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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 18/01/2005
Minutes




25
MINUTES of the MEETING of the ENVIRONMENT AND LEISURE OVERVIEW AND SCRUTINY COMMITTEE held on 18th January 2005


(To be read in conjunction with the Agenda for the Meeting)
*Mr R J Gates (Chairman)Mrs L S R Hodgson
*Mrs M V M Hunt (Vice-Chairman)*Mrs S R Jacobs
Mr L C Bate*Dr P M Marriott
*Mr M J Blower*Mrs P N Mitchell
*Dr J F A Blowers*Mr J R Sandy
*Mr M W ByhamMr J M Savage
Mr R D Frost*Mrs J A Slyfield
*Mr P Haveron*Mr A E B Taylor-Smith
*Mrs P Hibbert
* Present

Mr M H W Band and Mr W M Marshall attended as substitutes.
Mr B Grainger-Jones was also in attendance.


52. MINUTES

The Minutes of the Meeting held on 23rd November 2004 were confirmed and signed subject to the amendment of Minute Number 47, Paragraph 6 to delete the word 'enforcement’ and insert 'planning contravention'.

53. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

54. DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS

The following personal interest was declared at the meeting in relation to Appendix B (Item 7):-

Mr R J Gates - Waverley appointed trustee on JSJ

The following personal interests were declared at the meeting in relation to Appendix C (Item 8):-

- Waverley Representative on Sport Godalming
55. EXECUTIVE FOUR-MONTH ROLLING PROGRAMME (Agenda Item 5, Appendix A)

RESOLVED that the Executive Four-Month Rolling Programme of key decisions be received and noted.

56. COMMITTEE WORK PROGRAMME (Agenda Item 6)

At its meeting on 16th March 2004, the Committee voted on what in-depth reviews to include in its future work programme. Youth Activity received the highest number of votes and Development Control and Decriminalised Parking Enforcement were tied in second place.

The Committee noted that the Youth Strategy Special Interest Group was currently conducting a review of services for young people. It was considered that there would be duplication of work if this Committee was to carry out its intended review on Promoting Youth Activity in Sport and Countryside Pursuits. It was therefore agreed to request reports from the Special Interest Group on the work carried out as a way of addressing this Committee's interest in youth activity.

The Committee also agreed that Decriminalised Parking Enforcement was already a subject of a report on the agenda and considered that it was not appropriate to delay work on this matter any further to carry out an in-depth review.

The Committee noted that it would be receiving a report from the Constitution Review Special Interest Group on the future Overview and Scrutiny Work Programmes and considered it appropriate to consider its future work programme at its next meeting.

RESOLVED that the Committee work programme be received

57. BUDGET 2004/05 AND FINANCIAL STRATEGY (Agenda Item 7, Appendix B)

Draft General Fund - Capital Programme

The Committee considered a report on the revised proposals for the draft 2005/06 Capital Programme in respect of General Fund Services. This report will be considered by the Executive on 7th February with final approval by Council on 22nd February 2005. The Committee wished to emphasise that the Quality Bus Partnership should receive any additional funding should it become available and that funding for bus shelters should be considered as a priority. RESOLVED that the report be received and the Executive informed of the Committee's views, as outlined above.

Draft General Fund Revenue Estimates

The Committee received a report on the latest position regarding the General Fund Budget. After a full and lengthy debate, the Committee wished to express that it was very disappointed at the proposed staff budget reductions in the Arts and Sports Departments, with its effect on the provisions of services for particularly young people and the wider community. Whilst recognising the revenue constraints that exist, Members agreed that there should be a minimal impact on the services provided. Members expressed that there should be an examination of priorities in the Environment and Leisure Department and sponsorship opportunities should be explored. The Committee wished to express that every effort should be made to continue all services currently provided at the earliest opportunity when the resources become available.

The Committee also expressed concern at the proposed loss of a LA21 position in the Environment Department and considered this comparatively a marginal saving.

The Committee also wished to express that it was deeply regrettable that it was proposed to cease Saturday opening at the Locality Offices and considered that this would discriminate against members of the public who did not have access to a computer system. Members suggested that Saturday opening should remain and close on Monday. The Committee questioned the proposed saving and stated that further background figures on the use of the facilities was required to consider the matter adequately.

RESOLVED that the report be received and the Executive informed of the Committee's views, as outlined above.

58. SPONSORED ORGANISATION SCHEME - APPLICATIONS FOR REVENUE FUNDING 2005/06 (Agenda Item 8, Appendix C)
In regard to the Blackwater Valley Recreation and Countryside Management Service the Committee expressed that we were the only authority that had not met their financial obligations (6,954). In regard to the Surrey Heathland project it was also noted that obligations (10,462) had not been met. Members also expressed that existing obligations (500) for the Hurtwood Control Committee should be maintained to show a continuing support. The Committee wished to express that all obligations should be met and that it was not good practice not to do so.

The Committee questioned the reduction in regard to the Rural Life Centre and considered that this would have a considerable effect. Officers informed the Committee that a reduction had been proposed as there was evidence of them generating their own income. The Committee however, agreed that the figure obtained last year (5,000) would be appropriate. In reference to the Cranleigh Arts Centre, Members question the figures suggested (32,000 based on assessments; 27,750 funding available), Officers informed the Committee that this figure was considered necessary to cater for additional administrative staff. Members suggested that there should be encouragement towards them becoming self financing.

RESOLVED that the report be received and the Executive informed of the Committee's views, as outlined above.

59. DECRIMINALISED PARKING ENFORCEMENT (Agenda Item 9, Appendix D)

The Committee received a report which considered the request by Surrey County Council for Waverley Borough Council to enter into an Agency Agreement to operate on-street decriminalised parking enforcement in the Borough. The potential effects of the introduction of decriminalised parking enforcement on the operation of the Council's off-street car parks was also considered. The Committee emphasised the importance and need for a level of staffing that would enable 'effective' enforcement when operating the scheme in the borough and asked to receive the Officer report on detailed terms before the Executive considered it.

RESOLVED that

1. Officers be authorised to negotiate the terms and conditions of an Agency Agreement, between Surrey County Council and Waverley Borough Council, for Waverley to operate an effective decriminalised on-street parking enforcement operation in the Borough, at no overall cost to Waverley; and

2. Officers report back to the Committee with details of those terms and conditions and a detailed cost model to enable observations to be passed to the Executive.

60. CONTINUATION OF MEETING

At 9.56 p.m., in accordance with Procedure Rule 9, the Chairman proposed and the Committee agreed that the meeting should continue until all the business of the meeting had been completed.

61. LOCAL DEVELOPMENT SCHEME (Agenda Item 10, Appendix E)

The Committee considered a report which contained the Local Development Scheme, Core Strategy and the Outline of a Scoping Report for the Core Strategy Sustainability Appraisal and set out the progress in producing them. The Committee was updated orally that the Government Office for the South East had endorsed the approach taken with only editing changes.
The Committee had a number of observations on the Core Strategy. Members considered that a new issue on the need to protect and enhance the high quality environment in the Borough be added to the list of issues in the Core Strategy document. It also recommended that two of the objectives, one on health and one on open space be amended. The Committee agreed that the paragraph in the Spatial Portrait on health facilities in the Borough, be amplified to include the need for equality of access to health care.

Members considered the arrangements for public consultation, and the view was expressed that public involvement appeared to be limited. It was explained that, in accordance with the Government guidance, this was the Early Stakeholder stage and the focus was on organisations, though there would be an invitation to the public to make comment through the Council’s Link Magazine. It is also intended to consult the Citizen’s Panel. The second period of consultation on the preferred options would include a number of public meetings.

The Committee praised Officers on the quality and depth of work that had been carried out in producing the documents.

RESOLVED that the observations as outline above be passed to the Executive.



The meeting concluded at 9.59 pm






comms/o&s3/2004-05/062