Agenda and minutes

Full Council
Tuesday, 11th December, 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Council Offices. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services  Tel: (0116) 257 2775 Email: democratic.services@oadby-wigston.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

52.

Calling to Order of the Meeting

The meeting of the Council will be called to order to receive His Worship The Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

Minutes:

The meeting of the Council was called to order to receive His Worship The Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

 

The meeting was led in prayer by the Reverend to the Mayor.

53.

One Minute Silence in Memory of Councillor Robert (Bob) R Fahey

Minutes:

A minutes’ silence was respectfully observed in memory of Councillor Robert (Bob) R Fahey, who had served as the Member for Oadby Grange Ward since May 2015.

 

The Reverend to the Mayor delivered a message of condolence to Councillor Fahey’s family, friends and colleagues.

 

 

54.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Councillors E R Barr, Mrs K M Chalk, Miss M V Chamberlain, J Kaufman, Mrs L Kaufman, Dr T K Khong, K J Loydall JP and R H Thakor.

 

55.

Declarations of Interest

Members are reminded that any declaration of interest should be made having regard to the Members’ Code of Conduct. In particular, Members must make clear the nature of the interest and whether it is 'pecuniary' or ‘non-pecuniary'.

Minutes:

None.

56.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To read, confirm and sign the minutes of the previous meeting in accordance with Rule 17 of Part 4 of the Constitution.

Minutes:

By affirmation of the meeting, it was

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The minutes of the previous meeting of the Council held on Tuesday, 02 October 2018 be taken as read, confirmed and signed.

57.

Action List Arising from the Previous Meeting DOCX 116 KB

To read, confirm and note the Action List arising from the previous meeting.

 

Minutes:

By affirmation of the meeting, it was

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The action list arising from the previous meeting of the Council held on Tuesday, 02 October 2018 be taken as read, confirmed and signed.

58.

Motions on Notice

To consider any Motions on Notice in accordance with Rule 12 of Part 4 of the Constitution.

Minutes:

None.

59.

Petitions, Deputations and Questions

To receive any Petitions and, or, Deputations in accordance with Rule 24 of Part 4 of the Constitution and to answer any Questions by the Public or Members in accordance with Rules 10 and 11 of Part 4 of the Constitution respectively.

Minutes:

None.

60.

Mayor's Announcements

60a

List of Official Mayoral / Deputy Mayoral Engagements DOCX 28 KB

Minutes:

The Mayor reminded those in attendance that the Civic Carol Service was taking place on Wednesday, 12 December 2018 at Oadby Baptist Church and all were welcome to attend. Any Members who had not yet replied to their invitation were encouraged to do so.

 

By affirmation of the meeting, it was:

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The list of Official Engagements attended by The Mayor and/or Deputy Mayor be noted.

61.

Leader's Statement

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council presented a Statement outlining his recent work, the administration’s plans and an overview of recent decisions taken since the previous meeting of the Council.

 

In respect of the proposed unitary authority for Leicestershire, it was confirmed that despite the announcement by the County’s seven MP’s that in their view now was not the right time for a major reorganisation, the County Council had signalled its intention to continue to work up its plans and carry out a public consultation. The Secretary of State had gone on record as saying that merging authorities was not the long-term solution to local government’s financial difficulties, whilst Nottinghamshire had recently pulled the plug on its unitary proposals. Although the 31 March 2019 ‘sunset clause’ meant that there was no realistic chance of a cogent Leicestershire proposal being put together and gaining collective agreement, allegedly the Leader at County Hall wishes to retain an ‘off the shelf’ plan for potential future usage.

 

In view of the apparent widespread lack of support for a unitary authority, the District/Borough Council Leaders had held initial conversations regarding a feasibility study to look at shared services across the County. However, the Leader of Oadby & Wigston was of the view that any such work could potentially validate the County Council’s future ‘off the shelf’ solution, and therefore this authority would not be allocating any resources to participating further in this initiative.

 

In response to a Member question, reassurance was provided by the Chief Executive that from the outset, all Oadby & Wigston staff had been kept regularly informed through various communication channels as to what was happening with regard to the proposed unitary structure.    

62.

The Strategic Growth Plan - “Leicester and Leicestershire 2050: Our Vision for Growth” DOCX 304 KB

Report of the Head of Planning, Development & Regeneration

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council received the report as set out on pages 15-59 of the agenda, which asked it to consider and approve the revised Leicester and Leicestershire Strategic Growth Plan (SGP) to put in place a long-term strategy for future development and prosperity across the City and County.

 

There was a general consensus amongst Members that whilst it was not a perfect document, the proposed Plan represented a useful strategy to focus the mind on the major issues facing the region for the period up to 2050, as well as offering potential solutions. It was suggested that in certain areas the Plan lacked vision, whilst the inclusion of speculative housing figures was criticised on the basis that until the precise location of certain infrastructure projects had been decided, the location of most of the new homes needed could not be accurately forecast. It was however widely acknowledged that approving the Plan would protect the Borough in terms of the relatively low housing figures required when compared to neighbouring local authority areas, many of whom had five-figure projections. Whilst the figures made uncomfortable reading to some Members, it was suggested that failing to plan for the future appropriately would be irresponsible and without securing vital infrastructure improvements the Borough was likely to become gridlocked.

 

Some Members were less supportive of the Plan, arguing that there had been a lack of transparency in its formulation and that it required further work before it could be considered fit for approval. There was particular concern that whilst the Plan was a strategic document and not a policy document, it could tie the Council’s hands and leave the authority in a position where Members might not be able to oppose future developments in the Borough, even if they were clearly inappropriate. There was also a concern expressed about the threat that meeting the housing figures would pose towards the Council’s existing green spaces.

 

During the debate, Councillor Mrs H E Loydall proposed and the Deputy Leader of the Council seconded a motion that an amendment be made to Recommendation A to replace the words “be approved” with “be considered as a starting point”.

 

In response to the moving of the above motion, the Head of Planning, Development & Regeneration reassured Members that the SGP was a non-binding, non-statutory strategic document; therefore approving it would be demonstrating a commitment to collectively sharing the strategic vision, as opposed to locking the authority in to a binding series of targets or obligations. The Monitoring Officer concurred with this view, and also stated that even if it were a statutory policy document, this would still not be binding on Members as it would not override their obligation to consider cases on their own merits, without fettering their discretion. Members were also reminded that the Council has a statutory duty to cooperate with its neighbouring local authorities in the preparation of its Local Plan. The situation was made clear to Members that by failing to approve the SGP, the authority would almost  ...  view the full minutes text for item 62.

63.

Proposed Gambling Act 2005: Statement of Licensing Principles (2019-2021) DOCX 290 KB

Report of the Interim Licensing Officer

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council received the report as set out on pages 60-94 of the agenda, which asked it to approve and adopt the final proposed Gambling Act 2005 Statement of Licensing Principles (2019-21), for commencement on 31 January 2019.

 

It was moved by Councillor Mrs L M Broadley, seconded by Councillor M L Darr and

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The final proposed Gambling Act 2005 Statement of Licensing Principles (2019-21) be approved and adopted for commencement on 31 January 2019.

64.

Amendment to Polling Place and Polling Station (South Wigston Ward)

Report of the Democratic & Electoral Services Manager

Minutes:

The Council received the report as set out on pages 95-97 of the agenda, which asked it to approve St Mary’s Parish Church Hall as a designated polling place and polling station in South Wigston Ward for the Borough Council election scheduled for Thursday 2 May 2019.

 

It was moved by the Leader of the Council, seconded by Councillor Mrs S B Morris and

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

St Mary’s Parish Church Hall be approved as a designated polling place and polling station in South Wigston Ward for the Borough Council election scheduled for Thursday 2 May 2019.

65.

Member Conduct Update (Verbal Update) DOCX 13 KB

Verbal update of the Head of Law & Governance / Monitoring Officer

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council received a verbal update from the Monitoring Officer in relation to an alleged breach of the Code of Conduct by Councillor Miss A R Bond, which had been adjudicated upon by a Determination Sub-Committee on Thursday 29 November 2018.

 

The Council were advised that on the balance of probabilities, the Determination Sub-Committee was satisfied that Councillor Bond’s actions had been contrary to the standards required under the Member Code of Conduct, and unanimously resolved that the following sanctions should be applied:

 

a.    In respect of a complaint from a member of the public, Councillor Bond should be required to make a written apology to the complainant, approved by the Monitoring Officer, by the end of December 2018. This was currently being progressed, and Councillor Bond had been made aware that should she fail to apologise within the time limit set by the Sub-Committee then a further sanction of Censure would be applied. The Sub-Committee also recommended that Councillor Bond should attend training on Communication Skills and Equality & Diversity Awareness, and Officers were in the process of identifying suitable courses to fit this brief.

 

b.   In respect of a complaint from the Leader of the Council, Councillor Bond should be required to make a verbal and written apology, approved by the Monitoring Officer, to all Members at the Full Council meeting on Tuesday 11 December 2018.

 

The Monitoring Officer then invited Councillor Bond to verbally deliver her apology in respect of the complaint from the Leader of the Council.

 

A copy of the apology verbally delivered by Councillor Bond is filed together with these minutes at Appendix 1.

 

By affirmation of the meeting, it was

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The contents of the verbal update from the Monitoring Officer and the verbal and written apology from Councillor Bond be noted by Members.

66.

Exclusion of the Press and Public

The press and public are likely to be excluded from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (Exempt Information) during consideration of the item(s) below on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information, as defined in the respective paragraph(s) 1, 2 and 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act and, in all the circumstances, the public interest in maintaining the exempt item(s) outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

Minutes:

By affirmation of the meeting, it was

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The press and public be excluded from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (Exempt Information) during consideration of the item on the grounds that it involved the disclosure of exempt information, as defined in the respective paragraph(s) 1, 2 and 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act and, in all the circumstances, the public interest in maintaining the exempt item(s) outweighed the public interest in disclosing the information.

67.

Facing the Future (Verbal Update)

Verbal update of the Director of Finance & Transformation / Section 151 Officer

Minutes:

The Council received a verbal update from the Chief Executive in closed session.

 

By affirmation of the meeting, it was

 

UNANIMOUSLY RESOLVED THAT:

 

The contents of the verbal update be noted by Members.