establishment in March 2018 be noted

 

b.    That delegation of the development and endorsement of the HotSW Local Industrial Strategy (LIS) to the HotSW Joint Committee (noting that final approval of the HotSWLIS rests with the HotSW Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the Government) be agreed

 

c.    That the Budget statement for 2018/19 as set out in Appendix B attached to the report, and in accordance with the decisions taken at the time the Committee was established, the Council will be asked to make an annual budgetary provision to meet  the support costs of the Joint Committee in line with the 2018/19 contribution be noted.   Final clarification on any additional 2019/20 budget requirement will be provided following the completion of the review of the Joint Committee’s role, function and management support arrangements and development of its work programme for 2019/20.

 

d.    The Budget and Cost-sharing Agreement as set out in Appendix B attached to the report be agreed.

 

 

(Vote:  For – Unanimous)

34.

Council Tax Base (2019/20) pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To receive the report of the Strategic Manager (Resources)

Minutes:

The Strategic Manager (Resources) explained that the tabled copy of the report contained figures  which required by legislation to be extracted from the Council Tax system as at 30 November, which meant they could not be issued out by the Agenda deadline.  

 

In accordance with Council Tax regulations, the Authority are required to set its Council Tax Base by 31 January.

 

It was proposed by Councillor A Inch,  seconded by Councillor Watson and –

 

Resolved:

 

That the Council Tax Base for 2019/20, as tabled at the meeting, be agreed.

 

(Vote:  For 25, Against 1)

35.

Mid-Year Review of Treasury Management pdf icon PDF 110 KB

To receive the report of the Strategic Manager (Resources)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Strategic Manager (Resources) advised that the Council is legally required under the CIPFA Code of Treasury Management adopted by the Authority, to present a mid year review on treasury management activity.  The report presented activity in the year to date.

 

During the discussion Councillor Christie referred to the Council’s debt with the Public Work Loans Board.  The Strategic Manager (Resources) explained that loans were at the time of TDC having local authority houses, and there was a debt outstanding at the time of the transfer of the housing stock. The Strategic Manager (Resources) agreed to circulate further details.

 

It was proposed by Councillor Hackett, seconded by Councillor Langmead  and –

 

Resolved:

 

·         That the Mid-Year Treasury Management Review be noted

 

·         That the short term limit on the Council’s bank account be increased to £8m.

 

(Vote:  For – Unanimous)

36.

Petitions

To receive petitions (if any)

Minutes:

There were no petitions.

 

37.

Notices of Motion

Minutes:

There were no notices of motion.