Agenda item - Corporate Plan 2020-2023

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Agenda item

Corporate Plan 2020-2023

Extract from the proceedings of the Policy & Resources Committee meeting held on the 5 December 2019, together with a report of the Executive Lead Officer for Strategy, Governance & Law.


57.1         Councillor Platts introduced the report which detailed the proposed Corporate Plan for 2020-23 that outlined the Council’s ambitions to deliver real change over the period of the Administration.  There were six key themes within the plan and these would be highlighted by the respective Chairs of Committees as part of the debate.  However, she noted that the organisation’s staff were its greatest asset and without them it would not be possible to deliver the plan.  She wanted to also take the opportunity to thank those staff who had help to develop the plan over the last few months and recommended it to the Council for adoption.


57.2         Councillor Moonan referred to the theme of A Healthy and Caring City and noted that other themes would all contribute to this.  She felt that it was an important objective and hoped that all parties would contribute to its development and achievement.


57.3         Councillor Janio questioned the substance of the plan and suggested that there was a need for the Administration to consider how it would work with the newly elected Conservative Government and realign the plan’s objectives accordingly.


57.4         Councillor Williams stated that there was a need to look at how well the council was doing already and noted that the opening of the night shelter that would operate 365 days a year.  She also noted that the council was improving its housing targets and 800 new homes had been added.  The private rented sector was improving with the introduction of the licensing scheme that was fully supported by private landlords.


57.5         Councillor Fishleigh stated that she would abstain in the vote and queried how it fitted in with the aims of Brighton & Hove Connected whose leaders had not met since October 2018.  The plan failed to outline any costs or revenue streams and did not have a time-line.  She referred to page 17 where it said the council would work with its partners, but it failed to say who they were.  It also stated that the council would work with the two universities but again failed to link that to the need for affordable housing.  She also questioned how the skills of the City’s MP’s and MEP would be utilised and offered to help with the needed re-write and editing of the plan.


57.6         Councillor Allcock referred to the theme of A Growing and Learning City and noted how terrific the city’s schools were and how they were working together to address the need to raise standards for those children who were in need and to improve the attainment gap.


57.7         Councillor Pissaridou referred to the theme of A Sustainable City and noted the 2030 target for a carbon neutral city.  She noted that work was underway to look at hydrogen as an alternative energy resource and that there was a need to find solutions in relation to the South-East being a water stressed area.  She also noted the success of the Bio-Sphere and related projects.


57.8         Councillor Fowler noted that regeneration projects were underway, and others being brought forward which would contribute to addressing the climate change crisis.  She hoped that the Members Working Group and officer group would be able to progress matters and build good working relations with the Coast to Capital LEP.


57.9         Councillor Evans noted the need to work on the Community Wealth Building and Social Value projects to make the local economy fairer and inclusive.  She noted that a Working Group had been established to take the project forward.


57.10      Councillor Gibson welcomed the plan and the opportunity to combine the objectives of both the Labour and Green Parties manifestos.  He stated that there were challenges to be faced such as homelessness and the provision of new affordable homes across the city.  He hoped that councillors could work together across all groups to meet the objectives and improve the city for all.


57.11      Councillor Powell welcomed the plan and stated that it was a positive document, although she had some concerns in regard to the proposed budget cuts to much-needed service areas.  She hoped that these could be reconsidered, and alternative solutions found by working together.  She also expressed concern over the potential impact that the newly elected government may bring.


57.12      Councillor Yates noted that this was the first corporate plan produced by a Labour Administration for some time; having inherited the previous one.  However, it was at the start of the Administration and he noted how the city was the only one outside of London to have a 5G test-bed. He believed that the council had good working relations with the Greater Brighton Economic Board and Coast to Capital LEP, which meant that the plan could be taken forward on a collective basis.


57.13      Councillor Shanks welcomed the commitment to the youth services and the aim to improve attainment levels as there was a correlation with their economic situation which also needed to be addressed.


57.14      Councillor West noted the comments and stated that he felt the plan was thin and lacked the data it was based on.  He suggested that it would be beneficial to have that included.  He was concerned over the lack of action, e.g. the target of carbon neutral by 2030 was listed but there had been nothing done in the last 6-months to start to achieve that and issues such as the lack of compatibility between being carbon neutral and having park and ride. To maintain a park and ride scheme requires an infrastructure that supports the use of the car an yet to be carbon neutral the use of the car should be discouraged.


57.15      Councillor Robins suggested that there was a need to consider the positives and the contribution of the visitor economy and voluntary sector.  The city was the sixth most generous one in the country and had a number of listed buildings that had to be protected.  He had recently received a delegation from Bali who had wanted to learn about how well the city managed its visitor economy.


57.16      Councillor Druitt drew attention to the need to consider the small business economy and find ways to support social enterprises and independent traders who were struggling and losing funding.  There were key to the diversity of the city’s economy and there was a need to find ways to support them in practical terms and not just written aims in a document.


57.17      Councillor Platts welcomed the comments and contributions and stated that she was proud of the plan and that it had been developed on a collaborative basis.  She accepted there was a need to bring to fruition and hoped that party politics could be set aside for the benefit of the city and that everyone could work together to achieve a real difference.


57.18      The Mayor noted that the recommendations had been moved and put them to the vote which was carried.


57.19      RESOLVED: That the Corporate Plan 2020-23 be approved.


57.20      The Mayor then adjourned the meeting for a refreshment break at 6.30pm.


57.21      The Mayor reconvened the meeting at 7.00pm.

Supporting documents:


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