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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Executive Board
Tuesday, 24th October, 2017 10.00 am

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

50.

Questions pdf icon PDF 36 KB

 

(a)          Public Questions/Statements

 

(b)          Members’ Questions

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Groves

 

In accordance with Standing Order 10 of the Council’s Constitution, a Member submitted a question querying whether an appraisal had been undertaken to determine if the Groves was still needed for educational purposes.

 

The Lead Member for People – Education responded to the question.

51.

Declarations of personal interests, if any

Members are reminded of their responsibility, under Article 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 6 – Capital Programme 2017/18 – 2021/22

Councillors Brian Cameron, Dana Davies, Adrienne Jeorrett and Graham Rogers – 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 thereon.

 

Agenda Item 9 – Difficult Decisions 2018/19 – 2019/20 – Reshaping Services/Budget Consultation

Councillor D J Griffiths – Personal and Prejudicial – holder of a blue badge.  The Councillor withdrew from the meeting for this item taking no part in the discussion or the voting thereon.

Councillors Adrienne Jeorrett and David Kelly – 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.

 

Agenda Item 11 – Outside Bodies

Councillor D J Griffiths – Personal and Prejudicial – Member of Gwersyllt Park Cricket Club Management Committee.  The Councillor withdrew from the meeting for this item taking no part in the discussion or the voting thereon.

52.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 162 KB

To sign as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 September 2017

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 September 2017 be signed as a correct record.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 September 2017 be signed as a correct record.

53.

North Wales Growth Bid and Governance pdf icon PDF 142 KB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That the progress of the development of a competitive Growth Deal Bid for North Wales be supported.

 

(ii)        That the preferred governance model of a statutory joint committee model be supported in principle for further development, with a full report on a recommended constitution and terms of reference, supported by an Inter Authority Agreement, to follow at a later date.

 

(iii)       That the Leader of the Council be authorised to act as a member of a ‘Shadow’ Joint Committee in the interim period.

 

(iv)      That the Leader (as one of the Leaders of the six partner councils represented on the ‘Shadow’ Joint Committee) be granted authority to enter into collective first stage negotiations with the UK and Welsh Governments over the scale and outline content of a Growth Deal Bid, whilst noting that no financial or other commitments will be entered into at this first stage of negotiations.

 

(v)       That an initial revenue contribution of £50,000 from the Reshaping Reserve in 2017/18 for the detailed development of the Growth Deal Bid, to include a budget pressure for 2018/19 for the  Housing and Economy department to cover future year contributions, be approved. 

 

(vi)      That any proposed Growth Bid is considered by the Executive Board prior to submission.

 

Reason for decisions

 

To enable the Council to continue to support the development of a Growth Deal Bid for North Wales and to be an active partner in the governance and delivery of a growth deal.  

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (HHE/47/17) seeking Members’ agreement to support the North Wales Growth Deal Bid and to agree the governance arrangements required to manage and deliver an approved Growth Deal Bid.

 

The Lead Member presented the report and a discussion ensued.  The following points were raised during the debate:

 

·         Assurances were sought in relation to Wrexham’s Lead Member representation on the Shadow Joint Committee.

·         Concern was expressed that the Strategy could support additional housing growth in the longer term, even though in Wrexham it was felt that there was no need for such development, given the effect that development would have on services.  In response, the Chair confirmed that there would be six elected Members on the Joint Committee, one from each North Wales Authority, and the aim of the Growth Bid was to bring improvements to North Wales.  He advised that the Local Development Plan 2 would determine the number of houses to be built within Wrexham.

·         Acknowledgement that there were pressures as a result of housing policies, but confirmation that the release of housing sites in Cheshire and the North West had significantly reduced the pressure on North Wales.

·         Confirmation that there would be representation from each of the North Wales Authorities.

 

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That the progress of the development of a competitive Growth Deal Bid for North Wales be supported.

 

(ii)        That the preferred governance model of a statutory joint committee model be supported in principle for further development, with a full report on a recommended constitution and terms of reference, supported by an Inter Authority Agreement, to follow at a later date.

 

(iii)       That the Leader of the Council be authorised to act as a member of a ‘Shadow’ Joint Committee in the interim period.

 

(iv)      That the Leader (as one of the Leaders of the six partner councils represented on the ‘Shadow’ Joint Committee) be granted authority to enter into collective first stage negotiations with the UK and Welsh Governments over the scale and outline content of a Growth Deal Bid, whilst noting that no financial or other commitments will be entered into at this first stage of negotiations.

 

(v)       That an initial revenue contribution of £50,000 from the Reshaping Reserve in 2017/18 for the detailed development of the Growth Deal Bid, to include a budget pressure for 2018/19 for the  Housing and Economy department to cover future year contributions, be approved. 

 

(vi)      That any proposed Growth Bid is considered by the Executive Board prior to submission.

 

Reason for decisions

 

To enable the Council to continue to support the development of a Growth Deal Bid for North Wales and to be an active partner in the governance and delivery of a growth deal.  

 

54.

Capital Programme 2017/18-2021/22 pdf icon PDF 142 KB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That the additional allocation of £150k to Town Centre Improvements, as outlined in paragraph 2.4 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(ii)        That the allocation of Welsh Government General Capital Funding in 2021/22 recommended by the Corporate Land and Buildings Strategy Group shown in paragraph 4.21 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(iii)       That the allocation of the Heritage and Community Well Being Annual Capital Provision shown in paragraph 4.23 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(iv)      That the rolling programme for 2017/18 to 2021/22 as detailed in appendices 2 and 3 of report HF/91/17, including changes to the Highways capital schemes as outlined in paragraph 4.16, be approved.

 

(v)       That the capital programme be next reviewed and reported to the Executive Board in February 2018.

 

(vi)      That the Treasury Management Activity and Prudential Indicators in Appendix 4 of report HF/91/17 be noted.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)            This report follows an earlier monitoring report in July in compliance with Financial Regulation 3.13 that requires that the Head of Finance monitors and reports to Members on the Capital Programme.

 

(ii)        Local Authorities are required under the Local Government Act 2003 to comply with the CIPFA Prudential Code for Capital Finance.  The indicators presented in Appendix 4 fulfil the requirements of the Code.

 

Minutes:

(Members declarations of interest in relation to this item are set out in Minute 52 above)

 

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (HF/91/17) to review the 2017/18 – 2021/22 Capital Programme and semi-annual Treasury Management Activity including Prudential Indicators.

 

The Lead Member introduced the report and highlighted the main points contained within it.  A debate ensued and during discussions, the following points were highlighted:

 

·         Confirmation that additional funding was being proposed for improvements to the Town Centre.  The Town Centre was within a conservation area, and there was an additional cost for some of the materials used.  Proposals were still being developed, and the detail on phase 1 would be available shortly.

·         Reassurances given that future maintenance costs of materials currently being considered would be taken into consideration.

·         Clarification sought in relation to changes to the Environmental Improvements Programme.  The Lead Member for Place – Housing advised that an All Member Workshop on this issue was in the process of being arranged.

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That the additional allocation of £150k to Town Centre Improvements, as outlined in paragraph 2.4 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(ii)        That the allocation of Welsh Government General Capital Funding in 2021/22 recommended by the Corporate Land and Buildings Strategy Group shown in paragraph 4.21 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(iii)       That the allocation of the Heritage and Community Well Being Annual Capital Provision shown in paragraph 4.23 of report HF/91/17 be approved.

 

(iv)      That the rolling programme for 2017/18 to 2021/22 as detailed in appendices 2 and 3 of report HF/91/17, including changes to the Highways capital schemes as outlined in paragraph 4.16, be approved.

 

(v)       That the capital programme be next reviewed and reported to the Executive Board in February 2018.

 

(vi)      That the Treasury Management Activity and Prudential Indicators in Appendix 4 of report HF/91/17 be noted.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)            This report follows an earlier monitoring report in July in compliance with Financial Regulation 3.13 that requires that the Head of Finance monitors and reports to Members on the Capital Programme.

 

(ii)        Local Authorities are required under the Local Government Act 2003 to comply with the CIPFA Prudential Code for Capital Finance.  The indicators presented in Appendix 4 fulfil the requirements of the Code.

 

55.

Focused On Our Performance 2016-17 pdf icon PDF 2 MB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED – That the ‘Focused on our Performance 2016/17’ report as outlined in Appendix 1 of report CLF/13/17 be approved for publication.

 

Reason for decision

 

To enable the Council to comply with the Local Government (2009) Measure and Wales Programme for Improvement Guidance and to provide a public assessment of progress made against the Council Plan.

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (CLF/13/17) to provide Members with an assessment of performance against the Council Plan 2016/17.

 

The Lead Member presented the report and guided Members through the main points contained within it.  A debate followed, and the points below were highlighted:

 

·         Observations made in relation to “red, amber and green” performance measures.

·         News that sickness levels within the Authority were reducing was welcomed, but there was a suggestion that the costs associated with sickness needed to be made available.

·         Assurances sought concerning the recruitment and retention of Social Workers within Safeguarding, and information requested regarding the number of full time/full time equivalent staff and Agency staff.

·         Reference was made to an earlier statement by the Wales Audit Office that outdated arrangements may limit the speed of progress in delivering improved outcomes for citizens.  A Member requested further information on what work had been carried out within the last 12 months to address this issue.

·         Clarification sought over the number of tenants refusing to have work done to their kitchens and bathrooms in order to bring them up to the Welsh Housing Quality Standard.  The Lead Member for Place – Housing acknowledged that there was an issue in some areas, but Officers would continue to work with the tenants to encourage them to agree to the works being carried out.

 

RESOLVED – That the ‘Focused on our Performance 2016/17’ report as outlined in Appendix 1 of report CLF/13/17 be approved for publication.

 

Reason for decision

 

To enable the Council to comply with the Local Government (2009) Measure and Wales Programme for Improvement Guidance and to provide a public assessment of progress made against the Council Plan.

 

56.

Forward Work Programme pdf icon PDF 49 KB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED – That the Forward Work Programme be approved.

 

Reason for decision

 

To approve the current list of items included in the Forward Work Programme.

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Finance, Performance, Health and Safety and Governance submitted a report (HCCS/65/17) asking Members to approve the current list of items included in the Forward Work Programme for the period November 2017 to February 2018.

 

The Lead Member reminded Members of the importance of ensuring that items were added to the Forward Work Programme as soon as possible.

 

The Lead Member for People – Education advised that a report detailing the responses from the consultation on the delivery of welsh medium primary school education would need to be added to the programme, together with a report in relation to the delivery of education within the Glyn Ceiriog Foundation, which was yet to go out to consultation.

 

RESOLVED – That the Forward Work Programme be approved.

 

Reason for decision

 

To approve the current list of items included in the Forward Work Programme.

57.

Difficult Decisions 2018/19 and 2019/20 - Reshaping Services/Budget Consultation pdf icon PDF 66 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety

Additional documents:

Decision:

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That the approach to the Difficult Decisions consultation exercise be approved.

 

(ii)        That the inclusion of the savings proposals, outlined in Appendix 1 of report

HF/92/17 be approved for consultation.

 

(iii)       That this matter be dealt with as an urgent item of business in accordance with Section 43(1) of the Council’s Standing Orders.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         To enable the Council to take account of people’s views before finalising the Council’s revenue budget for the 2018/19 and 2019/20 financial years.

 

(ii)        To enable the consultation to commence on 25 October 2017.

 

Minutes:

(Members declarations of interest in relation to this item are set out in Minute 52 above)

 

The Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety submitted a report (HF/92/17) asking Members to agree the approach for this years ‘Difficult Decisions’ consultation which includes plans to reshape services and specific budget proposals for 2018/19 and 2019/20.

 

The Lead Member presented the report and a detailed debate took place.  During discussions, the following points were raised:

 

·         Disappointment expressed by some Members in relation to the budget setting process and that some sections of the proposed budget had not been considered by the relevant Scrutiny Committee but were being considered in workshops.  In response, Members were reminded of the scrutiny process contained within the Council’s Constitution in which Members could request items be considered for discussion, through the submission of a Topic Request Form.

·         Recognition of the difficult position that the Council were in, and the suggestion was made that other ways of raising additional money to avoid further cuts needed to be looked at.  Whilst acknowledging that families were struggling, it was suggested that Members could look into the possibility of increasing Council Tax more than in previous years in order to reduce the financial pressure on other much valued services.

·         Confirmation that the Council’s Communications Team would be communicating various elements of the budget to the public to raise awareness and ensure they have the opportunity to respond fully to the consultation.

·         Suggestion made that the number of Senior Councillor positions could be reviewed.

·         Possibility of reviewing the Council’s Waste Services Contract was suggested.  Officers advised that the Customers, Performance, Resources and Governance Scrutiny Committee would be looking at the current revenue budget and arrangements for the PFI Waste Services Contact.  However, the service was currently delivering recycling rates that were below Welsh Government targets, and any penalties associated with withdrawing from the contract could be significant.

·         Confirmation was given that the final settlement would be announced on 20 December by Welsh Government, where it was hoped that further detailed information may be available, in particular, with regards to funding pay awards for staff and teachers.

·         Suggestion made that shared services with other Authorities should continue to be explored.

·         Suggestion that in relation to Adult Social Care, eligibility criteria was still referred to in the document, even though the criteria no longer applied.  The Lead Member for People – Health and Adult Social Care advised that the criteria stopped when the Social Care and Wellbeing Act was introduced.  Service users were now assessed on an individual basis and assessed for services based on their needs.

·         There was an expectation expressed that every School would feed into the budget process and that each School Governing Body would understand what their individual budget pressures were.  Officers advised that the provisional settlement protected the position of Schools to the extent they weren’t suffering reductions in budget.  Schools are consulted with through the School Budget Forum.

·         Confirmation sought that any additional  ...  view the full minutes text for item 57.

58.

Public Protection Service Enforcement Policy - Sub Policy - Safety of Sports Grounds pdf icon PDF 129 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED - That Members approve the Safety of Sports Grounds Policy.

 

Reason for decision

 

To ensure that a clear policy is in place that sets out how the Council will discharge its legal responsibilities as a regulator.

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety submitted a report (HEP/67/17) seeking approval for the proposed Safety of Sports Grounds Policy.

 

RESOLVED - That Members approve the Safety of Sports Grounds Policy.

 

Reason for decision

 

To ensure that a clear policy is in place that sets out how the Council will discharge its legal responsibilities as a regulator.

 

59.

Outside Bodies pdf icon PDF 95 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That the Lead Member with responsibility for Children’s Services be appointed to represent the Council on the National Adoption Service Governance Board and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(ii)        That Councillor Barrie Warburton be approved to represent the Council on the Gwersyllt Park Cricket Club Management Committee and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(iii)       That Councillor Marc Jones be approved to represent the Council on the Dee Valley Water Customer Challenge Group and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(iv)      That this matter be dealt with as an urgent item of business in accordance with Standing Order 43(1) of the Council’s Standing Orders.

 

Reason for decisions

 

To ensure that the Council is appropriately represented on the outside bodies identified in the report and to enable nominated representatives to serve with immediate effect.

Minutes:

(Members declarations of interest in relation to this item are set out in Minute 52 above)

 

The Lead Member for People – Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety submitted a report (HCCS/66/17) asking Members to consider the Council’s representation on outside bodies.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That the Lead Member with responsibility for Children’s Services be appointed to represent the Council on the National Adoption Service Governance Board and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(ii)        That Councillor Barrie Warburton be approved to represent the Council on the Gwersyllt Park Cricket Club Management Committee and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(iii)       That Councillor Marc Jones be approved to represent the Council on the Dee Valley Water Customer Challenge Group and that this appointment be made for the period up to the date of the next local government elections in 2022.

 

(iv)      That this matter be dealt with as an urgent item of business in accordance with Standing Order 43(1) of the Council’s Standing Orders.

 

Reason for decisions

 

To ensure that the Council is appropriately represented on the outside bodies identified in the report and to enable nominated representatives to serve with immediate effect.

60.

Town Centre Car Park Management pdf icon PDF 169 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for Place – Environment and Transport

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED –

 

That the Head of Environment and Planning in consultation with the Lead Member for Environment and Transport be authorised to introduce revised car parking charges from 1 January 2018, subject to statutory consultation and necessary arrangements, an amended Off Street Parking Order for the town centre car parks:

 

a) A 1-3 hour parking tariff of £1.80, Monday to Sunday across all

WCBC-operated town centre car parks.

 

b) A reduction in the all-day charge to £3.00, Monday to Friday in

Waterworld/Crown Buildings together with a reduction from £350

to £300 for a six month parking permit.

 

c) An increase in the all-day charge to £2.00, Monday to Sunday in

Crescent Road together with an increase from £168 to £200 for a

six month parking permit.

 

d) Removal of the ‘free after three’ provision in Crescent Road and

Ty Pawb (formerly People’s Market car park) with charges

extending until 18:00 hours and an introduction of an evening

charge of £1.00 from 18:00 hours through to 24:00 hours.

 

e) An increase in the 0-1 hour parking tariff to £1.00, together with an increase in the-all day charge to £2.50 in Ty Pawb (formerly

Peoples Market car park).

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         To ensure a tariff and charging structure is in place that reflects the demands for parking in the town centre for the benefit of residents, visitors and local businesses.

 

(ii)        To ensure that all statutory and operational matters are dealt with in a proactive and timely manner.

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Place – Environment and Transport submitted a report (HEP/81/17) seeking approval for amendments to the Town Centre Off-Street Car Parking Order concerning tariff and charging structures.

 

The Lead Member presented the report and highlighted the main points contained within it.  A debate ensued and the following issues were raised:

 

·         The introduction of a three hour tariff was welcomed, but disappointment was expressed that there was no longer a charge for two hour parking.

·         It was noted that on social media, the public had complained about the price of parking, and a Member suggested that some further initiatives be introduced, such as free parking during certain periods for residents living within the County Borough.

·         Responding to some of the comments, the Lead Member advised that the pricing structure was comparable to the private sector car parks, and income generated went into the Environment Department’s cash limited budget.

·         Confirmation sought that objections or suggestions could be put forward as part of the consultation process.

·         In response to some concerns expressed regarding residential parking, the Lead Member suggested that this could be a matter that the relevant Scrutiny Committee may wish to discuss.

·         Acknowledgement given that there had been an increase in footfall in the town centre following some of the free car parking initiatives, identifying the importance therefore of ensuring that this trend was not reversed.

 

RESOLVED –

 

That the Head of Environment and Planning in consultation with the Lead Member for Environment and Transport be authorised to introduce revised car parking charges from 1 January 2018, subject to statutory consultation and necessary arrangements, an amended Off Street Parking Order for the town centre car parks:

 

a) A 1-3 hour parking tariff of £1.80, Monday to Sunday across all

WCBC-operated town centre car parks.

 

b) A reduction in the all-day charge to £3.00, Monday to Friday in

Waterworld/Crown Buildings together with a reduction from £350

to £300 for a six month parking permit.

 

c) An increase in the all-day charge to £2.00, Monday to Sunday in

Crescent Road together with an increase from £168 to £200 for a

six month parking permit.

 

d) Removal of the ‘free after three’ provision in Crescent Road and

Ty Pawb (formerly People’s Market car park) with charges

extending until 18:00 hours and an introduction of an evening

charge of £1.00 from 18:00 hours through to 24:00 hours.

 

e) An increase in the 0-1 hour parking tariff to £1.00, together with an increase in the-all day charge to £2.50 in Ty Pawb (formerly

Peoples Market car park).

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         To ensure a tariff and charging structure is in place that reflects the demands for parking in the town centre for the benefit of residents, visitors and local businesses.

 

(ii)        To ensure that all statutory and operational matters are dealt with in a proactive and timely manner.

61.

Organisation Development Workforce Strategy pdf icon PDF 90 KB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED - To approve the Organisation Development & Workforce Strategy 2017 – 2022.

 

Reasons for decision

 

(i)         To ensure that the Council has an Organisation Development and Workforce Strategy in place for its workforce which support the delivery of the Council Plan.

 

(ii)        To continue to develop a framework of integrated people policies, procedures, systems and guidance to enable consistent and fair employment provisions to our workforce and to enable managers to fulfil their people management responsibilities.

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Organisation – Planning and Corporate Services submitted a report HCCS/64/17 seeking approval for the new Organisation and Development Workforce Strategy 2017 – 2022.

 

RESOLVED - To approve the Organisation Development & Workforce Strategy 2017 – 2022.

 

Reasons for decision

 

(i)         To ensure that the Council has an Organisation Development and Workforce Strategy in place for its workforce which support the delivery of the Council Plan.

 

(ii)        To continue to develop a framework of integrated people policies, procedures, systems and guidance to enable consistent and fair employment provisions to our workforce and to enable managers to fulfil their people management responsibilities.