Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, Urban Road, Kirkby-in-Ashfield. View directions

Contact: Lynn Cain  Email: l.cain@ashfield.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

C.43

Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary or Personal Interests and Non Disclosable Pecuniary/Other Interests

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest made.

C.44

Minutes pdf icon PDF 216 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED

that the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 5th October, 2017, as now submitted, be received and approved.

C.45

Announcements from the Chairman, Leader, Members of the Cabinet and the Head of Paid Service

Minutes:

Chairman

 

Young Councillor of the Year

“Firstly I would like to extend my congratulations to Councillor Lauren Mitchell on winning her recent ‘Young Councillor of the Year’ award.  Councillor Mitchell, who represents Hucknall South for Labour, collected her award at the eighth annual awards ceremony at London’s Guildhall.  May I take this opportunity to wish Councillor Mitchell every success for the future.

 

Civic Service

“My second announcement relates to my civic service that I recently held at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Hucknall.  I would just like to thank everyone for attending; a significant amount of money was raised for the Chairman’s Charity which again we are collecting raffle tickets for tonight and I’d like to thank everyone that did attend. 

 

I’d also like to put on record my thanks to the officers that were involved in organising the event and I’m sure that Members who attended would agree that this year we did things a little differently and it was a fantastic event.  So I’d like to thank all those involved in the organising of the event and those that attended.”

 

Leader of the Council

 

Syrian Refugee Families

“I just want to let you know of an event that I went to.  I was privileged to attend a welcome event for our four Syrian refugee families that we have recently welcomed to Ashfield.  I went there along with Councillor Nicolle Ndiweni.  All four families are really grateful for the assistance we have given them alongside Tuntum Housing, local churches and the mosques, local schools and especially their neighbours who have really been a godsend to them.  They have helped them, are advising them and including them in their lives…..it was a privilege to attend this.

 

The fact that they come from a war-torn country and not knowing what fate will befall them the following day, the next day or the next week…..to actually come here and to feel safe was fantastic to hear.  We heard from three of the children whose English is already very good; they explained what they were doing in school and how much they are enjoying going to school and what their hopes for the future were. 

 

Also one of the mums was brave enough to stand up and say a few words in English so that was really appreciated and although we haven’t got any confirmed plans, I am really looking forward and hopeful that in 2018 and beyond we can welcome more families to our area.  I think it is something we should all be proud that we have managed to do.  Well done everybody for allowing that to happen and let’s hope we can get more families soon.”

C.46

Questions from the Public

From County Councillor David Martin, Underwood:

 

Question1

To Councillor Tim Brown:

 

“Has Councillor Tim Brown made any more headway with the Labour Party’s future plans for the closure of Selston Golf Course? I believe this is a valuable community asset and all that can be done, should be done to ensure it is preserved, would Cllr Brown agree?”

 

Question 2

To Councillor Tim Brown:

 

“Why is there no funding available for any of our other recreational facilities like Jacksdale's Wharf Green, as there is across the rest of the District as we contribute through our Council tax base to the District as well?”

Minutes:

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11, the following questions had been submitted by County Councillor Martin who was present at the meeting in order to read out his questions.

 

From County Councillor David Martin, Underwood:-

 

Question1

To Councillor Tim Brown:

 

“Has Councillor Tim Brown made any more headway with the Labour Party’s future plans for the closure of Selston Golf Course? I believe this is a valuable community asset and all that can be done, should be done to ensure it is preserved, would Cllr Brown agree?”

 

The Portfolio Holder for Environment, Councillor Tim Brown, responded to the question as follows:-

 

“I’d like to thank Councillor Martin for his question.  On the 19th January, 2017, Cabinet took a decision to work with Nottinghamshire County Council in identifying any interested parties to take over the operation of Selston Golf Course which would enable the Council to be released from its lease obligations.

 

The Council set a timetable up to the 31st march, 2017 to seek an alternative provider for the site or we would initiate plans to turn the site into a country park.  Despite Ashfield District Council working with County officers to prepare a marketing plan and making steps to initiate that plan, a delay in decision making at County Hall has prevented the marketing of the site at this time.

 

Since then, officers of the Council have promoted the marketing of the site by the County Council and represented the views of Selston Parish to the County Council.  At this time as far as we are aware, the County Council are still considering their position as it is having a review of all its assets.

 

The Council has maintained the site for more than planned in order to gain the County Council more time to progress the marketing plan.  Whilst it is recognised that the site is a resource for the local community to enjoy, sales indicate that the golf course is no longer a viable business.  The cost to this Authority of subsidising a small number of golfers, some of them are not local, is in the region of £78,000 per year.  Running the course for longer than planned affected our budget negatively and we are now at a point where we need to act.  Therefore when the golf club closes on the 17th December for its annual Christmas holiday closedown, it will not re-open in January 2018.

 

However, we will maintain the course for a further month into January to give the County one last opportunity to market the site as a golf course.  If by the end of January there is no movement on this then we will begin to implement a community park project. 

 

Turning the site into a community park will enable the community to continue to enjoy the site for dog walking and as a beautiful open space.  Whilst this may not be everyone’s preferred option, we should note it was a popular choice during the consultation period and  ...  view the full minutes text for item C.46

C.47

Petitions

To consider a petition submitted by Councillor Jason Zadrozny with 1265 signatories as follows:-

 

“Scrap Labour’s Garden Bin Tax in Ashfield”

Minutes:

The Council received a petition submitted by Councillor Jason Zadrozny as follows:-

 

“Scrap Labour’s Garden Bin Tax in Ashfield.”

 

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 12.6 and the Council’s Petition Scheme, Councillor Zadrozny addressed the Council for the prescribed five minutes and moved that the garden waste collection proposals for April 2018 be referred back to Cabinet for further discussion.  The petition, containing over one thousand signatures, was duly debated for a maximum of fifteen minutes whereby the Portfolio Holder for Environment proposed adherence to the original decision regarding 2018 charges for garden waste collection.

 

RESOLVED

that the Council confirms its acceptance of the petition and having debated the matter, agrees to endorse the original decision to charge an annual fee of £28 (if paid by direct debit, £34 for one off payment) for garden waste collection by the Council commencing in April 2018.

C.48

Report on Urgent Key Decision

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council advised as follows:-

 

“In accordance with Rule 17.2 of the Access to Information Procedure Rules it is necessary for me to inform Council when an executive decision has been taken pursuant to Rule 16 (Special Urgency Provisions.)

 

I can inform the Council that one such decision has been taken by me as a matter of urgency recently.

 

The decision relates to the purchase of a commercial investment property in line with the Council’s Property Investment Strategy. The proposed acquisition is a key decision and contains exempt information but the full 28 days’ notice could not be given due to the need to proceed with the transactions without delay and in order to comply with the tight deadlines imposed by the sellers.

 

The Rule 16 Notice and the non-exempt elements of the decision have been published.”

 

C.49

Committee Membership and Political Proportionality Changes pdf icon PDF 185 KB

Minutes:

Council was requested to consider the consequential impact of political proportionality on Council seats following the recent by-election in the Hucknall North Ward and to approve further alterations to memberships on the Planning Committee, Audit Committee and Scrutiny Panel A.

 

RESOLVED

that the following changes be made to the Council’s Committees:-

 

Committee:

To Vacate Seat:

Replaced By:

 

Proportional Changes

 

Planning Committee

Cllr. Phil Rostance

 

Cllr. Helen-Ann Smith

Local Plan Steering Group

Cllr. Kevin Rostance

Cllr. John Wilmott

Overview and Scrutiny Committee

 

Cllr. Phil Rostance

Cllr. John Wilmott

Requested Changes

 

Scrutiny Panel A

 

Cllr. Kevin Rostance

Cllr. Phil Rostance

Audit Committee

Cllr. Tom Hollis

Cllr. Jackie James

Cllr. Lee Anderson

 

Cllr. John Wilmott

Cllr. David Griffiths

Cllr. Paul Roberts

Planning Committee

(temporary replacement)

Cllr. Jim Aspinall

 

Cllr. Cathy Mason

 

Reason:

To comply with the provisions of the Local Government & Housing Act 1989, requiring the Council to allocate seats on its Committees in a politically proportionate way.

 

 

C.50

Overview and Scrutiny Annual Report 2016/17 pdf icon PDF 104 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council was presented with the Annual Overview and Scrutiny Report for 2016/17 by Councillor Lee Anderson, Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

Following the presentation, Councillor Helen-Ann Smith advised the Council that she has submitted a minority recommendation in relation to the ‘Cemeteries – Home Made Kerb Sets’ review for Cabinet to consider alongside the main recommendations.  Unfortunately, acknowledgement of the minority recommendation had been omitted from the Annual Report and a request had been made to the Scrutiny Manager to ensure its inclusion it the final document.

 

RESOLVED

that the Annual Overview and Scrutiny Report for 2016/17, be received and noted.

 

Reason:

Scrutiny has a statutory responsibility to produce an annual report on the work undertaken by Overview and Scrutiny.

 

(During consideration of this item, Councillor Rachel Madden left the room at 7.53 p.m. and returned to the meeting at 7.55 p.m.)

C.51

Appointment to Outside Body

Body:

Representative:

Term Ending:

 

Cahn Memorial Homes - Hucknall

 

Term Ending For:

Cllr. Chris Baron

 

one representative

31st December, 2021

 

 

Minutes:

Council was requested to consider an appointment to an outside body.

 

RESOLVED

that Councillor Chris Baron be re-appointed as the Council’s representative on Cahn Memorial Homes – Hucknall for the term ending 31st December, 2021.

C.52

Recommendations from the Cabinet and the Council's Committees pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with the Council Procedure Rule 2(ix), Council considered two recommendations from the following:-

 

Minute No. CA.31

Cabinet – 19th October, 2017

General Fund and Housing Revenue Account Budget Monitoring to August 2017

 

RESOLVED

that virement required within the Housing Revenue Account, as outlined in the Cabinet report, be endorsed in accordance with Financial Regulations;

 

 

Minute No. CA.

Cabinet – 30th November, 2017

Capital Strategy Update & Proposed Capital Programme 2017/18– 2021/22

 

RESOLVED

that the changes to the strategies and revised capital programme covering 2017/18 – 2019/20, as outlined in the Cabinet report, be approved.

 

(During consideration of the recommendations to Council, Councillors Helen-Ann Smith and Lee Anderson left the room at 7.56 p.m. and 8.00 p.m. and returned to the meeting at 8.00 p.m. and 8.02 p.m. respectively.)

C.53

Notice of Motion

Motion 1

To consider a notice of motion proposed by Councillor Mike Smith and seconded by Councillor Cathy Mason, as follows:-

 

“Since Britain joined the European Union, Structural Funds have Co financed a vast range of initiatives to promote economic growth, particularly in older industrial areas.  With Brexit, that source of funding will disappear; this Council therefore welcomes the UK government source of new funding.

 

However, several issues are unresolved that could play a pivotal role in delivering growth and jobs in the places that need this the most.  The industrial Communities alliance has proposed that:

 

¾    The shared prosperity Fund’s budget should be set at a level that not only compensates for the loss of EU funding (1.5BN a year) but also provides additional recourse’s to match the scale of the challenge to deliver growth and prosperity across Britain.

 

¾    The Fund should focus on narrowing local and regional differences in economic well-being

 

¾    Local Authorities should have a strong hand in the management of the new fund.  Local Authorities are most closely attuned to local needs and should take the key decisions about spending priorities

 

This Council agrees to write to the chancellor, and Secretaries of State for Business and Communities, with copies to local MPs, calling on the UK Government to incorporate these proposals into the structure of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.”

Minutes:

The Council received a notice of motion moved by Councillor Mike Smith and seconded by Councillor Cathy Mason as follows:-

 

“Since Britain joined the European Union, Structural Funds have Co financed a vast range of initiatives to promote economic growth, particularly in older industrial areas. With Brexit, that source of funding will disappear; this Council therefore welcomes the UK government source of new funding.

 

However, several issues are unresolved that could play a pivotal role in delivering growth and jobs in the places that need this the most. The industrial Communities alliance has proposed that:

 

¾    The shared prosperity Fund’s budget should be set at a level that not only compensates for the loss of EU funding (1.5BN a year) but also provides additional recourse’s to match the scale of the challenge to deliver growth and prosperity across Britain.

 

¾    The Fund should focus on narrowing local and regional differences in economic well-being.

 

¾    Local Authorities should have a strong hand in the management of the new fund.  Local Authorities are most closely attuned to local needs and should take the key decisions about spending priorities.

 

This Council agrees to write to the chancellor, and Secretaries of State for Business and Communities, with copies to local MPs, calling on the UK Government to incorporate these proposals into the structure of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.”

 

Having been fully considered, the motion was then put to the vote and it was

 

RESOLVED

that this Council agrees to write to the Chancellor and Secretaries of State for Business and Communities, with copies to local MPs, calling on the UK Government to incorporate these proposals into the structure of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

 

(During consideration of the motion, Councillors Jackie James and Jason Zadrozny both left the room at 8.02 p.m. and returned to the meeting at 8.04 p.m. and 8.06 p.m. respectively.)

C.54

Questions received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 13 pdf icon PDF 60 KB

Minutes:

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 13, the following questions were submitted:-

 

Question 1

From Councillor Rachel Madden:

 

“Can the Portfolio Holder please outline what work was undertaken to control weeds growing in road gulleys across Ashfield District this year? Was he happy with this programme?

 

Councillor Tim Brown, Portfolio Holder for Environment, responded as follows:-

 

“Yes thank you.  Thank you for asking this question.  As you are aware Councillor Madden, Ashfield District Council maintains weeds and road gulleys in this District under a contract from Nottinghamshire County Council, Via, three times per year and that runs until March 2018.  Performance reviews are carried out annually in line with the contract and Via has expressed satisfaction with the performance of the Environmental Services, so much so that they have recently extended the contract for a further year until 2019.

 

Resident complaints regarding grass cutting and weed control significantly reduced when Ashfield took on this service in 2014 and have continued to reduce from 129 in 2015 to 108 in 2017.  Having seen a reduction in resident complaints and having had our contract extended to undertake this work I am very happy with this programme.” 

 

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 13.5, Councillor Madden was invited to ask a supplementary question as follows:-

 

“Thank you Chairman.  In view of that response is the Portfolio Holder willing to write to the residents such as on Sandhills Road, Stonechurch View or on the Midfield Estate because I can assure you that the residents in my division that I speak to are not happy.  Thank you.” 

 

The Portfolio Holder for Environment again responded as follows:-

 

“I think as the County Councillor for those areas Councillor Madden it’s up to you to take those complaints direct back into Nottinghamshire County Council.  This Chamber is Ashfield District Council.  This is obviously a Via issue and I think you need to take it back in your County Council capacity.”

 

Question 2

From Councillor Jason Zadrozny:

 

“The current Council Leader has sanctioned a decision to spend £3,666.58, which was the cost to print and send out a mailing to all tenants about her introduction of a new 'amenity' charge.

 

The charge will look like a rent rise by the back door as the loss in the 1% rent reduction to the Council is £236,026 and the amenity charge will generate £226,464. A conveniently similar amount.

 

There are no guarantees installed by the Labour group to ensure the money generated will be spent on the things listed in the public consultation and not simply put into the general Housing Revenue or other general accounts.

 

On this basis does the Leader feel that she still has the full confidence of the entire Labour Group with her financial strategies?”

 

Councillor Cheryl Butler, Leader of the Council, responded as follows:-

 

“Thank you.  Jason you’ve done it again.  You’ve asked a closed question so really all I should give you is a closed answer which is yes I do.  However, I will discuss  ...  view the full minutes text for item C.54

C.55

Questions received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 13.2 - In relation to Cabinet and Committee Meeting Minutes published since the last ordinary meeting of the Council pdf icon PDF 90 KB

Minutes:

There were no questions submitted by Members.