Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Council - Tuesday, 14 July 2020 2.00 p.m.

Venue: Virtual meeting - Online. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services  03450 450 500 Email: democratic.services@scambs.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES

To receive apologies for absence from Members.

Minutes:

Apologies for Absence were received from Councillors Jose Hales, Alex Malyon, Tony Mason, Dawn Percival and Nick Sample.

2.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Minutes:

None. 

3.

Register of Interests

Members are requested to inform Democratic Services of any changes in their Register of Members’ Financial and Other Interests form.

Minutes:

The Chair requested that Members inform Democratic Services of any changes to their registered interests.

4.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 304 KB

To authorise the Chairman to sign the Minutes of the meeting held on 21 May 2020 as a correct record.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 21 May 2020 were agreed as a correct record, subject to the following amendments:

 

The third paragraph, second sentence of the minute 12b should be amended as follows: “Milton Parish Council had agreed to pay £10,000 and she urged Council to support the proposed grant" and “Cambridge Sports Lake”, should be corrected to “Cambridge Sport Lakes” throughout.

 

The third paragraph of minute 13, was amended to “Councillor Nigel Cathcart supported the Strategy and hoped that more could be done to repair buildings, instead of demolishing them.”

 

The fourth paragraph on page 6 of minute 10 was amended to “Councillor Heather Williams expressed concern at the change that allowed an officer to prevent a planning application being determined by the Planning Committee, asserting that this power should reside with elected representatives”.

5.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

To receive any announcements from the Chair, Leader, the Cabinet or the Head of Paid Service.

Minutes:

The Chair made the following announcements:

·         Congratulations to Councillor Alex Malyon on the birth of her baby boy, named Benjamin Paul Malyon Shillitoe.

·         Kathrin John, Democratic Services Team Leader, will be retiring later this month. The Chairman thanked her for three years of sterling service and wished her all the best in retirement.

·         Welcomed Anne Ainsworth, Chief Operating Officer to her first meeting of Council.

 

The Leader made the following announcements:

·         Kathrin John will be sadly missed and she wished her well for the future.

·         The appointment of Anne Ainsworth, Chief Operating Officer, and Jeff Membery, Head of Transformation, brought the Council’s Leadership Team up to full strength.

·         She thanked the Council’s officers, local members, parish councils, community groups and volunteers for their efforts over the last four months in rising to the challenge caused by the Covid-19 virus.

6.

QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC pdf icon PDF 261 KB

To answer any questions asked by the public.

 

The deadline for receipt of public questions is noon on Tuesday, 7 July 2020.

 

The Council’s scheme for public questions at remote meetings may be inspected here:

 

Public Questions at Remote Meetings

Minutes:

Daniel Fulton expressed his concern over the curtailed consultation period of a planning application last autumn and the cost of legal recent legal proceedings. He asked the following question to the Leader of Council:

Does the Leader of the Council agree with the Monitoring Officer’s assessment that there is no benefit to the Council being made aware of unlawful decisions taken by officers on its behalf? 

 

The Leader explained that it was not the Monitoring Officer’s assessment that there was “no benefit to the Council being made aware of unlawful decisions taken by officers on its behalf”. The information was in the public domain and the issue has been dealt with in the high court. It was important that the Council learned from its mistakes.

 

There was no supplementary question.

 

Richard Williams expressed his concern that the Council was not fully aware of the issues regarding the planning conditions on a building that he opposed. He commented that this had been very stressful and unsettling. He asked the following question to the Leader of Council:

The report states that no further action is necessary because a review of the planning service’s validation and sign off processes will be undertaken. Does the Leader of the Council feel that any improvements could be made in the way that elected councillors exercise oversight of the Council’s planning service?

 

The Leader acknowledged that planning applications could be stressful on all those they affected. She assured Council that there were monthly board meetings, involving two Chief Executives, that provided oversight of the joint planning service. The Scrutiny and Overview Committee received quarterly reports on the performance of the planning service and the Planning Committee received reports on enforcements and appeals at its meetings. The Local Plan process was subject to external scrutiny. A new Joint Development Control Committee was being established. The Leader was satisfied that councillors had oversight of the Council’s planning service.

 

Richard Williams expressed concern that his views and those of other local people had not been listened to. He expressed the hope that the review of the planning service would resolve this.

 

The Leader sympathised with Mr Williams and recommended that all local residents should report their concerns to their local representatives: their parish council, their district and county councillors. She explained that she always responded to any resident of the District who contacted her. She concluded that the Council would learn from this experience.

 

Mr Andrew Taylor was not present and so the Chair read out Mr Taylor’s question on his behalf.

 “Could the Leader of the Council please provide her thoughts about the importance of openness and transparency in local government and the vital importance of complying with legal standards contained within the Freedom of Information Act and the Environmental Information Regulations?” 

 

The Leader of Council explained that she was committed to promoting openness and transparency, across the wide range of activities that the Council undertakes – wherever this was possible.

 

7.

PETITIONS

To note all petitions received since the last Council meeting.

Minutes:

No petitions had been received. 

8.

TO CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING RECOMMENDATIONS:

8a

Thriplow Community Governance Review (Civic Affairs Committee - 2 June 2020) pdf icon PDF 254 KB

Civic Affairs Committee recommended to Council:

 

1.    The request from Thriplow Parish Council to change representation to 5 for Thriplow village ward and to 4 for Heathfield ward and to implement these changes from the next scheduled election in May 2022.

 

2.    The request from Thriplow Parish Council to change its name to the Parish of Thriplow and Heathfield, the timing to be agreed with the Parish Council.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED

 

A)       To change ward representation for Thriplow Parish Council to 5 for Thriplow village ward and to 4 for Heathfield ward from the next scheduled election in May 2022.

 

B)       To change the name of the Parish to the Parish of Thriplow and Heathfield, with immediate effect as requested by Thriplow Parish Council.

Minutes:

The Chair presented this report on the Thriplow Community Governance Review, which invited Council to change the ward representation for the Parish Council and change the name of the Parish to the Parish of Thriplow and Heathfield. He explained that following consultation with Thriplow Parish Council, the recommendation from Civic Affairs Committee had been amended to implement the change of the Parish name immediately. Councillor Richard Williams spoke in favour of this proposal, as local member. He explained that the Parish Council fully supported the recommendations and he thanked the Development Officer for her work throughout the Community Governance Review.

 

The Chair proposed and Councillor Richard Williams seconded the recommendations in the report

 

By affirmation Council RESOLVED

 

A)       To change ward representation for Thriplow Parish Council to 5 for Thriplow village ward and to 4 for Heathfield ward from the next scheduled election in May 2022.

 

B)       To change the name of the Parish to the Parish of Thriplow and Heathfield, with immediate effect as requested by Thriplow Parish Council.

8b

Refreshed New Build Council Housing Strategy (Cabinet - 29 June 2020) pdf icon PDF 159 KB

Cabinet  recommended to Full Council that the New Build Council Housing Strategy be approved and adopted

 

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED        to approve and adopt the New Build Council Housing Strategy as set out in Appendix A to the report.

Minutes:

Councillor Hazel Smith, Lead Cabinet Member for Housing, introduced this report, which set out the reasons for, and context within which, the Council will acquire or directly commission new build affordable homes to be owned and managed directly by the Council. She announced that the Council was on target to achieve its ambition of doubling the number of Council houses it builds each year for the next five years. The new homes would be energy efficient.

 

Councillor Dr. Tumi Hawkins explained that the Planning team were working with their colleagues in housing to deliver affordable, energy efficient homes.

 

Councillor Dr. Claire Daunton supported the strategy and commended the intention to support older people looking to move to a smaller property.

 

Councillor Heather Williams expressed her support for the motion, as it would increase the Council’s housing stock.

 

Councillor Nigel Cathcart expressed his support for the motion and hoped that the number of council owned properties could be increased further in the future.

 

In response to a question from Councillor Gavin Clayton, Councillor Hazel Smith explained that the unallocated funds in the HRA shown on page 43 of the agenda would be used to build new council houses in the future.

 

By affirmation Council

 

RESOLVED   to approve and adopt the New Build Council Housing Strategy as set out in Appendix A to the report.

8c

Greater Cambridge Joint Development Control Committee (Civic Affairs Committee - 1 July 2020) pdf icon PDF 346 KB

The Civic Affairs Committee recommended Council:

 

  1. On the withdrawal of the Cambridgeshire County Council, to dissolve the Joint Development Control Committee (JDCC) between Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council as surviving members, pursuant to section 101 (5) Local Government Act 1972 and cease all delegations to the same with effect from 31 July 2020; and
  2. To establish a new joint planning committee between Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council (to be called the Joint Development Control Committee) with the Terms of Reference as set in Appendix A subject to the number of members from each council to be increased from three to six, and to delegate functions to the joint committee and officers as set out therein, pursuant to section 101(5) and section 102 Local Government Act 1972 with effect from 1 August 2020.
  3. To agree that ongoing planning matters or any other continuing action which would otherwise fall to be determined by the JDCC will, after 31 July 2020, transfer to the new Joint Development Control Committee for determination.
  4. To authorise the Joint Director of Planning and Economic Development to decide,  in consultation with the Chair and Vice Chair of the new joint development control committee, whether to refer any development control matters for determination by the Greater Cambridge Joint Planning Committee where the boundary of the site concerned overlaps or is adjacent to the boundary between Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council.
  5. To authorise the Monitoring Officer to make any consequential amendments to the Council’s constitution arising from the above decisions.
  6. To agree the proposed draft standing orders for the Committee subject to:
    1. The Chair and Vice Chair appointments alternating between the two councils, to take place annually.
    2. County Councillors to be permitted to attend and address the committee.

 

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED

 

A)   On the withdrawal of Cambridgeshire County Council to dissolve the JDCC

between Cambridge City Council and South Cambridgeshire District

Council as surviving members, pursuant to section 101 (5) Local

Government Act 1972 and cease all delegations to the same with effect

from 31 July 2020; and

 

B)   To establish a new joint planning committee between Cambridge City

Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council (to be called the Joint

Development Control Committee) with the Terms of Reference as set in

Appendix A and to delegate functions to the joint committee and officers as set out therein, pursuant to section 101 (5) and section 102 Local

Government Act 1972 with effect from 1 August 2020

 

C)   To agree that any ongoing planning matters or any other continuing action

relating to development covered by the terms of reference in appendix A

which would otherwise fall to be determined by the previous Committee

will, after 31 July 2020, transfer to the newly formed Joint Development

Control Committee for determination

 

D)   To authorise the Joint Director of Planning and Economic Development, in

consultation with the Chair and Vice Chair of the Committee, to decide

whether to refer any development control matters for determination by the

Joint Development Control Committee where the boundary of the site

concerned overlaps or is adjacent to the boundary between Cambridge

City Council and South Cambridgeshire District Council

 

E)   To authorise the Monitoring Officer to make any consequential

amendments to the Council’s constitution arising from the above decisions

 

F)    To appoint 6 members (and substitutes) from SCDC to serve upon the new

Joint Development Control Committee from August (4 Liberal Democrat group members: Councillors Anna Bradnam (spokesperson), Steve Hunt, Dr Claire Daunton and Dr Tumi Hawkins (substitutes: Councillors John Williams and Peter Fane) and 2 Conservative group members: Councillor Tom Bygott and Grenville Chamberlain (substitutes: Councillors Graham Cone and Mark Howell)

 

G)   To comment upon the proposed draft standing orders for the Committee

as appropriate.

 

H)   To agree the following amendments to the Terms of Reference of the Committee, as proposed by the Civic Affairs Committee of Cambridge City Council:

 

                    i.    To add the following two additional provisions to the “Functions of the Committee”:

§    The review, change, amendment or modification of the Standing Orders of the Committee.

 

§    Any matter related to an application previously determined by the Joint Development Control Committee for Cambridge Fringes and which would continue to form a part of this Committees functions.

 

                  ii.    To update the “Joint Development Control Committee Scheme of Delegation” part e to remove the “call-in” capabilities of the County Council so as to read as follows:

 

§    e) The application is one where, within 21 days of being notified of the application or within 14 days of receipt of any subsequent material amendment to the proposal, any Member of the City Council or of the District Council requests in writing (including e-mail), that the application should be determined by Committee, stating the planning grounds on which the request  ...  view the full decision text for item 8c

Minutes:

The Chair presented this report which sought Council’s agreement to establish a new Committee on 1 August 2020 that will continue to be called the Joint Development Control Committee. The report also detailed the key changes to membership, scope, geography and draft terms of reference, for Council’s approval.

 

The Chair highlighted paragraph 2.6 of the report, which stated that the Committee would be made up of six members, four Liberal Democrats and two Conservatives. There would be two substitutes from each political group.

 

The Chair proposed the following amendments to the recommendation, which had been provided by the Joint Director of Planning. These changes to the Terms of Reference had been proposed by Cambridge City Council’s Civic Affairs Committee.

 

To add to the “Functions of the Committee” (page 60 of the agenda) so as to insert two further additional provisions:

 

The review, change, amendment or modification of the Standing Orders of the Committee.

 

Any matter related to an application previously determined by the Joint Development Control Committee for Cambridge Fringes and which would continue to form a part of this Committees functions.

 

In addition, to update the “Joint Development Control Committee Scheme of Delegation” part e (page 74 on the SCDC Council agenda) to remove the “call-in” capabilities of the County Council so as to read as follows:

 

e) The application is one where, within 21 days of being notified of the application or within 14 days of receipt of any subsequent material amendment to the proposal, any Member of the City Council or of the District Council requests in writing (including e-mail), that the application should be determined by Committee, stating the planning grounds on which the request is based.

 

It was noted that neither of these revisions were considered to raise new issues for the Councils and reflected legal advice aimed at providing clarity which has been received from Bevan Brittain who were advising the Councils on the matter.

 

These amendments to the recommendation were agreed, by affirmation.

 

Councillor Dr. Tumi Hawkins, Lead Cabinet Member for Planning, expressed her disappointment that Cambridgeshire County Council had withdrawn their membership from the Committee, but respected their decision. She thanked officers for their work in preparing the terms of reference for the new Committee and looked forward to still closer working with Cambridge City Council on planning.

 

Councillor Mark Howell declared a non-pecuniary interest as a County Councillor and explained that he would not participate in the debate or the subsequent vote. In response to questioning, the Monitoring Officer explained that it was up to Councillors to decide whether they had an interest and whether to participate in the debate, but he did not consider that membership of the proposed Joint Development Control Committee or the County Council should preclude them from the debate.

 

Councillor Henry Batchelor declared a non-pecuniary interest as a County Councillor, but explained that he intended to vote.

 

Council by affirmation (Councillor Mark Howell abstained)

 

RESOLVED

 

A)   On the withdrawal of Cambridgeshire County Council to dissolve the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8c

9.

CAMBRIDGESHIRE AND PETERBOROUGH COMBINED AUTHORITY pdf icon PDF 428 KB

Attached are the reports summarising the work of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority in May and June 2020.

Minutes:

The Leader reported that the Combined Board was reviewing the appropriate location for the headquarters of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority. The Government had provided funds to the Board, which were aimed at improving public transport and keeping people out of their cars. The Leader also reported that business recovery funds from the Government had been allocated via the fortnightly forum meetings.

 

Council NOTED the reports.

10.

GREATER CAMBRIDGE PARTNERSHIP pdf icon PDF 313 KB

Attached is a summary of the decisions of the Greater Cambridge Partnership Executive Board at its meeting held on 25 June 2020.

Minutes:

Councillor Aidan Van de Weyer reported on the Greater Cambridge Partnership Executive Board meeting held on 25 June.

 

Councillor Henry Batchelor expressed his disappointment at the decision by the Board to make a traffic order for a bus lane in Linton, when the funds could have been better spent elsewhere. He expressed his concern at the fact that there was no call-in process for the Board’s decisions.

 

Councillor Gavin Clayton asked why the decision had been taken to defer the proposed Cambourne to Cambridge public transport project.

 

Councillor Heather Williams noted that Cambourne was misspelt in the report and she recorded her thanks to County Councillor Tim Wotherspoon, the outgoing Chair of the Greater Cambridge Joint Assembly.

 

Councillor Peter Fane asked whether the environmental impact on the Magog Downs had been taken into account. He also asked whether the Mayor had been consulted before the decision had been taken.

 

Councillor Deborah Roberts was disappointed with the decision taken by the Board with regard to the Foxton travel hub and she felt that the views of the Parish Council had been ignored. She was concerned that the decision could not be challenged and she had written to the local MP. She asked Councillor Dr. Van de Weyer to talk to Foxton Parish Council about how congestion caused by the new car park could be mitigated, as congestion on the A10 was already a concern, exacerbated by the railway crossing.

 

Councillor Aidan Van de Weyer explained that all local views had been considered before decisions were taken and the Greater Cambridge Partnership Board was democratically accountable. He suggested that he meet with the local members for Linton to discuss the reasons for the decision and look at longer term solutions. Regarding the Cambourne to Cambridge route, he explained that it was vital that the correct decision was made and the public were fully engaged. He acknowledged the impact of the South East scheme, which had been evaluated as the best solution among the alternatives. The Combined Authority had been kept aware of the decision making process and the Mayor was welcome to discuss any concerns he had with the Board. He recognised the need to engage with local communities. He responded to the concerns with regard to the Foxton travel hub and noted the comments regarding local engagement; he would like to meet with Foxton Parish Council, with officers, to discuss the next stage.

11.

APPOINTMENT TO THE INDEPENDENT REMUNERATION PANEL AND RATIFICATION OF THE APPOINTMENT OF INDEPENDENT AND DEPUTY INDEPENDENT PERSONS pdf icon PDF 214 KB

To invite Council to re-appoint Graham Jagger to the Independent Remuneration Panel and to ratify the re-appointment of both Grant Osbourn and Gillian Holmes to the positions respectively of Independent Person and Deputy Independent Person.

 

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED to

 

A)        Re-appoint Graham Jagger as a member of the Independent Remuneration Panel for a term of office expiring 30 September 2022.

 

B)        Ratify the re-appointment of Grant Osbourn as the Council’s Independent Person for a further year.

 

C)        Ratify the re-appointment of Gillian Holmes as the Council’s Deputy Independent Person for a further year.

 

Minutes:

The Chair proposed the recommendations in this report, which invited the Council to re-appoint Graham Jagger to the Independent Remuneration Panel and to ratify the re-appointment of both Grant Osbourn and Gillian Holmes to the positions of Independent Person and Deputy Independent Person respectively. The Leader seconded the motion.

 

Council by affirmation

 

RESOLVED to

 

A)        Re-appoint Graham Jagger as a member of the Independent Remuneration Panel for a term of office expiring 30 September 2022.

 

B)        Ratify the re-appointment of Grant Osbourn as the Council’s Independent Person for a further year.

 

C)        Ratify the re-appointment of Gillian Holmes as the Council’s Deputy Independent Person for a further year.

 

12.

MEMBERSHIP OF CABINET, COMMITTEES AND OUTSIDE BODIES

(a)  To note that the Leader has appointed Councillors Peter McDonald and Brian Milnes as members of the Cabinet.

 

(b)  To note and endorse the following changes in memberships of committees, other bodies and substitute arrangements:

(i)    The replacement of Councillor Sue Ellington by Councillor Dr. Richard Williams as a member of the Planning Committee;

(ii)   The appointment of Councillor Sue Ellington as the first named substitute on the Planning Committee to fill the current Conservative Group vacancy for a substitute on the committee; and

(iii)  The replacement of Councillor Tom Bygott by Councillor Nick Wright   on the  Joint Local Planning Advisory Group.

 

(c)   The Leader to report verbally on the appointment of Liberal Democrat Members to replace Councillors McDonald and Milnes on the Scrutiny and Overview Committee, together with any associated changes in substitute membership.

 

(d)  To note and endorse any other changes in the membership of committees or substitute arrangements which have been made in accordance with the wishes of the Leader of the political group to which the seat has been allocated.

 

(e)  To consider any changes required in the membership of outside bodies.

 

 

 

Minutes:

Changes in memberships of committees and substitutes were set out on the agenda.

 

Councillor Bridget Smith, Leader of Council, explained that due to the Covid crisis the Council needed to increase the size of Cabinet to take into account the increase in the Executive’s workload. She announced that Councillor Brian Milnes had been appointed as the Lead Cabinet Member for Environment Services and Licensing. Councillor Peter McDonald had been appointed as the Lead Cabinet Member for Business Recovery and Skills. Councillor Bill Handley would remain on Cabinet and was appointed to the new position of the Lead Cabinet Member for Community Resilience, Health and Wellbeing.

 

The following further changes were also reported.

 

Councillors Peter McDonald and Brian Milnes were replaced with Councillors Peter Fane and Jose Hales on Scrutiny and Overview Committee – Councillor Eileen Wilson and Councillor Sollom were appointed as substitutes.

 

Councillor Dr. Ian Sollom replaced Councillor Brian Milnes as a member of Audit and Corporate Governance Committee.

 

Councillor Dr. Tumi Hawkins replaced Councillor Brian Milnes as a member of Planning Committee and Councillors Geoff Harvey and Brian Milnes were appointed as substitutes. 

 

Councillor Peter Fane replaced Councillor Pippa Heylings as a member of the Cambridge and Peterborough Combined Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Councillor Dr. Ian Sollom was appointed as a substitute for this Committee.

 

Councillor Grenville Chamberlain thanked Councillor Peter McDonald for his work on the Scrutiny and Overview Committee and Councillor Brian Milnes for his hard work as a reliable Vice Chair of the Committee. It was noted that the Scrutiny and Overview Committee would elect its replacement Vice Chair at its next meeting.

 

Council NOTED and ENDORSED these changes, together with those listed on the agenda.

13.

MONITORING OFFICER REPORT pdf icon PDF 295 KB

To receive the report of the Monitoring Officer.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer presented this report which reflected on whether there had been any contravention by the Council of any enactment or rule of law with regard two planning decisions and an environment decision notice. It was noted that the shared planning service received approximately 6,000 planning applications a year.

 

Council NOTED the report, which recommended that no further actions were required.

14.

QUESTIONS FROM COUNCILLORS

A period of 30 minutes will be allowed for this item to include those questions where notice has been provided (as set out on the agenda below) and questions which may be asked without notice.

 

Members wishing to ask a question without notice should indicate this intention to the Democratic Services Team Leader prior to commencement of the meeting.  Members’ names will be drawn at random by the Chair until there are no further questions or until the expiration of the time period.

14a

From Councillor Peter Fane

Is the Leader concerned by the lack of progress of the Government in agreeing the terms of a trade deal with the EU and the uncertainty that this creates for businesses and residents in our District?

 

 

Minutes:

Is the Leader concerned by the lack of progress of the Government in agreeing the terms of a trade deal with the EU and the uncertainty that this creates for businesses and residents in our District?

 

The Leader stated that the country was already facing the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which would be made considerably worse if there was no trade deal with the European Union. A lack of clear information made it difficult for businesses to prepare for the possible impact of a no deal scenario.

 

Councillor Peter Fane suggested that Cabinet should reconvene the Brexit Advisory Group to allow this authority to work with the City Council to help businesses to meet the challenges that lay ahead.

 

The Leader saw the merit of reconvening the Brexit Advisory Group, as it would provide an opportunity for this authority to work with the City Council in liaising with local businesses. She explained that Councillor Peter McDonald would be Cabinet’s point of contact with the Group, as the Lead Cabinet Member for Business Recovery.

14b

From Councillor Judith Rippeth

Would the Leader confirm approximately how many South Cambs residents volunteered to provide assistance to vulnerable residents during the Covid-19 lockdown?

 

Minutes:

Would the Leader confirm approximately how many South Cambs residents volunteered to provide assistance to vulnerable residents during the Covid-19 lockdown?

 

The Leader was pleased to report that approximately 4,500 people had volunteered in the District, which was an impressive response from the community.

 

As a supplementary question, Councillor Rippeth asked if the Leader agreed that the crisis had demonstrated the importance of local communities and that it was appropriate to build on this.

 

The Leader recognised the longer-term challenges caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and the negative effects it could have on residents’ health and wellbeing, which was why the post of Lead Cabinet Member for Resilience, Health and Wellbeing had been created to try and mitigate the long-term effects of the virus and keep our residents healthy.

14c

From Councillor Steve Hunt

Does the Leader agree that the Covid-19 lockdown has revealed tremendous opportunities from reducing dependence on private cars, and the value to our community in terms of reducing congestion, improving air quality and reducing noise pollution?

 

Minutes:

Does the Leader agree that the Covid-19 lockdown has revealed tremendous opportunities from reducing dependence on private cars, and the value to our community in terms of reducing congestion, improving air quality and reducing noise pollution?

 

The Leader recognised that it would be a challenge to reduce residents’ dependence on cars, especially as social distancing made it difficult to use public transport. She expressed the hope that businesses could be encouraged to allow their staff to continue to work from home. She explained that the new Local Plan identified the importance of transport and included the aim of trying to get people out of their cars and into buses, onto bikes or to walk.

14d

From Councillor Grenville Chamberlain

Following the comments of the Deputy Leader at the GCP board meeting on 25th June, where he committed to finding a route that no longer cuts through Coton, will the administration give a commitment that this councils representative on the GCP will not permit the destruction of the trees at Hardwick along the A428?

 

Minutes:

Following the comments of the Deputy Leader at the GCP board meeting on 25th June, where he committed to finding a route that no longer cuts through Coton, will the administration give a commitment that this council’s representative on the GCP will not permit the destruction of the trees at Hardwick along the A428?

 

Councillor Aidan Van de Weyer stated that it was important that as the Council’s representative on the Greater Cambridge Partnership Executive Board that he restricted himself to general comments, otherwise he would be unable to vote at meetings of the Board due to rules regarding pre-determination. He stated that the plans had mitigating factors to soften the environmental impact of the schemes.

 

Councillor Grenville Chamberlain suggested that the mitigation was just an inadequate fence between the St Neots road and asked if a safe off-road cycle route between Hardwick and Cambridge could be developed.

 

Councillor Aidan Van de Weyer explained that a range of mitigation measures were being considered as part of a holistic approach in a whole network of transport routes.

14e

From Councillor Nick Wright

Does the Leader believe that the views of scrutiny should be taken into account with Cabinet’s Decision making?

 

Minutes:

Does the Leader believe that the views of scrutiny should be taken into account with Cabinet’s Decision making?

 

The Leader explained that she was an enthusiastic supporter of the Scrutiny and Overview Committee and her administration had decided that the Chair should be an opposition group member. The decision had also been taken to move to a pre-scrutiny arrangement and Cabinet would consider all recommendations made by the Scrutiny and Overview Committee. However, it was the job of Cabinet to make tough decisions about budgets and policies, weighing up all the considerations when reaching decisions. Cabinet would always listen to the Scrutiny and Overview Committee, but sometimes it had to make decisions, which, having looked at all the options, it thought were in the best interests of the Council.

 

Councillor Nick Wright stated that concerns expressed by the Scrutiny and Overview Committee on the investment partnership had been ignored by Cabinet. Council noted that this item would be discussed by Council at agenda item 18.

 

14f

From Councillor Dr. Richard Williams

Under what legally power was this council able to withhold parish council precept payments after a schedule of payments had been agreed?

 

Minutes:

Councillor Richard Williams explained that the word “legally” in the question on the agenda should be amended to “legal” and so the question should read “Under what legal power was this council able to withhold parish council precept payments after a schedule of payments had been agreed?”

 

Councillor John Williams, Lead Cabinet Member for Finance, explained that the Local Authorities (Funds) (England) Regulation 1992 prescribed the way in which local preceptors were to receive their precept payments and they stated that 50 per cent should be paid within one month of the start of the financial year and the remainder within six months of the start of the financial year. Due to the unprecedented situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and because of the difficulties in collecting the Council Tax, Business Rates and Housing rents, there had been a risk that the Council would run low on readily available cash by the end of May. The authority had therefore asked parish councils if they would be willing to receive 25% of the precept at the start of the financial year, instead of the usual 50%. When the Government announced that Councils could delay the transfer of Business Rates the Council was able to transfer the remaining 25% by mid-May.

 

Councillor Richard Williams welcomed the fact that parish councils had been paid promptly in May, but he stated that the legislation did not allow the delay in payments to parish councils. He also asked that in future councillors be informed of such a delay before the information was made public.

 

Councillor John Williams explained that any delay in payments was contingent on the permission of the parish council. Only two parish councils had asked to be paid as normal and this request had been complied with.

 

Councillor Heather Williams raised a point of order under Standing Order 15.12, stating that Councillor Richard Williams’ question had not been answered. Councillor John Williams stated that he had answered the question in his first response.

14g

From Councillor Heather Williams

Will the leader confirm that the addition of 2 extra cabinet members is within budget?

 

Minutes:

Will the leader confirm that the addition of 2 extra cabinet members is within budget?

 

The Leader confirmed that the extra cost could be contained within the overall budget for Democratic Representation and this year the amount claimed for travel expenses had greatly reduced. She stated that Cabinet was made up of nine members in 2017/18 and had been reduced to seven by the current administration.

 

Councillor Heather Williams stated that the members of Cabinet shared their allowances in May 2017 and she asked whether the current Cabinet would also share their allowance with the additional membership without increasing total allowance received by Cabinet.

 

The Leader explained that the increase in Cabinet would cost £11,704.50 for the rest of the financial year, which was good value for money.

14h

From Councillor Graham Cone

When will the administration release the sites that have been put forward for the new local plan?

 

Minutes:

When will the administration release the sites that have been put forward for the new local plan?

 

Councillor Tumi Hawkins, Lead Cabinet Member for Planning, explained that the plan was to publish the list of sites put forward for consideration in September. The data would be published on the Great Cambridge Shared Planning website along with a summary report and supporting information and would include all of the sites put forward for consideration but without any assessment of their suitability as that was an ongoing process. Online briefings would be held and any questions on the data will be answered.

 

Councillor Graham Cone asked how the Council could mitigate the concerns of residents who feared the negative impact of any new development.

 

Councillor Tumi Hawkins explained that the list of sites had not yet been assessed on their planning merit. This would be explained fully in the online briefing.

15.

NOTICES OF MOTION

A period of 30 minutes will be allowed for each Motion to be moved, seconded and debated, including dealing with any amendments. At the expiry of the 30 minute period, debate shall cease immediately, the mover of the original Motion, or if the original Motion has been amended, the mover of that amendment now forming part of the substantive motion, will have the right of reply before it is put to the vote.

15a

Standing in the name of Councillor Sarah Cheung Johnson

Council notes:

 

1.    The killing of George Floyd in June 2020, for which a Minneapolis police officer has been charged with second-degree murder and three other police officers have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.

 

2.    Previous racially aggravated murders, crimes and mistreatment of Black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) people in the US, UK and beyond, including but not limited to Stephen Lawrence, Darren Cumberbatch, Julian Cole, Joy Gardner, Adrian Thompson, Mark Duggan, Cherry ‘Dorothy’ Groce, Edson Da Costa, Rashan Charles, Michael Powell, Nuno Cardoso, Adrian McDonald, Olaseni Lewis, Daniel Adewole, Trevor Smith, Sarah Reed, Jermaine Baker, Sheku Bayoh, Kevin Clarke, Leon Briggs, Anthony Grainger, Kingsley Burrell, Jacob Michael, Mzee Mohammed Daley, Derek Bennett, Azelle Rodney, and Sean Rigg. (LinkLink)

 

3.    BAME people are 54% more likely than white people to be fined under the new coronavirus lockdown laws. (Link)

 

4.    In the UK 26% of instances of police using firearms are against black people, despite black people making up only 3.3% of the population. (Link)

 

5.    51% of young men in custody in the UK are from Black, Asian or minority ethnic backgrounds, despite these groups making up only 14% of the UK population. (Link)

 

6.    Around two thirds of healthcare staff who have died as a result of COVID-19 are from a BAME background whereas they make up 20% of the overall workforce. (Link)

 

7.    Black people were 47 times more likely to face suspicionless stop and searches by police than white people.

(Link)

 

 

Council believes:

 

  1. Racism in all forms, both structural and in individuals, continues to be a serious and often unseen problem in the UK. This is as true in Cambridgeshire, where the ethnic minority population is 18.6%, as it is in areas with greater diversity.

 

  1. Although progress has been made in combating racism, work to eradicate it entirely is far from complete.

 

  1. This Council, representing people in South Cambridgeshire, has a duty as a public leader to actively lead that work.

 

Council resolves to meet the challenge head on and:

I.              Ensure Black History month, an event initiated by Cllr Tumi Hawkins for the first time in SCDC’s history in 2019, is made an annual event at South Cambs.

 

II.            Request Scrutiny and Overview Committee to convene a Task and Finish group to:

 

a.    Review and examine the SCDC structure to ensure ethnic minorities are not disadvantaged. Understand specifically how many BAME staff we employ, where are they working, what barriers, if any exist to their career progression and whether a “name blind” recruitment process would aid in the recruitment of more BAME staff. Review the evidence, provide recommendations and devise a set of KPIs and a challenging outturn for us to achieve this.

 

b.    Consider BAME access to housing and to homelessness and welfare support, which are important parts of the council remit. The group would review and recommend concrete actions on how we adopt an actively anti-racist outlook  ...  view the full agenda text for item 15a

Minutes:

Councillor Sarah Cheung Johnson gave notice of her wish to alter the motion of which she had given notice by the deletion of paragraph 2. Council consented to the alteration. Councillor Cheung Johnson then proposed the following motion, seconded Councillor Tumi Hawkins:

 

Council notes:

 

1.    The killing of George Floyd in June 2020, for which a Minneapolis police officer has been charged with second-degree murder and three other police officers have been charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder.

 

2.    BAME people are 54% more likely than white people to be fined under the new coronavirus lockdown laws. (Link)

 

3.    In the UK 26% of instances of police using firearms are against black people, despite black people making up only 3.3% of the population. (Link)

 

4.    51% of young men in custody in the UK are from Black, Asian or minority ethnic backgrounds, despite these groups making up only 14% of the UK population. (Link)

 

5.    Around two thirds of healthcare staff who have died as a result of COVID-19 are from a BAME background whereas they make up 20% of the overall workforce. (Link)

 

6.    Black people were 47 times more likely to face suspicionless stop and searches by police than white people.

(Link)

 

 

Council believes:

 

A.   Racism in all forms, both structural and in individuals, continues to be a serious and often unseen problem in the UK. This is as true in Cambridgeshire, where the ethnic minority population is 18.6%, as it is in areas with greater diversity.

 

B.   Although progress has been made in combating racism, work to eradicate it entirely is far from complete.

 

C.   This Council, representing people in South Cambridgeshire, has a duty as a public leader to actively lead that work.

 

Council resolves to meet the challenge head on and:

I.             Ensure Black History month, an event initiated by Cllr Tumi Hawkins for the first time in SCDC’s history in 2019, is made an annual event at South Cambs.

 

II.            Request Scrutiny and Overview Committee to convene a Task and Finish group to:

 

a.    Review and examine the SCDC structure to ensure ethnic minorities are not disadvantaged. Understand specifically how many BAME staff we employ, where are they working, what barriers, if any exist to their career progression and whether a “name blind” recruitment process would aid in the recruitment of more BAME staff. Review the evidence, provide recommendations and devise a set of KPIs and a challenging outturn for us to achieve this.

 

b.    Consider BAME access to housing and to homelessness and welfare support, which are important parts of the council remit. The group would review and recommend concrete actions on how we adopt an actively anti-racist outlook within areas where we have influence, by reviewing our corporate equalities and diversity  policies so that anti-racism is explicit and not implied; by routinely calling for transparent reporting and continuous monitoring of the impact on the BAME community: for example, continuing to request  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15a

15b

Standing in the name of Councillor Nick Wright pdf icon PDF 175 KB

That South Cambridgeshire District Council, while committed to the promotion of exception sites, is dedicated to protecting the green belt in the emerging local plan.

 

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED       That South Cambridgeshire District Council, while committed to the promotion of exception sites, is dedicated to protecting the greenbelt in the emerging local plan in line with the National Planning Policy Framework.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Nick Wright indicated that he wished to alter the motion of which he had given notice by the addition of the words “in line with the National Planning Policy Framework” at the end of the motion. Council consented to the alteration. Councillor Wright then proposed the following motion: “That South Cambridgeshire District Council, while committed to the promotion of exception sites, is dedicated to protecting the green belt in the emerging local plan.”

 

Councillor Nick Wright stated that whilst he supported exception sites, green belts needed to be supported as they kept villages separate from each other and the city. Green belt separation also encouraged the regeneration of brown field sites, especially those within the city boundaries.

 

Councillor Richard Williams seconded this motion. He stated that we were fortunate to have green belts in the District, but if the current policy was weakened it would be detrimental to our villages.

 

Council by affirmation

 

RESOLVED:

 

That South Cambridgeshire District Council, while committed to the promotion of exception sites, is dedicated to protecting the greenbelt in the emerging local plan in line with the National Planning Policy Framework.

15c

Standing in the name of Councillor Heather Williams

Given the unprecedented circumstances officers have been working in during the covid-19 pandemic, this council asks the chairman to correspond with all officers, of all tiers, to thank them for their on going work during this incredibly challenging time on behalf of all 45 councilors of South Cambridgeshire.

 

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED        that given the unprecedented circumstances officers have been working in during the covid-19 pandemic, this Council asks the Chairman to correspond with all officers, of all tiers, to thank them for their on going work during this incredibly challenging time on behalf of all 45 councilors of South Cambridgeshire.

Minutes:

Councillor Heather Williams proposed the following motion, as laid out in the agenda: “Given the unprecedented circumstances officers have been working in during the covid-19 pandemic, this council asks the chairman to correspond with all officers, of all tiers, to thank them for their on going work during this incredibly challenging time on behalf of all 45 councilors of South Cambridgeshire.”

 

Councillor Graham Cone seconded the motion by expressing his admiration for the way in which staff had adapted to their changing roles, new IT systems and the formation of new teams.

 

Councillor Hazel Smith, Lead Cabinet Member for Housing, highlighted the work of housing officers, who had taken on a number of new responsibilities due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Councillor Nigel Cathcart stated that the public sector had been swifter in responding to the crisis than the private sector. He thanked officers for learning new skills and applying them successfully.

 

Councillor Neil Gough, Deputy Leader, requested that the work of all shared service staff also be recognised.

 

Council by affirmation

 

RESOLVED

 

that given the unprecedented circumstances officers have been working in during the covid-19 pandemic, this Council asks the Chairman to correspond with all officers, of all tiers, to thank them for their on going work during this incredibly challenging time on behalf of all 45 councilors of South Cambridgeshire.

16.

CHAIR'S ENGAGEMENTS

There are no Chair’s engagements to report since the last Council meeting in view of the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

 

Minutes:

None to report. 

17.

Exclusion of Press and Public

The press and public are likely to be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item in accordance with the provisions of Section 100(a)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of the Act).

Minutes:

Council by affirmation agreed to go into private session.

 

The Chair moved, the Leader seconded and Council, with abstentions from Councillor Deborah Roberts and Heather Williams, but all other councillors in favour

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item in accordance with the provisions of Section 100(a)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A (as amended) of the Act).

18.

INVESTMENTS PARTNERSHIPS - MEMBERS' AGREEMENTS (Cabinet - 4 March 2020)

Decision:

Council

 

AGREED       The recommendations, as detailed in the confidential report, with the amendments agreed whilst the Council was in confidential session.

 

Minutes:

Councillor John Williams introduced this item regarding approval of investment partnerships in accordance with the approved Investment Strategy and moved the recommendations in the report. Councillor Hazel Smith seconded the motion.

 

Following detailed debate, it was

 

RESOLVED

 

That the recommendations, as detailed in the confidential report, with the amendments agreed whilst the Council was in confidential session, be approved.