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Shropshire Council
Shirehall
Abbey Foregate
Shrewsbury
Shropshire
SY2 6ND

Agenda and minutes

Council
Thursday, 21st July, 2016 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury, SY2 6ND. View directions

Contact: Karen Nixon  Committee Officer

Items
No. Item

14.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

The Chief Executive reported that apologies for absence had been received from Mrs J Barrow, Mr T Bebb, Mr G Butler, Mrs T Huffer, Mr R Hughes, Ms A Liebich, Mrs P Mullock, Mr P Nutting, Mr K Pardy, Mr J Tandy, Mr D Tremellen and Mr L Winwood.

 

 

15.

DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS

Members are reminded that they must not participate in the discussion or voting on any matter in which they have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest and should leave the room prior to the commencement of the debate.

Minutes:

Members were reminded that they must not participate in the discussion or voting on any matter in which they have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest and should leave the room prior to the commencement of the debate.

 

 

16.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 115 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the previous meeting held on 19 May 2016, which are attached marked 3.

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the meeting held on 19 May 2016, as circulated with the agenda papers, be approved and signed as a correct record.

         

         

17.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

To receive such communications as the Chairman, Speaker, Leader and Head of Paid Service may desire to lay before the Council.

Minutes:

17.1    Chairman’s Engagements

 

The Chairman referred Members to the list of official engagements carried out by herself and the Speaker since the last meeting of the Council on 19 May 2016, which had been circulated at the meeting.

 

17.2    Queen’s Birthday Honours

         

The Chairman announced that the following Shropshire residents had been awarded honours in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List and that she had written to each of the recipients to congratulate them on their achievement:

 

Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)

 

David Tudor – for services to charity and the community in Shrewsbury.

The Reverend Monica Jane Newsome – of Clun, for services to HM Prison Service and voluntary services to the community in Lichfield, Staffordshire.

Ruth Diane Walmsley - Coalmoor, for services to Children in Conakry, Guinea, West Africa.

 

Medallist of the Order of the British Empire (BEM)

 

Glenda Wesley - Welshpool Road, Ford, for services to young people and the community.

Judith Williams - of Frankwell, Shrewsbury, for services to charity and voluntary organisations.

Frances Medley – for services to the community in Shawbury and

Stanton upon Hine Heath

 

17.3    Tributes

 

It was noted that two former colleagues had sadly passed away; Mr Mansel Williams and Mrs Liz Parsons.  Tributes for both were led by Alan Mosely and included kind words from Mr T Clarke, Mr M Pate, Mr M Kenny and Mrs P Dee.

         

At the conclusion of the tributes all stood in silence in fond memory of their colleagues.

 

 

18.

PUBLIC QUESTIONS pdf icon PDF 113 KB

To receive any questions from the public, notice of which has been given in accordance with Procedure Rule 14.

Minutes:

          Public Questions

 

The Speaker announced that ten public questions had been received in accordance with Procedure Rule 15 (a copy of the report containing the questions and the formal responses was attached to the signed minutes):

 

(i)       Received from Mrs Joyce Brand regarding income from car parking in Ludlow and Oswestry which was answered by the Leader, Mr M Pate – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

There was no supplementary question.

 

 

(ii)      Received from Mr Stephen Froggatt and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader, in relation to the reduction of library services and levels of councillor’s personal allowances – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

By way of a supplementary question Mr Froggatt asked for details of who the Independent Remuneration Panel members were.

 

In response, the Leader undertook to let Mr Froggatt have this information following the meeting.

 

 

(iii)      Received from Mr Peter Gilbert and answered by Mr S Jones, Portfolio Holder for Highways and Transportation, in relation to the bus and coach station in Shrewsbury – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

By way of a supplementary question Mr Gilbert asked when the remedial works would be started and also asked for an assurance that the maintenance would be kept up in future.

 

In response, the Portfolio Holder confirmed that the weeds would be dealt with by the end of the week and the remaining outstanding works would be completed before the end of the financial year – he was sorry he could not be more specific – but he assured the works were in hand.

 

 

(iv)     Received from Mr Peter Gilbert and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader, in relation to the Guildhall, Shrewsbury – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

By way of a supplementary question Mr Gilbert asked when the Council would start to receive rental income from the Guildhall.

 

In response, the Leader confirmed that this had already been covered in his formal response to Mr Gilbert’s question.  He was disappointed that the benefits and advantages of having a University in Shrewsbury was not being viewed more positively, especially with the benefits that came with it.

 

 

(v)      Received from Ms Emma Bullard and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader, in relation to staff redundancies – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

By way of a supplementary question Ms Bullard asked if it was true that some vacancies were left unfilled and was it the case that Shropshire Council no longer employed bridge engineers?  If so, what exactly were the implications for bridge safety across the county?

 

In response, the Leader confirmed that he would write to Ms Bullard after the meeting with a formal response.

 

 

(vi)     Received from Ms Emma Bullard and answered by Mr S West, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, in relation to the management of the Sports Village at Sundorne – copy attached to the signed minutes.

         

By way of a supplementary question Ms Bullard asked if the swimming pool was to be included within the Sports  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

DRAFT SHROPSHIRE COUNCIL CORPORATE PLAN 2016/17 TO 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 107 KB

Report of the Chief Executive will follow marked 6.

 

Contact Clive Wright Tel 01743 252007.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr M Pate and seconded by Mrs K Calder that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

RESOLVED:

 

a)    That the draft Corporate Plan 2016/17 to 2018/19 be approved by Council.

b)    That the medium term outcomes and objectives in the Corporate Plan be reviewed in October 2016 and then reviewed each year thereafter, as part of the Council’s Corporate Planning Cycle alongside the refresh of the Financial Strategy.

c)     That the Strategic Action Plans, which were in formulation, would be available in October 2016.

 

 

20.

FINANCIAL STRATEGY 2016/17 TO 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 891 KB

Report of the Head of Finance, Governance and Assurance will follow marked 7.

 

Contact James Walton Tel 01743 255011.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by the Leader, Mr M Pate, and seconded by Mr M Wood that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

          RESOLVED:

 

a)    That the amendments to the current net budget to reflect savings of £17.025m by 2017/18 and a further £1.624m by 2018/19 as detailed in the Financial Strategy Report to Cabinet 13 July 2016 (Annex 1), Appendix 2, be approved.

 

b)    That further work being progressed to deliver a Sustainable Business Model for the Council to close the Core Funding Gap and deliver a financially self-sufficient Council in the medium to long term be noted.

 

c)     That the work being undertaken to attempt to reduce or close the reported Core Funding Gap in the short term in 2017/18 and 2018/19 by the use of one-off initiatives (to replace delivery of some Red RAG Rated savings as reported to Cabinet on 27 January 2016) be noted.  Council also noted that to achieve a balanced budget without further Red Savings proposals being implemented would require the identification of almost £34m of one-off proposals over these two financial years which would not reduce the size of the core funding gap in future years (still requiring £28.7m of base budget savings by 2019/20.

 

d)    That the Efficiency Plan including the proposals around the use of the new flexibilities on the use of Capital Receipts as detailed in the Financial Strategy Report to Cabinet 13 July 2016 (Annex 1), section 9 and Appendix 5, be approved.

 

e)    That the financial implications of ICT investment as set out in Table 7, Annex 1, be approved and that the necessary amendments to the gross budget to reflect these financial implications also be approved.

 

 

21.

CAPITAL OUTTURN 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 179 KB

Report of the Head of Finance, Governance and Assurance is attached marked 8.

 

Contact James Walton Tel 01743 255011.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was proposed by the Leader, Mr M Pate, and seconded by Mr D Turner that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

RESOLVED:

 

a)    That the net budget variations of £0.490m to the 2015/16 capital programme, detailed in Appendix 1/Table 1 and the re-profiled 2015/16 capital budget of £51.9m, be approved.

 

b)    That the re-profiled capital budgets of £70.4m for 2016/17, including slippage of £7.4m from 2015/16, £36.4m for 2017/18 and £16.2m for 2018/19 as detailed in Appendix 1/Table 4, be approved.

 

c)     That the outturn expenditure set out in appendix 1 of £44.4m, representing 85.7% of the revised capital budget for 2015/16 be noted.

 

d)    That retaining a balance of capital receipts set aside of £17m as at 31st March 2016 to generate a one-off Minimum Revenue Provision saving of £377,500 in 2016/17, be approved.

 

 

22.

REVENUE OUTTURN 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 256 KB

Report of the Head of Finance, Governance and Assurance is attached marked 9.

 

Contact James Walton Tel 01743 255011.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by the Leader, Mr M Pate, and seconded by Mr M Wood that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

RESOLVED:

 

a)    That it be noted that the Outturn for the Revenue Budget for 2015/16 was an underspend of £2.816m, which represents 0.5% of the original gross budget of £594m.

b)    That it be noted that the level of general balance stands at £18.370m, which is above the anticipated level included within the Financial Strategy.

c)     That it be noted that the Outturn for the Housing Revenue Account for 2015/16 was an underspend of £1.031m and that the level of the Housing Revenue Account reserve stood at £5.824m (2014/15 £3.076m).

d)    That the increase in the level of Earmarked Reserves and Provisions (excluding delegated school balances) of £4.175m in 2015/16 be noted.

e)    That that the level of school balances stand at £7.173m (2014/15 £3.957m) be noted.

 

 

23.

ANNUAL ASSURANCE REPORT OF AUDIT COMMITTEE TO COUNCIL 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 228 KB

Report of the Head of Finance, Governance and Assurance is attached marked 10.

 

Contact James Walton Tel 01743 255011.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr T Barker and seconded by Mr J Cadwallader that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

          RESOLVED:  That the Annual Assurance Report for 2015/16 be approved.

 

 

24.

ICT DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION PROGRAMME pdf icon PDF 459 KB

Report of the Head of Human Resources and Development will follow marked 11.

 

Contact Michele Leith Tel 01743 254402.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr M Wood and seconded by Mr L Chapman that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

          RESOLVED:

 

a)    That the preferred approach (the Hybrid Option) described within this report i.e. to replace all of the current ICT provision (systems, processes, and infrastructure) with new fully integrated cloud-based solutions be confirmed and approved.

b)    That the financial implications of the preferred approach as set out in this report be approved that the use of capital receipts and other funding sources identified to fund the budgetary increase required for the full ICT Digital Transformation Programme also be approved.

 

 

25.

CHANGES TO ARRANGEMENTS FOR APPOINTMENT OF EXTERNAL AUDITORS pdf icon PDF 124 KB

Report of the Head of Finance, Governance and Assurance is attached marked 12.

 

Contact James Walton Tel 01743 255011.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr T Barker and seconded by Mr J Cadwallader that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

RESOLVED: 

 

a)    That the preferred approach selected and recommended to Council by Audit Committee on 23 June 2016 be endorsed; Supporting the Local Government Association (LGA) in setting up a national Sector Led Body by indicating an intention to “opt-in”.

 

b)    That a further report will be brought to Council on this, including details of any costs that will need to be included in the 2016/17 and/or 2017/18 budgets.

 

 

26.

JOINT HEALTH OVERVIEW AND SCRUTINY COMMITTEE CO-OPTED MEMBER VOTING SCHEME pdf icon PDF 102 KB

Report of the Commissioning Support Manager is attached marked 13.

 

Contact Tom Dodds Tel 01743 258518.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr G Dakin and seconded by Mr D Evans that the report, a copy of which is attached to the signed minutes and the recommendations contained therein, be received and agreed.

 

RESOLVED:  That the continuation of the current voting scheme for the co-opted Members of the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee to September 2019 as set out in the attachment to the terms of reference in Appendix 2, be approved.

 

 

27.

APPOINTMENTS TO COMMITTEES

To confirm the following change of membership:

 

Enterprise and Growth Scrutiny Committee

The appointment of Mrs H Fraser to replace Mr M Kenny as a Substitute Member.

 

Minutes:

It was proposed by Mr R Evans, seconded by Mr M Kenny and duly

 

RESOLVED:  That the following appointment to committee be confirmed:

 

Enterprise and Gowth Scrutiny Committee

The appointment of Mrs H Fraser as a Substitute Member to replace Mr M Kenny.

 

 

28.

MOTIONS

The following three motions have been received in accordance with Procedure Rule 16 as follows;

         

          From Councillor Tim Barker:

 

‘Shropshire Council supports and endorses the Royal British Legion’s campaign to “count them in” which seeks to ensure that questions concerning military service and membership of the armed forces community are included in the 2021 census and subsequent ones.  Including relevant questions will enable statutory and voluntary service providers to better meet the needs of the armed forces community.

 

Shropshire Council is a signatory to the Armed Forces Covenant and by virtue of that has promised to ensure that Service personnel (both regulars and reservists) veterans and service families are treated fairly and not disadvantaged in any way by virtue of their service.’

 

From Councillor Pam Moseley:

 

‘The recent decision by the Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group to sign the Sustainable Services Programme Strategic Outline Case letter of support to the Governing Body Board of Shrewsbury & Telford NHS Hospital Trust is a further step towards the acceptance of the Outline Business Case, which will lead to the closure of one of Shropshire's two accident & emergency departments, with the strong possibility that this will be at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.

 

Concerns have been raised in many quarters, including by the Local Medical Committee which represents local General Practitioners; it has described the assumptions of the Future Fit process as "optimistic in the extreme" and has concerns about the likely impact on the primary care and community services sectors.

 

This Council therefore strongly opposes any proposals which would lead to the diminution of emergency care facilities available to Shropshire residents, through the downgrading of the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital from an emergency care centre to an urgent care centre.’

 

From Councillor Andy Boddington:

‘Town and parish councils have called for a referendum on raising council tax above 1.99%.  A rise in the unitary tax rate would reduce the need for large increases in local precepts.  It would also lead to a fairer distribution of costs.  Under current plans, the residents of market towns such as Ludlow face paying extra for services that are used by people from a wide hinterland. 

This motion requires officers of Shropshire Council to explore the willingness of people in Shropshire for a referendum on a council tax rise above 1.99%.  Officers are requested to do this using:

1) The Big Conversation 

2) Discussions with town and parish councils

3) Local press and broadcast media. 

4) Any other ways that they feel will enable communities and local residents to let councillors know their preference.

The outcome of this exercise should be reported back to the September meeting of this Council.’

 

Minutes:

28.1    The following motion was proposed by Mr T Barkerand duly seconded by Mr C Mellings who also declared an interest (his father was a veteran and his nephew was currently serving with the Rifles);

         

Shropshire Council supports and endorses the Royal British Legion’s campaign to “count them in” which seeks to ensure that questions concerning military service and membership of the armed forces community are included in the 2021 census and subsequent ones.  Including relevant questions will enable statutory and voluntary service providers to better meet the needs of the armed forces community.

 

Shropshire Council is a signatory to the Armed Forces Covenant and by virtue of that has promised to ensure that Service personnel (both regulars and reservists) veterans and service families are treated fairly and not disadvantaged in any way by virtue of their service.”

 

After debate and on being put to the vote, the motion was carried with a large majority of members voting in favour.

 

28.2    The following motion was proposed by Mrs P Moseley and duly seconded by Mr A Mosley:

 

“The recent decision by the Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group to sign the Sustainable Services Programme Strategic Outline Case letter of support to the Governing Body Board of Shrewsbury & Telford NHS Hospital Trust is a further step towards the acceptance of the Outline Business Case, which will lead to the closure of one of Shropshire's two accident & emergency departments, with the strong possibility that this will be at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.

 

Concerns have been raised in many quarters, including by the Local Medical Committee which represents local General Practitioners; it has described the assumptions of the Future Fit process as ‘optimistic in the extreme’ and has concerns about the likely impact on the primary care and community services sectors.

 

This Council therefore strongly opposes any proposals which would lead to the diminution of emergency care facilities available to Shropshire residents, through the downgrading of the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital from an emergency care centre to an urgent care centre.”

 

At this point Mrs Chebsey declared a pecuniary interest in this motion and duly left the room.

 

Mrs K Calder proposed an amendment, which was seconded by Mr L Chapman, to amend the motion to read as follows;

 

“The recent decision by Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group to sign the Sustainable Transformation Programme Strategic Outline Case letter of support to the Governing Body of Shrewsbury and Telford NHS Hospital Trust is a further step towards the development of the Outline Business Case.

 

This Council strongly opposes any diminution in the quality of care and accessibility for patients in the provision of rural and urban acute services to all of the residents in Shropshire as a result of the NHS Transformation programmes currently taking place in the County.  We also insist that the government’s arrangements of all of the NHS transformation programmes include elected member involvement in the development and subsequent decision-making, thereby giving the process democratic accountability.”

 

After debate and on being put to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS pdf icon PDF 103 KB

To receive any questions from Members, notice of which has been given in accordance with Procedure Rule 15.2.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Speaker advised that seven questions from Members had been received in accordance with Procedure Rule 15 (copies of the report containing the detailed questions and their formal responses are attached to the signed minutes).

 

(i)       Received from Mr D Lloyd and answered by Mr S Jones, the Portfolio Holder for Highways and Transportation in relation to increasing activity by the Road Safety Partnership across the County in connection with speed limits – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

There was no supplementary question.

 

(ii)      Received from Mr D Kerr and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader of the Council in relation to a 10% cut in councillors’ allowances – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

By way of a supplementary question Mr Kerr asked if Mr Pate had seen the open letter by Surrey Council about allowances.

 

In response the Leader confirmed that he was unaware of the open letter, but if Mr Kerr felt so strongly on this issue he was always entitled to refuse his own personal allowance.

 

(iii)      Received from Mr D Kerr and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader of the Council in relation to Shropshire Council returning to the former committee system of local government – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

By way of a supplementary question Mr Kerr asked again if the Leader would consider changing systems.

 

In response the Leader confirmed that many authorities used the same democratic system as Shropshire Council and there were currently no plans to change this.

 

(iv)     Received from Mr A Mosley and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader of the Council in relation to the recent closure of ip&e, the costs, staff implications, reasons as to why it failed and the production of a report for public scrutiny – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

By way of a supplementary question Mr Mosley asked what were the overall costs of ip&e from set-up to closure.

 

In response the Leader confirmed that all the answers were detailed in the written response already provided.

 

(v)      Received from Mr A Mosley and answered by Mr M Price, Portfolio Holder for Planning, Housing, Regulatory Services and Environment in relation to student accommodation in Shrewsbury – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

By way of a supplementary question Mr Mosley asked for an assurance that there would be no further delays and that the work would be started as soon as possible.

 

In response the Portfolio Holder said that a lot of groundwork had already been undertaken and he confirmed that he would go back and ensure that all works were progressing as they should.

 

(vi)     Received from Mr R Evans and answered by Mr M Pate, Leader of the Council in relation to pressing central government for better funding – copy attached to the signed minutes.

 

By way of a supplementary question Mr Evans commented that he believed this was a good opportunity to open up a dialogue with the new Secretary of State  ...  view the full minutes text for item 29.

 

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