Agenda and minutes

Council - Monday, 11th January, 2021 7.00 pm


Contact: Governance  Email:


No. Item




There were none.




The Chairman confirmed that his engagements had been circulated in advance of the meeting.




CouncillorHemsley spoke in relation to the COVID briefing. He raised that at the end of 2020 there had been a significant tightening of restrictions resulting at the start of 2021 in the Country being placed in lockdown. The impact of this was stark across the Country and there had been a rise in hospital admissions and lives lost. Councillors noted that for Rutland, the lockdown came at the right time as there had been a sharp rise in figures and lockdown would assist in helping reduce this. The current figures were 283,000 per 100,000 of the population. The County had directed resources to help communities such as testing, shielding and vaccinations.


Councillor Hemsley went on to say how important it was to follow the national guidelines, most notably, those for staying at home. These included washing hands, keeping the house ventilated, self-isolating and following contact tracing guidance. 1.9million vaccines had currently been issued and the rollout encouraging and a relief.  It was important that everyone continued to remind the community of being vigilant and following the guidance.  


Councillor G Brown provided Council with an update on the Housing Infrastructure grant and the current position. He explained that work continued into getting agreement on the two key documents; the Grant Determination Agreement (GDA) and the Allocation Agreement. In relation to the GDA it was a Standard Homes England document and there had been some reluctance for it being modified for Rutland’s unique project. The MOD and Rutland officers had been facing firm negotiations but Homes England was maintaining its standard position with only some amendments. It was almost complete and just required changes to the wording of some of the Schedules which were attached to the main document. The Allocations Agreement focused on the roles and responsibilities between Rutland and the MOD to agree the GDA.


Council expressed thanks for the hard work of all officers involved in the difficult process over the last nine months especially over unprecedented times.    




In accordance with the Regulations, Members are invited to declare any disclosable interests under the Code of Conduct 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.


In relation to Item 10, Mr Horsfield, the Monitoring Officer, advised that for those Councillors which were also Members of Parish Councils, he did not think discussion would result in a pecuniary interest. They may wish to advise that they are Members of a Parish Council for transparency.


During the meeting, on the second motion of item 15, Cllr Dale raised a pecuniary interest as a family member was in receipt of a carers allowance. He would not vote on this motion. 



To confirm the minutes meeting of the Council meeting held on the 9th November 2020.


The Chairman proposed, and Councillor Hemsley seconded that the minutes of the two hundred and twenty third meeting of the Rutland County Council held on 9th November 2020, be confirmed as amended by Councillor Waller prior to the meeting and circulated.




The minutes of the Council meeting held on the 9th November 2020 be confirmed as a true record.




To receive any petitions, deputations and questions received from Members of the Public in accordance with the Virtual Meetings Regulations (S1 2020 392) and the subsequent RCC Procedure Rules agreed at Council on 20 May 2020 and revised by Council on 14 September 2020. (Please see link: Revision to Virtual Meetings Protocol.)


The total time allowed for this is 30 minutes. Petitions, deputations and questions will be dealt with in the order in which they are received and any which are not considered within the time limit shall receive a written response after the meeting.


There were none.



To receive any questions submitted from Members of the Council in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rules 30 and 30A.


Question from Councillor Jones to the Leader


“At the Cabinet meeting on Nov 17th 2020, it was announced that Cllr Stephenson would be taking on the role of Climate Change Champion:


a)    Can the terms of reference of the role be shared with councillors and made public through appending to the minutes of this meeting?


b)    With reference to the Climate Action Motion passed by Full Council in October 2019, can you confirm that Cllr Stephenson is therefore the cabinet member taking responsibility for the delivery of Zero Carbon Activity?


c)    What are the levels of carbon emissions from Council activities and how has this been calculated?”


In response to Councillor Jones, the Leader replied:


“The Terms of Reference were being drafted and would be circulated with the Minutes. He would like these to be informed by the discussions and debate with Councillors and the Community over the coming months. The final Terms of Reference would come to Full Council to be approved as well as the appointment of the Climate Change Champion for 2021/22.”


“The Leader confirmed that since the recent changes to portfolios, Councillor Stephenson would be the cabinet Member for the delivery of the Action Plan on Climate Change.”


“Councillor Stephenson would be addressing the planned programme of works to implement the Council’s planned approach and would be obtaining the latest up to date carbon emission baseline figures. Currently they were estimated and published by BASE to assess the impact within the Council and County wide. A link to this will be appended to the reply.”


There were no supplementary questions.


Question from Councillor Jones to the Leader


The Climate Action Motion committed to ensuring that the Executive and Scrutiny functions review council activities taking account of production and consumption emissions, and produce an action plan within 12 months, together with budget actions and a measured baseline.


a)    What precisely has Cabinet done in the last year to fulfil this requirement?


b)    On how many occasions has each scrutiny panel reviewed Council activities taking account of production and consumption emissions and as a result produced an action plan?


c)    Where on the forward plan is there an action plan to reduce carbon emissions?

The Leader responded that:


Alongside the Council’s Climate Action Motion, it was agreed the Growth, Infrastructure and Resources Scrutiny Committee would convene a Biodiversity Task and Finish Group.  This Task and Finish Group took priority and had now concluded its discussions and published its findings in October last year.


The Covid-19 pandemic had impacted timescales for developing a comprehensive carbon reduction plan informed by a measured baseline.  However, the pandemic had also provided opportunities for the Council to take positive steps in reducing its contribution to carbon emissions.  Taking prompt action to enable staff to work from home and continue to do so since March 2020 had led to a considerable reduction in both business and commuter mileage, and associated emissions.  In addition, the Council had taken the difficult decision to maintain a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.



To determine matters where a decision taken by a Committee has been referred to the Council in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rule 110.


Nothing to raise.



To determine matters where a decision taken by the Cabinet has been referred to Council by the call-in procedure of Scrutiny Panels, as a result of the decision being deemed to be outside the Council’s policy framework by the Monitoring Officer or not wholly in accordance with the budget by the Section 151 Officer, in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rules 206 and 207.


There were no call in of decisions.



To receive reports from Cabinet on recommendations referred to the Council for determination.


Report No: 07/2021

Additional documents:


Councillor G Brown presented a report to Council regarding payments being made to Parish Councils for the CIL [Community Infrastructure Levy] money that they would have received but for the issues described within the agenda report. The Cabinet report of 17th November 2020 (report number 153/2020) was attached to the agenda papers outlining these.


It was outlined to Members that as a result of the issues, Parish and Town Council’s may have missed out on CIL Payments. As a consequence, (and in addition to the recommendations made in the Report) Cabinet considered that, as Parish and Town Council’s had not received CIL payments they may otherwise have received, the County Council should make equivalent payments to the amount of CIL, approximately £22,563.77.


Council noted that there was no provision within the budget for this payment. It would be taken from general reserves if approved. As the payments in relation to CIL were never received then the Council was not able to use CIL monies to make these payments.


Prior to the Chairman opened up this item for debate and discussion, the Interim Chief Executive clarified that Cabinet had agreed to ‘write off’ £150,425.26 potential income associated with the 8 applications as this was in its powers.


Councillor Coleman advised that although he felt that it was a morally right thing to do and that they should get the full percentage owed to them. But should take into account that we did not get the full percent owed to us. He asked, being aware of the current financial climate, whether officers had asked the Parish Councils whether or not a phased approach could be taken.


Councillor Powell agreed it was the morally correct thing to do. She asked Councillor G Brown if the terms of giving that CIL be given under the same terms, i.e, spend, monitoring and retrieving monies because its technically not a CIL payment and legally where id the Council stand with this. She was alarmed that there had been a failure of the system. So adding the £20,000, it was now £170,000 of income that had disappeared. In the improvement plan that had already gone to Cabinet, there was in progress the review of the Section 106 process and payment and would like to know that this come back to Cabinet or Council with an action plan with dates included to ensure the processes were correctly applied.


Councillor Waller was concerned about the use of reserves which the Council may need in future. However, she agreed that they did need to pay the funding. If any of these Parishes were in her Ward, none of them would on balance our loyalty outweighs anything else and it isn’t their fault that we made a mistake. What she was more worried about was some Members may recall losing Section 106 monies as the Council didn’t claim them in time. For example, with the Oakham North development and wanders about how robust the processes across the board were. This  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.



a.            To receive reports from Committees on matters which require Council approval because the Committee does not have the delegated authority to act on the Council’s behalf.

b.            To receive reports from Council Committees on any other matters and to receive questions and answers on any of those reports.


There were no reports from Committees of the Council to consider.



To receive the reports from the Scrutiny Commission / Scrutiny Committees on any matters and to receive questions and answers on any of those reports.


There were no reports from the Scrutiny Commission or the Scrutiny Committees to consider.



To note any reports on joint arrangements or external organisations that have been be made in writing


The Chairman advised that Cllr Bool had emailed Councillors on the 23rd December 2020 updating members on the Combined Fire Authority.




Report No: 06/2021


The Council received a report in relation to Rutland County Council seeking to establish a conversation with residents, particularly those who did not traditionally engage with Council consultations and plans, to understand what mattered most to them in order to develop a vision and aspirational view for Rutland to inform future strategies and approaches and broaden the Council’s ongoing engagement with residents. The report was introduced by Councillor Hemsley.

The report outlined the background to this position, highlighting that when in 2019 Rutland County Council agreed its Corporate Plan 2019-2024. As part of its strategic aim to Deliver Sustainable Development it was identified that a 50-year vision needed to be established. However, but this was delayed by the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and the need to reprioritise resource to support the activity around this. The postponement provided an opportunity to reassess this project.


It was proposed that Rutland’s approach should focus on developing a stronger ongoing relationship with residents and businesses through engaging, posing questions and listening to what matters to them about their lives in Rutland. And looking at a number of different communication channels. Councillor Hemsley advised that the Council had already received letters asking to be involved by interested parties that can see how important this work would be for understanding the Health needs of the County, having also shared the concept with some local businesses who were keen to help inform the work. Councillor Hemsley welcomed Council’s thoughts on this and hoped that this meeting was the start of a fruitful conversation.

Councillors considered the proposal and mostly supported the approach. It was felt that it was crucial to start as soon as possible although concern was raised about the time table and whether or not it was achievable. Also, that it was important that it was accessible to all members of the community to be part of, especially those hard to reach. Further concern was raised about how this would be translated into action and a request was made for a briefing so they could discuss in more detail.  

In response to the comments, Councillor Hemsley confirmed that a briefing would take place towards the end of January ready for the launch in March and asked Members for their support going forward.

Councillor Stephenson seconded the report.

In relation to recommendations 1, 2 and 4 a recorded vote was held:


There voted in favour:

Councillors Ainsley, Baines, Begy, Bool, A Brown, G Brown, Burrows, Coleman, Dale, Fox, Harvey, Hemsley, Jones, Lowe, MacCartney, Oxley, Payne, Powell, Razzell, Stephenson, Waller, Walters, Webb, Wilby and Woodley.


There voted against:

Councillor Cross


There who abstained:

Councillor Blanksby

The vote being 25 in favour, 1 against and 1 abstention, the motions 1, 2 and 4 were carried.


In relation to recommendation 3, a recorded vote was held:


There voted in favour:

Councillors Ainsley, Baines, Begy, Bool, A Brown, G Brown, Coleman, Fox, Harvey, Hemsley, Jones, Lowe, MacCartney, Oxley, Payne, Razzell, Stephenson, Walters and Wilby.


There voted against:

Councillors Cross,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.



To consider the Notices of Motion submitted by a) Councillor Jones and seconded by Councillor Oxley and b) Councillor Burrows and seconded by Councillor MacCartney in accordance with Procedure Rule 34, the texts of which can be found in the agenda pack.


Motion received from Councillor Jones (and seconded by Councillor Oxley)


i)      Rutland County Council declares a climate emergency and commits to appointing Rutland’s Climate Change Champion (to mirror the Armed Forces Champion) at Annual Council.


ii)    Rutland County Council commits to achieving zero carbon activity by 2030.


iii)   Rutland County Council will include a standard paragraph “impact on the climate and the Council’s aim to reduce carbon emissions” in every Council and Cabinet report.


iv)   Rutland County Council will report annually, through the Annual Governance Statement, progress made to achieve net zero carbon emissions.

The Chairman opened up debate on the motion to Council. A number of Councillors were in support of the motion but there was concern about the ambitious target of being carbon zero by 2030 and whether it was achievable. It was agreed that the Council should be aspiring to this and although COVID had set progress back, it was important to start having conversations and make progress. Councillor Stephenson outlined that there needed to an overarching strategy to identify the projects that were going to make a large impact on reducing carbon emissions and an action plan to drive work forward. It was recognised that action would require capital expenditure. It was highlighted that taking action going forward, it really needed to be done in partnership as reducing emissions was the responsibility of everyone. She put forward an amendment to the motion, seconded by Councillor Razzell as follows:


“This Council acknowledges that we are in a climate crisis. This Council understands it needs to take urgent action to address this by


·       undertaking a thorough baseline assessment of carbon emissions

·       reviewing and developing the existing climate change action plan to include a clear financial plan, scope of responsibilities and specific carbon reducing projects.

·       Establishing an evidence base and deliverable target for the reduction of carbon emissions by 2030 with net carbon zero as soon as it is possible before 2050.

This Council also notes that it must work in partnership with the wider community and businesses including the farming community to reduce the overall carbon emissions for Rutland creating a sustainable rural life for future generations


Councillors were in support of the amended motion but felt that it should include points 3 and 4 from the original motion as it was important that an annual report was prepared with checks and balances. Furthermore, that placing a note on reports was a good reminder for report writers to consider climate change issues. Councillor Brown reminded members that the action plan agreed in 2018 had these points included already, but due to factors such as COVID these had not been taken forward. A further point was raised questioning why the farming community was noted specifically in the motion. 


Councillor Stephenson summed up her amended motion, she assured members that there was no black hole and she was driving this forward. She was proud of the farming community in Rutland and this was about partnership working. Farmers knew about  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.



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


None to consider. The Chairman, therefore, closed the meeting.