POLICY AND RESOURCES COMMITTEE
Minutes of the proceedings at a meeting of the Committee held in the Council Chamber, South Lakeland House, Kendal, on Tuesday, 26 September 1995, at 10.30 a.m.
S.B. Collins (Chairman) E. Proctor (Vice-Chairman)
P.E. Ball M.C. Bentley R.K. Bingham R.N. Bolton Mrs E.M. Braithwaite D. Butterworth C.J. Crane C. Gardner Mrs G.S. Hubbard H.S. Lewis P.L. Lister C.S. Reynolds N.R. Spendlove W. Stewart J. Swift D. Vatcher
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors I.S. Gordon and J. Studholme.
RESOLVED - That the Chairman sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 7 September 1995.
807 PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
RESOLVED - That it be noted that no questions, deputations or petitions had been received.
808 PROGRESS REPORT
The Clerk and Chief Executive presented a progress report covering the meetings of the Committee held on 11 and 24 July, 29 August and 7 September 1995. Appended was a report by Councillor Mrs J.E. Jenkinson on the work of the Barrow-in-Furness Public Safety Scheme - Local Liaison Committee and the Management Committee of the Ulverston and North Lonsdale Citizens' Advice Bureau during the previous 12 months.
RESOLVED - That the reports be received.
809 LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972 - EXCLUDED ITEMS
RESOLVED - That the items in Part II of the agenda be dealt with following the exclusion of the press and public.
810 POLICY AND RESOURCES EMERGENCY SUB-COMMITTEE
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meetings of the Sub-Committee held on 10 August and 6 September 1995 be received; and
(2) the disposal to a Housing Association of No. 2, Yard 31 (Old Police Yard), Finkle Street, Kendal, for conversion to four residential units be approved.
811 PERFORMANCE REVIEW SUB-COMMITTEE
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meeting of the Sub-Committee held on 14 August 1995 be received; and
(2) the advice contained in Minute 498(2) be noted.
812 PERSONNEL SUB-COMMITTEE
The Committee considered the minutes of the meetings of the Sub-Committee held on 11 July, 16 August and 11 September 1995. In discussing the minutes of the meeting held on 11 September, Members underlined the requirement for tight control on recruitment (as spelled out in Minute 739) until such time as the new staffing structure was in place. They also believed it would be beneficial if all Members of the Council could be supplied with a schedule of salary scales and, in due course, a breakdown of establishments showing the numbers on each particular point of scale.
Attention was also focussed on the decision not to take any action on the reinstatement of a Woodland Officer on a three year temporary contract through the Cumbria Broadleaves Initiative. In considering the notes of the Environment Working Party, later in the meeting, the Commitee would be asked to reconsider the Personnel Sub-Committee's decision.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meeting of the Sub-Committee held on 11 July, 16 August and 11 September 1995 be received and the recommendations contained in the minutes of the meeting held on 11 September be forwarded to the Council for approval;
(2) Members of the Council be supplied with schedules of the staff salary scales; and
(3) the issue over the reappointment of a Woodland Officer be debated further, when the notes of the meeting of the Environment Working Party held on 13 September 1995 are discussed.
813 COMPETITION AD-HOC SUB-COMMITTEE
RESOLVED - That the minutes of the meeting of the Sub-Committee held on 10 August 1995 be received.
814 FINANCE AND PROPERTY SUB-COMMITTEE
The Committee considered the minutes of the meeting of the Sub-Committee held on 13 September 1995 and, in particular, Minutes 771(2) (the requirement under Standing Order 32(3) that the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of every Standing Committee and Sub-Committee shall be Members of the Council) and 774 (amenity land at East View, Kendal).
Members believed that Standing Order 32(3) should remain, but recognised that, in the particular circumstances surrounding the appointment of the current Vice-Chairman of the Lake Administration Sub-Committee, the waiver of that Standing Order had been appropriate. Some concern was expressed over the decision contained in Minute 774, though Members were reassured to learn that the Ward Member was unlikely to agree to the decision and that consequently the land at East View, Kendal, was likely to be debated further by the Finance and Property Sub-Committee.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meeting of the Finance and Property Sub-Committee held on 13 September 1995 be received and the recommendations contained therein be forwarded to the Council for approval; and
(2) Standing Order 32(3) be retained, on the understanding that if circumstances, similar to that outlined in Minute 771, occur again in the future, such cases might be dealt with on their own merits.
815 COMMUNITY CHARGE COMMITTALS PANEL
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meeting of the Panel held on 13 September 1995 be received; and
(2) the request contained in Minute 795(2) be approved.
816 EMPLOYER SAFETY BOARD
RESOLVED - That
(1) the minutes of the meeting of the Employer Safety Board held on 11 September 1995 be received;
(2) the request contained in Minute 728(2) be acknowledged; and
(3) the satisfactory resolution of the problem, referred to in Minute 727, at a meeting of the Board earlier in the day, be noted.
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY WORKING PARTY 817 Notes
RESOLVED - That the notes of the meeting of the Working Party held on 6 September 1995 be received.
By Minute 19 (1995/96), the Committee had appointed Councillor C.A. Mayho to the Information Technology Working Party. Councillor Mayho had given notification that he wished to resign from membership of the Working Party and a replacement was therefore required.
RESOLVED - That Councillor R. Leach be appointed to membership of the Working Party.
819 ENVIRONMENT WORKING PARTY
In considering the notes of the meeting of the Working Party held on 13 September 1995, Members concentrated on the issue which had been raised earlier in the day (Minute 812) over the decision not to reinstate the Woodland Officer's post.
The Working Party had asked that the decision be reconsidered, bearing in mind that the Forestry Authority was likely to fund 50% of the cost of the post.
In the event of the Personnel Sub-Committee's decision being reaffirmed it was also asking the Committee to give urgent consideration as to how the allocation of the duties appropriate to the post should be undertaken.
The Chairman of the Personnel Sub-Committee explained that although the Sub-Committee had recognised the wish of Members to see a continuation of the post of Woodland Officer, its immediate reinstatement would have been contrary to the policy established pursuant to Minute 739 (1995/96). He felt that there might be scope to reconsider the post once the departmental restructuring exercise had been completed.
The Clerk and Chief Executive understood that as a condition of funding 50% of the Post, the Forestry Authority was asking for it to be filled by December 1995. He suggested that the Chief Leisure Services Officer should verify just how stringent that timescale was, with a view to reporting to the Personnel Sub-Committee on 20 November 1995 as to whether it would be practicable to reconsider the matter following the departmental restructuring exercise.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the Working Party's notes be received;
(2) the Personnel Sub-Committee be asked to consider, at their meeting on 20 November 1995, whether there might be scope for reviewing their decision regarding a Woodland Officer;
(3) the Environmental Focus scheduled for March 1996 be used as the vehicle for presenting a proposed timetable for the launch of "Local Agenda 21" and to report on the issues which will need to be addressed etc., with the launch itself taking place at a further focus event later in the year; and
(4) the Association for the Conservation of Energy be supported in its attempt to secure legislation which will reduce the VAT payable on energy saving materials to the same rate as that paid on fuel supplies.
CAPITAL PROGRAMME 820 Monitoring Report
The expenditure monitoring report, which had been prepared by the Capital Programme Officer Group, was presented.
RESOLVED - That the report be received.
821 Usable Capital Receipts - Temporary Changes
Referring to Minute 1951 (1994/95), the Treasurer reported that the Government (by Regulation) had confirmed its proposal to increase from 50% to 90% the usable proportion of capital receipts arising from the sale of retail property in the year from 1 September 1995.
The effect was to increase the Council's capital spending ability by ¨540,000 (i.e. 40% of ¨1,350,000 being the sale price of the freehold of the Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal, less 10% deposit). Completion of that transaction had taken place on 7 September 1995.
RESOLVED - That the additional opportunity to incur capital expenditure, albeit without any additional revenue resources, be noted.
822 Capital Programme Working Party
The minutes of the meeting of the Working Party held on 12 September 1995 were presented. They included decisions by the Working Party to revise the monitoring procedures, based on proposals by the Capital Programme Officer Group; to ask the Housing Committee to consider the likely size of future annual Housing "Customer Choice" Programmes in order that workloads could be planned efficiently; to endorse the general principle of compulsory purchase/ opportunity purchase under the housing enabling role; and to make revisions to the Capital Programme.
The Working Party was also asking the Committee to recommend approval to reserve schemes being brought forward in the event of delay or failure to obtain planning permission for the School Knott Housing Scheme development at Windermere, and to the retention of ¨100,000 in contingencies once provision had been made for the Low Mill Tannery Land Reclamation Scheme, Ulverston.
Appended to the Working Party's minutes was a revised Financial Model/Capital Programme. It reflected the decisions made by the Working Party and continued assumptions that the Council's Basic Credit Approval and Supplementary Credit Approval limit for Renovation Grants for the years 1996/97 onwards would be unchanged from the 1995/96 figures. The Committee was asked to consider the revised Financial Model/Capital Programme with a view to recommending it to the Council for approval.
The attention of Members was drawn to a footnote to the revised Model/Programme which stated that the Council had agreed that the first call on usable capital receipts from the sale of the Westmorland Shopping Centre would be in respect of Grange-over-Sands Swimming Pool (at least ¨300,000) and that the second call would be for a CCTV scheme for Kendal.
The Chief Technical Officer reported the results of the survey of the existing pool at Grange, and on a feasibility study for an indoor pool and associated revenue earning facilities on the site of the Pool. Both aspects had been discussed by the Grange-over-Sands Recreation Working Party on 25 September 1995 and at a meeting which the Working Party had held with interested parties/organisations later that same day.
The Clerk and Chief Executive also gave a progress report on steps which were being taken to secure additional funding for the CCTV scheme for Kendal.
RESOLVED - That the minutes of the meeting of the Capital Programme Working Party held on 12 September 1995, and the officers' reports be received.
* RECOMMENDED - That
(1) in the event of delay or failure to obtain planning permission for the School Knott Housing Development, Windermere, approval be granted to Oak Street, Windermere and Sparrowmire Phase VI and part of Phase VII, Kendal, being brought forward and thereby taking up the capital allocation to the School Knott scheme in 1995/96;
(2) ¨100,000 be retained in Contingencies (P&R 5.2) for "other purposes" once provision has been made for Low Mill Tannery Land Reclamation Scheme (the inclusion of which is qualified until the availability of all grants towards the scheme is confirmed);
(3) the revised Capital Programme appended to these minutes (Appendix A) be approved; and
(4) all other bids/amendments which have been considered by the Working Party, but not included in the Revised Programme, be held in abeyance for the time being.
823 Capital Estimate - Kendal Town Hall Stonework (LT5.11)
Further to Minute 1955 (1994/95), the Treasurer sought approval for a capital estimate for remedial work at Kendal Town Hall.
The work was to be carried out at the same time as urgent revenue repairs to the Band Room roof, enabling a saving of ¨3,250 to be made on the revenue scheme, which had been originally estimated at ¨52,000. It would however, require the closure of Lowther Street for a period of 22 weeks from 9 October 1995.
RESOLVED - That the undermentioned capital estimate be approved:-
Revenue Consequences Total Capital 1995/96 1996/97 1997/98 Estimate/Cost Estimate Estimate Forecast ¨ ¨ ¨ ¨
Remedial work - Kendal Town Hall Stonework (LT5.11) together with fees. 107,500 5,700 11,500 11,500 Capital Financing costs (20 years)
STRATEGIC BUDGETING 824 Priority Rating Exercise
The Clerk and Chief Executive reported that he had circulated elected Members with a questionnaire, in the same way as he had done the previous year, designed to help define the Council's priorities. In view of the somewhat indifferent response from Members he had deduced that the questionnaire form was not a suitable vehicle on which to base strategic decisions. He had however analysed the 20 replies received, and the results were presented to the Committee, together with a report by the Treasurer on the Medium Term Commitment Plan and other financial issues which had a bearing on strategic budgeting.
Members considered possible reasons for the poor response to the questionnaire. These included failure to consult the Strategic Budgeting Working Party over the content of the questionnaire, the complexity of the questionnaire, and newly elected Members not having received any induction training in relation to strategic budgeting.
The Chairman of the Committee felt that there was a need to consult more widely (i.e. outside the Council), over the Council's priorities.
The poor response to the questionnaire exercise and Members desire for a more simplified procedure, further consultation with the Strategic Budgeting Working Party and wider consultation cast doubts on whether a strategic budget for 1996/97, based on the 1995 exercise, was a viable proposition. Against that was balanced the timescale for
settling the budget and other influencing factors (e.g. departmental and committee restructuring).
* RECOMMENDED - That
(1) the Strategic Budgeting Process be continued; and
(2) no further priority consultation exercise be undertaken with elected Members in order to formulate a strategic budget for 1996/97.
RESOLVED - That in order to formulate a strategic budget for 1997/98
(1) a meeting of the Strategic Budgeting Working Party be convened to assist with the production of a simplified and more easily understood questionnaire (possibly incorporating the use of pie charts and a service grouping approach);
(2) a seminar on strategic budgeting be held for the benefit of all Members; and
(3) approval in principle be given to a wider consultation exercise (possibly with Town and Parish Councils/Meetings, local organisations and the general public), once the areas over which consultation is required have been defined.
825 General Budget Issues
The Treasurer presented the Council's Medium Term Commitment Plan and drew attention to other financial issues which had a bearing on strategic budgeting.
The costs of continuing with the existing level of service had been identified in the Plan's figures, which had been approved by all Committees. They were compared with possible capping levels, and it had been assumed the capping rules would continue to apply in subsequent years, merely allowing annual 0.5% increases. The figures did not however allow for the effects of departmental restructuring, nor the probability of National Park levies having to be met within the cap. Nevertheless the projections in the Plan pointed to the fact that the Council's Revenue Budget would be under-resourced in 1996/97 and 1997/98. Substantial reductions would therefore have to be contemplated to the figures in the forecasts.
At a national level, the Department of the Environment, together with the Local Authority Associations, were examining a number of possible revisions to the Standing Spending Assessment (SSA) formula. Included amongst them were the downgrading of the sparsity factor (from which the District Council, as a sparsely populated area, benefitted) and enchancements to the weightings given to the London local authorities in recognition of the special circumstances which pertained in the Capital. The North West Regional Association had drawn attention to some of the obscure technical reasons for those proposed enhancements and to the way that other local authorities
outside London would be subsidising the London authorities if those enhancements were ratified.
With regard to the Government's capping règime, although speculation about its removal was rife, the Treasurer was recommending that the Council should plan on the assumption that it would be retained for future years. Even if the caps were removed, the District Council would have to consider carefully the extra burden on its Council Tax payers were it to set its expenditure at the level predicted in the Medium Term Commitment Plan, bearing in mind what might be precepted by Cumbria County Council and the Police Authority and levied by the National Parks.
Members shared the Treasurer's concerns, and believed that pressure should again be brought to bear on the Government for a more realistic recognition within the SSA formula, of the impact of day visitors on the District and hence on the District Council's services.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the attention of Local Members of Parliament be drawn to the threat of a down-grading of the sparsity factor and the impact of the London area cost adjustment factor within the SSA formula and the effect that these would have on the District Council;
(2) in order to reinforce the District Council's case, officers be asked to gather together evidence about the additional costs involved in providing services in rural areas and to forward that evidence to the Association of District Councils and to the Department of the Environment; and
(3) the case concerning the day visitor factor within the SSA be again taken up with the Government via the Association of District Councils.
826 ADJOURNMENT OF MEETING
The meeting adjourned for lunch at 12.56 p.m. and reconvened at 2.00 p.m. when the same Members were present.
FUTURE OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN SOUTH LAKELAND 827 Future of South Lakeland Working Party
The Committee considered the notes of the meeting of the Working Party held on 22 August 1995, from which it was noted that there was continuing dialogue with representatives of Cumbria County Council over improvements to the two tier structure, that the Chairman of the Working Party and the Clerk and Chief Executive had given their views to the County Council's Select Committee E on the County Council's proposals for devolution, and that the Working Party had given limited support to the Friends of Real Lancashire in putting forward a case to Cumbria County Council in furtherance of the campaign for recognition of Cumbria's historic counties.
RESOLVED - That the notes be received.
828 Committee/Departmental Restructuring
As a consequence of the adoption by the Council of the "Minimum Disturbance Option" and the "Commissioner/Provider Split", the Committee considered the various instructions which had been given to the Future of South Lakeland Working Party (pursuant to Minutes 453 and 479 (1995/96)) and the Working Party's response, as contained in the notes of its meeting held on 22 August.
With regard to Committee restructuring the Working Party had considered three issues:-
(a) the possibility of establishing a Rural Communities Group;
(b) the detailed functions of each Committee under the "Minimum Disturbance" decision; and
(c) the workload of the Policy and Resources Committee and the potential for delegation to its main Sub-Committees.
The Working Party's view on (a) was that, on balance, it would not be in the best interests of the Council to create a Rural Communities Group.
On (b) it had made minor revisions to the detailed functions of certain Committees.
Under (c) it was recommending a substantial revision of the delegated powers of the Policy and Resources Committee and the Finance and Property Sub-Committee (which should be renamed Finance and General Purposes Sub-Committee to reflect its wider role) and no changes to the terms of reference and delegated powers of the Personnel Sub-Committee.
Members considered whether certain detailed functions had been allocated to the appropriate committees, but recognised that there would be an opportunity to "fine tune" these at a later stage, in the light of experience. They also discussed the implementation date for the "Minimum Disturbance" decision and recognised that it would be beneficial for it to coincide with the Annual Meeting of the Council in May 1996.
As to Departmental Restructuring, the Working Party was recommending that the timetable presented to the Committee on 24 July 1995 be approved, subject to it being recognised that, whilst restructuring could be implemented on 1 April 1996 only Central Support Departments could "go live" on that date and that a further year may be required to implement change involving the creation of business units from the Environmental Health, Leisure Services and Planning Departments.
A special meeting of the Committee would be held in October 1995 to consider recommendations by the Clerk and Chief Executive and the three Directors (designate) for the new staffing structure of the Council.
* RECOMMENDED - That
(1) the Committee structure outlined at Appendix B to these minutes and the changes referred to in 3(a), (b), (c) and (d) below be adopted and implemented from 14 May 1995;
(2) a Rural Communities Group be not established;
(3) (a) the reserved powers and duties of the Council (as contained in paragraph A1 of the existing Scheme of Delegation) be amended by the deletion of sub-paragraph (r) "the allowing of food shops in the Westmorland Shopping Centre, Kendal" in view of the sale of the freehold of the Centre;
(b) the Finance and Property Sub-Committee be renamed the Finance and General Purposes Sub-Committee;
(c) the delegated powers and terms of reference of the Policy and Resources Committee be amended and revised into the format shown at Appendix C(1) to those minutes;
(d) the delegated powers and terms of reference of the Finance and General Purposes Sub-Committee be as set out at Appendix C(2) to these minutes; and
(e) no changes be made to the terms of reference and delegated powers of the Personnel Sub-Committee; and
(4) the departmental restructuring timetable being recommended by the Future of South Lakeland Working Party be approved.
829 Improvements to the System of Local Government Within South Lakeland District
As part of its remit of examining ways of improving the system of local government in the District, the Future of South Lakeland Working Party had considered a Code of Practice on working with local councils in Cumbria. The Code had been produced by Cumbria County Council in liaison with the Cumbria Association of Local Councils.
The County Joint Committee had also considered the Code, and had resolved that it should be presented to appropriate district council committees. The County Council's Chief Executive had also suggested that the District Council might like to consider adopting it (suitably adapted) as a base document from which to develop working relationships with local councils in South Lakeland. The Future of South Lakeland Working Party supported that approach and were submitting the Code to the Committee for consideration, together with
a consultation document from the County Council on "Working Together: Towards a Voluntary Sector Strategy for Cumbria County Council".
RESOLVED - That
(1) a Code of Practice on Working with Local Councils, based on the County Council's Code of Practice, be drawn up by the Future of South Lakeland Working Party;
(2) Cumbria County Council be informed that the Committee welcomes its document on "Working Together: Towards a Voluntary Strategy for Cumbria County Council" and that the District Council will in turn be producing its own document; and
(3) the content of that document be drawn up by the Future of South Lakeland Working Party.
830 LOCAL GOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION
Further to Minute 410 (1995/96), a Joint Policy Circular from the three local authority associations had been received, formally inviting the District Council to join the Local Government Association. The invitation to join was on the basis of the proposals set out in "One Voice for Local Government" as modified by the revised proposals reported to the Committee on 11 July 1995.
A timetable, setting out key dates and actions leading to the creation of the Local Government Association, had been included with the Policy Circular. The Committee's attention was drawn to the first meeting of the Shadow General Assembly of the new Association, which was to be held in Central London on 30 November 1995. There was an invitation to nominate a named representative to attend the meeting.
The Clerk and Chief Executive referred to Minute 1550 (1994/95) and reminded the Committee that the Council had registered the strongest possible protest against any proposal to include it within a regional structure, under a new Local Authority Association, which was based on the Northern Region; furthermore it had made it known to the local authority associations, that unless it was positioned within the Region which was based on the Government's Integrated Offices for the North West, it would be forced to reconsider its position regarding support for a new single Local Authority Association. Although the Clerk and Chief Executive had received written assurances via the Association of District Councils that the Council's wishes would be accommodated, he was not aware that the constitution of the new Association reflected those wishes.
* RECOMMENDED - That
(1) subject to the incorporation of a rider which safeguards the Council's position regarding its membership being conditional upon it being positioned within the regional structure based on the Government's Integrated Offices for the North West under the New Local
Authority Association, the Secretary of the Association of District Councils be advised that the District Council will join the Local Government Association; and
(2) Councillor Mrs E.M. Braithwaite be appointed as the Council's representative to attend the inaugural meeting of the Shadow General Assembly of the Association on 30 November 1995.
831 A CHOICE FOR ENGLAND: A CONSULTATION PAPER ON LABOUR'S PLANS FOR ENGLISH REGIONAL GOVERNMENT
The Labour Party had published a consultation paper setting out its proposals for English regional government. A copy of the introduction and summary was presented to the Committee for comment.
The Association of District Councils (ADC) had suggested that as the debate about regional government was an important issue for all member authorities (whatever their political control), it was keen to receive member authorities' comments on the paper so that it could develop a full and considered response.
The ADC was also holding a one day seminar in London on 26 October 1995 to assist authorities consider the issue.
RESOLVED - That
(1) a response, on the Council's behalf, be made to the Consultation Paper;
(2) the Future of South Lakeland Working Party be asked to make that response; and
(3) no delegate be appointed to attend the seminar in London on 26 October 1995.
APPOINTMENT OF REPRESENTATIVES TO SERVE ON OUTSIDE BODIES 832 Cumbria Rural Citizens' Advice Bureau
By Minute 407 (1995/96), the Committee had appointed Councillor Mrs J.S. Borer as the Council's representative on the Management Committee of the Cumbria Rural Citizens' Advice Bureau.
Mrs Borer had subsequently stated that due to other major commitments she was unable to give the work of the Bureau the attention and support required and could not therefore accept the appointment.
RESOLVED - That Councillor Mrs G.S. Hubbard be appointed as the Council's representative on the Management Committee of the Cumbria Rural Citizens' Advice Bureau.
833 Sandgate Pool, Kendal - Consultative Committee
At its meeting on 28 April 1992, the Committee had appointed Councillor B. Todd as the Council's representative to serve on the Consultative Committee for a four year term (expiring 1996).
Councillor Todd had indicated that he wished to resign as the Council's representative.
The Committee was asked to appoint a replacement to serve out the remaining year of the term of office.
RESOLVED - That Councillor W. Stewart be appointed as the Council's representative to serve on the Sandgate Pool Consultative Committee.
834 GRANTS TO ORGANISATIONS
The Treasurer reported that a balance of ¨1,685 remained unallocated from the 1995/96 budget of ¨63,790.
Further to Minute 403 (1995/96), he re-submitted applications from YMCA Lakeside - Princes Trust for Volunteers and The Granary, Ulverston, together with further financial information about those organisations.
He also reported that applications for grant aid had been received from NSPCC - South Cumbria Centre and the Portia Trust.
RESOLVED - That
(1) a grant of ¨1,000 be made to the NSPCC - South Cumbria Centre, together with one of ¨685.00 to The Granary, Ulverston, towards their ongoing work; and
(2) the applications from YMCA Lakeside - Princes Trust for Volunteers and the Portia Trust, towards setting up costs for projects, be not granted.
835 COMMEMORATION OF THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF VJ DAY
RESOLVED - That the action of the Chairman of the Policy and Resources Emergency Sub-Committee in authorising a VJ Day Commemorative Event grant of ¨50.00 to the King's Own Border Social and Recreation Centre, Ulverston, following a late application, be confirmed.
PUBLIC OFFICES 836 Ulverston Town Hall - Office Accommodation
As a result of the split of the former Housing Department into client and contractor the office accommodation at Ulverston Town Hall used by the Department had been divided between the two. However, the space allocated to the contractor was insufficient, and the Clerk and Chief Executive presented proposals for a short-term solution.
It was recognised, however, that a development plan for the Town Hall was in the course of preparation and that the Working Party, appointed pursuant to Minute 1164 (1994/95), was likely to be reporting its findings and recommendations to the Committee on 5 December 1995.
RESOLVED - That no action be taken for the time being on the proposals for a short-term solution to the office accommodation problems at Ulverston Town Hall, and the report of the Working Party be awaited.
837 MEMBERS' TRAINING DAY: "PUBLIC RELATIONS - WHAT VALUE?"
Each year Members from the six District Councils and the County Council were invited to attend a training event organised by their training officers.
The subject for the 1995 event was "Public Relations - What Value to Local Authorities?". The event would be held on 24 October 1995 at Higham Hall, Bassenthwaite.
Each of the District Councils and the County Council were being invited to send up to six Members. The Chief Executives and one other officer from each authority with responsibility for Public Relations were also being invited.
The Committee was asked to approve the attendance of up to six Members and to authorise attendance at the event as an Approved Duty for the payment of Attendance, Travelling and Subsistence Allowances, as in previous years.
Group Leaders had already been asked to nominate one Member each from their respective Groups; that left the Committee with the task of appointing two more delegates.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the attendance of up to six Members at the training day be approved;
(2) in addition to the four Members appointed via the Group Leaders, Councillors Mrs E.M. Braithwaite and S.B. Collins be also appointed to attend; and
(3) the attendance of the Members be authorised as an Approved Duty for the payment of Attendance, Travelling and Subsistence Allowances.
Note:- In accordance with Section 100(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, the Chairman allowed the following item of business, which required an urgent response.
838 DISTRICT AUDIT CONFERENCE - "ADDING VALUE LOCALLY"
District Audit was organising a series of Value for Money launch conferences, under the title of "Adding Value Locally". They were specifically targeted at local authority Members, Chief Executives and other Chief Officers.
The District Auditor had issued an invitation for the Council to be represented at the launch conference at Leyland on 16 October 1995.
RESOLVED - That Councillor E. Proctor be appointed as the Council's elected Member delegate to the launch conference at Leyland, and his attendance be authorised as an "Approved Duty" for the payment of Attendance and Travelling and Subsistence Allowances.
839 COMPULSORY COMPETITIVE TENDERING (CCT) Finance Services and Information Technology
Referring to Minute 1247 (1994/95), the Treasurer reported Regulations (effective from 20 August 1995) which confirmed the proposals contained in the consultation papers considered by the Committee on 3 January 1995.
There was however confusion about how the percentage of work, which local authorities must subject to CCT, would be calculated. Different interpretations were being proffered by the Department of the Environment, the Audit Commission and CIPFA. A meeting with the District Auditor was being sought to try and clarify the situation.
RESOLVED - That the Regulations be noted and a further report be presented to the Committee as the position develops and, hopefully, clarifies.
840 PRESS AND PUBLIC
RESOLVED - That, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 8, 9, 1, 12 and 9 respectively, of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.
841 DIRECT SERVICES DEPARTMENT Building Division
Further to Minutes 1973 (1994/95) and 396 (1995/96), the General Manager of the Direct Services Department presented a report on the operations of the Building Division. Given the encouraging signs, the progress made, and recognising that the Division was providing a good service to the Council, whilst saving it substantial costs, the Direct Services Management Board was recommending that the Building Division be retained and given every encouragement to succeed.
RESOLVED - That
(1) the recommendations of the Board be wholeheartedly supported; and consequently
(2) the Building Division of the Direct Services Department be retained.
Referring to Minute 397 (1995/96), the Clerk and Chief Executive presented a further report, containing his observations and actions taken or proposed in relation to the issues raised in the findings of the Panel appointed pursuant to Minute 1239 (1994/95).
RESOLVED - That the report be noted.
843 APPOINTMENT OF ACTING CHIEF PLANNING OFFICER AND ACTING CHIEF TECHNICAL OFFICER
Further to Minute 739(1) (1995/96), whereby it had been reported that the Chief Technical Officer and the Chief Planning Officer had accepted Voluntary Redundancy terms, the Clerk and Chief Executive stated that the two officers would retire with effect from 30 September 1995. As no new appointments would be made to the posts, the respective Deputy Chief Officers were being asked to stand in until the Council was restructured on 1 April 1996. Given the circumstances which surrounded the cases and the longer than usual period of cover required, the Committee was asked to approve the appointment of Mr M.P. Jayne (Deputy Chief Planning Officer and Director (designate) of Operations) as Acting Chief Planning Officer and Mr J. Tait (Deputy Chief Technical Officer) as Acting Chief Technical Officer.
The Treasurer reported on the financial implications of the Chief Officer retirements and the Acting Chief Officer appointments, and on possible sources from which to fund them.
RESOLVED - That the aforementioned officers be appointed, respectively, as Acting Chief Planning Officer and Acting Chief Technical Officer for the period 1 October 1995 to 31 March 1996 on a salary commensurate with the lowest point of Chief Officer Scale 5.
* RECOMMENDED - That the revenue consequences (¨23,800) of the retirements/re-designations in 1995/96 not covered by savings within the two departments concerned, be financed out of the revenue funds, totalling ¨648,800, which have been earmarked for capital purposes.
844 PUBLIC OFFICES South Lakeland House - Heating and Ventilation Problems
The Clerk and Chief Executive reported on the ongoing problems with the heating and ventilation system in South Lakeland House and sought approval to the appointment of a consultant engineer specialising in heating and ventilation design. The consultant had previously been engaged to discuss with the designers of the system problems which had been identified at an earlier stage and the proposals for dealing with those problems. Another report from her had also been commissioned with regard to investigations into the background of the installation of the system.
If ratified, her further appointment would cover work in assessing the suitability of any additional remedial work proposed by the designers. In the event of failure to reach agreement over the scope of that work, she would be asked to prepare a report on the system, which would compare the standard of its design with the standard expected from a reasonably competent engineer. It was anticipated that her fees might be recoverable.
RESOLVED - That Linda Austin of Philip Rockhill and Associates be appointed to act on the Council's behalf in the above matter.
* RECOMMENDED - That a supplementary Revenue Estimate of up to ¨10,000 be approved to cover the cost of her fees.
845 APPLICATION FOR BUILDING AT SOUTHFIELD, MILNTHORPE ROAD, KENDAL
The Committee considered an application for the granting of consent to a breach of a covenant restricting the building of houses at Southfield, Milnthorpe Road, Kendal.
RESOLVED - That the application be refused.
The meeting ended at 5.42 p.m.