Agenda and minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Committee
Tuesday, 4th June, 2019 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices, High Street, Epping

Contact: R Perrin Tel: (01992) 564243  Email:  democraticservices@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Webcasting Introduction

This meeting is to be webcast. Members are reminded of the need to activate their microphones before speaking.

 

The Chairman will read the following announcement:

 

“This meeting will be webcast live to the Internet and will be archived for later viewing. Copies of recordings may be made available on request.

 

By entering the chamber’s lower seating area you consenting to becoming part of the webcast.

 

If you wish to avoid being filmed you should move to the public gallery or speak to the webcasting officer”

 

Minutes:

The Chairman reminded everyone present that the meeting would be broadcast live to the Internet, and that the Council had adopted a protocol for the webcasting of its meetings.

2.

SUBSTITUTE MEMBERS

To report the appointment of any substitute members for the meeting.

Minutes:

It was reported that Councillor R Morgan was substituting for Councillor G Mohindra.

3.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 457 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 16 April 2019.

Minutes:

            RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the Committee meeting held on 16 April 2019 be signed by the Chairman as a correct record.

4.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

To declare interests in any items on the agenda.

 

In considering whether to declare a pecuniary or a non-pecuniary interest under the Council’s Code of Conduct, members are asked pay particular attention to paragraph 11 of the Code in addition to the more familiar requirements.

 

This requires the declaration of a non-pecuniary interest in any matter before overview and scrutiny which relates to a decision of or action by another committee, sub-committee of the Council, a joint committee or joint sub-committee in which the Council is involved and of which the Councillor is also a member.

 

Paragraph 11 of the Code of Conduct does not refer to Cabinet decisions or attendance at an overview and scrutiny meeting purely for the purpose of answering questions or providing information on such a matter.

Minutes:

(a)          Pursuant to the Council’s Code of Member Conduct, Councillor S Murray declared a non-pecuniary interest  in agenda item 9 (Overview & Scrutiny Committee Work Programme 2019/20) by virtue of being part of the Epping Forest Sixth-Form Consortium in his previous employment. Councillor S Murray advised that he would remain in the meeting for the consideration of this item.

 

(b)          Pursuant to the Council’s Code of Member Conduct, Councillor D Dorrell  declared a non-pecuniary interest  in agenda item 9 (Overview & Scrutiny Committee Work Programme 2019/20) by virtue of his son attending one of the schools within the Epping Forest Sixth-Form Consortium.

 

(c)           Pursuant to the Council’s Code of Member Conduct, Councillor C Whitbread  declared a non-pecuniary interest  in agenda item 9 (Overview & Scrutiny Committee Work Programme 2019/20) by virtue of being the Deputy Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care at Essex County Council.

 

5.

Public Questions & Requests to Address the Overview and Scrutiny Committee

To receive questions submitted by members of the public and any requests to address the Committee.

 

(a)       Public Questions

 

Members of the public may ask questions of the Chairman of Overview and Scrutiny Committee at ordinary meetings of the Committee, in accordance with the procedure set out in the Council’s Constitution.

 

(b)       Requests to address the Overview and Scrutiny Committee

 

Any member of the public or a representative of another organisation may address the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on any agenda item (except those dealt with in private session as exempt or confidential business), due to be considered at the meeting.

 

 

Minutes:

It was noted that there were no public questions or requests to address the Committee.

6.

Executive Decisions - Call-In

To consider any matter referred to the Committee for decision in relation to a call-in.

 

 

Minutes:

It was noted that no executive decisions had been called-in for consideration at this meeting.

7.

Corporate Priorities 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 74 KB

Minutes:

The Leader gave a verbal report on the Corporate Priorities for 2019/20 (attached).

 

The Committee commented that although the Corporate Priorities for 2019/20 had been available in other documents, they would have liked a written copy of the Leader report, as it contained much more detail and would have enabled a better quality of scrutiny. The Leader advised that the Corporate Priorities were normally verbally reported to the Committee with an overview and general direction, which the Cabinet would be pursuing. The decisions would evolve, and many options would be considered for the benefit of the Council.

 

Further comments were raised concerning the Service Company & Development Company and what this decision would entail. The Leader advised that the Cabinet were considering all options to protect the Councils assets.

 

The Committee enquired whether the proceeding Cabinet’s business could be considered by the Committee to enable discussions and concerns or resistance, if any, to be raised before the meeting. The Chief Executive advised this could be considered, although the Forward Plan of Key Decisions was included in every agenda of the Committee, which highlighted the Key Decisions or major projects for the forth coming year that the Cabinet would be taking. 

 

            RESOLVED:

 

(1)  That the Committee noted the Corporate Priorities for 2019/20 attached at appendix 1 of these minutes.

8.

Overview & Scrutiny Committee Work Programme 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 62 KB

Progress towards the achievement of the work programmes for the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and each of the select committees, is reviewed by the Committee at each meeting.

 

(a)          Current Work Programmes

 

The draft work programme for the Committee for 2018/19 is attached as an appendix to this report.

 

(b)          Reserve Programme

 

A reserve list of scrutiny topics is developed as required, to ensure that the work flow of overview and scrutiny is continuous. When necessary, the Committee will allocate items from the list appropriately, once resources become available in the work programme, following the completion of any ongoing scrutiny activity.

 

Members can put forward suggestions for inclusion in the work programme or reserve list through the adopted PICK process. Existing review items will be dealt with first, after which time will be allocated to the items contained in the reserve work plan.

 

Minutes:

The Committee considered it’s draft work programme for the coming year.

 

The Committee noted that scrutiny of the Transformation Programme was to be deleted from the work programme, as ongoing projects and programme activity would be monitored by the Stronger Council Select Committee.

 

The Committee was also asked to consider the Reserve Programme and whether it would like to move any items to the work programme for 2019/20. The Committee support items (4) Local High Streets – Viability and Regeneration and (5) Adult Social Care (Scrutiny of External Organisation) being moved to the main work programme.

 

AGREED: The Committee agreed to add these to the work programme for 2019/20.

 

The Committee considered the other items on the Reserve Programme. The Committee commented that item (1) Epping Forest Sixth-Forum Consortium should remain on the reserve programme and be reconsidered once the Epping Forest College had attended and item (3) Essex Police/Essex Fire & Rescue Service -Joint Governance, would remain on the work programme, although scrutiny would be carried out through the Stronger Communities Select Committee.

 

AGREED: The Committee agreed that the Reserve Programme for 2019/20.

 

9.

Overview & Scrutiny Select Committees - Membership 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 117 KB

To consider nominations (to be circulated) for appointment to membership of the select committees for the current municipal year and to make appointment to the position of chairman and vice-chairman of each of the select committees.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman advised that the Committee had previously agreed the new Overview and Scrutiny framework at its meeting on 16 April 2019, which had been based on three new select committees, reflecting the themes of the Corporate Plan for 2018-2023; Stronger Council; Stronger Communities and Stronger Places.

 

The rules set out within Article 6 of the Council’s Constitution required that the Committee determine the membership and work programme for the Select Committees for the new municipal year.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(1)       That, each of the select committees comprise of 11 members for 2019-20;

 

(2)       That, the appointment to the select committees for Stronger Council, Stronger Places and Stronger Communities as set out in Appendix 2 to these minutes be agreed; and

 

(3)       That, the chairman and vice-chairman of each of the select committees for 2019/20 as set out in Appendix 2 to minutes be agreed.

10.

Overview & Scrutiny Select Committees - Terms of Reference & Work Programmes 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 56 KB

To note the terms of reference and work programmes for each of the new select committees, as agreed by the Committee at its meeting on 16 April 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the Terms of Reference and Work Programmes for the Stronger Communities, Stronger Council and Stronger Places select committees for 2019/20 that had been agreed at the last meeting.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the Terms of Reference and Work Programmes for the Stronger Council, Stronger Communities and Stronger Places select committees as set out in Appendix 3 for the municipal year 2019/20 be agreed.

11.

Forward Plan of Key Decisions - Review pdf icon PDF 139 KB

The Cabinet’s forward plan of key decisions is reviewed by the Committee at each meeting, to provide an opportunity for the scrutiny of specific decisions to be taken over the period of the plan. Wherever possible, Portfolio Holders will attend the Committee to present forthcoming key decisions, to answer questions on the forward plan and to indicate where appropriate work could be carried out by overview and scrutiny on behalf of the Cabinet.

Minutes:

The Committee reviewed the Cabinet’s programme of Key Decisions for 2019-20.

 

Planning Services

 

Councillor S Murray advised the Planning Services Portfolio Holder that he would be asking question about the Key Decision for the Statement of Community Involvement, when it was determined by Cabinet. The Planning Services Portfolio Holder advised,  that if the questions were put into writing beforehand, he would be able provide a detailed answer at the meeting.

 

Contract and Technical Services

 

Councillor R Jennings enquired whether a Task and Finish Panel could be set up around the Key Decision on the Waste Management Review. The Committee agreed to this suggestion and the Contract and Technical Services Portfolio Holder supported the request.

 

AGREED: That a Task and Finish Panel be set up to consider the Waste Management Review and a scoping exercise for the Panel be brought to the next meeting for consideration.

 

Councillor D Wixley asked whether the Council was considering recycling bins on the high streets of the District to increase the recycling rates and whether that would be considered by the Task and Finish Panel. The Chairman advised that the Task and Finish Panel would have to determine it’s work programme and whether this type of item would be included. The Contract and Technical Services Portfolio Holder advised that he had been discussing these options with officers before and would continue.

 

Councillor J H Whitehouse enquired about a Task and Finish Panel for Air Pollution. The Democratic Services Manager advised that a written proposal for a Task and Finish Panel would be required, with some thought to the scope and timescale to the subject, as it was a broad topic.

 

Housing and Property Services

 

Councillor S Murray asked whether a detailed report would be made available for all members when the Key Decision regarding the Service Company & Development Company was made, and whether it would be about providing new rental income or  possible transferring existing housing stock.

 

The Leader advised that the report would be submitted to a future Cabinet meeting and no further consideration had been given at this time.

 

The Chairman suggested that this item could benefit from a Task and Finish Panel in the forthcoming months and Councillor S Murray endorsed this idea.

 

Furthermore, Councillor S Murray enquired about a previous decision regarding the  formation of an off-street parking area on land at Marlescroft Way, Loughton, for the provision of daytime parking for employees of the Council’s depot at Oakwood Hill. The Leader advised that the Housing and Property Services Portfolio Holder had withdrawn the planning application and with the progression at Oakwood Hill depot and the Accommodation Strategy, the car parking requirements had been addressed by on-street parking permits.

12.

Former Overview & Scrutiny Select Committees - Minutes of Meetings pdf icon PDF 104 KB

To agree the minutes of the last meeting of each of the former select committees.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman advised that following the decision of the Committee to revise the existing overview and scrutiny select committee framework and reduce the number of select committees to three, based on the corporate priorities. The minutes of the final cycle of the previous select committees were required to be agreed by the Committee.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the final meetings of the Communities Select Committee  (15 January 2019),  the Governance Select Committee (26 March 2019), the Neighbourhoods Select Committee (19 March 2019) and the Resources Select Committee (2 April 2019) be agreed as a correct record.