Agenda for Council on Thursday, 21st October, 2021, 4.30pm

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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - BTH. View directions

Contact: Mark Wall  Head of Democratic Services

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Items
No. Item

38.

Declarations of Interest

    (a)       Disclosable pecuniary interests;

    (b)       Any other interests required to be registered under the local code;

    (c)       Any other general interest as a result of which a decision on the matter might reasonably be regarded as affecting you or a partner more than a majority of other people or businesses in the ward/s affected by the decision.

     

    In each case, you need to declare

    (i)        the item on the agenda the interest relates to;

    (ii)       the nature of the interest; and

    (iii)      whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest or some other interest.

     

    If unsure, Members should seek advice from the Monitoring Officer or Democratic Services Officer preferably before the meeting.

    Minutes:

    38.1      There were no declarations of interests in matters appearing on the agenda.

     

39.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 806 KB

    To approve as a correct record the minutes of:

    (a)  the last Council meeting held on the 15 July 2021;

    (b)  the Special Council meeting held on the 15 July 2021.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    39.1      The minutes of the (a) the Special meeting held on the 15th July and (b) the last ordinary meeting held on the 15th July were approved as a correct record of the proceedings.

40.

Mayor's Communications.

    To receive communications from the Mayor.

    Minutes:

    40.1      The Mayor stated that he wished to hold a minute’s silence to remember those women who had suffered from violence and as a mark of respect for the death of Sir David Amess MP.

     

    40.2      The Mayor then gave the following communications:

     

    The Mayor noted that following the Notice of Motion relating to the Mary Clarke statue, he had been asked to accept the lamp that was sitting on his desk which was lit to mark the way for those who were suffering from violence. He also noted that councillors had been asked to wear an orange ribbon to show their support for the campaign against violence against women and girls.

     

    The Mayor noted that the Service of Compassion took place on Sunday and for those of you who could not attend, it was available to watch on You Tube. The Service was organised by the Interfaith Contact Group.

     

    The Annual Civic Advent Service was being held on the 28 November at St Nicholas Church. All Councillors are welcome to attend, and should contact the Mayor’s Office to let officers know whether you will be there, by the 15 November.

     

    The Mayor then noted a couple of events that he wished to draw Members’ attention to:

    Actually Gay Men’s Chorus 7 December

    The original version of Miracle on 34th Street 10 December

     

    Both events were in aid of the Mayor’s charities and both events were taking place at All Saints Church in Hove.

     

    The Mayor stated that he had been made aware of a revision to Item 56 the Notice of Motion on Protect Residents This Winter. He was happy to accept the revision which was to ensure that the correct information was stated.

     

    The Mayor noted that he had been informed by the petitioner for Item 41 that they were unable to join the meeting until 5.00pm due to work commitments and would therefore take Item 42 Public Questions ahead of this item.

     

    Finally, the Mayor stated that he intended to take regular short breaks during the meeting, in order to give everyone in the chamber an opportunity to get some fresh air and remove their masks.

41.

To receive petitions and e-petitions.

    To receive any petitions to be presented to the Mayor by members of the public and/or Members as notified by the due date of 7 October 2021 (10 working days).

    Minutes:

    41.1      The Mayor invited the submission of petitions from councillors and members of the public.  He reminded the Council that petitions would be referred to the appropriate decision-making body without debate and the person presenting the petition would be invited to attend the meeting to which the petition was referred.

     

    41.2      Ms Graber presented a petition signed by 278 people seeking consultation with parents on city playground  upgrades.

     

    41.3      The Mayor thanked Ms Graber and confirmed that the petition would be referred to the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.

42.

Written questions from members of the public. pdf icon PDF 117 KB

    A list of public questions received by the due date of 12noon on the 15 October 2021 will be circulated separately as part of an addendum at the meeting.

    Minutes:

    42.1         The Mayor reported that 8 written questions had been received from members of the public and invited Mr Johnson to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    42.2         Mr Johnson asked the following question, Brighton needs to take an innovative leap as Berlin has done with regards to rent control.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/apr/23/berlin-rent-cap-defeated-landlords-empty

    Rent control cooled the housing market in Berlin (both in rental prices/ home prices) and should be developed in Brighton.   How quickly can this take place?

     

    42.3         Councillor Gibson replied, improving private rented housing is a key priority in our Housing Committee Work Plan. However, rent control in non-Council-owned housing stock is outside the scope and powers of the local authorities and is a matter for national government

     

    42.4         Mr Johnson asked the following supplementary question; are you suggesting that the matter needs to be raised in Parliament?

     

    42.5         Councillor Gibson replied; yes and one slightly heartening thing is that in Scotland the SNP and Green parties are working on arrangements to introduce rent controls there which is a step forward and one that other governments may then adopt.

     

    42.6         The Mayor thanked Mr Johnson for his questions and invited Mr Harris to come forward and address the council.

     

    42.7         Mr Harris asked the following question;

     

    The Home Office currently has a backlog of over 70k Asylum cases and rising waiting to be completed. This is causing massive delays and trauma to asylum seekers, many of which are fleeing violence, torture and war zones. Following the recent High Court action Ncube vs Brighton & Hove City Council, could the Council please explain the process a young (under 26) Asylum Seeker who is homeless, has NRPF and is in need of housing support / advice, should take in order to gain sanctuary and emergency housing support should they choose to live and settle in Brighton and Hove?

     

    42.8         Councillor Gibson replied; each case has to be assessed individually. There is no blanket response, the law around this is complicated and the Council is constrained by legislation as highlighted in the case referred to.  It depends on many factors for example, what category of NRPFs a person is ; whether they are an EU citizen or are they in the UK with leave to remain or no leave to remain. Then there is the consideration of whether they have needs such as would come under the Care Act, or National Assistance Act or Children’s Act. If none of these apply, then there is consideration of whether they have a live application with the Home Office and whether accommodation can be provided by the Home office. The Council works with both organisations offering support and the Home Office wherever possible to ensure those with NRPF are not left destitute

     

    42.9         Mr Harris asked the following supplementary question; I am actually thinking of a particular client.  He applied to social services and was told to go to the police station, but was put into a taxi, not told where they were going and ended up outside the city, away from the support services that had been put in place. Do you agree this is quite concerning?

     

    42.10      Councillor Gibson replied; I really hope that the appropriate bodies will look at this particular case. I think councillors in the city are probably getting similar cases it would be good to know how the council is monitoring the situation to ensure that people are being placed into suitable care.

     

    42.11      The Mayor thanked Mr Harris for his questions and invited Mr Smith to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    42.12      Mr Smith asked the following question; is it envisaged or indeed is there any possibility (however remote) that any section of the A259 could be included in the car free city centre proposal and are the council and officers aware that transport infrastructure forms a very small part of the term liveable city?

     

    Please can you also advise why the other five elements that constitute a liveable city are not receiving equal public consideration and do you accept that in the absence of this, the original definition of a car free city centre was infinitely more appropriate?

     

    42.13      Councillor Heley replied; further work will be undertaken to explore the initial, proposed options for a Liveable City Centre that have been considered so far by the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee.  This will take place over time and in phases.  This work will include the extent of the areas and roads that could be included or excluded and how they could be managed to achieve the best outcomes for people and businesses. The role and use of the A259 will be an important part of this and opportunities for improving it for non-car users, including crossings to the seafront will be considered as part of this work.

     

    We have used the term ‘liveable’ in ‘Liveable City Centre’ as a general description rather than suggesting that it will deliver all the normally recognised constituents of a ‘liveable city’.  However, by creating a more attractive central area, it will support improved city centre neighbourhoods, provide opportunities for more green spaces, and offer a more accessible environment.  It will also encourage and offer more sustainable mobility, support a diverse and resilient city centre economy, and will create more vibrant public spaces for everybody to use and enjoy. Other benefits would be improved air quality, reduced noise levels and safer streets.

     

    42.14      Mr Smith asked a supplementary question, could I please have a copy of the plan should there be one and confirmation as to whether there is any intention to close part of the A259 and what the views of the DfT would be?

     

    42.15      Councillor Heley replied, it was not possible to provide any further information at this point, but she would be happy to address any questions that Mr Smith had if he could send them to her.

     

    42.16      The Mayor thanked Mr Smith for his questions and invited Councillor Fishleigh to ask a question on behalf of Anna Webb who was unable to join the meeting.

     

    42.17      Councillor Fishleigh asked the following question; residents in Ovingdean want to reduce their reliance on cars but that is impossible when we have one bus an hour which stops before 7pm and only takes us either north or south.  We have no direct bus service into the local shops in Rottingdean. As part of the current bus review, will you commit to looking at how the bus service into and out of Ovingdean can be improved?

     

    42.18      Councillor Heley replied; I recognise the issues you raise, and this is something I am keen to address to help make buses a more attractive option for more people. Our Bus Service Improvement Plan includes actions to improve the bus services supported by the council, including better frequencies and evening services. I’m pleased to say this includes services to Ovingdean but unfortunately, I am unable to commit to specific improvements until we are aware how much funding will be made available to councils to implement their Bus Service Improvement Plans. We hope to be able to provide an update on changes to supported bus services next year.

     

    42.19      The Mayor thanked Councillor Fishleigh for asking the question on behalf of Ms Webb and noted that she was also asking a question on behalf of Tracey Llewellyn who was also unable to join the meeting.

     

    42.20      Councillor Fishleigh asked the following question, residents of Ovingdean have repeatedly come to council committees asking for pavements where none currently exist on our busiest roads which are north Greenways and Ovingdean Road. These would enable us to get out of our cars and walk safely between the shop, nursery, village hall, church, takeaway & to access public footpaths across the farmland. 

    In the draft Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan is a list of the prioritised neighbourhood areas for walking improvements.

    Ovingdean is 25th on the list of 31. Why is Ovingdean so far down this list and will you consider moving it higher up?

     

    42.21      Councillor Heley replied, thank you for your question Councillor Fishleigh, which follows on from the one you asked at Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee last month.  The technical input used to identify strategic priorities for the next 10 years have followed government recommendations, and this has been combined with a wide range of stakeholder input from across the city.   Factors that have been assessed include levels of high deprivation, age of population, and collisions involving pedestrian and cyclists.  In addition, the assessment has included connections with local services such as education facilities, strategic development sites, local destinations, leisure facilities, green spaces and Air Quality Management Areas.

     

    The wider Ovingdean neighbourhood has been assessed and is included, but as a lower priority compared to others across the city.  However, we are currently consulting on the Plan and would welcome all suggestions and responses and the survey can be found on the council’s website.  

     

    42.22   The Mayor thanked Councillor Fishleigh for asking the question on behalf of Ms Llewellyn and invited Mr Harland to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    42.23   Mr Harland asked the following question, can the Leader of the Council confirm or deny that contact was made with change.org directly or indirectly, to complain and request the removal of the name and photo from the petition requesting the resignation of the Chair of the ETS committee? 

     

    Link.https://www.change.org/p/brighton-hove-city-council-councillor-must-resign.

     

    42.24   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, Change.org determine whether a request to change a petition is accepted in the same way Facebook determines whether a post is acceptable or not. They govern this, not us. Particularly given the recent and horrific murder of David Amess MP while serving his own constituents, I am sure everyone here will agree that any purposeful targeting of a person in public life, particularly a person who falls under protected characteristics owing to their age, sex, race, religion or belief, or sexual orientation, is one that should be challenged. Further, we are a minority administration, and we do not operate under a system of executive leadership. All decisions are taken, and pass or fall, owing to the votes of everyone, of all political parties, on a committee. Therefore to target one person for a policy or position is both wrong and inappropriate.

     

    42.25   Mr Harland asked a supplementary question, if contact was made do you not consider that suppression of democracy?

     

    42.26   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, it is not appropriate for me to comment, if someone contacted Change.org as it is essentially a matter for them. I am accountable and answerable for the City Council actions, its policies or practices not what individuals do and their individual capacity outside of the City Council.

     

    42.27   The Mayor thanked Mr Harland for his questions and invited Ms King to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    42.28   Ms King asked the following question, given that various national allowance systems, such as Child Benefit, are means-tested to ensure that the wealthiest in society are not eligible to claim, can the Leader of the Council give examples of similar systems within the Council whereby wealth is taken into account when pay-outs are made?

     

    42.29   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied; can I ask that Ms King emails me her question and what it is she is seeking an answer on so that I can provide a full response, as it stands, I am not sure I can give an appropriate reply.

     

    42.30   Ms King asked the following supplementary question; is it appropriate for councillors to claim for babysitting costs?

     

    42.31   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied; the matter relates to the Scheme of Members Allowances that is recommended by the Independent Remuneration Panel, who look at all aspects of remuneration and what should be included to enable people from all backgrounds to stand as councillors. This includes young parents and what support is appropriate for them to undertaken their roles and childcare forms part of the overall scheme.

     

    42.32   The Mayor thanked Ms King for her questions and invited Mr Maclay to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    42.33   Mr Maclay asked the following question does the leader of the council agree the accepted rule for councillors in the UK, is that they must live in the town/city that they represent, and that it would be inconceivable that any councillor would show total disregard for this rule and not be residing locally amongst their constituents, especially during “times of crisis” such as those that we are experiencing now?

     

    42.34   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied; thank you for the question. The position regarding the qualification to stand for elections and being able to continue to hold office after being elected is governed by section 79 of the Local Government Act 1972. Section 79 actually says that there are a number of grounds for qualifying to hold and to continue to hold office as a councillor. They are not, however, limited to residents of the local authority. Some of the reasons that you can stand for office, could be that you are on the electoral register,  occupying lands or being a tenant, having one’s place of work in the area or during the 12 months preceding the election or residing in the area. I hope you'll be able to see from what I've said that being a resident of the local authority area is not the only ground for qualifying to be elected.

     

    42.35   Mr Maclay asked the following supplementary question, could the Leader of the Council confirm he is aware of those in his Group who have spent considerably more than half their time in the last 18 months living outside Brighton and Hove?

     

    42.36   Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, there is a need to appreciate the situation that we have all been in with the pandemic and people’s personal circumstances. It has meant that they were perhaps away from the city council area for a period of time due to restrictions on travel being imposed travel. It meant that there were lockdowns not just here, not just over Europe but all over the world.

     

    42.37   The Mayor thanked Mr Maclay for his questions and noted that was the end of the public questions.

43.

Deputations from members of the public. pdf icon PDF 206 KB

    A list of deputations received by the due date of 12noon on the 15 October 2021 will be circulated separately as part of an addendum at the meeting.

    Minutes:

    43.1      The Mayor reported that one deputation had been received from members of the public and invited Mr Smith as the spokesperson for the deputation to join the meeting and address the council.

     

    43.2      Mr Smith thanked the Mayor and stated that it related to improving the bus services and encouraging people back onto the bus so as to tackle congestion on the A259 coast road east of the Marina. There was a clear need to address the build-up of traffic which prevented buses from entering the bus lane that had been established to improve journey times. The deputation was seeking to have a trial period whereby other traffic could use the bus lane in a certain part of the A259 and thereby improve journey time and encourage more commuters onto buses. He hoped that the council would consider a 6-month trial and then see the benefits that could be made.

     

    43.3      Councillor Heley replied, the  Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee approved a draft Bus Service Improvement Plan in September. All Local Transport Authorities are required to produce this document in response to the new National Bus Strategy. This responds to the government’s requests to introduce more bus priority, improve bus journey times and grow passenger numbers. It identified the A259 corridor as one where improvements could be made, and funding has been requested to develop proposals and consider the feasibility of these. There are no current proposals to allow traffic into bus lanes; however, the impact on general traffic will be fully assessed as part of scheme development.

     

    43.4      The Mayor thanked Mr Smith for joining the meeting and speaking on behalf of the deputation. He explained that the points had been noted and the deputation would be referred to the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee for consideration. The persons forming the deputation would be invited to attend the meeting and would be informed subsequently of any action to be taken or proposed in relation to the matter set out in the deputation.

44.

Petitions for Council Debate pdf icon PDF 271 KB

    Petitions to be debated at Council.  Report of the Monitoring Officer.

     

    (1)       Stop the Greens’ Destruction of Brighton and Hove. Proposed by Adrian Carter.

    Minutes:

    44.1      The Mayor stated that where a petition secured 1,250 or more signatures it could be debated at the council meeting.  He had been made aware of one such petition and invited Mr Maclay to join the meeting and to present the petition concerning the way in which the Council was being run on behalf of the lead petitioner Mr Carter.

     

    44.2      Mr Maclay thanked the Mayor and stated that the petition which had been signed by over 5,000 people and raised concern over the way in which the city council was currently being run and called on the Green Administration to stand down.

     

    44.3      Councillor Mac Cafferty thanked Mr Maclay for presenting the petition and stated that.

     

    44.4      Councillors Brown and O’Quinn spoke on the petition and noted that charity events were held at the stadium and that the actual sport was not illegal or unregulated. It was also recognised that the protests had an impact on residents and if the stadium closed it would have impact on jobs.

     

    44.5      The Mayor thanked Mr Maclay for presenting the petition and stated that as it was a matter for the Council, he would put the recommendation to note the petition to the vote.

     

    44.6      RESOLVED: That the petition be noted.

45.

Call Over for Reports of Committees.

    (a)  Call over items 48 - 50 will be read out at the meeting and Members invited to reserve the items for consideration.

     

    (b)  To receive or approve the reports and agree with their recommendations, with the exception of those which have been reserved for discussion.

     

    (c)  Oral questions from Councillors on the Committee reports, which have not been reserved for discussion.

    Minutes:

    45.1      The Mayor noted that a report from the Special Policy & Resources Committee meeting held on the 13th October 2021 had been referred to the Council for information and that he had accepted it as a late item. It was listed in the addendum as Item 50(a).

     

    (a)   Callover

     

    45.2      The following items on the agenda were reserved for discussion:

               

    Item 49     -    Council and Committee Meetings

    Item 50     -    Response to Members Letter – Freedom of Information Requests

    Item 50     -    (a) City Clean Dispute Resolution

     

    (b)       Receipt and/or Approval of Reports

     

    45.3      The Mayor confirmed that Items 49, 50 and 50(a) had been reserved for discussion; and

     

    45.4      The Mayor confirmed that the following report on the agenda with the recommendations therein had been approved and adopted:

     

    Item 48     -    Review of the Waste Minerals Plan – Proposed Submission

     

    (c)       Oral Questions from Members

     

    45.5      The Mayor noted that there were no oral questions.

46.

Written questions from Councillors. pdf icon PDF 306 KB

    A list of the written questions submitted by Members has been included in the agenda papers.  This will be repeated along with the written answers received and will be taken as read as part of an addendum circulated separately at the meeting.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    46.1      The Mayor noted that written questions from Members and the replies from the appropriate Councillor were taken as read by reference to the list included in the addendum which had been circulated prior to the meeting as detailed below. He also noted that some responses had not been submitted in time for the addendum but would be included in the minutes to ensure a full record was kept.

     

    (1)      Councillor  Yates: Housing

     

    46.2      Can the lead for housing please update members on proposals to:

    ·           Fully reinstate housing scheme managers

    ·           Enable residents to access residents’ community facilities

    ·           Enable tenants’ associations to access their dedicated facilities at Eastergate Rd Housing Offices.

     

    Reply from Councillor Gibson / Hugh-Jones Joint Chair of the Housing Committee

     

    46.3      The seniors housing service is trialling a hybrid operating model in line with other council and housing services. Our scheme managers have worked their normal hours during the pandemic and continue to do so. A hybrid model is allowing scheme managers to work more flexibly, and whilst they are now predominately on-site, this model allows some time for tasks to be done off-site where this makes sense to do so, such as supervision, training, data record updating, or daily calls.

     

    Some staff are also more vulnerable to COVID-19 and we are working in line with the corporate risk assessment process to look at their front line roles – as a result some tasks may be shared within the team.

     

    The communal areas are open to residents except for the guest rooms where we are working with our cleaning contractor to ensure that reopening these facilities is done in a COVID safe way. The service is also re-establishing social activities in communal areas where this can be done safely.

     

    The service continues to see sporadic cases of COVID-19 and working in a cautious way enables us to provide a service whilst managing the on-going risk to residents and staff. If we fully reinstated the pre-pandemic service, we risk undoing all the good work we’ve done controlling this dangerous virus in our schemes.

     

    We are also piloting a return to some in person meetings with resident groups subject to the relevant risk assessments, and with an offer of a hybrid option for those who still may wish to proceed virtually.  Our initial risk assessment indicates Hove Town Hall as a safer option for meetings than the Housing Centre (Eastergate Road) owing to ventilation concerns.

     

     

    (2)      Councillor Hamilton:Public Toilets in Victoria Rec

     

    46.4      There are no public toilets in Victoria Rec in Portslade anymore. It is a very busy recreation ground where many people, especially young people, go for football training and other exercise. There is money to modernise some toilets but surely providing them where needed should be a priority. Please can new toilets for Victoria Rec be included in the 2022-3 capital programme?

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.5      Thank you for your question.

     

    Unfortunately, there is no money available, either capital or revenue, to build and maintain new toilet facilities in the city.

     

    It was recommended to Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee on 24 November 2020 to initiate Traffic Regulation Order consultations to introduce car parking charges for car parks in several city parks. This included the car park at Victoria Rec. An amendment to this recommendation was moved and subsequently agreed and so the TRO was not progressed.

     

    Had the original recommendation been approved and car parking charges explored further for Victoria Rec, this would have provided an income stream which could have assisted the notion of toilets in the area and/or their maintenance.

     

    New toilets cannot be developed without an ongoing management/maintenance plan by a third party such as a café, and this would only be possible if capital money was available for the build.

     

    The new bowls centre does provide toilets for its members.

     

    (3)      Councillor Grimshaw: Mental Health Emergency Services

     

    46.6      I’m particularly interested in those detained under the mental health act as they are a danger to themselves and others. How many are admitted but then sent home? How many are actually sent for long term inpatient treatment? How many emergency mental health cases have not been able to access the Haven as it’s full? How many are just then taken to A&E and then sent home? How many are sent home with the promise of additional support? How long does it take for addition support from ASC to be put in place? What are the waiting times? What is the person supposed to do to get support whilst they are waiting?

     

    Reply from Councillor Shanks, Chair of the Health & Wellbeing Board

             

    46.7      Please note that where we have not had the answers to this question, we have contacted partners, but more comprehensive replies may be available through them.

     

    I’m particularly interested in those detained under the mental health act as they are a danger to themselves and others

     

    It would be helpful to highlight that The Mental Health Act is designed to give health professionals the powers, in certain circumstances, to detain, assess and treat people with a mental disorder who are at risk of harm to themselves or others.

     

    How many are admitted but then sent home?

     

    Please see below, as requested. Brighton & Hove residents were identified from their CCG:

     

    Admissions under the MHA of Brighton and Hove residents: 12 months to end June 2021

    Total Admissions to Hospital

    Section 2

    173

    Section 3

    74

    Section 4

    2

    Discharges from detention of Brighton and Hove residents: 12 months to end June 2021

    Discharges from MHA and Hospital

    Discharges to Informal Status

    Section 2

    61

    61

    Section 3

    89

    54

    Section 4

    1

    0

     

    How many are actually sent for long term inpatient treatment?

     

    Patients are assessed and cared for in the most appropriate environment to meet their needs, long term inpatient treatment is not terminology that we would recognise.

     

    How many emergency mental health cases have not been able to access the Haven as it’s full?

     

    The Haven is well utilised by B&H residents. Should the facility be fully occupied, patients are assessed and treated in alternative settings.

    How many are just then taken to A&E and then sent home?

     

    Taking people to A&E, is an option that is clearly defined in the current amendment to the s136/135 policy and guarantees a place of safety for someone in mental health crisis detained under s136. As with the Havens/Urgent Care Lounge, the police remain with the person throughout their entire s136 period in A&E. If patients are sent home the decision is taken collaboratively by a team of assessing professionals.

     

    How many are sent home with the promise of additional support?

     

    Patients are assessed and provided supported appropriate to their needs. If there is no evidence of a mental disorder, then individuals will appropriately be discharged. For patients where a mental health need is identified they will be signposted to other services, such as housing, social care, alcohol and drug support, etc. by the assessing AMHP.

     

    How long does it take for additional support from ASC to be put in place? What are the waiting times? What is the person supposed to do to get support whilst they are waiting?

     

    Mental Health Services within Brighton and Hove are integrated between Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Brighton and Hove City Council.  This means that there are a number of co-located Social Workers and other social care members of staff embedded in both community and acute mental health services.  If an individual is already known to mental health services, then the request for additional support will be passed onto their Social Worker or Lead Practitioner to act upon.  If for any reason the Social Worker or Lead Practitioner is absent from work, then these concerns should be passed onto a duty worker to manage.  If the individual isn’t known and requires support for their mental health, then they can approach the Mental Health Rapid Response Service.  Waiting times are dependent on incoming work, staffing and risks.  However, all new referrals are screened by triage and prioritised based on risk to self and others and needs - 4hrs, 5 days or 20 days.  Anyone known to the service and who is having active input should receive a prompt response which again should be based on risks.

     

    (4)      Councillor Williams: Afghan Refugees

     

    46.8      I’m sure we all want to help the Afghan refugees as much as we can who have arrived in our city. I know many charities and community organisations have mobilised to assist which is wonderful. What is the council doing to help with their needs and what Government funds are available to finance this?

     

    Reply from Councillor Osborne / Powell, Joint Chair of the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee

     

    46.9      The council responded to an urgent request from the Home Office and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government made to all local authorities in the UK on 13th September. This asked that we make an offer to participate in the Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy (ARAP) and the Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ACRS) which are the government schemes to fund local authorities to receive and support the Afghans evacuated from Kabul during the summer as well as more Afghan citizens whom the government plans to bring to the UK over the coming years.

     

    The council’s response was to confirm our commitment to participating in the ARAP/ARCS by welcoming Afghan citizens and their families to our city. Our response pointed out that we have a nearly unique situation here in the city with four Afghan families already identified for settlement into the city due to one of the adult family members being a Chevening Scholar with a place at the University of Sussex. The City Council therefore confirmed that it would support, under the ARAP/ARCS scheme,  the settlement of these families. Officers are working hard in partnership with the University, the local community and voluntary sector and private landlords to secure accommodation as quickly as possible and set up support for these families and future ones although we have not yet had confirmation that these four families have Thanks ARAP or ARCS status. The city council also confirmed that it expects to participate in the programme beyond these four families however this will be led by available property. We have reached out to local private landlords, philanthropists, VCS and our economic partnership to assist with property and are confident of securing more.

     

    The draft government funding instructions for the ARAP and ACRS were only published on 14/10/21 and officers are working through the detail of these documents. We know that  the government has committed to providing funding on a per head basis for Afghan refugees. Over a three-year period these amount to £20,520 to cover the local authority welcome, integration offer and provision of services, up to £4,500 per child to cover education provision (it is not yet clear whether this is for one or three years), £850 to cover English language provision, for adults requiring this support (year one only)  and £2,600 to cover health provision (year one only). The Government announced a further £17 million fund for additional housing support where subsidies are needed. The draft guidance suggests that the fund is to be used to help local authorities find properties quickly  for large families currently in the bridging hotels by providing top-up funding to meet the gap between the Local Housing Allowance and market rents and also to cover shortfalls in Universal Credit payments which impact on a family’s ability to cover their rent.

     

    (5)      Councillor Platts: Bulky Waste Collections

     

    46.10   Will the Council consider preventative action on fly tipping by putting signage on communal bins that outlines how residents can dispose of bulky waste?  Can this information include what constitutes fly tipping and information for residents who leave usable items by bins thinking those items might be helpful to others, the level of fines for such fly tipping, the website address and phone number for arranging bulky waste collection, contact information for Freegle, Tech Take Back and other low cost means of disposing of waste?

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.11   Thank you for your question.

     

    I note that a similar question was put in 2017 at the time when 300 new communal bins were rolled out with new signage. The then lead Councillor Gill Mitchell agreed such signage, signposting people to Freegle and others, would be important to have on the new communal bins, when that round of bins was introduced.

     

    Through the City Environment Modernisation Programme, improvements are still being made to the communal bin system.

     

    As part of this work, Cityclean are looking at signage. The team will consider the ideas as part of the new signage design. This could include, for example, the use of QR codes to direct people to the council website where they can find more information on bulky waste and other services.

     

    In addition to this, promotion of council waste services continues to be a priority of the Managing Waste Responsibly Project, with Cityclean officers working closely with the Communications Team to ensure this is met.

     

    Cityclean has recently started a research project with Keep Britain Tidy specifically regarding student waste.  One of the main focuses of the project will be looking at fly tipping and ways to reduce this. The learning from this project will be able to be implemented to drive change and improvement within this population.

     

    Officers are appreciative of these ideas around this.

     

    (6)      Councillor Platts: Garden Waste Collections

     

    46.12   Some addresses are still not able to access the Council’s garden waste scheme; have no space for home composting and no access to a local composting scheme. Of these some don’t have cars and can’t get to the tip.  I have asked a couple of times, on their behalf, how they are supposed to get rid of garden waste and received no reply. Can the Council please answer this question and confirm when all postcode areas across the City will have access to the garden waste collection scheme or a composting scheme within easy walking distance of their homes? 

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.13   Thank you for your question.

     

    It is acknowledged that some addresses in the city are not suitable for the council’s garden waste collection service via the current wheelie bin system.  Cityclean is looking to expand the service and considering alternative viable options such as paper sack collections or pay-as-you-go schemes.

     

    Initial research of councils that offer sack collections demonstrate there is a need for comprehensive IT systems to schedule ad-hoc collections that suit residents needs and timescales and which integrates and aligns with garden waste operational resource and round structure. As you are aware, Cityclean does not yet have a comprehensive IT system to manage the service and therefore it is unlikely a solution can be offered by the council until the Digital Cityclean project is delivered.

     

    In the meantime, an internet search for garden waste collection services yields a number of companies operating in Brighton & Hove which offer garden waste collection services to residents.

     

    Cityclean continues to work on expanding the reach of the community composting scheme in collaboration with Brighton & Hove Food Partnership. Four new sites have opened so far this year and all locations can be found on the Food Partnership’s website.

    (7)      Councillor Platts: Card Incentive Scheme

     

    46.14   The Labour Group submitted a Budget amendment £0.010m one-off allocation to evaluate the creation of a city wide ‘Carbon Partner’ card incentive scheme to encourage residents to move to lower carbon living through Council and private sector support. One of the intentions was to support residents who are getting rid of their cars but still need to get rid of bulky waste and garden waste but can’t access the Council’s garden waste scheme; have no space for home composting and no access to a local composting scheme. Can the Council update with progress on this scheme, given we have identified a solution that would reduce car use and contribute to the circular economy?

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.15   Unfortunately, officers have not had the capacity to progress the evaluation of a city wider ‘Carbon Partner’ card over the last few months. However, such a card would be part of the wider Climate Engagement work we do as a city council, and now that a Climate Communications and Engagement lead post has been created there will be more capacity to take forward climate change related behaviour change work.  This will be in collaboration with transport, city environment and other relevant services. It is anticipated that this evaluation work will start in 2022.

     

    (8)      Councillor Platts: Electric Scooters

     

    46.16   Will the Council publish a clear statement of policy about the use of electric scooters in Brighton & Hove?  Due to pilots taking place in other areas and the continued sale of scooters to the public, there is some confusion about whether they are allowed on the public highway. Residents are asking about the process for making them legal, especially now there is a petrol crisis; they also want to know how the Council will be involved in the decision-making process and if the public will be consulted.  Can the Council give the date by when such a statement can be published?

     

    Reply from Councillor Mac Cafferty, Leader of the Council

     

    46.17   Brighton & Hove is not taking part in the current trials of e-scooters in England. These trials are for hire fleets only and will run until Spring or Summer 2022. No new trials are permitted, so E-scooters will remain illegal to use on the public highway in the city until Parliament passes legislation to legalise them in late 2022 or early 2023. 

     

    Privately owned E-scooters may only be used on private land with the permission of the owner or occupier, and this is the case even in authorities where trials are taking place.

     

    The Council has previously taken part in a Department for Transport consultation on e-scooter use. No Government plans to consult the general public have been announced.

     

    E-scooters will be considered as part of the Bikeshare reorganisation. A report is planned for the 18 January 2022 Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee setting out the legal position, stakeholder responses to date, proposals for a voluntary code of conduct for operators, and changes to existing byelaws which might strengthen police powers to enforce responsible use.

     

    (9)      Councillor Platts: Minibus Route

     

    46.18   The Labour Group submitted a Budget amendment for a circular minibus route around the eastern part of the City to encompass the hilly areas with poor bus services such as Wilson Avenue, Queen’s Park Rd and parts of Hanover & Elm Grove. The idea was for this to run every 15 minutes and link up with the main arterial routes so that people could reduce car use or even feel able to get rid of their cars completely. Please can I have an update on progress?

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.19   Officers are drawing up a specification for a route prior to carrying out soft market testing with operators.  A concern in drawing up any route is whether it is commercially viable, and if not, it would require continued support from the Council.  It may also abstract passengers from existing routes affecting their viability at least in the short term.  The costs of a frequent service are as yet not quantifiable but £20K allocated would only be a fraction of the amount needed to run this service annually.

     

     Under the draft BSIP approved at ETS in September it is proposed that a review of all the supported services be undertaken once future demand is clearer and we know what funding the council will receive from government, such a review will be undertaken in parallel with local bus operators within the Enhanced Partnership. It is also a long-standing aspiration that improvements are made to the frequency of existing supported bus services and that there is more consistency between Sunday and weekday services, and this could bring considerable benefits to parts of the city you refer to.

     

    (10)   Councillor Platts: Community Workshop Proposal, Southwater Close, Craven Vale

     

    46.20   The Council is responsible for a disused storeroom on Housing land at Southwater Close, Craven Vale. According to residents it has been unused for at least thirty years. Craven Vale Community Association wishes to bring a large proportion of the building back into use as a Community Workshop. It was first raised as a possibility with the Council in late 2014, and in April 2015 EDB commissioned a feasibility study for it to be converted, but it was not done as requested.

     

    Members of the Craven Vale Committee met with the Council on site in September 2017 when no insurmountable problems were raised.

     

    EDB commissioned a detailed report from Podium in April 2018. Its report of September 2018 agreed the project was feasible, and CVCA agreed that it would raise the funds to convert the building, with the Council to cover the basic costs of making the building watertight. CVCA was then granted £10,000 by EDB in April 2019 towards the cost of upgrading the building.

     

    Little has happened since. The Council said that it would need a minor planning application because of the change of use, and that it would now need level access from the pavement - not an easy task in Craven Vale but the CVCA Committee suggested a small extra ramped path which was agreed by the Council. In September 2019, the Council obtained a grant of £2,500 from the Environmental Improvements programme to pay for the ramp but said it would need detailed drawings as requested by the Planning Officer.

    I believe these drawings are still awaited, and that it has still to go to a preliminary planning meeting more than two years later. Craven Vale CA has had no information now for more than two years and so far, the plan has been awaiting approval for more than six years. Please can we have an update on whether the project is still moving forward? If so, please will the Council set out a clear, written plan of action and undertake to brief Craven Vale CA on the process and expected timeline for completion of the project?

     

    Reply from Councillor Osborne / Powell, Joint Chair of the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee

     

    46.21   Thank you for your question.

     

    We understand the lack of progress of your longstanding  proposal to create a community workshop in Southwater Close has been the source of frustration for the Craven Vale Residents Association.

     

    However, the pandemic has had a significant negative impact on our ability to progress many less urgent projects owing to other pressing Covid-19 priorities.

     

    Our approach under the Estate Development Budget and Environmental Improvement Budget has been to empower residents to take the lead whilst supporting  with technical advice and input.

     

    However, this is challenging with a project as complex as the CVCA proposal which will require dedicated council officer resource in order to support it.

     

    Some good initial work has been done to establish if the proposal is technically feasible. Officers have worked through legal issues and consulted with the community on the proposal which is broadly supported .

     

    Post pandemic, we now propose to make contact with Craven Vale Community Association to review what resource is required to take this forward and whether this is available at this time in light of our other significant recovery and renewal programme priorities.

             

    (11)   Councillor Platts: Community Drug Impact Co-ordinator and Drugs Summit

     

    46.22   The Labour Group submitted a Budget amendment for a Community Drug Impact Co-ordinator and a Drugs Summit. Please can I have an update on when we expect this post to be filled and an approximate date for holding the Drugs Summit to hear directly from residents about their experiences?

     

    Reply from Councillor Osborne / Powell, Joint Chair of the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee

     

    46.23   The post has been recruited to and the new drug impact co-ordinator will start on 1st November. We anticipate that the drugs summit will be held spring next year.

     

    (12)   Councillor Platts: Printed Papers for Councillors

     

    46.24   Can the Council confirm the total annual saving that was identified if all Councillors shifted from using printed papers of agendas and reports for working groups, Committees and Full Council and used only online systems instead?  Can the Council state the number of Councillors who have successfully made the transition from paper to digital copies and the actual saving that has been realised?

     

    Reply from Councillor Gibson, Joint Deputy Chair (Finance) of the Policy & Resources Committee

     

    46.25   The response could not be provided in time inclusion with the addendum and will be provided to the Councillor following the meeting and listed in the minutes.

     

    (13)   Councillor Platts: Kite Place

     

    46.26   The residents of Kite Place in East Brighton have suffered many problems since moving into their new properties.  These have included ongoing problems of water pressure with residents reporting it can take up to 15 minutes for hot water to come through and up to 2 hours to run a bath as well as toilets not flushing properly. Attempts to fix the water pressure has caused leaks in communal areas. Residents report significant overheating in many flats and communal areas, which makes some residents feel unwell, some need to use fans to cool their flats and this has increased their electricity bills.  The overheating has also caused lifts to breakdown and breakdowns have become a common experience, leaving some residents with disabilities trapped in their flats. Residents have also reported that the floors in their flats are ‘dropping’.  Councillors requested a meeting was held with officers and residents and this took place in August. Can the Council give a clear timeline that shows when the problems will be fully resolved?

     

    Reply from Councillor Gibson / Hugh-Jones, Joint Chair of the Housing Committee

     

    46.27   Thank you for your question.

     

    We are very concerned that some residents have encountered these issues at Kite Place and the Housing and Regeneration teams are working closely together to investigate and resolve them. 

     

    Kite Place East

    Inspections are continuing to be undertaken in the properties. Water pressure and the supply of hot water would appear to be the only issues in this block and the remediation upgrade is awaiting a date from the contactors to be confirmed.  Approved works, the replacement of primary pumps and subsequent pipework and electrical alterations to facilitate a better flow rate on the primary pipework circuit. This is to address the issues of the poor hot water supply to the properties within this block.

     

    Kite Place West

    Inspections that have been undertaken have shown that the circulation central heating within the block is being interrupted by the entraining of air into the system. Various solutions are being developed to alleviate this problem and a full schedule of remediation will be released shortly.  This work is expected to be completed by mid-December 2021.

     

    In addition, and in order to fully understand the issues and lessons we can learn Housing’s Property & Investment team are undertaking a procurement exercise to appoint independent building surveyors to undertake condition survey of defects noted and reported by residents.  We are currently going through the procurement process with the aim of undertaking full surveys early in the New Year followed by a report in spring 2022.  This will be shared, and actions taken to resolve the issues in line with the survey’s findings.

     

    External consultants will complete the following surveys:

    ·           Flooring issues to flats

    ·           Balcony issues with system adopted

    ·           Review of hairline cracks and minor movement - internal and external

    ·           Ventilation to flats

    ·           Overview of windows

    ·           Overview of solar gain issues

    ·           Review of the plumbing installation

    ·           General condition survey

     

    As part of the consultant investigations we will review whether any of these issues are latent defects or covered by warranty.

     

    We are sorry that residents have experienced these issues and want to undertake a thorough investigation to ensure the correct measures are taken to fully resolve them and lessons learnt is taken forward to future projects.

     

    (14)   Councillor Platts: Percival Terrace

     

    46.28   Can the Council confirm whether it is accepted practice for the staff at Percival Terrace to request that residents pay ‘fees’ to them in cash? Can the Council confirm what these fees are for?  A resident has been told they are for ‘maintenance’.

     

    Reply from Councillor Gibson / Hugh-Jones, Joint Chair of the Housing Committee

     

    46.29   Thank you for your question.

    I can confirm that there is a service charge of £12.50 per week for a single person at Percival Terrace. This is a contribution towards utility costs. This can be paid directly to the managing agent via cash or bank transfer.

    As part of the re-procurement exercise, service charges have been reviewed and will be capped for future contracts. This will also make the process more transparent for our residents.

     

    (15)   Councillor Platts: East Brighton Park

     

    46.30   Can the Council explain why the upper pitch area has been locked up, preventing residents from accessing it? The wire around the outside has now been damaged as people have bent it back to use the area. Will the Council agree to repair this and unlock the pitch?

    Can the Council confirm that the toilets in East Brighton Park pavilion have now been added to the cleaning contract as promised?

     

    Reply from Councillor Heley, Chair of the Environment, Transport & Sustainability Committee

     

    46.31   The 3G pitch at the Stanley Deason Leisure Centre has been closed for refurbishment the contractors are due to hand it back to the Council on the 19th of October

     

    The gardening staff at East Brighton Park have been instructed to clean the toilets following the fun run as they would  ...  view the full minutes text for item 46.

47.

Oral questions from Councillors pdf icon PDF 108 KB

    A list of Councillors who have indicated their desire to ask an oral question at the meeting along with the subject matters has been listed in the agenda papers.

    Minutes:

    47.1         The Mayor noted that 18 oral questions had been submitted and that 30 minutes was set aside for the duration of the item.

     

    (1)             Councillor Allcock: Subject matter: Staff Performance & Development          

     

    47.2         Councillor Allcock asked a question relating to staff performance and the process for individual reviews with managers. He noted that it was well known that good staff performance was underpinned by effective and consistent management and support. The Council primarily aims to achieve this through regular one to one meetings between managers and their staff and through the annual Performance Development Plan or PDP process which all employees are required to participate in. The results of the recent staff survey revealed that 65% of Council staff responded positively to the question. My performance development plan review is held in a meaningful way. However this represents only half 56% of the total workforce and is two percent down on the previous results. The levels of completion of annual PDP's and the delivery of one-to-one meetings have been consistently low over recent years, with approximately 4 out of 10 staff missing out. In addition, results of the Staff survey show that black or Black British colleagues were less satisfied than the overall cohort of respondents on the question of whether the PDP was held in a meaningful way. So that's 57% compared with 64% that feel the PDP was meaningful. Asian or Asian British colleagues were also less likely by 5 percentage points to say that they have one to one meetings with their manager every four to six weeks in 2021 was 9% lower than in 2019. Now I'm sure Councillor Gibson would see these results as telling at a time when there are so many concerns raised by residents about poor Council performance and would also consider that the findings on their ethnicity brings shame to us all.

     

    So my question is, what meaningful steps are the administration putting into place to improve these results on PDP completion and one to one support meetings in a meaningful and speedy way?

     

    47.3         Councillor Gibson replied, the council has a process in place for regular 121 meetings where staff meet with line managers to cover work objectives, wellbeing and future development. A more detailed annual meeting (Performance and Development Plans) takes place to set objectives annually and to ensure there are clear links to directorate and organisational objectives. For our leadership network, a rated appraisal process ensures transparency and consistency in the management of the council’s senior managers. These processes are supported by a comprehensive learning and development offer, with some mandatory training for induction, new managers, and recruitment. I ado accept that improvements can be made and would be happy to discuss this further outside of the meeting.

     

    47.4         Councillor Allcock asked the following supplementary question; will you agree to investigate the reasons for the lower response rate and look into ways to improve this?

     

    47.5         Councillor Gibson replied, yes, I am hopeful that we will see an improvement in the level of responses and satisfaction in the PDP process in the next staff survey.

     

    (2)             Councillor Bell: Subject matter: Industrial Relations

                                    

    47.6         Councillor Bell asked whether the Leader of the Council had any regrets in regard to the recent handling of the latest industrial dispute?

     

    47.7         Councillor Mac Cafferty replied the council continues to work collaboratively with its Trade Unions to make the council a fair and inclusive employer, and where possible resolve issues at an early stage. Where there are disputes, we aim to understand the issues being raised by Trade Union colleagues and seek ways to resolve concerns. We proactively hold consultation meetings at both a corporate and departmental level and have well established processes that ensure we work with TU colleagues on matters such as our budget setting process and any staffing changes to our organisational structures. Following previous discussions with TU colleagues, the council has recently appointed a TU Relations Manager, to reflect our joint ambition to reduce the number of disputes and ensure a collegiate and collaborative environment, where concerns can be addressed openly. My only regret is that we weren't able to be joined by your good colleagues in our decision to get rid of some of the lowest pay grades across the council.

     

    47.8         Councillor Bell asked a supplementary question, before the elections back in 2019, there was a peer review where it said that this Council, in its entirety, had to have a complete reset with the unions. If our relationship is still in need of a reset, I'd like to know what plans there are to ensure that we do not end up in a similar situation to the one we have experienced over the recent months?

     

    47.9         Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, you're right to remind us about what was said through the Local Government Association peer review. There is always a way of reviewing what is going on and we must understand some of the challenges that have that have come up. However, some of the issues that were raised have been long-standing and will need to be worked through by all parties concerned collectively if changes were to be made and the welfare of staff improved.

     

    (3)   Councillor Appich: Subject matter: Care Staff

                                    

    47.10      Councillor Appich asked a question concerning the shortfall of care staff both in home and residential care across the city.

     

    47.11      Councillor Shanks replied, there is a crisis across the country at the moment and we have high demand for health care in the city, particularly for people wishing to remain in their own homes and we are looking at how to recruit more staff and support them.

     

    47.12      Councillor Appich noted the information and stated that she would be keen to explore retention measures and recruitment options with the Chair outside of the meeting.

     

    (4)   Councillor Bagaeen: Subject matter: Performance on Climate Change

                                    

    47.13      Councillor Bagaeen asked how the council was addressing the issue of climate change and what measures were being put in place to help such as the installation of charging points.

     

    47.14      Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, the council is taking a number of actions to address the situation and will need to work with other organisations if a real difference is to be made. The council is monitoring carbon emissions and a report will come to committee in due course, but the expectation is that we will see an improvement.

     

    47.15      Councillor Bagaeen asked a supplementary question and for clarification as to how the Council planned to measure the level of carbon emissions and its position in relation to the Carbon Disclosure Project and how will it manage the impact on its residents?

     

    47.16      Councillor Mac Cafferty replied, the Council is developing a carbon emissions plan and the Working Group will take lead, but a number of the actions could not be completed earlier due to the need to develop the plan. He hoped that once the plan was in place it would alleviate a number of concerns and answer questions that were being raised.

     

    (5)   Councillor Pissaridou: Subject matter: Adult Social Care

               

    47.17      Councillor Pissaridou asked if the arrangements for the discharge of patients from hospital could be reviewed as she believed it was not working well. She referred to a case of a person who should have been in hospital for a two-night stay but because of a lack of care staff remained in hospital for a further ten days. This had a significant impact on the person and their family and meant they had to wait longer for post-operative care to be put in place.

     

    47.18      Councillor Shanks replied, I believe that there is a discharge process in place which looks at what assistance may be required after a person leaves hospital. However, it does appear that something went wrong and perhaps the case can be looked at by the appropriate bodies to see whether changes need to be made to the process.

     

    47.19      Councillor Pissaridou asked a supplementary question; can the Chair confirm how the discharge process is funded and assure residents that there is adequate funding to meet their needs.

     

    47.20      Councillor Shanks replied, it is difficult to confirm as funding for adult social care comes from government and although there is an intention to increase this, it is not known how and when it will be provided. In the meantime there are pressures on the budget which we are trying to address.

     

    (6)   Councillor Platts: Subject matter: Rats

                                    

    47.21      Councillor Platts asked a question relating to the increase in rats in areas of the city and what action was being taken to address the situation.

     

    47.22      Councillor Heley replied she had not been aware of the situation in the areas referred to but would raise this with officers and ensure that action was taken to address the matter.

     

    47.23      Councillor Platts asked a supplementary question and queried whether the Chair agreed that the rat problem had been exacerbated by the overflowing bins due to either there being an insufficient number or collections?

     

    47.24      Councillor Heley replied that she would be happy to look into the situation and to see whether additional bins were required and what other action could be taken to alleviate the problem.

     

    (7)   Councillor McNair: Subject matter: Bin Strike Compensation

    47.25      Councillor McNair asked what compensation residents could claim as a result of missed rubbish collections due to the recent strike action.

     

    47.26      Councillor Heley replied, the council had apologised for the disruption caused during the industrial action and a clean-up process had begun but it was not possible to offer any compensation.

     

    47.27      Councillor McNair asked a supplementary question, what improvements to the refuse collection service could residents expect to see now that the strike was over?

     

    47.28      Councillor Heley replied, there is a modernisation programme underway, and this should see improvements to the service being implemented.

     

     

     

     

    (8)   Councillor Fishleigh: Subject matter: Real-Time Air Quality Monitoring

                                    

    47.29      Councillor Fishleigh asked if the Chair could provide an update on the roll-out of real time air quality monitoring.

     

    47.30      Councillor Heley replied, the issue was recently raised at committee and an in-depth report was due to be brought to a future committee meeting and officers were investigating the potential use of mobile air quality equipment that could be used to provide information.

     

    47.31      Councillor Fishleigh asked a supplementary question, was it possible to give a timeline for the report and data from the air quality monitoring.

     

    47.32      Councillor Heley replied, she would need to speak to officers and could then inform Councillor Fishleigh.

     

    (9)   Councillor Wilkinson: Subject matter: Service Delivery Criss

             

    47.33      Councillor Wilkinson asked, what action was being taken to address the volume of complaints that all Members were receiving about the delivery of basic council services. There were problems with refuse collections, graffiti and being able to obtain parking permits for example. Whilst it was recognised that the pandemic had been a factor there was a need to get services back working effectively.

     

    47.34      Councillor Heley replied, it is recognised that there are issues affecting the delivery of services and staff were working to address these and the situation was being scrutinised by the ET&S Committee with regular updates being brought to Members. There was a modernisation programme being followed and this should see improvements coming to fruition.

     

    47.35      Councillor Wilkinson asked a supplementary question, do you agree there is a problem and if not, why are councillors receiving so many complaints?

     

    47.36      Councillor Heley replied, there are issues that need to be tackled and the ET&S Committee was working to ensure these could be resolved, and she looked forward to working with the Councillor to ensure that solutions could be found.

     

    (10)   Councillor Simson: Subject matter: Missed Funding Opportunities

                                    

    47.37      Councillor Simson asked whether the Administration had taken up the opportunity to bid for funding support from the Police & Crime Commissioner towards making the city streets safer?

     

    47.38      Councillor Powell replied, officers had been working with the Police & Crime Commissioner to support the council’s safer streets project but due to staffing pressures it was not possible to complete the necessary bids for funding. Officers were working on developing the Community Safety Strategy and then with the start of the pandemic it led to officers being asked to lead on emergency planning matters and other related issues. However, bids were submitted for the round two of Safer Streets and one was successful and subsequently for round three which will see support for the night economy project to improve street lighting.

     

    47.39      Councillor Simson asked a supplementary question as to whether the capacity issues for staffing had been resolved?

     

    47.40      Councillor Powell noted that significant funding had been put into supporting domestic violence projects and a Working Group was currently looking at the impact of the contractual changes and procurement process. As part of this a new staffing structure was also being progressed and a report would be coming to the next TECC Committee in November. She also noted that officers continued to put bids forward for a wide range of government programmes when capacity allowed, and this would continue under the new structure.

     

    47.41      The Mayor noted that the 30 minutes set aside for the item had been reached but that there was general consent for questions to continue and therefor stated that he would continue for a further 10minutes.

     

    (11)   Councillor Henry: Subject matter: Rubbish Collections

             

    47.42      The question was asked on Councillor Henry’s behalf, what plans are there to recruit more permanent staff in City Clean to ensure that rubbish and recycling rounds can be completed on time?

     

    47.43      Councillor Heley replied, an offer had been put forward by the management team and it was hoped that this would be accepted by the trade union and then implemented.

     

    (12)    Councillor Mears: Subject matter: Repairs Backlog

                                    

    47.44      Councillor Mears asked what action was being taken to address the backlog of housing repairs?

     

    47.45      Councillor Gibson replied, as Members will be aware there has been a  pandemic which has impacted on the service and the ability to carry out repairs, with only essential repairs being undertaken. Whilst all repairs are being logged, there is a need to prioritise the work.

     

    47.46      Councillor Mears asked a supplementary question, there are 277 empty properties awaiting to be released. How will this be achieved and what extra costs will be incurred by tenants and leaseholders in contributions to the Housing Revenue Account following the decision to bring the repairs service back in house?

     

    47.47      Councillor Gibson replied, it was hoped that more properties could be made available, and officers were working with contractors to enable this to happen. He could not comment on the HRA at this point but would ensure Councillor Mears received further information.

     

    (13)          Councillor Fowler: Subject matter: Blakers Park Playground

             

    47.48      Councillor Fowler stated that she had received complaints about the lack of consultation in regard to proposals for Blakers Park and asked if the delayed improvements over the summer would be taken forward and residents consulted?

     

    47.49      Councillor Heley replied, there are published plans for the park, and it is open for use. Unfortunately the completion of the works was delayed due to unforeseen issues but these ha been addressed, and she was happy to put the councillor in touch with the playgrounds officer who can provide more information.

     

    47.50      Councillor Fowler asked a supplementary question, I note that there have been incidents of anti-social behaviour in the park and damage to the equipment reported in the press, will action be taken to address this and ensure the park is safe to use?

     

    47.51      Councillor Heley replied, I will ask officers for an update and provide you with a written response. She also noted that local ward councillors had set up a local action team and that would be a good forum to raise issues and discuss matters like this.

     

    (14)   Councillor Grimshaw: Subject matter: Football Pitches

                                    

    47.52   Councillor Grimshaw stated that she had been disheartened to see the poor state of facilities and local pitches for grassroots football and asked if any action was planned to improve the conditions for those that took part in the games and came to watch?

     

    47.53   Councillor Heley replied, she would ask officers to provide the details for the planned works for these.

     

    47.54   Councillor Grimshaw asked a supplementary question, will sufficient funding be identified in the budget for next year to ensure that pitches and facilities can be maintained?

     

    47.55    Councillor Heley replied, it is important to provide these facilities and she hoped that funding could be found and she would continue to lobby the government for more funding.

     

    47.56   The Mayor stated that the time for oral questions had gone beyond the 30 minutes set aside for the item and therefore the remaining questions would be carried over to the next meeting.

     

    (15)    Councillor Williams: Subject matter: Fuel Poverty

     

    (16)    Councillor Evans: Subject matter: Women’s Safety

     

    (17)   Councillor O’Quinn: Subject matter: CAHMS

     

    (18)   Councillor Childs: Subject matter: Telephone Boxes

     

    47.57      He then adjourned the meeting for a refreshment break at 6.40pm.

     

    47.58      The Mayor reconvened the meeting at 7.10pm and informed Members that during the recess a councillor had received a positive PCR result. Having consulted with Group Leaders and being mindful of the health & safety of Members and officers it was agreed that the meeting should be curtailed. There was one tine sensitive motion which he would take and all other items requiring discussion would then be deferred and others noted.

     

    47.59      The Mayor then invited Councillor Appich to move the notice of motion concerning fair trade, item 53 on the agenda.

48.

Review of the Waste & Minerals Plan - Proposed Submission pdf icon PDF 285 KB

49.

Council & Committee Meetings - October 2021 pdf icon PDF 383 KB

50.

Response to Members Letter: Freedom of Information requests pdf icon PDF 176 KB

50a

City Clean Dispute Resolution pdf icon PDF 302 KB

51.

Getting Council Services Back to Work pdf icon PDF 192 KB

52.

Housing Repairs pdf icon PDF 191 KB

    Proposed by Councillor Williams on behalf of the Labour Group.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    52.1      The item had been deferred.

53.

Fair Trade City pdf icon PDF 189 KB

    Joint motion proposed by Councillor Appich on behalf of the Labour and Green Groups.

    Minutes:

    53.1      The Notice of Motion as listed in the agenda was proposed by Councillor Appich on behalf of the Labour Group and formally seconded by Councillor Osborne.

     

    53.2      The Mayor then put the following motion to the vote:

     

    This Council notes:

    1.      That Brighton & Hove was awarded Fair Trade City Status in 2004, and renewed this in 2015;

    2.      That a continued commitment to Fair Trade was agreed by the Policy & Resources Committee on 6 June 2016, and reaffirmed by a Notice of Motion to the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee on 24 September;

    This Council recognises:

    1.      That significant progress has been made in promoting Fair Trade products across the city as part of its good food standards, and that the importance building on that progress remains crucial today;

    Therefore, this Council:

     

    1.      Reaffirms its continued commitment to Fair Trade by formally supporting the renewal of its Fair-Trade City Status;

    2.      Confirms its continued and ongoing commitment to Fair Trade as part of its Food Standards;

    3.      Grants delegated authority to the Chief Executive to offer the Council’s support for future applications for renewal of Brighton & Hove’s Fair Trade City Status.

     

    53.3      The Mayor confirmed that the motion had been carried.

     

54.

Poor Condition of Pavements in Brighton and Hove pdf icon PDF 185 KB

55.

Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty pdf icon PDF 283 KB

56.

Protect Residents This Winter pdf icon PDF 219 KB

57.

Violence Against Women and Girls pdf icon PDF 284 KB

    Cross-Party motion propsed by Councillor Powell on behalf of the Green, Labour and Conservative Groups.

    Minutes:

    57.1      The item had been deferred.

58.

Council Placement of Homeless People and Rough Sleepers pdf icon PDF 268 KB

    Proposed by Councillor Mears on behalf of the Conservative Group.

    Minutes:

    58.1      The item had been deferred.

59.

Close of Meeting

    The Mayor will move a closure motion under Procedure Rule 17 to terminate the meeting 4 hours after the beginning of the meeting (excluding any breaks/adjournments).

    Note:

    1.        The Mayor will put the motion to the vote and if it is carried will then:-

    (a)      Call on the Member who had moved the item under discussion to give their right of reply, before then putting the matter to the vote, taking into account the need to put any amendments that have been moved to the vote first;

    (b)      Each remaining item on the agenda that has not been dealt with will then be taken in the order they appear on the agenda and put to the vote without debate.

    The Member responsible for moving each item will be given the opportunity by the Mayor to withdraw the item or to have it voted on.  If there are any amendments that have been submitted, these will be taken and voted on first in the order that they were received.

    (c)      Following completion of the outstanding items, the Mayor will then close the meeting.

    2.        If the motion moved by the Mayor is not carried the meeting will continue in the normal way, with each item being moved and debated and voted on.

    3.        Any Member will still have the opportunity to move a closure motion should they so wish.  If such a motion is moved and seconded, then the same procedure as outlined above will be followed.

             Once all the remaining items have been dealt with the Mayor will close the meeting.

    Minutes:

    59.1      The Mayor thanked everyone for their understanding and closed the meeting.

 


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