Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Princes Theatre - Town Hall, Station Road, Clacton-on-Sea, CO15 1SE. View directions

Contact: Ian Ford  01255 686584

Items
No. Item

86.

Apologies for Absence

The Council is asked to note any apologies for absence received from Members.

 

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Cawthron and Overton.

87.

Minutes of the Last Meeting of the Council pdf icon PDF 156 KB

The Council is asked to approve, as a correct record, the minutes of the Council Meeting held on Tuesday 21 January 2020.

Minutes:

Members had had circulated to them, prior to the commencement of the meeting, an amended Page 12 of the Minutes which contained corrected text.

 

RESOLVED, that the minutes of the ordinary meeting of the Council, held on Tuesday 21 January 2020, be approved as a correct record and be signed by the Chairman, subject to the correction being made to page 12 of those Minutes as indicated on the amended page which had been circulated prior to the commencement of the meeting.

88.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors are invited to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Personal Interest, and the nature of it, in relation to any item on the agenda.

 

Minutes:

With regard to the Council’s consideration of the budget and Council Tax proposals and the statutory provisions in respect of Members’ declarations of interest thereon, the Monitoring Officer reminded Members of the salient points contained in her advice that had been recently circulated to them by email on 6 February 2020.

 

The Monitoring Officer also reminded Members that The Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 required local authorities to hold a named vote on the Budget motion and any and all amendments thereto.

89.

Announcements by the Chairman of the Council

The Council is asked to note any announcements made by the Chairman of the Council.

Minutes:

The Chairman updated Council on recent and upcoming events in his diary including his Charity Quiz, his recent visit to Biberach, the Pride of Tendring awards and a voluntary services awards night.

90.

Announcements by the Chief Executive

The Council is asked to note any announcements made by the Chief Executive.

 

Minutes:

The Chief Executive made the following announcements:-

 

Councillor Nicola Overton

 

“Mr Chairman, Council will be aware that it is a requirement under Article 2.06 of the Council’s Constitution that if a Member exceeds four months without attending a meeting of the Council or attending a meeting of a committee or sub-committee of the Council either as an appointed member of a committee/sub-committee or as a substitute member of a committee/sub-committee that shall be reported to the next Council meeting.

 

Therefore, in accordance with the said Article 2.06 I formally report that Councillor Nicola Overton has exceeded four months without attending a meeting of the Council or attending a meeting of a committee or sub-committee of the Council either as an appointed member of  a committee/sub-committee or as a substitute member of  a committee/sub-committee.

 

The last meeting that Councillor Overton attended was the meeting of the Community Leadership Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 7 October 2019.

 

Councillor Overton has recently contacted me and informed me that she is currently suffering from ill health.”

 

Councillor Peter Harris

 

“Mr Chairman, I formally report that, pursuant to Regulation 10(b) of the Local Government (Committees and Political Groups) Regulations 1990, Councillor Peter Harris has served formal notice on the Council that he no longer wishes to be treated as a member of the Tendring Independents political group.

 

I further formally report that Councillor Harris, pursuant to Regulation 9(b) of the Local Government (Committees and Political Groups) Regulations 1990, has served formal notice on the Council that he wishes to be treated as a member of the Conservative political group. That notice has been duly counter-signed by the Leader of the Conservative Group (Councillor Neil Stock).

 

Councillor Stock has not exercised his right under Section 15(1)(e) of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 and Regulation 17(c) of the Local Government (Committees and Political Groups) Regulations 1990 for a review of the allocation of seats to political groups to be carried out.

 

This report is for Members’ information only.”

91.

Statements by the Leader of the Council

The Council is asked to note any statements made by the Leader of the Council. 

Councillors may then ask questions of the Leader on his statements.

 

Minutes:

There were no such statements on this occasion.

92.

Statements by Members of the Cabinet

The Council is asked to note any statements made by Members of the Cabinet (Portfolio Holders).

Councillors may then ask questions of the Portfolio Holders on their statements.

 

Minutes:

There were no statements by members of the Cabinet on this occasion.

93.

Report of the Cabinet - A.1 - Executive's Proposals - General Fund Budget and Council Tax 2020/2021 pdf icon PDF 360 KB

To present to Council the Cabinet’s General Fund budget proposals including the Council Tax for District and Parish/Town Council Services for 2020/21.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council gave consideration to the Cabinet’s General Fund budget proposals for 2020/21 and the amount of Council Tax for District and Town and Parish Council services for the financial year 2020/21, for each category of dwellings within the District of Tendring, to support the proposed level of expenditure.

 

Members were aware from Minute 105 (A.4) of the meeting of the Cabinet held on 24 January 2020, that the Chief Executive, in consultation with the Leader of the Council and the Corporate Finance and Governance Portfolio Holder, had been authorised to submit a report to this meeting in respect of the formal draft resolutions necessary to implement the Cabinet’s budget proposals, together with any late information, or notifications received from the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, as may necessarily affect the budget.

 

The Council was advised of all the resolutions and recommendations made by the Cabinet on 24 January 2019, together with the additional recommendations necessary to set the Council Tax levy. Those resolutions and recommendations were before the Council, as contained within item A.1 of the Report of the Cabinet.

 

The Council was aware that the Cabinet’s proposed budget had been subject to the Council’s Budget and Policy Framework Procedure Rules, which had included scrutiny by the Council’s Resources and Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

Members were also aware that the Town and Parish Councils within the District had met to set their precepts and those precepts were contained within Appendix G to the Report of the Cabinet, which detailed the Precepts on the Collection Fund.

 

The Council was also aware from Appendix H that the average District and Parish Council Tax for a Band D property would increase to £214.91, an increase of 3.76%.

 

The Leader of the Council (Councillor Stock OBE) made the following budget statement –

 

“The protection of frontline services, the key foundation of our 10-year financial plan, is once more the crucial and significant deliverable in the budget we have in front of us tonight – I am so proud that we have been able to achieve this for a further year as this is so fundamentally important and really makes a difference to our residents. I know that every other Council, up and down this country, would love to be in this same position.

 

It has been an interesting 12 months since we sat here last year, not least the number of new faces around the room who are tonight considering their first budget as a District Councillor. It would be fair to say that in those last 12 months the government in Westminster, and Parliament in particular, got completely bogged down with a single issue, pretty much, it seemed, to the exclusion of anything else. But, the General Election in December has happily broken that deadlock, and we have now finally left the European Union and at long last made good on the referendum decision that this country made almost four years ago. And already we are seeing a much  ...  view the full minutes text for item 93.

94.

Report of the Cabinet - A.2 - Executive's Proposals - Housing Revenue Account Budget 2020/2021 pdf icon PDF 251 KB

To present to Council the Cabinet’s Housing Revenue Account budget proposals for 2020/21 including the increase in dwelling rents for 2020/21.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council gave consideration to the Cabinet’s Housing Revenue Account (HRA) budget proposals for 2020/21, including the proposed increase in dwelling rents for 2020/21.

 

Members were aware from Minute 106 (A.5) of the meeting of the Cabinet held on 24 January 2020, that the Chief Executive, in consultation with the Housing Portfolio Holder, had been authorised to adjust the forecast / budget, including the use of reserves, if the financial position had changed prior to this Council meeting.

 

The Council was advised of all the resolutions and the recommendation made by the Cabinet on 24 January 2020, together with the additional recommendations necessary to set the HRA budget, fees and charges and dwelling rents for 2020/21. Those resolutions and recommendations were before the Council, as contained within item A.2 of the Report of the Cabinet.

 

The Council was aware that the Cabinet’s proposed HRA budget had been subject to the Council’s Budget and Policy Framework Procedure Rules, which had included scrutiny by the Council’s Resources and Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

The Leader of the Council (Councillor Stock OBE) made the following budget statement:-

 

“As mentioned earlier, there are many new faces in the room who will be considering a General Fund budget for the first time. But in terms of the Housing Revenue Account (HRA), this is the first time that it has been in front of any of us at a Full Council meeting, so quite a timely change to previous arrangements.

 

In terms of size and scale, the HRA is on a par with the General Fund with expenditure in excess of £13 million each year.

 

It is a relatively quiet year budget-wise, but one of the highlights is the Government’s removal of the requirement to reduce rents by 1% each year. As we have said before, this was unsustainable and has already taken a considerable amount of money out of the HRA - we estimate that it will have taken over £30m out of the account over a 30 year business planning period – money that could have gone into building new homes and improving existing homes.

 

Hopefully, people therefore see the proposed 2.7% rent increase as sensible, prudent and necessary to support the HRA budget to continue to remain strong and allow the Council to make the right investment in people’s homes. The average proposed weekly rent is £82.42, which I think represents good value for money.   

 

When speaking about the HRA it always seems a good time to reflect on the Right to Buy. We know it is unlikely to be something that the Government are ever going to do away with in England, so lobbying for such an outcome will likely fall on deaf ears. But perhaps a more productive approach would be to suggest ways to make the Right to Buy sustainable – this is something we have already done when officers met with representatives from MHCLG last year. We made some sensible and credible suggestions on how the Government could balance  ...  view the full minutes text for item 94.

95.

Urgent Matters for Debate

The Council will consider any urgent matters submitted in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 2(viii).

Minutes:

There were none on this occasion.