Agenda and minutes

Dorset Council
Thursday, 18th July, 2019 6.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, County Hall, Dorchester

Contact: Susan Dallison  01305 252216 - Email: susan.dallison@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

15.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 303 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 16 May 2019.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 16 May 2019 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

16.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

In respect on item 8 on the agenda, Cllr D Turner declared a potential pecuniary interest as he was in receipt of an Army Pension.  He further advised that his wife may be in a position of benefit as a result of the recommendation. Cllr Turner confirmed that he would not take part in the debate or the vote on the item.

 

Cllr C Lugg and Cllr B Quayle made a similar declaration in respect of item 8 on the agenda. 

 

17.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive any announcements from the Chairman of Council. 

Minutes:

The Chairman reported the sad loss of Ray Nowak a former member of Weymouth & Portland Borough Council who passed away in May.  He was a longstanding and well respected local figure in the Weymouth & Portland community.

 

The Chairman advised the Council that in future eulogies would only be taken for members of Dorset Council.

 

The Chairman reported on a number of civic events that she and the Vice-Chairman had attended, including the Wimborne Civic Day and Mayor Making in Dorchester and Blandford.  The Chairman advised that she was pleased to have attended the re-signing of the Armed Forces Covenant at Bovington where Cllr David Walsh, Chairman of the Armed Forces Covenant Board in Dorset, had signed the convenant on behalf of Dorset Council.  

 

The Chairman also advised on a recent Danceathon organised in County Hall as a fund-raiser by Friends of Dorset Care Leavers.  She suggested that as all Dorset councillors were legally “corporate parents” this was an opportunity to act as corporate grandparents, and encouraged councillors to make a contribution to the charity.

 

18.

Public Participation - Questions and Statements

A period of 15 minutes is allocated to receive and respond to questions and statements on the business of the Council in the following order:

 

(a) Questions and statements from Town and Parish Councils;

(b) Questions and statements from those living or working in the Dorset Council area. 

 

At each meeting a person or organisation can submit  a maximum of 2 questions, or 2 statements or 1 question and 1 statement.

A period of 3 minutes is available for each question or statement to be asked or read.

 

The deadline for the receipt of questions and statements is 8.30am on 15 July 2019. 

Minutes:

All the public questions, statements together with the responses from the Leader of the Council and Portfolio Holders were set out in the Appendix 1 attached to these minutes.

 

19.

Public Participation - Petitions and Deputations

A period of 15 minutes is allocated to receive and respond to petitions in accordance with the council’s petitions scheme.

 

A period of 15 minutes is allocated to receive and respond to deputations in

accordance with the council’s constitution.

 

The petitions scheme and procedures relating to deputations can be viewed at:  

http://moderngov.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk/documents/s5860/Part%202.%20Pages%2096-183%20-%20Rules%20of%20Procedure.pdf

 

Minutes:

The Chairman accepted receipt of a petition from Ms Sarah Kerslake and her son of over 1,000 signatures in relation to Budmouth College.

The Chairman advised that as there were a large number of members of the public in attendance at the meeting items 8 and 9 would be taken later in the agenda. This would allow the matters of public interest to be considered first.

20.

Announcements and reports from the Leader of Council and Cabinet Members

To receive any announcements and reports from the Leader of Council and members of the Cabinet.

 

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council took the opportunity to reflect on the work of the council to date, highlighting the promise of cross-party working to shape key policies through the setting up of cross-party Executive Advisory Panels.  These included work on the Local Plan, Climate Change, Economic Growth and Development.  Further panels were to be established to address the areas of IT and Digital matters, relationships with Town & Parish Councils, Leisure Services and Social Care.  

 

The Leader of the Council advised that a letter had been sent to the Secretary of State regarding SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) funding following the last meeting of Full Council.  He highlighted that this was a national issue, but he would continue to work for what was in the best interest for Dorset. He referred to the challenges faced by Budmouth College and advised that the council would receive a Peer Review in October.  This was an opportunity for councillors from other councils to look at what Dorset was doing and make sure that councillors learnt lessons as the new Dorset Council progressed.

 

21.

Questions from Councillors

To receive questions submitted by Councillors.  The deadline for receipt of questions is 8.30am on 15 July 2019.

Minutes:

Cllr B Ezzard and Cllr K Wheller asked questions of the Leader of Council and the Portfolio Holder for Children, Education and Early Help.  These along with the responses are attached to the minutes at Appendix 2.

 

A question from Cllr A Brenton, who was absent from the meeting is also attached for information.

22.

Climate Change pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To receive the motion proposed by Cllr D Turner seconded by Cllr B Quayle

 

In accordance with the Constitution, Procedure Rule 14.3 (b) the motion will be forwarded to the Climate Change Executive Advisory Panel for consideration and report back to Full Council.

 

Minutes:

The following motion was proposed by Cllr D Turner, seconded by Cllr B Quayle and supported by Cllrs J Andrews, G Taylor, J Dunseith, K Wheller, R Knox and B Ridout:-

 

“Dorset Council notes:

that the impacts of climate breakdown are already causing serious damage around the world. 

that the ‘Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C’, published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in October 2018, (a) describes the enormous harm that a 2°C average rise in global temperatures is likely to cause compared with a 1.5°C rise, and (b) confirms that limiting Global Warming to 1.5°C may still be possible with ambitious action from national and sub-national authorities, civil society and the private sector.

Governments (national, regional and local) have a duty to act.  Strong policies to cut emissions also have associated health, wellbeing and economic benefits; and that recognising this, a growing number of UK local authorities have already passed 'Climate Emergency' motions.

Dorset Council therefore commits to:

Declare a ‘Climate Emergency’ that requires urgent action.

Make the Council’s activities net-zero carbon by 2040 or earlier.

Achieve 100% clean energy across the Council’s full range of functions by 2040 or earlier.

Ensure that all strategic decisions, budgets and approaches to planning decisions are in line with a shift to zero carbon by 2040 or earlier.

Support and work with all other relevant agencies towards making the entire area zero carbon within the same timescale; Suggested interim targets are:

30% by 2025, 60% by 2030 and 85% by 2035, these figures have been selected because it is the last few % that are hardest to eradicate from the system. Having these targets dates will concentrate minds.

Ensure that political and chief officer leadership teams embed this work in all areas and take responsibility for reducing, as rapidly as possible, the carbon emissions resulting from the Council’s activities, ensuring that any recommendations are fully costed and 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;

Dorset Council Scrutiny Panels will consider the impact of climate change and the environment when reviewing Council policies and strategies;

Work with, influence and inspire partners across the district, county and region to help deliver this goal through all relevant strategies, plans and shared resources by developing a series of meetings, events and partner workshops;

And that Dorset Council and partners take steps to proactively include young people in the process, ensuring that they have a voice in shaping the future;

Report on the level of investment in the fossil fuel industry that our pensions plan and other investments have, and review the Council’s investment strategy to give due consideration to climate change impacts in the investment portfolio;

Ensure that all reports in preparation for the 2020/21 budget cycle and investment strategy will take into account the actions the council will be required to take to address this emergency;

Call  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.

23.

Climate Change pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To receive the motion proposed by Cllr K Clayton seconded by Cllr M Roe

 

In accordance with the Constitution, Procedure Rule 14.3 (b) the motion will be forwarded to the Climate Change Executive Advisory Panel for consideration and report back to Full Council.

 

Minutes:

The following motion was proposed by Cllr K Clayton seconded by Cllr M Roe and supported by Cllrs B Heatley, J Orrell, N Ireland, D Bolwell, R Tarr, B Ezzard, D Taylor, S Williams, M Rennie, D Tooke and R Hughes

 

We know that climate breakdown is already causing serious damage around the world. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s 2018 ‘Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C’ describes the enormous harm that a 2°C average rise in global temperatures is likely to cause compared with a 1.5°C rise and confirms that limiting Global Warming to 1.5°C may still be possible with ambitious action. As many local councils now recognise, and as the outline 'Climate Emergency' motion we passed in May recognises, we have a duty to act NOW, and cannot wait for national governments to change their policies.

 

In this context, this motion proposes that Dorset Council commits to:

 

1.    Make the Council’s activities net-zero carbon by 2030;

 

2.    Work with partners and stake-holders to achieve the same across the whole of the Council area;

 

3.    Develop a Dorset wide transport strategy that discourages car use, encourages walking and cycling, and drastically improves rail and bus services;

 

4.    Develop an energy strategy that provides local renewable energy generation and storage, increases the efficiency of buildings and addresses fuel poverty;

 

5.    Develop a new Dorset Local Plan that ensures all planning decisions are consistent with a shift to net-zero carbon by 2030;

 

6.    End any investment by the Dorset Local Government Pension Fund in the fossil fuel industry or other activities that have an impact on climate change;

 

7.    Ensure that our net-zero carbon by 2030 ambition is reflected in ALL strategies and plans, that all policy papers include a Climate Impact Assessment;

 

8.    Require the cross-party climate change panel to report back to Council, within nine months, to provide a time table and action plan detailing how all the above can be achieved;

 

9.    Take steps to proactively consult and include the opinions of residents, particularly young people, in all of the above, and consider setting up citizens’ assemblies; and

 

10. Call on the UK Government to provide the powers, resources and help with funding to make this possible, and lobby local MPs to do likewise.”

 

Decision

 

That the Notice of Motion be referred to the Climate Change Executive Advisory Panel for consideration and report back to Full Council.

24.

Social Mobility pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To receive the motion proposed by Cllr P Barrow and seconded by Cllr P Kimber.

 

In accordance with the Constitution, Procedure Rule 14.3 (b) the motion will be forwarded to the Economic Development Executive Advisory Panel for consideration and report back to Full Council.

Minutes:

In inviting the proposer to put the motion, the Chairman advised that she fully supported the proposal and would welcome further examination of how the council could address the poverty which blights some parts of Dorset.

 

The following notice of motion was proposed by Cllr P Barrow, seconded by Cllr P Kimber and supported by Cllrs H Legg, C Sutton, L O’Leary, J Andrews, J Worth, A Canning, A Starr, S Cocking, L Fry, R Hughes and N Ireland

 

Background

 

Recent reports have revealed that low wages and poor social mobility are key issues in some areas of Dorset. Weymouth and Portland is particularly disadvantaged, but so are some other areas of the County.

 

The Social Mobility Commission’s “State of the Nation 2017” report, assessed social mobility across all local authority areas in the Country. Weymouth and Portland was placed third from bottom of England’s 324 local authority areas.

 

A House of Commons Library Briefing Paper, CBP 8400, published in 2019, assessed social mobility across all parliamentary constituencies. South Dorset was placed last among the 533 constituencies in England.

 

A report on the future of seaside towns, published in 2019 by The House of Commons Select Committee on Regenerating Seaside Towns and Communities assessed challenges faced by all seaside areas. Weymouth and Portland was referred to on several occasions, with the report noting particularly severe problems with low levels of attainment in secondary schools; reliance on part-time jobs, with the lowest wages in the UK; severe difficulty in encouraging students to return after graduation; and a population of transient renters in low-cost housing that is three times higher than the rest of Dorset.

 

End Child Poverty released a report in May 2019 on children living in poverty across the UK. In Weymouth and Portland 30% of children live in poverty, with particularly high levels in Weymouth East (39%), Melcombe Regis (39%) and Underhill (40%).

 

The GMB Union released a report in May 2019 that assessed wage levels across the UK using ONS statistics. This revealed that 25% of jobs in Weymouth and Portland pay less than the Real Living Wage with 6,500 working residents in Weymouth and Portland being paid less than £9 an hour. More than half of this total was represented by part-time jobs, giving evidence of an under-employed workforce on poverty wages. There are also many other areas in Dorset that have similar issues with low pay.

 

Many of our most disadvantaged residents are denied life chances to which they aspire. If we fail to improve social mobility we risk parts of our County becoming blighted communities.

 

Dorset’s micro-climate and world-class environment attracts older more affluent residents to live in the County and our economy benefits significantly from their personal spending. They in turn rely on a resilient and economically successful semi-skilled and skilled workforce for their lifestyle aspirations. It’s in all our interests that the workforce is supported and encouraged to remain in Dorset. Improving social mobility will provide the key underpinning to Dorset’s aspirations of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.

25.

Safe Passage Dorset pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To consider the motion proposed by Cllr V Pothecary seconded by Cllr S Flower.

 

Minutes:

The following motion was proposed by Cllr V Pothecary, seconded by Cllr S Flower and supported by Cllrs P Batstone, K Wheller, T Cook, S Jespersen, B Ridout, M Penfold, J Somper, C Sutton, C Jones and D Tooke

 

Background

 

80 years ago, at a time of great economic crisis, and in just 10 months, 10,000 mostly Jewish children were brought to Britain from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia, saving them from Nazi persecution. This magnificent effort by the people of Britain became known as the Kinder Transport.

 

The threat to children fleeing war and oppression is now at the highest level it has been in the last 70 years. We are witnessing the biggest humanitarian crisis since World War II, with over 70 million displaced worldwide by war, persecution and conflict. 25 million of these are refugees and more than 50% are children under 18yrs old.

 

Lord Dubs and Safe Passage are calling upon every local authority across the country to commit to accepting “a minimum of 3 unaccompanied or vulnerable children per year every year for the next 10 years”. Across the country, this would equate to the 10,000 child refugees brought here 80 years ago.

 

Safe Passage are committed to Safe and Legal routes for child refugees, so not only would these children be properly authenticated by agencies such as UNHCR working with the UK Home Office, but they would arrive by a SAFE and LEGAL ROUTE, not as spontaneous arrivals having taken immense risks in flimsy dinghies, or under or inside lorries. Furthermore, their care would be ensured through a fully government funded scheme and would not be an ongoing burden on local taxation.

 

On the 8th November last year Safe Passage (Dorset) obtained Dorset County Councils unanimous vote to providing their strongest support to their campaign and to carry this forward to Dorset Council at the earliest opportunity.

 

Notice of Motion

 

“That, provided Government fully funds the programme. Dorset Council will give the strongest possible support to Safe Passage (Dorset) by accepting a minimum of three unaccompanied and vulnerable refugee children per year, over a ten year period.”

 

The Chairman invited Mr B Sullivan, on behalf of the deputation, to make a statement in respect of Safe Passage following which members debated the motion before them. Details of the statement are set out in Appendix 2 to these minutes.

 

The Portfolio Holder for Children, Education and Early Years indicated that, in principal, he supported Lord Dubb’s concept and the notice of motion and many councillors spoke in support of the motion.  However it was agreed that it was important that the Safe Passage project was not a financial burden to the council and the children it already looked after. Therefore central government support for the scheme was essential.

 

It was proposed by Cllr V Pothecary seconded by Cllr S Flower

 

Decision

 

That provided Government fully funds the programme. Dorset Council will give the strongest possible support to Safe Passage (Dorset) by accepting  ...  view the full minutes text for item 25.

26.

Academisation of Budmouth College, Chickerell pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To consider the motion proposed by Cllr R Hope seconded by Cllr G Taylor.

 

 

Minutes:

The following motion was proposed by Cllr R Hope seconded by Cllr G Taylor and supported by Cllrs D Gray, J Dunseith, S Jones, R Legg, D Morgan, N Ireland, M Rennie, P Kimber and P Barrow

 

Background

Budmouth College has been in the heart of the community for over 30 years and has worked hard to build an ethos and culture to support the community it serves. Although it is acknowledged that there are aspects that do need to change it has a firm foundation, a foundation which needs to be preserved. This school is unique in that it serves one of the most deprived parts of the Dorset Council area which brings its own challenges, challenges that this school has risen to over the years.

There are significant concerns in the local area from students, parents and the wider community about the proposed academisation of Budmouth College. These concerns were the subject of a Notice of Motion to Weymouth Town Council on 26 June 2019 which was bought by Cllr Fuhrmann and supported by Weymouth Town Council. There was a request from WTC that academisation and the position that Budmouth College finds itself in should be highlighted to Dorset Council.

The school has a new Head Teacher who has an excellent track record and is held in high regard; the senior management team has been changed and feedback from teachers and parents since he took office have been positive and reflect a wider sense that the setting is robustly addressing the concerns raised at the last Ofsted inspection with positive and measurable results.

There has been a letter sent to the Rt Hon Damian Hinds from senior councillors and officers expressing concerns regarding the process of academisation at Budmouth College; these concerns both reflect and extend those raised by the community.

(This letter has been the subject of a leak to the media which is in no way condoned)

Motion

This council:

a) Supports and acknowledges the work of senior councillors and this Council’s Executive Director of People - Children in writing to the Rt Hon Damian Hinds, Secretary of State for Education, stating their concerns regarding the proposed academisation of Budmouth College.

b) Will make further representations to the Secretary of State for Education seeking his agreement to a delay in the timetable for academisation whilst the progress of Budmouth College since the last Ofsted report is assessed and further consultation is undertaken.

c) Will seek confirmation from the Regional Schools Commissioner of the reasons for the choice of intended academy provider and evidence of the adequacy of the due diligence carried out to ensure the appropriateness of the chosen organisation supplying the service.

Cllr N Ireland indicated that, as a parent of children educated at the college,  he supported the motion, however he also wished to add an additional recommendation as an amendment and this was set out below:-

“(d) recognises by immediately dismissing Budmouth College's IEB that the said body has failed to adequately support  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26.

Duration of Meeting

Following a vote, it was agreed that the meeting would continue beyond the 3 hour time limit that was set within the constitution.

 

27.

Revenues and Benefits Policies and Schemes pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To consider a recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 25 June 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In the absence of the Portfolio Holder, Cllr P Warf presented the report and recommendation.  The proposal was seconded by Cllr R Knox.

 

Decision

 

That Council agree, effective from 1 April 2019, that 100% of all income from War Disablement or War Widows Pension be disregarded when calculating entitlement to Housing Benefit in line with the resolution as set out at Appendix A of the report.

28.

Adoption of Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and Dorset Waste Plan pdf icon PDF 83 KB

To consider a recommendation from the Cabinet meeting held on 25 June 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In presenting the plan the Portfolio Holder for Planning advised that it was essential that the council had an up-to-date statutory policy framework for considering planning applications for waste development. The council also needed to comply with the requirements of the statutory/consequential orders concerning shaping Dorset Council which required a council-wide local plan by 2024.

 

Members were reminded that the plan was submitted to the Secretary of State in March 2018 and the Planning Inspector’s report had considered the plan to be legally compliant and sound.

 

Some members opposed the plan and others expressed concerns regarding the assumption of business as usual in respect of not reducing the current volumes of waste. There were also concerns around the site facilities being fit for purpose. 

 

In response the Portfolio Holder advised that the plan had been 6 years in the making and that the adoption of the plan would provide Dorset Council with an up-to-date policy framework. He stated that it was essential for a plan to accord with the latest national policies. It  would provide the council with greater certainty in securing acceptable development that provides for Dorset’s waste needs in a manner that was consistent with the Waste Plan. 

 

It was proposed by Cllr D Walsh and seconded by Cllr B Trite

 

Decision

 

That Council: -

 

(a)                   Adopts the Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and Dorset Waste Plan      subject to the inclusion of the main modifications that are appended to the Inspector’s Report;

 

(b)       Confirms that the formal adoption date will begin two weeks from the date at which both BCP Council and Dorset Council have resolved to adopt the plan;

 

(c)        Delegates to the Lead Member for Planning, after consultation with the Executive Director for Place:

 

(i)   Any additional (non-material) modifications to the Plan which were the subject of consultation, together with any other additional modifications which benefit the clarity of the Plan;

 

(ii)  Authority to expedite any technical/procedural matters associated with adoption of the plan, including those connected with Dorset Council’s role as the Competent Authority on matters relating to the Habitats Regulations Assessment 1 of the Plan.  

 

29.

Urgent items

To consider any items of business which the Chairman has had prior notification and considers to be urgent pursuant to section 100B (4) b) of the Local Government Act 1972. The reason for the urgency shall be recorded in the minutes.

 

Minutes:

There were no urgent items to report.

30.

Exempt Business

To move the exclusion of the press and the public for the following item in view of the likely disclosure of exempt information within the meaning of paragraph  of schedule 12 A to the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

The public and the press will be asked to leave the meeting whilst the item of business is considered.

Minutes:

There was no exempt business to report.

Appendix 1 - Public Questions and Statements pdf icon PDF 117 KB

Additional documents:

Appendix 2 - Questions from Councillors pdf icon PDF 55 KB