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This meeting is to be webcast and members are reminded of the need to activate their microphones before speaking. The Chairman will read the following announcement:
‘I would like to remind everyone present that this meeting will be broadcast live to the Internet and will be capable of subsequent repeated viewing, with copies of the recording being made available for those that request it.
By being present at this meeting, it is likely that the recording cameras will capture your image and this will result in your image becoming part of the broadcast.
You should be aware that this may infringe your human and data protection rights. If you have any concerns then please speak to the Webcasting Officer.
Please could I also remind Members to activate their microphones before speaking.’
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.
To report the appointment of any substitute members for the meeting.
The Cabinet Committee noted that Councillor A Lion substituted for Councillor N Avey.
Declarations of Interest
To declare interests in any items on the agenda.
(a) Pursuant to the Council’s Member Code of Conduct, Cllr A Lion declared an interest in agenda item 6, Digital Innovation Programme, by virtue of being Chairman of the Digital Innovation Zone (DIZ). The Councillor had determined that his interest was non-pecuniary and would remain in the meeting for the consideration of the issue.
(b) Pursuant to the Council’s Member Code of Conduct, Cllr G Mohindra declared an interest in agenda item 7, item 7, Hillhouse Development, Waltham Abbey, by virtue of being an Essex County Council Cabinet Member. The Councillor had determined that his interest was non-pecuniary and would remain in the meeting for the consideration of the issue.
To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 19 July 2018.
That the minutes of the meeting held on 19 July 2018 be taken as read and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
To consider the attached report (AMED-003-2018/19).
The Economic Development Officer (EDO) presented a report to the Cabinet Committee and updated them on a number of projects and issues being explored by the Economic Development Team.
Digital Innovation Programme
The ED Team continued to promote the work of and raise the profile of the Essex and Herts Digital Innovation Zone (DIZ), with numerous engagement events undertaken. In particular, the work of the project team exploring digital opportunities to improve information flow to ambulance crews in emergency situations had been presented to health partners on the Urgent Care Local Delivery Board and the Sustainability and Transformation Partnership Clinical Expert Oversight Group. Discussions were taking place to explore the potential for local pilot projects. Presentations on the DIZ have also been given to the LSCC, and Superfast Essex Steering Board. The programme had also achieved coverage at a national level. A number of external bids have been made under the umbrella of the DIZ but led by different external partners.
Councillor Lion added that the programme was moving ahead fast and at a meeting earlier today with Southend-on-Sea Borough Council they advised that they were looking at their commercial approach and considering the way the EFDC ED Team have worked to engage industry and other sectors to make this programme work, rather than it being a solely local authority driven initiative. There may be potential for the EFDC ED Team to provide some expertise to support their initiatives.
The 2018 Tourism and Visitor Conference was being held at the Marriott Hotel Waltham Abbey on Friday, 26 October 2018. The event will include presentations from key tourism partners, including, Vibrant Partnerships as well as a funding update from Best Growth Hub. Attendees would also review the performance of the sector over the last year and discuss increasing levels of work and opportunities being explored across borders with neighbouring authorities.
The new Phase 4a Superfast Essex broadband project remained in the planning stage. Once plans were finalised, the ED Team would look to bring the contractors, Gigaclear, in to a project kick-off meeting with key council departments to ensure the impact of the plans were fully understood and the interests of the council and its residents and businesses were properly considered. This £3.1million contract with Gigaclear would bring full fibre ultrafast speeds to a further 2,100 homes and businesses in the Epping Forest District by December 2019.
(1) That the current progress and work programme of the Council’s Economic Development Section were noted.
Reasons for Decision:
To appraise the Committee on the progress made with regard to Economic Development issues.
Other Options Considered and Rejected:
None, as this monitoring report was for information not action.
(Acting Chief Executive) To consider the attached report (AMED-004-2018/19).
The Acting Chief Executive (ACE) presented a report to the Cabinet Committee and updated Members on further developments to the report since it had been published.
(1) Epping Forest Shopping Park
The three remaining units had now been secured. Mountain Warehouse and Home Bargains were actively trading and Boots were in the process of fitting out their unit.
There was an issue with litter bins getting overfull and therefore litter being left on the floor in the Shopping Park. The frequency of litter bin collections had now been increased and more litter bins were on order.
The car park was being abused by other local businesses and commuters who were covering their number plates or driving in the exit lane to avoid the ANPR cameras. It had been established that the traffic management of the shopping park needed to be looked at as cars were congregating one end of the car park, near Aldi, which in turn made the traffic queue across the lanes making it hard for people to turn in and out of the shopping park and causing tailbacks as far back to the M11 exit.
To control the traffic situation additional controls needed to be put into place and Essex Highways have been requested to assess the problems and help find a solution.
There was still a problem with the roof leaking at the Smyth Toys unit therefore the retention had not been released for the roof works. The contractors had been called back to look at the roof and stop it from leaking.
At a recent meeting of the Debden Town Centre Partnership the traders of Debden Broadway had raised concerns that the Shopping Park was negatively affecting the footfall and trade to local businesses. EFDC have re-commissioned the original consultants to repeat the impact assessment and a report should be ready by the end of November 2018.
Councillor Mohindra commented that there had been no official opening of the Shopping Park and now that all of the units were occupied an official opening should be considered as this was a great achievement for EFDC. The ACE said he would look into arranging an official opening date of the Shopping Park.
(2) Oakwood Hill Depot
All feasibility work on the relocation of the Housing Repairs Service to the site had now been largely completed. The planning application had yet to be considered by the Area Plans South Sub-Committee while mitigation measures asked for by Natural England were being agreed with respect to visitor pressures on the nearby Roding Valley Nature Reserve.
(3) Pyrles Lane Nursery
On the 18 October 2018 a private report was considered by Cabinet where the sale of Pyrles Lane Nursery in excess of £3 million was agreed, on the basis of a development of 36 homes to which 40% of the homes would comprise of affordable housing, in the ratio of 75% affordable rented and 25% shared ownership.
(4) St John’s Road Redevelopment
Despite an extensive period of negotiation with Frontier Estates, ... view the full minutes text for item 14.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, together with paragraphs 6 and 25 of the Council Procedure Rules contained in the Constitution require that the permission of the Chairman be obtained, after prior notice to the Chief Executive, before urgent business not specified in the agenda (including a supplementary agenda of which the statutory period of notice has been given) may be transacted.
The Cabinet Committee noted that there was no other urgent business for consideration.
Exclusion of Public and Press
Exclusion: To consider whether, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press should be excluded from the meeting for the items of business set out below on grounds that they will involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the following paragraph(s) of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act (as amended) or are confidential under Section 100(A)(2):
The Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006, which came into effect on 1 March 2006, requires the Council to consider whether maintaining the exemption listed above outweighs the potential public interest in disclosing the information. Any member who considers that this test should be applied to any currently exempted matter on this agenda should contact the proper officer at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.
Background Papers: Article 17 - Access to Information, Procedure Rules of the Constitution define background papers as being documents relating to the subject matter of the report which in the Proper Officer's opinion:
(a) disclose any facts or matters on which the report or an important part of the report is based; and
(b) have been relied on to a material extent in preparing the report and does not include published works or those which disclose exempt or confidential information and in respect of executive reports, the advice of any political advisor.
The Council will make available for public inspection for four years after the date of the meeting one copy of each of the documents on the list of background papers.
The Cabinet Committee noted that there were no items of business on the agenda that necessitated the exclusion of the public and press from the meeting.