Agenda and draft minutes

Special Meeting, Council - Wednesday, 1st September, 2021 7.00 pm

Venue: Rutland Showground, Showground Way, Oakham LE15 7TW - The meeting will be available to listen in online at https://us06web.zoom.us/j/85261800870

Contact: Governance  Email: governance@rutland.gov.uk

Note: Although a public gallery will be available there is anticipated to be a maximum of 60 seats available and seating will only be reserved for those presenting petitions, deputations or questions, with all other seating available on a first come first serve basis. Members of the public wishing to observe the meeting are therefore encouraged to listen to the online audio stream at https://us06web.zoom.us/j/85261800870 As this a Special Meeting of the Council any petitions, deputations and questions must relate to item on the agenda in accordance with Procedure Rule 24. Any petitions or questions must be provided to the Governance Team by 4.30pm on the second working day before the meeting. Therefore, due to the Bank Holiday on Monday, 30 August this must be by 4.30pm on Friday, 27 August.  

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES

Minutes:

No apologies for absence were received.

 

2.

CHAIRMAN'S ANNOUNCEMENTS

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed Councillor P Browne to Rutland County Council following the recent Oakham South by-election and referred Members to his previously circulated announcements.

 

3.

ANNOUNCEMENTS FROM THE LEADER, MEMBERS OF THE CABINET OR THE HEAD OF PAID SERVICE

Minutes:

There were no announcements from the Leader, Members of the Cabinet or the Head of Paid Service.

 

4.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

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.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

5.

PETITIONS, DEPUTATIONS AND QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC pdf icon PDF 342 KB

To receive any petitions, deputations or questions received from members of the public related to items on the agenda in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rules 24 and 28. The total time allowed for this is 30 minutes.  Petitions, deputations, and questions must be made in person and will be dealt with in the order in which they are received, any which are not considered within the time limit shall receive a written response after the meeting.

 

Any petitions or questions must be received by 4:30pm on the second working day before the meeting, due to the Bank Holiday on Monday, 30 August this will be on Friday, 27 August. Requests to make deputations must be received by 12pm on the day of the meeting.

 

Minutes:

Eight deputations and two questions had been received for the meeting, the details of which had been circulated to Councillors and published alongside the agenda and minutes on the Council’s website. 

 

The Chairman invited Members to consider whether Procedure Rule 29 should be suspended, this was in order to allow all members of the public to be heard by removing the 30-minute limit on time allowed for the presentation of petitions, deputations and questions. This was moved by Councillor Waller and seconded.

 

Council voted unanimously to suspend Procedure Rule 29.

 

The first deputation was delivered by Sinclair Rogers, Chairman of Ketton Parish Council. Members did not ask any further questions of Councillor Rogers.

 

The first question was delivered by David Vickery, who explained that his question was intended to encourage the Council to think about possible ways to alleviate or combat a situation where it may not have a 5-year housing land supply.

 

Councillor I Razzell, Portfolio Holder for Planning, responded to the question by stating that the Council was aware of the stated Court of Appeal judgement and that this would be relevant in future decision-making irrespective if other actions available to the Council. However, it was explained that the weight given to policies in the existing adopted Local Plan would be a matter for the decision-maker for any proposal and the tilted balance in favour of development under paragraph 11 (d)(ii) of the National Planning Policy Framework would still need to be applied.

 

It was further explained that Mr Vickery’s suggested document listing in-date policies in the existing adopted Local Plan would be helpful for public awareness but would have little or no weight in planning decision making and would require time and staff resource that would need to be balanced against the need to focus on the preparation of a new Local Plan as soon as possible. Reference was made to Report 105/2021 which set out how the recommendation to begin preparation of a new local plan was considered to be the most effective way for the Council to achieve a 5 year housing supply in a planned way.

 

It was explained the options presented by Mr Vickery of preparing several Supplementary Planning Documents would also take time and staff resources which would need to be balanced against the need to prepare a new Local Plan, which itself could address some of the policy considerations raised by Mr Vickery. It was also highlighted that there was a risk of new policies introduced through an SPD that could be subject to legal challenge based on examples of other Councils.

 

Councillor Razzell recognised the benefit of updating Conservation Area appraisals, it was confirmed that the proposed funding for operating without a Local Plan included the recruitment of a full-time Conservation Officer who would work in part to support a review of Conservation Areas, it was  cautioned that the extent of Conservation Areas requiring re-appraisals would make this a long-term task for the Council. 

 

There was no supplementary from Mr  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS OF THE COUNCIL

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

Minutes:

There were no questions from Members of the Council.

 

7.

RUTLAND LOCAL PLAN pdf icon PDF 511 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report No 105/2021 was received from the Strategic Director of Places.

 

At this point Councillor A Walters proposed a brief adjournment to allow Members a comfort break, this was seconded.

 

With 12 votes in favour, 12 against and 3 abstentions, the vote was tied and the Chairman used his casting vote to defeat the motion, stating he wished the meeting to continue longer before proceeding to an adjournment.

 

Councillor I Razzell, Portfolio Holder for Planning, introduced the report and the recommendation from officers to withdraw the submitted Local Plan, but highlighted that officer’s role was to make recommendations and the decision lay with Council. Councillor Razzell also drew Members attention to the alternative options set out in Report 105/2021, which included an option for Council to revisit the decision to decline the Housing Infrastructure Grant funding after 22 September 2021 in order to continue with the submitted Local Plan.

 

Councillor Razzell proposed that Council delay a decision to withdraw the Local Plan in order to revisit the decision to decline the HIF grant after 22 September 2021. this was seconded and copies of an extract from Report 105/2021 setting out the option to revisit HIF were also produced for Members.

 

In response to a question from Councillor G Waller, Phillip Horsfield, Monitoring Officer explained that an amendment to instead consider the original recommendations set out in Report 105/2021 would have the effect of negating Councillor Razzell’s motion before Council and thus could not be considered. Therefore, a motion on the recommendations of Report 105/2021 could only be moved and considered should the motion from Councillor Razzell fall.

 

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The Chairman adjourned the meeting for 10 minutes to allow Members a comfort break and the extracts of Report 105/2021 to be distributed and read.

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A number of Members spoke in support of the option to re-consider the HIF after 22 September. It was highlighted that withdrawing the submitted Local Plan and starting the process afresh could leave the Council without an agreed Local Plan for some years which Report 105/2021 suggested could leave the Council vulnerable to intervention from central Government.

 

It was also highlighted the withdrawal of the Local Plan would result in the Council being unable to demonstrate a 5-year housing supply, which would leave areas across the county vulnerable to uncontrolled development not restrained by the various planning and environmental policies within a Local Plan. It was also put forward that allowing the submitted Local Plan to proceed would set a clear direction for Members and officers of the Council but also the County as a whole.

 

Members supporting the motion also gave the view that St George’s Barracks was a brownfield site and any future Local Plan would include development at the site, and re-visiting the HIF grant would allow the Council to ensure a sustainable and self-contained development and that the necessary infrastructure was delivered.

 

Other Members spoke against the motion and in support of the officer’s recommendation to withdraw the submitted Local Plan and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.