Agenda and minutes

Cabinet
Tuesday, 15th July, 2014 10.00 am

Venue: Town Hall, Scarborough

Items
No. Item

1.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 21 KB

Members are reminded of the need to consider whether they have a personal or prejudicial interest, or a disclosable pecuniary interest, to declare in any of the items on this agenda.  If so, the nature of the interest must be declared at the start of the meeting or as soon as the interest becomes apparent.  In addition, the attached form must be completed and passed to the Committee Administrator.  The Officers will be pleased to advise, if necessary, and any request for assistance should be made, in the first instance, to the Committee Administrator whose name appears at the end of this agenda.  Ideally, such advice should be sought before the day of the meeting so that time is available to consider any uncertainty that might arise.

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were received.

 

2.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 69 KB

To approve as a correct record and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on 17 June 2014 (attached).

Minutes:

RESOLVED that (i) the minutes of the meeting held on 17 June 2014, and (ii) the minutes of the meeting with Braeburn Community Junior School in respect of the new Visitor Economy Strategy on the same date be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

 

3.

Public Question Time

Public questions of which due notice has been given and which are relevant to the business of the Cabinet.

Minutes:

The Chairman reported that no public questions had been received.

 

4.

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 186 KB

To review the Cabinet’s Forward Plan (reference 14/254) attached.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the Forward Plan (Reference 14/254) be approved.

 

5.

Progress of Scrutiny of Executive Decisions

To receive an oral report by the Chief Executive.

Minutes:

Members were informed that there had been no call-ins of executive decisions since the last meeting on 17 June 2014.

 

6.

Corporate Debt Recovery Policy pdf icon PDF 145 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (reference 14/242) attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/242) which set out a new draft Corporate Debt Recovery Policy establishing consistent, firm but fair methods for debt recovery across the organisation.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet:

(i)                 Approve the application of a £10 surcharge to certain categories of debt where a customer does not opt to pay by Direct Debit (e.g. rental invoices). The surcharge will be added to each invoice raised after 1 April 2015 and will reflect the additional administrative costs associated with debts not collected by Direct Debit.

(ii)               Note that the Corporate Debt Recovery Policy sets out that the Council does not currently pass the cost of credit card charges on to those customers who choose to pay by credit card but that this will be monitored and reviewed annually. An internal review of credit card charges is currently being undertaken and the outcome of the review will be reported to Members later in the year.

(iii)             Note that the Council applies charges to outstanding Council Tax and Business Rate debts when certain recovery action is taken. These costs are in addition to any amounts added by the courts and primarily relate to £50 for the issuing of a court summons and £50 for the issuing of a liability order. These charges cover the costs incurred by the Council to administer the debt collection process and have not been increased for 3 years.

(iv)              Note that changes in enforcement agent legislation came into effect on 6 April 2014. The new legislation amends the process and costs for collecting a debt by referral to bailiffs (enforcement agents). In many cases the level of costs passed on to the customer in respect of debts recovered through this route will be substantially higher than under previous legislation.  

(v)                Note that changes in legislation which came into effect in April 2013 now allows the Council to apply Direct Earnings Attachments to recover amounts of overpaid Housing Benefit   

 

And recommend to Council

(vi)              The approval and adoption of the Draft Corporate Debt Recovery Policy

 

Reasons

To allow the Council to adopt a comprehensive Debt Management Policy covering all Council debts.

 

7.

Finance and Treasury Outturn Report - 2013/14 pdf icon PDF 307 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (reference 14/241) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/241) which outlined the Council’s financial and treasury outturn position 2013/14 and made various recommendations in respect of the year’s underspend and other matters.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet:

(i) Note the report, in particular

  • the £1.510 million underspend on the revenue budget for 2013/14;
  • the outturn position for capital schemes completed in the period and capital receipts for the 2013/14 year; and
  • the outturn position of the Council’s Treasury Management function for the 2013/2014 year.

 

(ii) Endorse the decision made by Director’s Team to commit £130k of the year end underspend for the following priority bids:

 

·      £10,000 subsidy for a Filey shuttle bus

·      £22,500 for the preparation for an application for the establishment of a University training College within the Borough

·      £10,000 for the preparation of a European funding bid

·      £20,000 contribution towards an A64 feasibility study

·      £17,500 Video streaming technology for Council meetings; and

·      £50,000 for Filey Caravan Park electrics

 

(iii) Approve that £64k of the year end underspend be committed for urgent repairs to the Peasholm Park waterfall structure, in order to complete the works prior to the summer season;

 

(iv) Approve that £31k be made available from Harbour reserves to create 12 additional berths at Scarborough Harbour and to convert existing electricity bollards to smart card outlets. 

 

(v) Accept £30k grant funding from North Yorkshire County Council for each of the next three years to support the administration of Disabled Facilities Grants by the White Rose Home Improvement Agency.

 

(vi) Recommend that the Council approve:

 

(a) That the following essential costs be funded from the year end revenue underspend:

 

·                    £934k in respect of Scarborough Depot relocation costs

·                    £230k in respect of costs of legal proceedings

 

(b) That funding of £185k be provided for the following priority bids:

 

·                    £105,000 for the Cinder Track; and

·                    £80,000 for Endeavour Wharf Pier repairs  

 

£152k of the required funding will be made available from the residual year end revenue underspend and the remaining £33k will be funded from uncommitted earmarked reserves.

 

(c) Approve the revised Prudential Indicators for Capital Expenditure and the Capital Financing Requirement.

 

Reasons

(i)                 To utilise the year end surplus to ensure that priority projects are progressed whilst maintaining financial stability for the Authority.            

(ii)               To comply with the CIPFA Code of Practice of Treasury Management in Local Authorities by informing Cabinet of the Council’s treasury management activities before 30 September following the end of the financial year that the report relates.

(iii)             To keep Members informed of Treasury Management activities and performance.

 

8.

Interim Budget Report - 2015/16 and 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 186 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (reference 14/257) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/257) which provided financial projections for the next two years, details of corporate savings and the residual budgetary shortfall, and potential areas for further savings.  In respect of the Value For Money (VFM) reserve which would be no longer used, the Director of Business Support explained that VFM projects would in future be funded on an Invest to Save basis from corporate reserves and other sources.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet note the report and in particular: 

 

(i)                 That current financial projections show that the Council will face a budgetary shortfall of £2.482 million in 2015/16, and a further £2.047 million in 2016/17 (a total of £4.529 million over the two years);

 

(ii)               That the Council’s prudent approach to budgeting has resulted in the identification of £1.545m corporate savings; which leaves a residual budgetary shortfall of approximately £1 million to be balanced through savings in 2015/16;

 

(iii)             That this residual budgetary shortfall cannot be achieved through efficiencies alone and, without targeting specific cuts to service delivery, the core functions of the Council could be seriously damaged and limited. The Council’s Senior Management Team are reviewing savings options and details will be reported to Members later in the year. Options being reviewed include:

 

·        The introduction of charges for green waste collection

·        Reductions in grants to Parish Councils in respect of Localised Support for Council Tax; and

·        Reductions in the Council’s contribution to Disabled Facilities Grants   

 

Other budget proposals for 2015/16 include:

 

·        The level of LSCT discount will be maintained at its current level (90%)

·        The Borough Council will maintain its budget for grass cutting at current levels, however proposals by NYCC to reduce the number of cuts on highway verges mean that the Council’s budget will need to be re-prioritised

 

(iv)              A review of reserves has been undertaken and it is proposed that contributions to reserves will be reduced by £100k per annum from 2015/16 onwards. In addition, an amount of £143k held in reserves is no longer required therefore this amount will be made available to fund one-off investment in the 2015/16 budget.

 

(v)                That, subject to the required level of savings being identified, the budget makes provision of £90k for one-off community projects. Members and senior officers will be given an opportunity to bid against this funding as well as the £143k detailed in recommendation (iv) above as part of the 2015/16 budget setting process;

 

Budget 2016/17

(vi)       That spending review announcements have not yet been made for the 2016/17 year and that future service delivery models will be reviewed to determine whether future efficiency savings can be delivered through this route.

 

Reasons

Full Council must approve the 2014/15 budget, and associated Council Tax level in February 2015. It is important that the Council sees the identification of budgetary savings as an on-going process which progresses throughout the year and considers its budget position early in order to consult with the public and key stakeholders on its budget  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Alternative Service Delivery - Establishment of Local Authority Trading Company pdf icon PDF 152 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (reference 14/255) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (Reference 14/255) which proposed the establishment of a private limited shell company to be owned by the Council which would enable the authority to take advantage of the opportunities offered by charging and trading powers and so offset ongoing budgetary cutbacks.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet approve:

(i)                 that the Director of Democratic and Legal Services takes all necessary steps to establish a private limited company to be owned by the Council  to be called First Resort Services Limited (the Company) or such other name as the directors of the Company may determine in consultation with the Leader of the Council through the purchase of a shell company;

 

(ii)               the delegation of authority to the Director of Democratic and Legal Services to enter into all relevant documentation;

 

(i)                 the appointment of the Chief Executive of the Council as the Managing Director of the Company together with the appointment of the Directors of Business Support and Democratic and Legal Services as Directors of the Company;

 

(ii)               the delegation of authority to the Director of Business Support to obtain the appropriate insurances for the directors of the Company, together with the ability to create the appropriate financial framework to service the Company

 

(iii)             that the Council hold the entire shareholding of the Company.

 

Reasons

To create a legal framework through which the Council can trade with external bodies and maximise income generation.

 

10.

The Living Wage - Annual Review pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (reference 14/238) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (Reference 14/238) which reviewed the operation of the Living Wage scheme and sought Members’ views on a number of options.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet approve:

(i)                 That the Living Wage Supplement be continued and an increased hourly rate be paid noting the issues raised in this report;

(ii)               that when the Council enters into a contract with an external service provider, the requirement to pay the Living Wage Supplement should not be compulsory, but rather the external service provider should be encouraged to support the scheme.

 

Reasons

This report provides an update on the implementation of the Living Wage and invites Members to consider a number of issues as part of the annual review that is required to be undertaken in relation to the continued payment of the Living Wage and its extension to Council contractors.

 

11.

Local Area Survey Result 2014 pdf icon PDF 193 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (reference 14/240) attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Democratic and Legal Services (Reference 14/240) in respect of the results of the recent Local Area Survey which concentrated on satisfaction with services, priorities and perceptions of residents.

RESOLVED that:

(i) the results of the Local Area Survey be noted; and

(ii) a further report be presented to Cabinet setting out work which is being undertaken to address areas where satisfaction can be improved.

 

Reasons

The Local Area Survey is a mechanism by which the Council can obtain a “snapshot” of the perceptions of local people on their satisfaction with the area in which they live and how services are delivered.  Surveys also assist in determining the reasons as to why there may be lower levels of satisfaction and assist the Council in delivering improvements to its services.

 

12.

Draft Green Space Supplementary Planning Document pdf icon PDF 168 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Service Delivery (reference 14/155) attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Service Delivery (Reference 14/155) which recommended a new draft Green Space Supplementary Planning Document to go out to public consultation.

RESOLVED that:

(i)                 That Members agree to the publication of the  Draft Green Space Supplementary Planning Document  for public consultation;

(ii)               That any substantive changes to the documents arising from Members discussions be subsequently cleared with the Chair of Planning and Development Committee and the Portfolio Holder for Strategic Planning and Regeneration prior to publication.

 

Reasons

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) is clear that planning policies should be based on adequate, up-to-date and relevant evidence.  With regard to planning for green spaces, paragraph 73 of the NPPF states that such policies should be based on robust and up-to-date assessments of the needs for open space, sports and recreation facilities and the opportunities for new provision.

 

The Borough Council’s current approach to planning for green space is set out within the “Negotiation of Play, Greenspace & Sports Facilities in Association with New Housing Developments” Supplementary Planning Document (SPD), which was adopted in 2007 (The costs contained within the SPD are updated annually in line with RPI).  Much of the information on which the SPD is based is now out of date and has been superseded by two recent pieces of evidence, namely; the “Scarborough Playing Pitch Strategy” (October 2013) and the “Green Space Audit” (May 2014).  As a result, the SPD itself is outdated and must be refreshed in line with the findings of the most recent evidence, as per the requirements of the NPPF.

 

13.

Bank Top Toilets, Robin Hood's Bay pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (reference 14/253) attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/253) in respect of the transfer of the Robin Hood’s Bay Bank Top public toilet facility to Fylingdales Parish Council.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet:

(i)                 approve the transfer of the Robin Hoods Bay Bank Top public toilet facility to Fylingdales Parish Council on a 125 year lease agreement at a peppercorn rent;

(ii)               approve a £5,000 contribution to Fylingdales Parish Council toward the refurbishment works to be funded from the Parish Council Contingency Reserve.

 

Reasons

To transfer the facility to the Parish Council to enable them to operate the toilet facility. 

To assist the Parish Council in meeting the refurbishment costs.

 

14.

Sale of Flat 4, Belle Vue Flats, Filey pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (reference 14/245) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/245) in respect of the sale of Flat 4, Belle Vue Court, Filey.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet:

(i)                 approve, in principle, the sale of a 125 year long leasehold interest in Flat 4, Belle Vue Court, Filey;

(ii)               approve that the estates agents fees are funded from the capital receipt;

(iii)             delegate the final decision as to whether to proceed with the sale to the Director of Business Support, in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Harbours, Assets, Coast and Flood Protection.

(iv)             Delegate authority to the Director of Democratic and Legal Services to enter in to the necessary agreements if the Director of Business Support after consultation decides to proceed with the sale.

 

Reasons

To achieve a capital receipt from the sale and reduce the ongoing maintenance charges incurred by the Council.

To enable an expeditious decision making process.

 

15.

Tourism - Joint Working pdf icon PDF 130 KB

To consider a report by the Director of Service Delivery (reference 14/251) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Service Delivery (Reference 14/251) which sought Members’ approval of the development of a new partnership with East Riding Council Tourism Service to develop joint local marketing and promotional plans to support the ongoing promotion of the Yorkshire Coast.

RESOLVED that the Cabinet approve the development of a partnership arrangement with East Riding of Yorkshire Council to promote the Yorkshire Coast.

 

Reasons

To align and develop marketing activity to provide a more effective and responsive service for promoting the Yorkshire Coast at a local level, which will in turn result in improved efficiencies and additional exposure for the destinations.

 

16.

Exclusion of the Public

To consider the following motion:-

“that in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (and subject to consideration of the public interest under Paragraph 10 of Part 2 of Schedule 12A of the Act) the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information (as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act), namely information;

(a) relating to any individual;

(b) which is likely to reveal the identity of an individual; and/or

(c) relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information)”.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (and subject to consideration of the public interest under Paragraph 10 of Part 2 of Schedule 12A of the Act) the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information (as defined in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act), namely information;

(a) relating to any individual;

(b) which is likely to reveal the identity of an individual; and/or

(c) relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information).

 

17.

Restrict Minute - 20 May 2014

Minutes:

The restricted minute of the meeting held on 20 May 2014 in respect of compensation for the sterilisation of development land at Peasholm Gap, was agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

 

18.

Londesborough Lodge

To consider a report by the Director of Business Support (14/256) attached.

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report by the Director of Business Support (Reference 14/256) in respect of the transfer of Londesborough Lodge to the Rokpa Trust.

RESOLVED that the recommendations in the report be approved, which are recorded in the Council’s Restricted Minute Book.

 

Reasons

For the reasons given in the report and recorded in the Council’s Restricted Minute Book.