Cheltenham Borough Council
Cheltenham Borough Council

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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Municipal Offices

Contact: Bev Thomas, Democracy Officer 

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Flynn, Horwood and Barnes.

2.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

3.

Minutes of the last meeting pdf icon PDF 330 KB

Minutes of the meeting held on 18 February 2019

Minutes:

The minutes of the last meeting held on 18th February 2019 were signed and approved as a correct record.

 

4.

Communications by the Mayor

Minutes:

The Mayor briefed Members on the events he had attended and made particular reference to the opening of the new crematorium which had been an exciting project for the council.

5.

Communications by the Leader of the Council

Minutes:

The Leader informed Members that a bid had been submitted to the Future High Street Fund which included reference to the proposed box park at Cheltenham Minster. He also informed that the County Council with CBC and Tewkesbury had submitted a bid to the Housing Infrastructure Fund for an all ways junction at junction 10.

6.

To receive petitions

Minutes:

There were none.

7.

Public Questions pdf icon PDF 82 KB

These must be received no later than 12 noon on Tuesday 19 March 2019.

Minutes:

1.

Question from Andrew Riley to the Cabinet Member Development and Safety, Councillor Andrew McKinlay

 

Serious accidents that have occurred in the town since the commencement of phase 4 have not been considered in the decision to extend the trial even though they were on roads which have been directly affected by traffic increases, on one short stretch of All Saints Road there have been 3 accidents in as many months during phase 4, yet only 1 has reached the accident map that was considered  when deciding to extend phase 4, local residents cannot previously recall any crashes on his stretch of road. So why were all 3 crashes not taken into account when deliberation was taken over this trial. How will all accidents be considered when it comes to the final consideration of the CTP.

 

Response from Cabinet Member

 

Section 170 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 requires drivers involved in traffic accidents involving personal injury on the road or other public place to report the accident in person at a police station, or to a constable. All road accidents involving human death or personal injury occurring on the Highway ('road' in Scotland) and notified to the police within 30 days of occurrence, and in which one or more vehicles are involved, are to be reported.

 

Severity of injury is specifically set out. A Serious injury includes (but is not limited to): fracture, internal injury, severe cuts, crushing, burns, concussion and fatalities occurring 30 or more days after the crash. Serious casualties are often (although not necessarily) detained in hospital for treatment.

 

All injury collisions (as defined above) are shared with both the County Council and the Department of Transport. The County Council collect collision data following the national standard across the Country (called Stats 19 and Stats 20) which specifically excludes reporting of ‘damage only’ collisions.

 

The up-to-date collision data available for the whole of the County is located on the following link; https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/highways/road-safety/collision-and-camera-map/

 

The trial restriction of Boots Corner to general traffic is being undertaken by an Experimental Traffic Regulation Order (ETRO). Once started, ETROs run for 18 months, to allow for changes to be made during the experiment. The current trial started on 28th June 2018 and can run until 28th December 2019.

Due to these small sample numbers of injury collisions, the highway authority usually average over more than one year to increase the reliability of the data. Collision data will be analysed as part of the Traffic Regulation Order report at the end of the trial.

2.

Question from Andrew Riley to the Cabinet Member Development and Safety, Councillor Andrew McKinlay

 

Within 2 weeks of the completion CTP phase 2 works a young man was killed in an RTA when walking to work at the junction of Clarence street and Crescent Place. Phase 2 made the north side of imperial square 2 way, enabling a new west of town to East route into Rodney road and the Regent Arcade, a route that includes this  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Member Questions pdf icon PDF 107 KB

These must be received no later than 12 noon on Tuesday 19 March 2019.

Minutes:

1.

Question from Councillor Jonny Brownsteen to Cabinet Member Clean and Green Environment, Councillor Coleman

 

The litter tally from a recent litter pick in St Paul's shows 4,522 items of litter collected, of which 2,655 were cigarette butts. Many of the cigarette butts were in the surrounds of the various shops and takeaways along St Paul's Road. Is the council able to make wall-mounted ash trays a requirement for businesses in residential areas? And what can we do to make businesses responsible for keeping the area outside their premises free of litter?

 

Response from Cabinet Member

 

As Cabinet member for Clean and Green Environment, I would take this opportunity to place on record my appreciation for the community effort in St Paul’s and other people engaged in litter picking, which sets a great example to others and in particular, those that show a disregard for our precious environment.

 

I am really pleased community groups are helping keep our neighbourhoods clean.  The Council is supporting Keep Britain Tidy’s Spring Clean which runs from 22 March to 23 April this year and details of the litter picks arranged by community groups can be found on our website. 

 

Cigarette butts contain plastic and are adding to the toll on wildlife caused by unnecessary pollution, as they wash into drains, streams, rivers and ultimately the sea.

 

The Council is currently reviewing its street cleansing service and we are actively engaging with the Cheltenham Business Improvement District (BID) and other organisations like Ubico, The Cheltenham Trust, Cheltenham Borough Homes and @plasticfreecheltenham, to help tackle the issue of plastic and other littering.

 

Keep Britain Tidy are promoting a High Street Clean Up day and the Council will be supporting this initiative not only for our main High Street but also ‘high street’ areas around town.  Additional government funding just announced will help support the provision of equipment for the Council and community groups.

 

The feedback from all the community groups will be valuable in understanding what we need to do to improve the cleanliness of our streets and clearly the work in St Paul’s demonstrates the need to look at how cigarette butts are disposed of.  Our review of litter bins on streets and in parks and gardens will incorporate this issue as most of our bins already allow for the safe disposal of cigarette butts.

 

Decisions about wall-mounted ash trays are ultimately a matter for individual businesses and the Council does not have the power to enforce this, but we would encourage shops and takeaways to consider what measures they can reasonably take to help tackle the issue. We would also welcome proactive co-operation from businesses in helping to keep their own frontages clear of litter, ensuring that this is disposed of responsibly.

 

In a supplementary question queried whether businesses could do anything more to ensure the streets were kept free of litter i.e. by providing ash trays?

 

The Cabinet Member thanked Cllr Brownsteen for all the work he was doing in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Capital, Investment, Treasury and MRP Strategies and Statements 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 78 KB

Report of the Cabinet Member Finance

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member Finance introduced the report. Her introduction is reproduced in full in the appendix to these minutes.

 

The following questions were raised and responses given :

·         Was the LGA peer review recommendation on reviewing inherent financial risk being addressed? In response the Leader explained that financial risk was an ongoing conversation with the Section 151 Officer and reviewed through the MTFS process.

·         It was asked whether the risk of default on rents and risk of void periods be included in the risk register- in response the Cabinet Member explained that it was a conscious decision to include full detail of risk within the relevant section of each report.

·         In terms of the table on proportionality it was suggested that in order to give more meaning to the numbers there should be a reflection of the level of council tax.

·         Were the labels on tables 5, 8 and 9 in appendix 2 correct ? The Chief Finance Officer apologised for the errors which were due to the fact that government guidance had been published late. The errors would be rectified in the published documents.

In the debate that ensued Members recognised that these were important documents for the council and reflected the significant investment the council was making in the town. The major projects such as the cyber park and housing investment were something the town should be proud of as these were setting the agenda for the future, for which the outlook looked bright.

 

The council’s finance officers and the Cabinet Member Finance were thanked for their significant and prudent work in leading and delivering this investment in Cheltenham. Recognition was also given to Arlingclose, the council’s treasury advisor.

 

Finally, the Cabinet Member Finance wished to personally thank officers and in particular the Executive Director Finance and Assets, Paul Jones.

 

RESOLVED (unanimously) THAT the following be approved :

 

·         The Capital Strategy 2019/20 at Appendix 2

·         The Investment Strategy 2019/20 at Appendix 3

·         The Treasury Management Strategy Statement 2019/20 at Appendix 4

·         The Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Statement 2019/20 at Appendix 5

10.

Draft Corporate Strategy 2019-2023 pdf icon PDF 87 KB

Report of the Leader

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader introduced the report. He thanked all the officers involved for their hard work in preparing the corporate strategy and in particular the Strategy and Engagement team.  He highlighted that it was a short, informative and easy to understand document. He noted that this had previously been agreed on an annual basis in anticipation of the Place Vision. The Place Vision had now been established and the corporate strategy built on the issues outlined within it, it had also been developed in parallel with the budget so was aligned to the Medium Term Financial Strategy. As per the outcome of the recent peer review, he advised that key resources were being focussed on the most important priorities. He confirmed that O&S had reviewed the document in February and they would conduct a 6 monthly review and the strategy would be reviewed by Council again in June. He highlighted that the departmental service plans were running in parallel to the corporate strategy.

 

The Leader cited the 5 key priorities and highlighted that the priority to make Cheltenham the cyber capital of the UK was an extremely important and exciting project for Cheltenham and the surrounding areas. With regards to the improvements to the town centre and public spaces they were continuing to ensure the CTP was rolled out and worked effectively. He confirmed that phase 1 of the High Street works had been completed and that the BID had reported an increase in footfall. Waste and recycling continued to be developed and work on making Cheltenham carbon neutral as per the Council motion adopted in February, was ongoing.  He noted that the lack of affordable housing was one of the biggest issues facing the town and the council was committed to delivering the £100m housing investment plan.

 

In the debate that followed, Members made the following comments:

·         One Member sought assurance that the resources were in place to be able to deliver on the corporate strategy. They were also grateful that a section on how success would be measured had been included. They also queried how we ensure the wider public are made aware of the programme and what the priorities are.

·         Councillor Harman, speaking on behalf of the conservative group highlighted that at the recent Council meeting they had voted against the continuation of the Boots Corner trial. He explained that they were in support of the corporate strategy, however, their stance on Boots Corner had not changed as this was just one element  of the Cheltenham Transport Plan.

·         Councillor Sudbury also advised that whilst she was in support of the corporate strategy she still had reservations about the transport plan.

The Leader acknowledged that as a Council and given the limited resources we are not able to achieve everything. However, once the action list had been devised they could better identify how each action would be resourced.

RESOLVED (unanimously) THAT

 

the draft corporate strategy 2019-23 (appendix 2) be approved and be used as a basis for monitoring  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

The Preparation of a Statement of Common Ground for Gloucestershire pdf icon PDF 79 KB

Report of the Leader

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader introduced the report, he explained that The Statement of Common Ground  (SoCG) had been established by the National Planning Policy Framework. He advised that the intention of the (SoCG) was to provide a more coordinated approach by all the authorities in the borough to long term spatial planning in Gloucestershire. He highlighted that it was particularly important given developments in the planning process with regards to the transport plan and adoption of the JCS2. Similarly, they were expecting the local plan report back from the inspector imminently.  

 

He advised that Gloucestershire County Council had recently recruited a strategic planning coordinator and this would hopefully streamline the planning process going forward. He advised that they were establishing how best to use the SoCG to put the Gloucestershire 2050 vision in place an ensure the vision could be shared across the County.  He highlighted that the SoCG would need to be produced and agreed between the six local planning authorities, the County Council, the GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership and other key parties as appropriate, including Severn Trent, Highways England and Homes England. He highlighted that if they were to agree the SoCG in principle today they would aim to have the final version back within 12 months.

 

In the debate that followed, Members made the following comments:

·           One Member had reservations about the terminology used on the Glos 2050 website with regards to the concept of a ‘supercity’ and whilst they were happy to support the recommendations they requested this terminology be amended. 

The Leader agreed that the reference to the supercity needed to be challenged and amended.

 

A Member asked whether CBC could encourage others, such as the County Council, to sign up to the initiatives which CBC were committing to. In response the Leader explained that 3 out of the 6 districts had now declared a climate emergency.

RESOLVED (with one abstention) THAT

The council work in partnership with the five other Local Planning Authorities, Gloucestershire County Council and the GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership to develop a Strategic Planning Framework for Gloucestershire, to 2050 and beyond, via the preparation of a ‘Statement of Common Ground’.

12.

Appointment of Mayor elect and Deputy Mayor pdf icon PDF 76 KB

Report of the Chief Executive

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Managing Director for Place and Growth introduced the report. He explained that Councillor Roger Whyborn had served as Deputy Mayor since last year’s Annual Council Meeting and Members would be asked to elect him as Mayor at this year’s Annual Meeting. He confirmed that Members had been approached as per the Order of Precedence outlined at Appendix 2 of the report to ascertain if they were willing to act as Deputy Mayor for 2019-2020. He advised that Councillor Sandra Holliday had indicated a willingness to put her name forward as Deputy Mayor.

 

RESOLVED (unanimously) THAT

 

      i.        The Order of Precedence in Appendix 2 be noted.

 

    ii.        That Councillor Roger Whyborn and Councillor SandraHolliday be put to the Annual Council Meeting forelection as Mayor and Deputy Mayor respectively for theMunicipal year 2019 - 2020.

13.

Nominations to Outside Bodies pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Report of the Chief Executive

Minutes:

The Managing Director for Place and Growth introduced the report. He explained that Councillor Flynn had resigned from her post on the Publica board as a Non-Executive Director, and two nominations had been received from Councillor Babbage and Councillor McCloskey as her replacement. As consensus was not achieved between the political groups the appointment was referred to Council for determination.

 

The Mayor requested a vote by a show of hands.

 

Councillor McCloskey (20)

Councillor Babbage  (8)

 

RESOLVED THAT

 

Councillor McCloskey be appointed as the Council’s Non-Executive Director on the Publica Board.

14.

Council Diary 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 105 KB

Report of the Cabinet Member Corporate Services

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member Corporate Services introduced the report. He explained that the corporate diary followed a similar rationale to that adopted in previous years with evening meetings scheduled for 6pm. He advised that Councillors and Officers had been consulted on the diary and any proposed amendments had been incorporated wherever possible.  As outlined in section 2 of the report, consideration had been given to the political party conferences and meetings avoided on these dates.

 

Members made the following comments during the debate:

 

·                    They requested that meetings be avoided during the school holidays and in particular the budget Council meeting scheduled in February half term be moved. In response, the Cabinet Member Finance advised that there was a very narrow window in which they could hold the budget Council due to the budget setting process. They also had to work collaboratively with the County, police and other organisations and as such there was a lesser degree of flexibility with this date.  She highlighted that if they were to hold it earlier they would need to convene an additional meeting to set the Council tax. One Member suggested it be held at 6pm to allow those who have issues with childcare to attend. 

 

The Cabinet Member Corporate Services endeavoured to take Members points on board regarding meetings during the holidays and explore alternative times where this was possible.

 

RESOLVED (unanimously) THAT

 

The draft Council Diary of meetings for September 2019 –August 2020 be approved.

15.

Notices of Motion pdf icon PDF 56 KB

Minutes:

Motion A

 

Proposed by Councillor Whyborn

Seconded by Councillor Clucas

 

1) In the light of recent published StageCoach data showing modal shift from private to public transport, and also greater emphasis on cycling and walking, now would seem the right time to be exploring further potential for public transport usage.

 

2) It is essential for Cheltenham to have attractive, safe, and practical facilities to encourage use of buses and coaches. For too long, the people of Cheltenham and the surrounding area have put up with very poor public transport connectively, and very poor facilities when waiting for buses and coaches. This is in marked contrast to other towns and cities in the UK and beyond, where money has been invested and facilities are good. Four main nodal points exist for bus and coach termination and the walk between some is more than enough to deter usage, for many.

 

3) The size and location of any central transport hub should take into account how the road and public transport networks, and the public realm, are likely to develop. Good connectivity to the rail station and key locations, such as the hospital, P&R, and main workplaces, should inform the plans, as should access to any prospective rapid transport link to Gloucester and beyond.

 

4) Recognising that CBC is neither a transport operator nor a transport authority, but IS very much a place shaping agency:

 

it is recommended that CBC officers and the Cabinet Member work with all the relevant agencies to study and determine the appropriate size, scope, and location of a properly equipped transport hub for Cheltenham, and how good connectivity can be delivered. This is particularly timely given the GCC Local Transport plan review currently being initiated.

 

 

In proposing the motion, Councillor Whyborn explained that there were two main strands, the first was for better transport facilities in Cheltenham to ensure the facilities were attractive, safe and practical. He noted that the Royal Well bus station was just a shack and not in keeping with a town like Cheltenham and that residents had complained about the lack of a coffee shop and minimal toilet facilities which was a marked contrast to other towns and cities. The second strand was improving the transport routes to better connect the town, including improving the connection between the Prom, the High Street and Pittville Street which at present were inadequate and acted as a deterrent. He acknowledged that bus usage was up, however, noted that the majority of trips were for leisure and not users travelling to work and that the percentage of those using the bus service within the borough were no higher than those coming from outside the borough.  The objective was not to just improve the bus connections but also the coaches, cycling and walking facilities to and from train station and other key locations. He suggested locating Shopmobility nearer to the bus interchange and providing high quality and smaller facilities for coaches and longer distance buses with local buses  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Any other item the Mayor determines as urgent and which requires a decision

Minutes:

None.

17.

Local Government Act 1972 -Exempt Information

The committee is recommended to approve the following resolution:-

 

“That in accordance with Section 100A(4) Local Government Act 1972 the public be excluded from the meeting for the remaining agenda items as it is likely that, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, if members of the public are present there will be disclosed to them exempt information as defined in paragraph 3, Part (1) Schedule (12A) Local Government Act 1972, namely:

 

Paragraph 3; Information 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) Local Government Act 1972 the public be excluded from the meeting for the remaining agenda items as it is likely that, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, if members of the public are present there will be disclosed to them exempt information as defined in paragraph 3, Part (1) Schedule (12A) Local Government Act 1972, namely:

 

Paragraph 3; Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular

person (including the authority holding that information)

 

18.

Exempt Minutes

Exempt Minutes of the meeting held on 18 February 2019.

Minutes:

RESOLVED THAT

The exempt minutes of the meeting held on 18th February 2019 be approved and signed as a correct record.