Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Karen Shepherd  01628 796529

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Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors N. Airey and Rankin

2.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To receive any declarations of interest

Minutes:

Councillor Bateson declared an interest in the item ‘Improving Choice in Education’ as she was Governor at Charters School. She remained in the room for the duration of the discussion and voting on the item.

 

Councillor Bicknell declared an interest in the item ‘Improving Choice in Education’ as his son was Assistant Headteacher and Director of Sport at Holyport College. He remained in the room for the duration of the discussion and voting on the item.

 

Councillor Dudley declared an interest in the item ‘Improving Choice in Education’ as he was a Founder and Chair of Governors at Holyport College, his wife was a founder and Governor at Holyport College and his daughter attended the school. He remained in the room for the duration of the discussion and voting on the item.

 

Councillor Hill declared an interest in the item ‘Draft Borough Local Plan Consultation’ as he owned a property on West Street. The property was not in the boundary of the Borough Local Plan. He remained in the room for the duration of the discussion and voting on the item.

 

Councillor S. Rayner declared an interest in the item ‘Draft Borough Local Plan Consultation’ as her husband was a trustee of a trust that owned significant land holdings in the borough, none of which were affected by the Borough Local Plan. She remained in the room for the duration of the discussion and voting on the item.

 

The Monitoring Officer confirmed that there was no need for Members to declare an interest in the item ‘Draft Borough Local Plan Consultation’ simply because they owned a home in the borough.

 

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 121 KB

To consider the Part I minutes of the meeting held on 27 October 2016

 

To note the Part I minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Regeneration Sub Committee held on 24 October 2016

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That:

 

i)             The Part I minutes of the meeting held on 27 October 2016 be approved, subject to that addition of Councillor Hilton to the attendance and an addendum to note that the word ‘loan’ should be replaced with the word ‘payment’ as follows:

 

DELIVERING DIFFERENTLY - FUTURE DELIVERY OF DEBT RECOVERY ENFORCEMENT SERVICES

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

ii. Approves a start-up payment of £114,000 to RBWM Commercial Services, required to set-up the Debt Recovery Enforcement service, and for this to be funded from the Development Fund.

 

 

ii)            The Part I minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Regeneration Sub Committee held on 24 October 2016 be noted.

4.

Appointments

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Finance explained that a number of councillors and officers had been ‘taken over’ as part of the Children’s Takeover Day held on 18 November 2016. This had included briefings to allow young people to present and scrutinise a number of the reports on the Cabinet agenda. The young people had been briefed to enable them to offer their views and opinions and he had been impressed with the tenacity that had been demonstrated. The Lead Member commented that it was not suggested that the views were representative of young people in the borough, nor that they had any constitutional weight, however they should be given the airing they deserved.  The Leader echoed these comments and thanked all those who had participated.

5.

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 289 KB

To consider the Forward Plan for the period December 2016 to March 2017

Minutes:

Cabinet considered the contents of the Forward Plan for the next four months and noted the changes that had been made to the plan since the last meeting. In addition it was noted that:

 

·         The item ‘Additional Library – Report of Consultation and Feasibility Studies,’ originally scheduled for December 2016, would be deferred to 23 February 2017

·         The item ‘Long Stay Parking Provision in Maidenhead,’ originally scheduled for December 2016, would be deferred to January 2017.

·         The item ‘Delivering Differently in Operations and Customer Services: Civil Enforcement Officer and Community Wardens Service’ would be presented to Cabinet in February 2017.

·         The item ‘Future Royal Borough Service Model for Residents,’ originally scheduled for December 2016, would be deferred to March 2017.

6.

Cabinet Members' Reports pdf icon PDF 194 KB

6a

Draft Borough Local Plan Consultation pdf icon PDF 202 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered approval for a further round of public consultation on the draft Borough Local Plan (BLP) under Regulation 18 of the Local Planning Regulations 2012.

 

Cabinet was addressed by Diana Tombs who was representing the Ascot, Sunninghill and Sunningdale Neighbourhood Plan Delivery Group.

Ms Tombs asked the following questions:

How can Cabinet consider whether this Plan is robust and endorse it without any reassurance that the infrastructure that is essential to it can be funded and delivered?  We recognise that an Infrastructure Delivery Plan is not technically required for Regulation 18 consultation but the NPPF does require a Plan to ensure provision of infrastructure alongside homes and jobs. Without any information on what infrastructure is needed and, crucially, how it will be funded. How can you face local residents and reassure them their quality of life and place will be protected through this BLP?

The Statement of Community Involvement, adopted by this Council in October, allows 8 weeks for consultation of Development Plan Documents, which include this Regulation 18 BLP, when the consultation is held over Christmas. Why therefore is the consultation period allowed in the timetable in front of you only 6 weeks?

 

Ms Tombs commented that there was a concern at the number of homes being built in the area in relation to infrastructure. They had been told that funds would be found from CIL and S106 but historically this had gone to other parts of the borough. She asked Members to assure her that receipts from the sough of the borough would be allocated as a priority to the local area.

 

Cabinet was addressed by Patrick Griffin on behalf of the Society for the Protection of Ascot and the Environs. Mr Griffin asked the following question:

 

Several policies, defined as strategic in the BLP, reference Supplementary Planning Documents (SPDs) which will provide detailed guidance to how these policies should be implemented.  On matters where there may be a difference, in fact or interpretation, between Neighbourhood Plan policies and the SPD, which will take precedence?

 

Mr Griffin also expressed concern, in relation to neighbourhood plans in the process or being adopted or developed, that these SPDs referenced as they were in policies that were defined as strategic, would to such a degree override most policies as to make Neighbourhood plans redundant. He asked Members to ensure that the Design SPD in particular would make it clear that Neighbourhood Plan policies had precedence over these guidelines?

 

Cabinet was addressed by Peter Shaw on behalf of the Society for the Protection of Ascot and the Environs. Mr Shaw asked the following question:

 

The BLP draft identifies the objectively assessed needs (OAN) as required by the NPPF, as 14,240 new dwellings.  Please provide the number and percentage breakdown of this  total number of new dwellings by their proposed location on:

 

a)     Green Belt

 

b)     Previously Developed Land in Green Belt

 

c)    Brownfield

 

The Lead Member commented that the draft BLP had taken a lot of time and effort by a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6a

6b

Council Performance Management Framework Quarter 2 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 4 MB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered the latest performance report.

 

The Deputy Lead Member explained that the new format had been streamlined and now focussed on highlighting strategic priorities. Changes in data collection also ensured qualitative analysis and benchmarking. The infographics was a new section. One of the four priorities was off target (equipping ourselves for the future). This related to a number of KPIs about staff satisfaction. A number of targets currently showed no data, if this remained the case in quarter 3 they would be automatically considered as off target.

 

The Lead Member for Adult Services and Health highlighted the target ‘percentage of adult safeguarding enquiries resolved in the 60 day timescale’. Performance the previous year had been only 31%, however this had been a result of increased workloads following the Supreme Court decision on care homes. It was anticipated the KPI would be back on target by year end.

 

The Lead Member for Environmental Services highlighted that the KPI in relation to reductions in fly tipping was amber. An action plan was in place to reach target by the end of the year, including the closing of lay-bys, analysis of areas of risk and proactive enforcement.

 

The Principal Member for HR and Legal commented that staff satisfaction targets were important as staff were vital to the council’s success. It was an annual measure so there would be no fluctuation between quarters; it may be necessary to amend the reporting as a result.  She highlighted that the Staff Forum had been reinstated and included senior leaders, Members and representatives from all directorates. The People Forum also met to review policies and take into account staff views. Exit interviews were offered to all staff; they had been moved on line to encourage take up. The response rate was currently 58%.

 

In light of comments from the Corporate Services Overview and Scrutiny Panel, the Deputy Lead Member proposed amendments to the recommendations to improve accountability by officers and Lead Members.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

          i. Notes the progress towards meeting the council’s strategic priorities and objectives

 

          ii. Requests Strategic Directors in conjunction with the relevant Lead Member(s), Heads of Service and Strategy and Performance to confirm, progress and monitor improvement actions for each indicator that is off target , to be made available publicly and updated quarterly

 

          iii. Endorses the ongoing work to improve the council’s Performance Management Framework

 

          iv. Notes that if performance remains off target for two consecutive quarters, or the Corporate Services and/or relevant Overview and Scrutiny Panel decide the improvement actions have not been progressed, the relevant Lead Member(s) and officers should attend the next Corporate and/or relevant Overview and Scrutiny Panel meeting for further review

 

 

6c

Improving Choice in Education pdf icon PDF 902 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered the borough’s response to the government consultation ‘Schools that work for everyone’ that confirmed the council’s commitment to excellent education for all pupils who lived in the borough, particularly for those living with financial disadvantage.

 

Cabinet was addressed by Rachel Cooke, who spoke on behalf of Excellent Education for Everyone, a group founded by borough parents to promote positive discussions about ways to deliver a fair and inclusive education for all in the borough. The Overview and Scrutiny Panel had already heard the group’s evidence that selective education would lead to fewer children attaining their potential and the attainment gap between rich and poor growing wider. The council’s motto was ‘residents first’, so the council should ask residents first if they wanted their existing schools to become selective. Should schools like Furze Platt shut their doors to 80% of nearby children? Grammar schools further shut their doors to disadvantaged students. Newlands was the top academically achieving comprehensive with comparable results to William Borlase Grammar. It was also an inclusive school with an ever-6 pupil population of 13.7% compared to 1.7% at William Borlase.

 

Ms Cooke highlighted that there was no mention in at the last election of encouraging existing schools to take up selective education.  A selective school meant that all Maidenhead parents would lose the automatic choice of sending a child to the school. There had been no evaluation of the consequences to residents of any school becoming selective. The Prime Minister had stated that new grammar schools should be built in areas with no outstanding or good schools and be trialled in areas of high deprivation. It was against the law to create new selective schools; the council was urged to respect the rule of law and withdraw the report before wasting taxpayer resources. Instead, build a brand new comprehensive or college open to all children no matter their background or academic ability.

 

The Deputy Lead Member for School Improvement highlighted the issue in the light of the national debate. The government’s green paper opened with wording about making the country work for everyone not just the privileged few. He hoped all could agree with that statement. The Deputy Lead Member referred to research by the Sutton Trust that showed independent schools were disproportionately represented in many professions. Selective education was not a magic bullet but he believed it had a part to play in redressing the balance. At Full Council in December 2014 the council had voted in favour of promoting selective education. The council had made a commitment in its manifesto to promote more choice, including selective education within the legal framework. There was no intention to move ahead with any proposal that would be outside the law. The report proposed responding to the government consultation and indicating support.  The proposals were not going backwards; there was no intention to force every child to sit an examination. The intention was to offer more choice to parents. In the old grammar system there had been  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6c

6d

A Review of Access Arrangements at Stafferton Way Civic Amenity sites pdf icon PDF 437 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a permit system for use of Stafferton Way Civic Amenity and Household Waste and Recycling Centre.

 

The Lead Member explained that the borough had been affected by neighbouring authorities already taking this approach. It was an important issue due to the costs to the borough, which amounted to nearly £100,000 per annum. Analysis showed that approximately 16% of users came from outside the borough. He had made it clear that the system should not involve another sticker that residents would need to display in their car.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

              i.        Approves the implementation of a permit scheme at Stafferton Way Civic Amenity Site and Household Waste Recycling Centre, to limit free use of the site to residents of the Royal Borough. The scheme will be implemented by April 2017. A charge will be applied to residents from outside the Royal Borough who wish to deposit waste at the site.

 

            ii.        Delegate authority to the Lead Member for Environmental Services and the Director of Operations and Customer Services to finalise the exact format of the permit scheme following consultation with visitors to the site.

 

                iii.            Approves the implementation of a permit scheme for commercial or commercial type vehicles, including vans, trailers and sign written vehicles, for access to use the Stafferton Way Civic Amenity Site and Household Waste Recycling Centre, where these vehicles are driven by residents of the Royal Borough and used to dispose of their own household waste.  The scheme will be implemented by 31st January 2017.

6e

Delivering Differently - Future of IT Provision pdf icon PDF 305 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered proposals for the Council’s approach to IT service provision over the next five years.

 

The Lead Member explained that as the way the council did business changed, the IT support also needed to change. The key theme was the development of a mixed economy including in-house and bought-in support. The number of applications would also be further rationalised and moved to off-site hosting where possible. Staffing would also be reviewed, for example there was no need to maintain levels of staff who could redesign networks when this only happened every few years and could be bought in.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

i)        Notes the Entec Si report findings and recommendations in Appendix A;

 

ii)      Approves further work to develop an IT transformation programme, to be brought back to Cabinet in February 2017;

 

iii)     Delegates approval to the Strategic Director of Operations and Customer Services, along with the Lead Member for Customer & Business Services (including IT) to procure an implementation partner to assist in the development of an IT transformation programme.

 

6f

Delivering Differently In Operations & Customer Services - Future Provision of Customer and Library Services pdf icon PDF 267 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a proposal to create a modern, first-in-class customer facing, high performing service called ‘Customer Experience’ with three access channels, 24/7 digital, face-2-face and telephone.

 

The Lead Member explained that Customer Services would move out of the Town Hall into locations that were easier for residents to access in Maidenhead Library and Ascot Library. In Windsor the service would temporarily move to Windsor Library whilst works were completed on York House. Residents would be able to meet with Customer Service staff during the longer library hours. The telephone service would also be extended to be 24/7. From January 2017 Digital by Choice would allow access to council services online 24/7. The council would need to spend £115,000 to make the library areas suitable for private meetings and a further £35,000 would be spent on Maidenhead Town Hall reception area. These costs would be offset by savings of £286,000 in 2017/18 and £100,000 in 2018/19. As there would be no change to the front of house service, the savings would come from re-organisation of staff.

 

The Principal Member for Neighbourhood Planning and Ascot and the Sunnings welcomed the proposals as people in the south of the borough often had to travel to Windsor to access services.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

i.          Approves a new operating model to create a single ‘Customer Experience’ Service from July 2017.

 

ii.         Recommends to Employment Panel the adoption of the new ‘Customer Experience’ operating model.

 

iii.         Approves bringing forward £100,000 of the proposed 2017-18 capital programme to deliver new customer systems, create the service hubs and remodel the existing reception space in the Town Hall.

6g

Affordable Housing Planning Guidance Document pdf icon PDF 609 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered approval of a guide for developers of sites which required the provision of affordable housing to meet national and local planning policy.

 

The Lead Member explained that the document gave guidance to developers of the types of affordable tenure offered in the borough including shared ownership, shared equity, and the private rental sector. The current local plan required 30% affordable housing on development areas. The proposed policy would be interim as it would be revised once the BLP was adopted.

 

The Deputy Lead Member for Ascot Regeneration commented that it was a long time since the council had set out its policy and the landscape had changed significantly. The document was clear and concise and set out the responsibilities and obligations of developers.

 

The Principal Member for Public Health and Communications commented that as a relatively young resident of the borough he was aware or the difficulties of getting on the housing ladder. He had purchased a property four and a half years ago using savings and with parental help. The value of his home had doubled since.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

i)             Approves the Affordable Housing Planning Guidance Document.

6h

Change to Council Tax Empty and Unfurnished Exemption pdf icon PDF 341 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered removal of the discretionary one-month, 100% empty and unfurnished exemption in line with many other local authorities, with effect from 1 April 2017. This was the last discretionary discount/exemption offered by the council.

 

The Lead Member explained the proposal would net the council £325,000 revenue of which it could keep £267,000.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

i.              Endorses the principle of removing the one-month Council Tax exemption for empty and unfurnished properties (previously known as Class C discount), with effect from 1 April 2017, and recommends this to Council for a final decision.

 

ii.            Grants delegated authority subject to approval by Council to the Strategic Director of Operations and Customer Service, in conjunction with the Lead Member for Customer & Business Services (including IT),  to take all appropriate steps to implement and administer the preceding recommendation in accordance with statutory requirements.

 

6i

Financial Update pdf icon PDF 463 KB

Minutes:

Cabinet considered the latest financial update.

 

The Lead Member explained that the situation had improved from the time of the last meeting with an underspend of £430,000 now projected. Reserves were anticipated to total £6.5m by year end, comfortably above the recommended level.

 

The Lead Member reported impressive performance in the Adult, Children and Health directorate which had reduced its projected overspend by £154,000. This resulted in a projected year end overspend of £158,000 out of a budget of £57m. The Operations and Customer Services directorate continued to outperform, projecting an underspend of £555,000. Members noted the proposal to add £350,000 to the capital budget to appoint a Development Manager for the leisure centre project.

 

The Lead Member explained that over the last few years the council had managed its cash balances without the need for additional borrowing. For a number of reasons cash balances were expected to drop at year end. This was due to the usual drop in council tax income from those who paid by direct debit over 10 months and also as money in relation to the LEP usually went out at the same time. It was therefore anticipated that modest additional borrowing of up to £15m may be needed during that period. Borrowing would be more than compensated by the anticipated capital receipts from the regeneration programme. The Chairman proposed a third recommendation to reflect the need for additional borrowing.

 

The Lead Member for Culture and Communities welcomed the investment in a Development Manager for the new leisure centre.

 

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That Cabinet:

 

i)          Notes the Council’s projected outturn position.

ii)         Approves a £350,000 capital budget for survey work and a Development Manager in respect of the new leisure centre at Braywick Park (see paragraph 4.12).

iii)       Authorise the Head of Finance to borrow up to an additional £15m as needed to fund the capital investment programme of the council.

The Lead Member thanked Luisa Marinozzi, who had chaired the Children’s Takeover Day Special Overview and Scrutiny Panel, for attending the meeting.

7.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972 - EXCLUSION OF THE PUBLIC

To consider passing the following resolution:-

 

“That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the remainder of the meeting whilst discussion takes place on items 8-9 on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1-7 of part I of Schedule 12A of the Act"

Minutes:

RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local

Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the remainder of the

meeting whilst discussion took place on items 8-9 on the grounds that they involved the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in

Paragraphs 1-7 of part I of Schedule 12A of the Act.

8.

Minutes

To consider the Part II minutes of the meeting held on 27 October 2016

 

To note the Part II minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Regeneration Sub Committee held on 24 October 2016

 

9.

Cabinet Members' Reports

9a

Delivering Differently - Future of IT Provision (Appendix)

9b

DAAT Tender - Award report

9c

Renewal of Microsoft Licensing Agreement