Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Cabinet - Tuesday, 16th June, 2020 10.00 am

Venue: Remotely - Via Zoom - https://zoom.us/j/99624614365

Contact: Emma Powley  01572 720991

Items
No. Item

23.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence. The Leader informed Cabinet that Councillor Walters would be in attendance imminently.

24.

ANNOUNCEMENTS FROM THE CHAIRMAN AND/OR HEAD OF THE PAID SERVICE

Minutes:

There were none.

25.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

 

In accordance with the Regulations, Members are required to declare any personal or prejudicial interests they may have and the nature of those interests in respect of items on this Agenda and/or indicate if Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.

Minutes:

There were none.

26.

RECORD OF DECISIONS

To confirm the Record of Decisions made at the meeting of the Cabinet held on 19th May 2020.

Minutes:

Cabinet confirmed the record of decision made at the Cabinet meeting held on the 19th May 2020.

27.

ITEMS RAISED BY SCRUTINY

To receive items raised by members of scrutiny which have been submitted to the Leader and Chief Executive (copying in Governance) by no later than 12 noon on Friday 12th June 2020.

Minutes:

Two items were raised by members of the Scrutiny Committee

 

i)               Children and Young People in relation to Item 7 – Children’s Services Improvement Plan and:

 

ii)              Growth Infrastructure and Resource Committee, in relation to Item 9 – Rutland Local Plan- Update on Timetable and Consultation.

 

Written representation of these items are appended to the minutes.

28.

EMERGENCY POWERS - COVID 19 UPDATE pdf icon PDF 343 KB

Report No: 82/2020

Decision:

Cabinet noted the continued use of the Civil Emergency Delegation

Minutes:

Councillor Hemsley as the relevant Cabinet Member elaborated on the report following agreement at the Cabinet meeting held on the 21st April 2020 where is was agreed that Cabinet review the emergency powers at each meeting of Cabinet to ensure that the powers were still required.

 

Councillor Walters joined the meeting. Having not been present during the discussion on the report, Councillor Walters abstained from voting to approve the recommendations.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the continued use of the Civil Emergency Delegation be noted.

 

Reason for Decision: It was agreed by Cabinet to review the emergency powers at Cabinet meeting to ensure that the powers are still required. The emergency response remains in effect and the situation remains uncertain. Should circumstances become more challenging in the near future, there is a need for the emergency powers to be in place to allow for continued decision making under the Council’s Scheme of Delegation

 

29.

CHILDREN'S SERVICES IMPROVEMENT PLAN pdf icon PDF 236 KB

Report No: 81/2020

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet approved the Children’s Services Improvement Plan in response to the Ofsted inspection and areas for improvement identified by Ofsted.

Cabinet approved funding to invest in training for children’s services to improve practice in line with the areas for improvement identified by Ofsted.

Minutes:

Councillor Wilby, as the relevant Portfolio Holder elaborated on his report and explained that the Ofsted inspection had taken place between the 2nd and 13th March 2020, the overall judgement being that the children’s services required improvement to be good in all areas. It was further noted that no children were found to be at immediate risk of harm and Ofsted had recognised urgent safeguarding concerns were addressed promptly and staff continued to work hard.

The Deputy Director - Children's Services explained that the department had undertaken its own self-evaluation which identified similar improvement recommendations given by Ofsted. A number of steps had been taken including a new approach to the governance of improvement with the Children’s Services Improvement Board feeding into Cabinet on progress and it was reported that any Councillor could attend the Board to observe proceedings. Children and Young Peoples Scrutiny Committee would also consider recommendations of the Improvement Board. The comments that had been submitted by the Children and Young Peoples Scrutiny Committee were constructive with work being carried out to consider the comments and incorporate changes.

RESOLVED:

That the Children’s Services Improvement Plan in response to the Ofsted inspection and areas for improvement identified by Ofsted be approved

That funding to invest in training for children’s services to improve practice in line with the areas for improvement identified by Ofsted be approved.

 

Reason for the decisions: It is recommended that Cabinet approves the Children’s Services Improvement Plan in response to the Ofsted inspection and areas for improvement identified by Ofsted. 13.2 It is recommended that Cabinet approves funding of c£49k over the next two years for training for children’s services to improve practice in line with the areas for improvement identified by Ofsted.

 

30.

FINANCIAL OUTTURN REPORT FOR 19/20 AND UPDATE ON BUDGET 20/21 pdf icon PDF 884 KB

Report No; 84/2020

(Key decision)

Decision:

a)    Cabinet noted the provisional outturn (subject to audit and finalisation of business rates figures) on the revenue budget and updated capital programme

b)    Cabinet approved the transfer to earmarked reserves from 19/20 underspends of £1.779m including £1.405m for ring fenced budgets

c)    Cabinet approved the use of £72k from the highways reserve to fund additional works completed due to inclement weather

d)    Cabinet recommended to Council the setting up of three new reserves and amending the ceiling of two reserves as detailed in section 2.4.3 and para 2.4.4 of the report.

e)    Cabinet noted the impact of Covid-19 on the MTFP (para 2.5 of the report)

f)      Cabinet approved the Capital budget adjustments (£231k) required to fund the capital programme (para 2.5.3 of the report)

Minutes:

Councillor G Brown as the relevant Cabinet Member, elaborated on the report and noted that the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic on the Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) and would continue to be assessed and monitored. The anticipated impact of Covid-19 on the Council’s financial position included additional expenditure that may be incurred that is not covered by Government funding. It was reported that some services generating income were no longer in operation as the Council had reviewed its service offer in light of Government advice and was only running essential services. Other key areas where the Council collected income (council tax, business rates, rents) would likely to see reduced recovery rates, losses and bad debts.

 

The Chief Finance Officer explained that the information contained within the report had been written at a time when there was not a clear understanding of the impact of Covid 19. There were several areas of concern which included the collection of Council Tax, the extension of the rent deferral scheme for businesses, the leisure sector and the provision of care. The funding gap post Covid 19 was estimated to be between £2.5 to £3 million and a significant amount of work would need to be undertaken and Members would be invited to share their ideas on how to address the matter. Thanks was given to the Chief Finance Officer and his team for their hard work in the circumstances.

 

RESOLVED

 

a)    That the provisional outturn (subject to audit and finalisation of business rates figures) on the revenue budget and updated capital programme be noted.

b)    That the transfer to earmarked reserves from 19/20 underspends of £1.779m including £1.405m for ring fenced budgets be approved

c)    That the use of £72k from the highways reserve to fund additional works completed due to inclement weather be approved

d)    That the setting up of three new reserves and amending the ceiling of two reserves as detailed in section 2.4.3 and para 2.4.4 of the report be recommended to Council.

e)    That the impact of Covid-19 on the MTFP (para 2.5 of the report) be noted

f)      That the Capital budget adjustments (£231k) required to fund the capital programme (para 2.5.3 of the report) be approved

 

Reason for decisions:  As the Council is required to make savings over the medium term, the outturn position is positive compared to Quarter 3. The approval of budget carry forwards will allow the 2020/21 budget to be updated to reflect spending plans.

 

31.

RUTLAND LOCAL PLAN- UPDATE ON TIMETABLE AND CONSULTATION pdf icon PDF 540 KB

Report No; 85/2020

(Key decision)

Additional documents:

Decision:

1.    Cabinet considered and approved a revision to the Local Development Scheme (LDS) as set out in Appendix 1 of the report to reflect the proposed updated timetable for the Local Plan.

2.    Cabinet considered and approved the draft review of the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) as set out in the Appendix 2 for 4 weeks consultation. 

 

Minutes:

Councillor G Brown, as the relevant Portfolio Holder elaborated on the report and explained that a review of the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) at this time would allow progress with the Local Plan consultation, and enable the Regulation 19 consultation (and subsequent stages) with regards to the Local Plan which had been approved by Council in February 2020, to take place. He further explained that the SCI was not a development plan document and noted that there was no statutory requirement to consult on it. It was however considered good practice to undertake informal consultation on the proposed changes. Cabinet were being asked to approve the draft review for a four-week consultation; this having been proposed that the consultation on the revised SCI will run from Friday 19th June to Friday 17th July 2020.  It was further noted that there were three stages of consultation which had already taken place in the preparation of the Local Planand the recommendation would enable the statutory consultation on the plan to progress.

 

Councillor G Brown updated Cabinet to the questions asked by the Growth Infrastructure and Resources Committee following the meeting held on the 11th June 2020 which are appended to the minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.    That a revision to the Local Development Scheme (LDS) as set out in Appendix 1 of the report to reflect the proposed updated timetable for the Local Plan be considered and approved.

2.    That the draft review of the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) as set out in the Appendix 2 for 4 weeks consultation be considered and approved. 

Reasons for decisions:

      i.         The Covid-19 pandemic has affected all aspects of the implementation of the Council’s statutory functions. In the context of the Local Plan, a decision was made not to commence the planned Regulation 19 consultation on 24th March but to keep this decision under review. Since then recent MHCLG advice encourages Local Planning Authorities to progress with the preparation of local plans as these will be key to enabling the inevitable economic recovery which will be necessary once the pandemic is over.

     ii.         As a result of postponement of the consultation the Local Plan timetable needs to be updated and published. Appendix 1 to this report sets out the revised timetable for the remaining stages in the process.

    iii.         The current SCI has been reviewed in order to update all elements of community engagement in the planning process and to ensure that Covid-19 restrictions are appropriate covered. This review will also provide the opportunity to maintain progress with the Local Plan in circumstances where there are limitations on access, movement and face to face contact which make the current provisions of the SCI impossible to implement for an uncertain period of time. The draft reviewed SCI is set out in Appendix 2 and Cabinet is asked to approve this document for a four week consultation period beginning on Friday 19th June 2020.

   iv.         The proposed changes to the SCI are  ...  view the full minutes text for item 31.

32.

ANY ITEMS OF URGENT BUSINESS

To receive items of urgent business which have previously been notified to the person presiding.

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

33.

Feedback- Scrutiny pdf icon PDF 120 KB

Additional documents: