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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Council
Wednesday, 21st February, 2018 4.00 pm

With effect from 1 April 2016 Agenda and Minutes will be available in both Welsh and English. Reports are working documents and produced in English only in accordance with Welsh Language Standard 41 of this Council’s Final Compliance Notice from the Welsh Language Commissioner.

Venue: Council Chamber, Guildhall

Contact: Jane Johnson  Committee Manager

Webcast: View the webcast

Items
No. Item

43.

To answer any public questions or receive public statements or petitions under Standing Orders 10 and 11 of the Council's Standing Orders

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Mayor reported that no public questions, statements or petitions had been received.

 

44.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Russell Gilmartin, Kevin Hughes, Hugh Jones, Ronnie Prince and Rondo Roberts.

45.

Mayor's Announcements

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Mayor thanked those Members who had attended the recent Portuguese Co-operation Protocol signing ceremony.  He advised that Wrexham had been honoured to host the Secretary of State for Portuguese and looked forward to developing a close working relationship with the Portuguese Consul in Manchester and the wider Portuguese community in Wrexham.

 

The Mayor advised Council that Trevor Coxon, Head of Customer and Corporate Services, would once again be raising money for Prostate Cancer UK, by cycling the opening stage of the Tour de France on 23 June for the second time. He reminded Members that those wishing to donate to his fundraising efforts should  contact Mr Coxon directly.

 

Finally, the Mayor reminded Members that the Annual St David’s Day Parade would be taking place in the Town Centre on Thursday 1 March at 1.00 p.m. This was the 10th year of the parade in Wrexham, which was always well supported by schools and the local community. He encouraged Members to join the parade if they are available.

46.

Declarations of personal interests, if any

Members are reminded of their responsibility, under Paragraph 11 of the Members’ Code of Conduct, to declare the existence and nature of any personal interest in respect of any of the business to be transacted at this meeting

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members were reminded of their responsibility, under Paragraph 11 of the Members’ Code of Conduct, to declare any interests in relation to any of the business to be transacted at this meeting.  The following declarations were made:

 

Agenda Item 7 – Revenue Budget and Council Tax Settings 2018 - 2020

Councillors Brian Cameron, Adrienne Jeorrett, Joan Lowe and John C Phillips – Personal and Prejudicial – School Governors.  The Councillors remained in the meeting and claimed an exemption under Paragraph 12(2) of the Members’ Code of Conduct, taking part in the discussion and voting thereon.

 

Councillors Sonia Benbow-Jones, Krista Childs, Michael Dixon, Paul Pemberton and Robert Walsh – Personal – Friends of Country Parks.  The Councillors remained in the meeting taking part in the discussion and voting thereon.

 

Councillor Gwenfair Jones – Personal – Relative of Police and Crime Commissioner.  The Councillor remained in the meeting taking part in the discussion and voting thereon.

 

47.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting held on 13 December 2017.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the meeting of the County Borough Council held on 13 December 2017 be confirmed as a correct record.

48.

Appointment of Member to the Executive Board, Committees, Scrutiny Committees and Various Panels pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health & Safety and Governance

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED:

 

(i)            That Councillor Andrew Atkinson be appointed onto the Executive Board in place of Councillor Paul Rogers.

 

(ii)          That the Leader of the Conservative Group notify the Head of Corporate and Customer Services of nominations to fill the seats identified in Paragraph 4.3 of report HCCS/16/18 , within 7 days of the date of this meeting.

 

(iii)         To note the changes in Membership of the Planning Committee and Constitution Working Group, which give effect to the wishes of the relevant Political Groups to which the seats are allocated, as follows:

 

Planning Committee

Councillor Derek Wright replaced Councillor Malcolm King, OBE

Constitution Working Group

Councillors Alan Edwards and Paul Pemberton to replace Councillors David Kelly and Phil Wynn

Councillor Paul Roberts to replace Councillor Hugh Jones and Paul Rogers to remain on the Working Group

Councillor Sonia Benbow-Jones to replace Councillor Joan Lowe

 

 

          REASON FOR DECISION

 

          To appoint a Member to the Executive Board in accordance with Article 7 of the Council’s Constitution.

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (HCCS/16/18) allowing Council to appoint a Member to the Executive Board and note changes in Group representation on Committees, Scrutiny Committees and Panels set up by the Council as part of its Constitution.

 

 

RESOLVED:

 

(i)            That Councillor Andrew Atkinson be appointed onto the Executive Board in place of Councillor Paul Rogers.

 

(ii)          That the Leader of the Conservative Group notify the Head of Corporate and Customer Services of nominations to fill the seats identified in Paragraph 4.3 of report HCCS/16/18 , within 7 days of the date of this meeting.

 

(iii)         To note the changes in Membership of the Planning Committee and Constitution Working Group, which give effect to the wishes of the relevant Political Groups to which the seats are allocated, as follows:

 

Planning Committee

Councillor Derek Wright replaced Councillor Malcolm King, OBE

Constitution Working Group

Councillors Alan Edwards and Paul Pemberton to replace Councillors David Kelly and Phil Wynn

Councillor Paul Roberts to replace Councillor Hugh Jones and Paul Rogers to remain on the Working Group

Councillor Sonia Benbow-Jones to replace Councillor Joan Lowe

 

 

          REASON FOR DECISION

 

          To appoint a Member to the Executive Board in accordance with Article 7 of the Council’s Constitution.

49.

Revenue Budget and Council Tax Setting 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health & Safety and Governance

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED -

 

1          a) the budget totalling £ 232,871,963 be approved.

 

b) that the Authority’s council tax for 2018/19 for Band D is set at £1,090.80 in respect of its general expenses and in respect of the special expenses for footway lighting a charge of £4.93 on the town centre community areas of Acton, Caia Park, Offa and Rhosddu, £16.44 on the community of Llangollen Rural, £12.46 on the community of Glyntraian and £10.60 on the community of Chirk.

 

c) that the Medium Term Financial Strategy including the Council’s Reserve Strategy outlined in Appendix 4 to report HF/19/18 be approved.

 

d) that the Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Investment Strategy outlined in Appendix 5 to report HF/19/18 be approved.

 

2          That it be noted that the Head of Finance calculated the following amounts for the year 2018/2019 in accordance with regulations made under section 33[5] of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 (as amended):-

 

            (a)        53280 being the amount calculated by the Council, in accordance with regulation 3 of the Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax Base)(Wales) Regulations 1995, as its Council Tax Base for the year 2018/2019.

 

            (b)       Part of the Council's area being amounts calculated by the Council, in accordance with regulation 6 of the Regulations, as the amounts of its Council Tax Base for the year for dwellings in those parts of its area to which one or more special items relate.

 

Community of

Tax Base

Abenbury

497

Acton

5749

Bangor Isycoed

587

Bronington

641

Broughton

2831

Brymbo

1946

Caia Park

3803

Cefn

2257

Ceiriog Ucha

164

Chirk

1677

Coedpoeth

1703

Erbistock

221

Esclusham

1420

Glyntraian

387

Gresford

2632

Gwersyllt

3895

Hanmer

370

Holt

830

Isycoed

229

Llangollen Rural

855

Llansantffraid Glyn Ceiriog

488

Llay

1764

Maelor South

687

Marchwiel

586

Minera

703

Offa

4105

Overton

694

Penycae

1133

Rhosddu

2749

Rhosllanerchrugog

3270

Rossett

1812

Ruabon

1781

Sesswick

315

Willington/Worthenbury

 

499

Total Taxbase

53280

 

3.         That the following amounts be now calculated by the Council for the year 2018/2019 in accordance with Sections 32 to 36 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 as amended :-

 

(a)

335,645,906

being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in section 32(2)(a) to (e) of the Act.

 

(b)

100,420,623

being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in section 32(3)(a) to (c) of the Act.

 

(c)

235,225,283

being the amount by which the aggregate at 3(a) above exceeds the aggregate at 3(b) above, calculated by the Council , in accordance with Section 32(4) of the Act, as its budget requirement for the year.

 

(d)

174,472,740

being the aggregate of the sums which the Council estimates will be payable for the year into its Council fund in respect of redistributed non-domestic rates, revenue support grant or additional grant as adjusted under section 33(3B).

 

(e)

1,140.25

being the amount at 3(c) above less the amount at 3(d) above, all divided by the amount at 2(a) above,  ...  view the full decision text for item 49.

Minutes:

Members declarations of interests in relation to this item are set out in Minute 46 above).

 

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (HF/19/18) enabling Members to agree the 2018/19 revenue budget in accordance with the recommendations of the Executive Board and to set the council tax for the financial year beginning 1 April 2018.

 

In introducing the report the Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance referred in particular to the rigorous consultation process undertaken with both Members of the Council and members of the public to date as part of the Difficult Decisions exercise.  The feedback received as a result of that consultation process had helped to form the proposals within the report HF/19/18.

 

A number of Members, in recognising the need to make efficiency savings as well as cuts, spoke in support of the proposed budget which they recognised to be sustainable, safe and balanced.

 

The Leader of the Labour Group proposed an amendment and referred to an alternative set of proposals which had been circulated in writing to Members in advance of the meeting. The amendment was duly seconded as follows:

 

“3.1 

 

a)    The budget totalling £232,871,963 be approved – as outlined in the revised Appendix 1 – 2018/19 Revenue Budget Summary.

b)    No change to Council Tax recommendation.

c)    That the Medium Term Financial Strategy be amended to take account of  the use of general balances in 2018/19, including the Council’s Reserve Strategy outlined in Appendix 4 and be approved.

d)    That the Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Investment Strategy be amended to take account of the use of general balances in 2018/19, in Appendix 5 and be approved.

 

3.2   That the replacement council tax resolution for 2019/19 be approved.”

 

In introducing the amendment the Leader of the Labour Group advised that the alternative budget sought to manage the overspend within Children’s Services through the reserve balance. 

 

In supporting the proposed amendment, a number of Members referred to the additional funding provided for both schools and the music service.

 

During the ensuing debate the following points were noted, in particular:

 

·         The Head of Finance confirmed that drawing from reserves in order to balance a budget  introduced a new level of risk and that national advice to Councils recommended strongly against this strategy.  

·         The Head of Adult Social Care and Interim Director of Social Services confirmed that the level of demand for children’s services was likely to remain high in 2018/19.  She further advised that the Regional Commissioning Board recognised provision of children’s services as a national priority for 2018/19. 

·         The Council Tax level in Wrexham remained one of the lowest levels in England and Wales.

 

In accordance with Standing Order 18(2), a recorded vote was called for and supported by the requisite number of members rising to show their desire, then taken on the amendment, the voting being as follows:

 

For the Amendment – Councillors Bryan Apsley, Paul Blackwell, Brian Cameron,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 49.

50.

Review of Senior Manager Pay 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 198 KB

To consider the report of the Chair of the Pay and Reward Panel

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED:

 

(i)            That the Pay and Reward Panel’s recommendation that no action should be taken in respect of the current salary ranges of the Council’s Chief Executive, Executive Directors and Heads of Departments for the 2018/2019 financial year be endorsed.  Therefore the grading structure will remain as set out in Appendix 1 to the report HCCS/10/18.

 

(ii)          It be noted that, in the next review year 2019, the panel will conduct a full review for pay for 2019/2020.

 

REASONS FOR DECISION

 

(i)         To apply the decisions of the Pay and Reward Panel, within the context of the Employee Pay and Reward Policy to ensure an appropriate pay structure exists for Senior Manager pay.

 

(ii)        To comply with the remit of the Pay and Reward Panel to undertake a review of Senior Management pay in accordance with the terms of reference.

 

(iii)       To ensure the terms of reference comply with changing legislation.

 

Minutes:

The Chair of the Pay and Reward Panel submitted a report (HCCS/10/18) seeking Council approval to the Pay and Reward Panel’s recommendations in relation to the review of Senior Manager’s pay for 2018/2019.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(i)            That the Pay and Reward Panel’s recommendation that no action should be taken in respect of the current salary ranges of the Council’s Chief Executive, Executive Directors and Heads of Departments for the 2018/2019 financial year be endorsed.  Therefore the grading structure will remain as set out in Appendix 1 to the report HCCS/10/18.

 

(ii)          It be noted that, in the next review year 2019, the panel will conduct a full review for pay for 2019/2020.

 

REASONS FOR DECISION

 

(i)         To apply the decisions of the Pay and Reward Panel, within the context of the Employee Pay and Reward Policy to ensure an appropriate pay structure exists for Senior Manager pay.

 

(ii)        To comply with the remit of the Pay and Reward Panel to undertake a review of Senior Management pay in accordance with the terms of reference.

 

(iii)       To ensure the terms of reference comply with changing legislation.

 

51.

Annual Review of the Pay Policy Statement pdf icon PDF 79 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for Organisation – Planning and Corporate Services

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED – That the Pay Policy Statement for publication in April 2018 as attached at Appendix 1 to the report HCSS/11/18 be approved.

 

REASON FOR DECISION

 

(i)           To meet the requirements of Chapter 8 of the Localism Act 2011, by ensuring that the Pay Policy Statement is reviewed and published annually.

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Planning and Corporate Services submitted a report (HCCS/11/18) seeking Council approval of the revised Pay Policy Statement that sets out the Council’s approach to pay.  Council was required to approve the Pay Policy Statement annually in order to meet the legal requirements of the Localism Act 2011.

 

RESOLVED – That the Pay Policy Statement for publication in April 2018 as attached at Appendix 1 to the report HCSS/11/18 be approved.

 

REASON FOR DECISION

 

(i)           To meet the requirements of Chapter 8 of the Localism Act 2011, by ensuring that the Pay Policy Statement is reviewed and published annually.

 

52.

Appointment of Co-opted Members to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 103 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health & Safety and Governance

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED:

 

(i)         That, in accordance with legislation, the Council appoint two Parent Governor representatives (one from primary and one from the secondary sector) to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee, with an entitlement to speak and vote on education issues only, until end February 2020. 

·         Primary school representative -  no nominations received. The local authority must seek nominations within one year of the vacancy arising.

·         Secondary school representative – Mrs Alison Fisher.

 

(ii)       In accordance with the recommendation of the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny, Mr Brent Evans be re-appointed as a co-opted member of the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee with an entitlement to speak but not vote on education issues, until end February 2019.

 

REASON FOR DECISION

 

(i)         To meet the statutory  requirement to have representation of Parent Governors  on the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and

Safety and Governance submitted a report (HF/10/18) enabling Members to

consider the appointment of Co-opted Members to the Lifelong Learning

Scrutiny Committee.

 

Members recognised the valid contribution made by the Co-opted

Members to the work of the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(i)         That, in accordance with legislation, the Council appoint two Parent Governor representatives (one from primary and one from the secondary sector) to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee, with an entitlement to speak and vote on education issues only, until end February 2020. 

·         Primary school representative -  no nominations received. The local authority must seek nominations within one year of the vacancy arising.

·         Secondary school representative – Mrs Alison Fisher.

 

(ii)       In accordance with the recommendation of the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny, Mr Brent Evans be re-appointed as a co-opted member of the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee with an entitlement to speak but not vote on education issues, until end February 2019.

 

REASON FOR DECISION

 

(i)         To meet the statutory  requirement to have representation of Parent Governors  on the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.