Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Wednesday, 21st July, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber. View directions

Contact: Rebecca Brough, Democratic & Corporate Services Manager  Email: democraticservices@dover.gov.uk

Link: 'Click Here to Watch Live Broadcast'

Items
No. Item

18.

Apologies pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors M Bates and N J Collor.

19.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 10 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the meetings held on 19 May 2021 (to follow).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Minutes of the Extraordinary meeting held on 19 May 2021 and the Annual Meeting held on 19 May 2021 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

20.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 143 KB

To receive any declarations of interest from Members in respect of business to be transacted on the agenda.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest made by Members.

21.

Announcements pdf icon PDF 56 KB

To receive any announcements from the Chairman of the Council, the Leader of the Council, Members of the Cabinet or the Head of Paid Service.

Minutes:

The Chairman of the Council, Councillor M D Conolly, made the following

announcements:

 

(a)  To advise that Councillors M J Holloway and J Rose had resigned. He thanked them both for the contribution that they had made to the Council during their service.

 

(b)  To inform the Council of the sad news of the death of Bruce Grant, Senior Multi-Skilled Tradesperson in the Assets Maintenance team and that he had sent a letter of condolence to Mr Grant’s family on behalf of the Council.  

22.

Leader's Time pdf icon PDF 88 KB

To receive an oral report at the meeting from the Leader (and Cabinet) on the business of the Executive or on any topic or subject that it is felt should be brought to the attention of the Council.

 

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 10 (Leader’s Time):

 

(a)  The Leader (and Cabinet) shall have up to 15 minutes to make within this report any statements that they wish on any topic or subject that they feel should be drawn to the attention of the Council.

(b)  The Leader of the Main Opposition Group (or their nominee) shall be allowed up to 10 minutes to respond.

(c)  The Leader of the Council shall be allowed up to 5 minutes to exercise a right of reply (or 25% of the time given to the Opposition Group Leader(s), whichever is the greatest).

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council, Councillor T J Bartlett, included the following matters in his report:

 

(a)  That the resignations of Councillors M J Holloway and J Rose was a sad loss to the Council and that he wished them both well in their future endeavours. He also wished good luck to the candidates standing for election in the vacant seats.

 

(b)  That the Council had launched its Tourism Strategy during an organised visit from the Tourism Minister.

 

(c)   To thank everyone who participated in the Great British Spring Clean event and also to thank the officers involved in organising it.

 

(d)  That he had been a judge in a local photography competition for children. There had been 73 excellent entries which had been reduced to a shortlist of 25 entries. There would be a prize giving held to congratulate the winners.

 

(e)  That he had attended the opening of the Clock Tower Square which was part of the Dover Wester Docks Revival redevelopment. He welcomed the modern and vibrant new public space.

 

(f)    That he had met the first tenants of Bomford Place, named after a prominent member of Dover’s suffrage movement, and advised that all 24 units were now occupied. That the Burgess Place development was also expected to go live this week. He had also viewed four other sites as part of the Council’s target of developing 500 new homes.

 

(g)  That possible sites for the Dame Vera Lynn Footpath had been identified in discussion with her family at the Western Heights.

 

(h)  That the Council had made an ambitious bid to the Levelling Up Fund. This included the development of a memorial park and amphitheatre. If the bid was successful, the Council would undertake consultation and stakeholder engagement on the proposals.

 

(i)    To highlight the great work at Kearsney Abbey and Russell Gardens and celebrate the 70th Anniversary of Russell Gardens. The new landscaping, new café and new play area had received a lot of positive feedback.

 

(j)    To acknowledge the disappointing performance of the waste contract operated by Veolia and the frustration experienced by residents affected by it. Veolia advised that they had been affected by the shortage of HGV drivers and the ‘pingdemic’. The Council was working with Veolia to get performance back on track.   

 

(k)   That following public feedback the Government had amended its proposals for the Inland Border Facility and it was now proposed that there would be two sites with a reduction in the size of the original proposed site.

 

(l)    That £80,000 had been awarded in community grants and that he was looking forward to further grant rounds.

 

(m) The celebrate the success of the 149th Open Golf Championship and highlight the potential inward investment opportunities. He thanked the Council’s team working on the project for their work and advised that the Open Golf Championship would return to St George’s in the future.

 

(n)  To thank the NHS staff who were present at the 149th  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.

23.

Appointment of Deputy Leader and Cabinet pdf icon PDF 284 KB

To receive from the Leader of the Council any changes to the size and composition of the Cabinet and to note the appointment of Members to the Cabinet portfolios.

 

 

 

 

Minutes:

In accordance with the Council Procedure Rules, Councillor T J Bartlett gave notice of his intention to appoint an Executive comprising of the Leader of the Council, Deputy Leader of the Council and five portfolios.

 

RESOLVED:     (a)   That it be noted that the Leader of the Council had given formal notification to the Monitoring Officer of his intention to appoint the following portfolio structure:

           

·         Leader

·         Deputy Leader

·         Community and Corporate Property

·         Finance, Governance, Digital and Climate Change

·         Social Housing and Port Health

·         Planning and Environment

·         Transport, Licensing and Regulatory Services

 

(b)   That it be noted that the Leader of the Council had appointed the following Members to the following Portfolios:

 

Deputy Leader

O C de R Richardson

Community and Corporate Property

O C de R Richardson

Finance, Governance, Digital and Climate Change

C A Vinson

Social Housing and Port Health

D P Murphy

Planning and Environment

N S Kenton

Transport, Licensing and Regulatory Services

M Bates

 

24.

Appointment of Shadow Cabinet pdf icon PDF 144 KB

To note the composition of the Shadow Cabinet as advised by the Leader of the Main Opposition Group. The Shadow Cabinet must directly reflect the composition of the Cabinet (in accordance with the Council Procedure Rules).

 

Minutes:

In accordance with the Council Procedure Rules, Councillor K Mills gave notice of his intention to appoint a Shadow Cabinet.

 

RESOLVED:       That, in accordance with notice provided by the Leader of the Opposition Group, the Shadow Cabinet be composed of the following:

 

Leader of the Main Opposition Group

K Mills

Deputy Leader of the Main Opposition Group

P M Brivio

Community and Corporate Property

H M Williams

Finance, Governance, Digital and Climate Change

S H Beer

Social Housing and Port Health

P M Brivio

Planning and Environment

E A Biggs

Transport, Licensing and Regulatory Services

L A Keen

 

25.

Seat Allocation and Group Appointments pdf icon PDF 110 KB

To receive from Group Leaders any changes to seat allocations or appointments.

 

 

(Note:  Any changes must be within the approved allocation of seats to political groups in accordance with the political balance rules (where applicable).)

Minutes:

It was moved by Councillor T J Bartlett and duly seconded by Councillor N S Kenton

 

RESOLVED:       That the following changes be made to appointments within the approved allocation of seats for the Conservative Group:

 

Committee

Member Removed

Member Appointed

Appointments Committee

Vacancy

O C de R Richardson

 

Dover Joint Transportation Advisory Board

 

Vacancy

C A Vinson

 

East Kent Service Committee

 

Vacancy

O C de R Richardson

Overview and Scrutiny Committee

 

Vacancy

D A Hawkes

M Bates

P D Jull

Planning Committee

O C de R Richardson

D A Hawkes

 

 

 

 

 

26.

Questions from the Public pdf icon PDF 189 KB

To receive answers in respect of questions from the public to Members of the Executive asked in accordance with Rule 11 of the Council Procedure Rules.

 

(a)  Questions will be asked in the order in which notice of them was received, except that the Chairman may group together similar questions.

(b)  The period for questions by the public shall be limited so that no further questions shall be put after the elapse of 15 minutes from the commencement of the first question.

(c)   A maximum of three minutes is allowed for the each question to be read.

(d)  A questioner who has put a question in person may also put one supplementary question without notice to the member who has replied to his or her original question. A supplementary question must arise directly out of the original question or the reply.

(e)  Afterwards, any other Member at the Chairman's discretion may speak for up to two minutes on a question or reply.

 

Questions from the Public

 

The questions received from the public within the notice period are set out in the agenda papers.

Minutes:

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11 (as amended by Council Procedure Rule 28.9), a question from Graham Wanstall was put to the Leader of the Council, Councillor T J Bartlett:

 

“Next year we celebrate 70 years on the throne of H.M. the Queen with the Platinum Jubilee. The Pencester Gardens in Dover is approaching its centenary since given to the Borough of Dover in the 1920’s. To mark this important occasion I propose we rename Pencester Gardens “Queen Elizabeth Park” and organise a Dover Party for the June 2022 weekend in the Gardens to formally adopt the new name and celebrate Her Majesty’s Jubilee and I ask you to support this proposal and to facilitate it as time is short?”

 

In response the Leader of the Council stated:

 

“As Mr Wanstall has said, 2022 promises to be a very special year for our nation as we celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

 

The government has already announced an additional bank holiday so that there will be four days of celebrations from 2nd to 5th June and I am sure that Town and Parish Councils across our District will be making plans to commemorate the occasion with street parties and other such events.

 

As regards the idea of renaming Pencester Gardens as “Queen Elizabeth Park”, the gardens were acquired by the Council in the 1920’s and are named after John de Pencester who had helped to defeat Louis the Dauphin of France at the time of the Battle of Dover in 1216.

 

Given that the current name already commemorates an event in Dover’s history, I am reluctant to change this, but I have noted this suggestion and will consider how the Council can mark the anniversary in an appropriate way. There is for example already a campaign being promoted, the ‘Queen’s Green Canopy’ which aims to encourage the planting of trees across our nation, which we are considering taking part in.”

27.

Recommendations to the Council from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Food Poverty Review

 

The Council at its meeting held on 30 October 2019 made the following resolution in respect of a Motion moved by Councillor K Mills:

 

“We note that there are 8 million people in this country who have trouble putting food on the table according to the UN. Over 500,000 people used Foodbanks in the UK last year.

 

The Trussell Trust alone distributed over 1.3m three-day emergency food supplies of people in crisis in the financial year 2017/18. Three million children are at risk of hunger during the school holidays and around 10% of the NHS Budget goes on treating diabetes and up to 1 million people live in food deserts in the UK.

 

We further note that the Government’s commitment to the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals which apply internationally and domestically commits governments to ending hunger by 2030.

 

We resolve to ask Scrutiny to investigate the extent of the issue in the Dover District and what can be done to tackle it.”

 

The Overview and Scrutiny Committee has at its meeting held on 12 July 2021 made the following recommendations to the full Council as part of its review:

 

(a)  That Council request the Cabinet form a Food Poverty Working Group on the following basis:

 

(i)              That the objective of the food poverty working group be to investigate ways in which the Council can assist in tackling the issue of food poverty and its underlying causes in the district and as part of this how the Council can support the vital role undertaken by the voluntary and community sector.

 

(ii)             That the working group membership be politically balanced.

 

(iii)            That a representative from the Cabinet be appointed to the working group.         

 

(iv)            That the working group be administratively supported by the Head of Community and Digital Services.

 

(v)             That the working group be time limited to two years of operation and be required to report to Cabinet on its conclusions at the end of that period.

 

(vi)        That the final Terms of Reference be determined by the Cabinet taking into account points (i) to (v).

 

(b)  That the Council recognises the importance of the work undertaken by Community Services in respect of deprivation and food poverty issues.

 

(c)   That the Council’s welcomes the participation by Dover District Council in the East Kent Food Poverty Working Group.

 

(d)  That the Council notes the excellent work undertaken by the Community and Voluntary Sector in respect of food poverty in the Dover district.

 

The accompanying report sets out the Overview and Scrutiny Committee’s investigations and findings.

 

 

Minutes:

Councillor C D Zosseder presented the recommendations of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee in respect of its Food Poverty Review. She thanked the groups in the district that were trying to tackle the issue of food poverty and in particular those that had taken the time to meet with the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

It was moved by Councillor C D Zosseder, duly seconded by Councillor M Rose, and

 

RESOLVED:   (a)   That Council request the Cabinet form a Food Poverty Working Group on the following basis:

 

(i)       That the objective of the food poverty working group be to investigate ways in which the Council can assist in tackling the issue of food poverty and its underlying causes in the district and as part of this how the Council can support the vital role undertaken by the voluntary and community sector.

 

(ii)     That the working group membership be politically balanced.

 

(iii)    That a representative from the Cabinet be appointed to the working group.        

 

(iv)    That the working group be administratively supported by the Head of Community and Digital Services.

 

(v)     That the working group be time limited to two years of operation and be required to report to Cabinet on its conclusions at the end of that period.

 

(vi)    That the final Terms of Reference be determined by the Cabinet taking into account points (i) to (v).

 

(b)  That the Council recognises the importance of the work undertaken by Community Services in respect of deprivation and food poverty issues.

 

(c)   That the Council welcomes the participation by Dover District Council in the East Kent Food Poverty Working Group.

 

(d) That the Council notes the excellent work undertaken by the Community and Voluntary Sector in respect of food poverty in the Dover district.

 

 

28.

Questions from Members pdf icon PDF 321 KB

Up to 60 minutes is allowed for this part of the meeting unless extended by the Chairman of the Council or on a motion moved, duly seconded and approved by the Council.  Members may ask one supplementary question in addition to their original question.

 

Members may ask one supplementary question in addition to their original question.

 

The questions received are set out in the order received in the agenda papers.

Minutes:

In accordance with Rule 12(1) of the Council Procedure Rules, Members of the Cabinet responded to the following questions:

 

(1)  Councillor P M Brivio asked the Portfolio Holder for Transport, Licensing and Regulatory Services, Councillor M Bates:

 

DDC has already demanded a review of the whole procedure leading to the chaos and gridlock that occurred in Dover over the Christmas period, so that lessons are learnt from what happened. This should be acted upon to ensure that there is a strategy in place to ensure such a situation does not happen again; residents and the council must be fully informed of this new strategy.

 

Is the Portfolio Holder able to advise when this council and more importantly the Public were advised of the new strategy?”

 

Reply by the Portfolio Holder for Planning and Environment, Councillor N S Kenton (in the absence of Councillor M Bates):

 

“Since the French border closure at the end of 2020 a Kent Police operation called Op Merlon has been created to mitigate a repeat of this situation. This operation creates control points on all the major routes into the town and far enough away to enable the town to be free from congestion.

 

This operation will only be deployed if the border is closed and is an Officially sensitive document.

 

DDC works closely with both highways agencies and DfT with regards the impacts on the community with disruptions at the port.”

 

(2)  Councillor K Mills asked the Leader of the Council, Councillor T J Bartlett:

 

“Is the leader able to advise the Council and Public why no one from the Cabinet or controlling administration attended the recent public meeting on the CO Innovations Centre despite as stated in the press that invites were sent?”

 

Reply by the Leader of the Council:

 

“Yes. Let me firstly say that I have visited the Co-Innovation Centre on a number of occasions and am appreciative of how this facility has operated and been supported by the Council since 2018 over the period of temporary use.

In answer to a press enquiry prior to the recent public meeting, a statement was issued clearly setting out our position; namely that:

 

We will continue to work closely with the Co-Innovation Centre. I, along with the Chief Executive and Head of Community and Digital Services met with operators of the site prior to the public meeting to provide the latest information. In this respect, it was confirmed that we are looking at ways that we could support the operators financially subject to the receipt of a suitable business plan. We have now received a proposal which is being considered.

 

Given this background, it was not considered necessary to attend the meeting later in the day.”

 

(3)  Councillor K Mills asked the Leader of the Council, Councillor T J Bartlett:

 

“Could the leader please advise council of the outcomes of any discussions held with DHB regarding fishing from the admiralty pier.”

 

Reply by the Leader of the Council:

 

“I am not aware of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

Motions pdf icon PDF 214 KB

Motions for which notice has been given are listed on the agenda in the order in which notice was received, unless the Member giving notice states, in writing, that they propose to move it at a later meeting or withdraw it.

 

If a Motion set out in the agenda is not moved by the Member who gave notice thereof it shall, unless postponed by consent of the Council, be treated as withdrawn and shall not be moved without fresh notice.

 

Up to 60 minutes is allowed for this part of the meeting unless extended by the Chairman of Council on a motion moved, duly seconded and approved by the Council.  Members may ask one supplementary question in addition to their original question.

 

The Motions received are set out in the agenda papers.

Minutes:

Motion 1

In accordance with Council Procedure Rule 13, Councillor C A Vinson moved the

Motion of which he had given notice as followed:

 

“This Council notes:

·        That the average age of a Dover district resident in 2016 was 43.3 years old, and the average age of local authority councillors across the country in 2018 was 59.4 years old.

·        That just 22% (7 of the 32) Dover district councillors elected in May 2019 were female, compared to 50.8% of the district’s population, and that analysis of the 2021 local elections by the Fawcett Society found that only 33% of the candidates were female.

·        That the role of a councillor should be open to all, regardless of their background.

·        That clarifying the Council’s arrangements for parental leave is a step towards encouraging a wider range of people to become councillors, and is also a step to encourage existing councillors who may want to start a family to remain as councillors;

·        That parental leave must apply to parents regardless of their gender, and that it should also cover adoption leave to support those parents who choose to adopt.

·        That Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972 already permits the Council to approve a leave of absence for any member such that they would not cease to be a councillor if they did not attend meetings of the Council for a period of six-months or more.

 

This Council resolves:

·        To encourage a broad range of candidates to stand for election, regardless of background, and particularly from groups that might be reluctant to do so – such as candidates who are younger, female or have family and/or caring responsibilities

·        To ensure that councillors that are new or adoptive parents, as well as councillors with older children and other caring commitments are supported as appropriate

·        To ensure that the Council’s Constitution clearly sets out the process by which members can seek a leave of absence, which should reflect not only the formal legislative permission required for periods longer than six-months, but also the Council’s own process to support new and adoptive parents seeking a period of leave of shorter duration

·        That pending formal changes to the Constitution, the Council look favourably upon ad hoc requests for parental or adoption leave

·        That requests for parental or adoption leave should not be unreasonably refused

·        That councillors have a responsibility to their constituents to ensure that their ward casework is covered for any period of absence, which may require support from other elected representatives in multi-member wards, or their political group as appropriate

·        That the Council’s website should be updated to show when a member is taking a period of absence, alongside details of any arrangements they have made to allow for constituency work in their ward to be covered.”

The Motion was duly seconded by Councillor C D Zosseder.

RESOLVED: This Council notes:

·         That the average age of a Dover district resident in 2016 was 43.3 years old, and the average age of local authority councillors  ...  view the full minutes text for item 29.

30.

Exclusion of the Press and Public pdf icon PDF 106 KB

The recommendation is attached.

 

MATTERS WHICH THE MANAGEMENT TEAM SUGGESTS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED IN PRIVATE AS THE REPORT CONTAINS EXEMPT INFORMATION AS DEFINED WITHIN PART 1 OF SCHEDULE 12A OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972 AS INDICATED AND IN RESPECT OF WHICH THE PROPER OFFICER CONSIDERS THAT THE PUBLIC INTEREST IN MAINTAINING THE EXEMPTION OUTWEIGHS THE PUBLIC INTEREST IN DISCLOSING THE INFORMATION

Minutes:

This item was withdrawn from the agenda.

31.

Market Square Project

To consider the report of the Strategic Director (Operations and Commercial) (to follow).

Minutes:

This item of business had been withdrawn from the agenda.

32.

Urgent Business Time pdf icon PDF 83 KB

To consider any other items deemed by the Chairman of the Council to be urgent in accordance with the Local Government Act 1972.

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business for consideration.

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