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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Executive Board
Tuesday, 11th September, 2018 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: Helen Coomber  Committee Manager

Webcast: View the webcast

Items
No. Item

41.

Questions pdf icon PDF 41 KB

 

(a)          Public Questions/Statements

 

(b)          Members’ Questions

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with Standing Order 10 of the Council’s Constitution, a Member submitted a question relating to Glyphosate based herbicides.

 

The Head of Environment and Planning responded to the question accordingly.

42.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Minutes:

An apology for absence was submitted on behalf of Councillor D J Griffiths.

43.

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 6 – Permission to Consult on the Permanent Expansion in Capacity at Barker’s Lane CP from 210 to 315

Councillor Brian Cameron and Adrienne Jeorrett – 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.

44.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 66 KB

To sign as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting held on 7 August 2018

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the Meeting held on 7 August 2018 be signed as a correct record.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the Meeting held on 7 August 2018 be signed as a correct record.

 

45.

Highways Safety Inspection Policy and Winter Service Policy pdf icon PDF 44 KB

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That the revised and updated policies relating to provision of the Winter Service and Highways Safety Inspection functions be approved.

 

(ii)        That a review of these policies be undertaken every 2 years.

 

Reason for decisions

 

Wrexham County Borough Council is a highways authority and, as such, is under a statutory duty to maintain the highway at public expense in a safe and serviceable manner for all road users.

 

Minutes:

The Lead Member for Place – Environment and Transport submitted a report (HEP/73/18) seeking Members’ approval for updated and revised policies relating to Winter Service and Highway Safety Inspections.

 

The Lead Member presented the report and highlighted the main points contained within it.  During the debate, the following points were highlighted:

 

·         Confirmation that the Environment Department were maintaining salt stock levels in readiness for the winter.

·         Acknowledgement of the hard work carried out by staff in maintaining the highway network last winter in what were particularly adverse conditions.

·         Concern that there didn’t appear to be a designation of footpaths on school routes contained within the policy, especially in relation to rural schools.  In response, the Lead Member commented that although all schools were covered in the policy, he recognised that this didn’t necessarily cover footpaths. 

·         Request that Members should be included in the list of reactive inspections of the Highways Safety Inspection Policy.

·         Clarification sought in relation to the resource levels in place that would ensure a robust regime for inspections.  In response, Officers confirmed that training and resources were constantly reviewed to ensure there was resilience in the service.

·         Confirmation that the number of claims received for damage to vehicles on the highway remained consistent and were for relatively small amounts.

·         Suggestion that the condition of rural roads were declining, partly due to the high level of HGVs and agricultural machinery that used them.  It was suggested that the carriageway inspection regime needed to have regard for volumes and types of traffic.

·         Importance of continuing to lobby Welsh Government for additional funding.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That the revised and updated policies relating to provision of the Winter Service and Highways Safety Inspection functions be approved.

 

(ii)        That a review of these policies be undertaken every 2 years.

 

Reason for decisions

 

Wrexham County Borough Council is a highways authority and, as such, is under a statutory duty to maintain the highway at public expense in a safe and serviceable manner for all road users.

 

46.

Permission to consult on the permanent expansion in capacity at Barker's Lane CP from 210 to 315 pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People - Education

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That Officers be approved to consult with all relevant parties regarding a permanent increase in capacity at Barker’s Lane Community Primary School, Barkers Lane, Wrexham LL13 9TP.

 

(ii)        That Members receive a further report in due course which will detail the response to the consultation and seek their approval for a preferred way forward.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         There is continued demand for Town Centre places within Wrexham. Whilst we are meeting current demand within the County further growth is projected.

 

(ii)        For the current admission round 2018 – 2019 the Education Department as the Admitting Authority was unable to meet the local demand within the Town Centre, refusing pupils for whom Barker’s Lane CP was their preferred school.

 

(iii)       In order to meet Welsh Government aspirations to further reduce primary school class sizes, there is a requirement to physically provide more places, particularly in the Town Centre.

 

(iv)      An opportunity has arisen where we can meet the additional demand through utilising Welsh Government funding outside of the 21st Century Schools Programme. This project would be 100% funded by Welsh Government.

Minutes:

(Members declarations of interest in relation to this item are set out in Minute 43 above)

 

The Lead Member for People – Education submitted a report (HEd/21/18) seeking approval to begin a period of consultation relating to a permanent increase in capacity at Barker’s Lane CP from a 210 pupil single form entry school with 30 pupil nursery to a 315 pupil, 1.5 form entry school with 45 pupil nursery.

 

The Lead Member presented the report which led to a detailed debate.  During the discussions the following points were highlighted:

 

·         Confirmation that any concerns regarding car parking or general traffic issues would be considered as part of the Planning process.

·         Clarification sought as to whether a sufficient building would be provided to accommodate the additional pupils.

·         Invitation to the Head of Education and the Lead Member to attend a meeting with parents in order to address any concerns.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That Officers be approved to consult with all relevant parties regarding a permanent increase in capacity at Barker’s Lane Community Primary School, Barkers Lane, Wrexham LL13 9TP.

 

(ii)        That Members receive a further report in due course which will detail the response to the consultation and seek their approval for a preferred way forward.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         There is continued demand for Town Centre places within Wrexham. Whilst we are meeting current demand within the County further growth is projected.

 

(ii)        For the current admission round 2018 – 2019 the Education Department as the Admitting Authority was unable to meet the local demand within the Town Centre, refusing pupils for whom Barker’s Lane CP was their preferred school.

 

(iii)       In order to meet Welsh Government aspirations to further reduce primary school class sizes, there is a requirement to physically provide more places, particularly in the Town Centre.

 

(iv)      An opportunity has arisen where we can meet the additional demand through utilising Welsh Government funding outside of the 21st Century Schools Programme. This project would be 100% funded by Welsh Government.

47.

Exclusion of Press and Public

In considering whether to exclude the press and public from the next part of the meeting Members are asked to consider the following factors when determining the public interest test.

 

Agenda Item 9 - Not for publication by virtue of Paragraphs 14 and 15 of Part 4 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended). 

The Proper Officer has determined in considering this report that paragraphs 14 and 15 should apply. Her view on the public interest test was that while she was mindful of the need to ensure the transparency and accountability of public authorities for decisions taken by them in relation to the spending of public money, the right of a third party to the privacy of their financial/ business affairs outweighed the need for that information to be made public. She was satisfied that in this case disclosure of the information would prejudice the discussion in relation to labour relations to the disadvantage of the authority and inhabitants of its area. This information is not affected by any other statutory provision which requires the information to be publicly registered. On that basis she felt that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

 

It is, therefore, recommended that the press and public be excluded from the Meeting during consideration of the following item as it is likely that, if they were present, there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 14 and 15 of Part 4 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the press and public be excluded from the Meeting during consideration of the following items of business as it is likely that, if they were present, there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 14 and 15 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

 

48.

Work Based Learning Options

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People - Education

Decision:

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That option 2 to close Itec, as detailed in report HEd/22/18, be approved.

 

(ii)        That the Head of Education be given approval to implement the necessary next steps.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         To ensure learners in Wrexham have access to more secure and sustainable training arrangements within the County Borough.

 

(ii)        To ensure that the Education Department concentrates its capacity on core mandatory service areas rather than attempting to deliver discretionary services in an increasingly competitive environment that come with a level of risk.

 

(iii)       To initiate the recommended option as soon as possible in order to address the ongoing challenges faced by Itec and to reduce the negative impact on the Education Department budget.

Minutes:

The Lead Member for People – Education submitted a report (HEd/22/18) to share feedback as a result of the former consultation process for Work-based Learning.

 

RESOLVED -

 

(i)         That option 2 to close Itec, as detailed in report HEd/22/18, be approved.

 

(ii)        That the Head of Education be given approval to implement the necessary next steps.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(i)         To ensure learners in Wrexham have access to more secure and sustainable training arrangements within the County Borough.

 

(ii)        To ensure that the Education Department concentrates its capacity on core mandatory service areas rather than attempting to deliver discretionary services in an increasingly competitive environment that come with a level of risk.

 

(iii)       To initiate the recommended option as soon as possible in order to address the ongoing challenges faced by Itec and to reduce the negative impact on the Education Department budget.