Agenda and minutes

Cabinet
Tuesday, 8th August 2017 6.00 p.m.

Venue: Lancaster Town Hall

Contact: Liz Bateson, Democratic Services - telephone (01524) 582047 or email  ebateson@lancaster.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

14.

Minutes

To receive as a correct record the minutes of Cabinet held on Monday, 26th June 2017 (previously circulated). 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on Monday 26th June 2017 were approved as a correct record.

 

15.

Items of Urgent Business Authorised by the Leader

To consider any such items authorised by the Leader and to consider where in the agenda the item(s) are to be considered. 

Minutes:

The Chairman advised that there were no items of urgent business.

 

 

16.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations by Members of interests in respect of items on this Agenda. 

Members are reminded that, in accordance with the Localism Act 2011, they are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests which have not already been declared in the Council’s Register of Interests. (It is a criminal offence not to declare a disclosable pecuniary interest either in the Register or at the meeting). 

Whilst not a legal requirement, in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 9 and in the interests of clarity and transparency, Members should declare any disclosable pecuniary interests which they have already declared in the Register, at this point in the meeting. 

In accordance with Part B Section 2 of the Code Of Conduct, Members are required to declare the existence and nature of any other interests as defined in paragraphs 8(1) or 9(2) of the Code of Conduct. 

 

Minutes:

No declarations were made at this point.

                     

17.

Public Speaking

To consider any such requests received in accordance with the approved procedure. 

 

Minutes:

Members were advised that there had been no requests to speak at the meeting in accordance with Cabinet’s agreed procedure.

 

18.

Consultation on the Introduction of Selective Licensing in the Private Rented Sector pdf icon PDF 250 KB

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Warriner)

 

Report of Chief Officer (Health & Housing)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Warriner)

 

Cabinet received a report from the Chief Officer (Health & Housing) which advised on the benefits of introducing a Licensing scheme for Private Rented Housing in a designated area of Morecambe, and sought approval to begin a consultation on its introduction.

 

The options, options analysis, including risk assessment and officer preferred option, were set out in the report as follows:

 

 

OPTION 1

 

Not go ahead with a consultation on the introduction of licensing

 

OPTION 2

 

Carry out a consultation exercise on the introduction of a licensing scheme in Morecambe

ADVANTAGES

 

 

 

The council operates a minimum service to meet its statutory obligation.

A properly administered licensing scheme should be cost neutral to the council but deliver positive benefits to the housing stock and local area.

 

Residents, potential residents and investors will be reassured of the council’s commitment to making improvements to the private rented sector.

 

A licensing scheme would complement existing regeneration programmes.

 

Resources from the TCA grant will fund the consultation.

DISADVANTAGES

The council are not taking advantage of all statutory tools available to them to improve conditions in the private rented sector.

 

The council are not maximising the funding offered by the TCA grant.

 

The council are not taking advantage of a self-financing intervention that has been demonstrated to encourage housing regeneration

 

Investors interested in Morecambe may not be reassured of the council’s commitment to improvement of the area as a whole.

 

There will be some officer time committed to the consultation exercise.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RISKS

Failure to meet the corporate priority of improvements to the private rental sector.

 

Failure to meet outcomes for TCA grant.

Complaints from landlords about increased regulation.

 

 

The officer recommendation is to approve a consultation exercise on the development of a Licensing Scheme in an area of the West End of Morecambe. The exact boundary is defined in Appendix 4 of the report.

 

The private rented sector is the only housing option available to some of the most vulnerable people in our society. However, in some areas, properties in this sector suffer from poor conditions, management and low-level anti-social behaviour. The introduction of a licensing scheme offers the opportunity to promote a successful private rented sector. This, alongside other interventions already in place in the renewal areas of Morecambe will bring about further benefits for the community.

 

Councillor Warriner proposed, seconded by Councillor Hanson:-

 

“That the recommendations, as set out in the report, be approved.”

 

Councillors then voted:-

 

Resolved unanimously:

 

(1)        That approval be given to the development of a Morecambe Licensing Scheme including the definition of a proposed designated area.

 

(2)        That approval be given to the commencement of a consultation exercise with all persons who are likely to be affected by the designation in accordance with the requirements of the Housing Act 2004.

 

(3)       That, following the consultation exercise and prior to the Morecambe Licensing Scheme being implemented, a report be brought back to Cabinet for final approval.

 

Officer responsible for effecting the decision:

 

Chief Officer (Health  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Community Housing Fund pdf icon PDF 249 KB

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Hanson)

 

Report of Chief Officer (Regeneration & Planning)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Warriner)

 

Cabinet received a report from the Chief Officer (Regeneration & Planning) which sought authority to establish a new governance and decision making framework for the allocation of the Community Housing Fund for Lancaster district.

 

The options, options analysis, including risk assessment and officer preferred option, were set out in the report as follows:

 

 

 

Option 1: Retain the DCLG funding and approve the framework and policy to allocate the Community Housing Fund and implement accordingly, and use the £29,645 to increase officer resources in the Planning Policy Team

Option 2: Do not approve the framework and policy set out in the report and either request officers to develop an alternative or hand the grant back to DCLG (if required)

Advantages

The proposed governance framework will allow the timely allocation of funding to investigate and bring community led developments into fruition. 

 

The approval of a jointly funded officer post will increase the officer resources available to Fylde and Lancaster on a pilot basis and will allow officers to review its effectiveness.

 

The Grant Policy clearly sets out the circumstances that the council will support projects and how the fund will be allocated, administered and managed.

 

The additional officer resources in the Planning Policy Team will ensure the Service can respond to the necessary legislative requirements, for a fixed period of time to run alongside whatever DCLG funding is provided and by virtue of extending the hours of two existing officer posts only.

 

The DCLG funding allocations are non ring-fenced grants and were direct awards not subject to a bid process. 

 

There will be no officer resources required to implement and manage the Community Housing Fund.

 

 

Disadvantages

The level of funding allocated will only provide a relatively small element of funding with pre-determined thresholds within the grant policy, which will require community groups to identify and pursue other forms of funding.

 

 

There would be a loss of opportunity to support potential projects that would benefit from an allocation of the Community Housing Fund, including the provision of affordable housing and residential schemes that could potentially meet a more diverse or more bespoke need that could directly benefit communities.

 

If funding is available in future years, there would be limited/no opportunity to secure any further allocation of funding if the council cannot evidence the money has been put to good use and allocated in the way it is intended.

 

There will still be legislative requirements around the development and maintenance of a Brownfield Register/Self and Custom Build Register

Risks

Given that the proposed jointly funded officer post will be directly employed by Fylde Council, this a more complex arrangement than employing a dedicated officer who is appointed by and reports solely to Lancaster City Council.

 

Given the nature of the funding and its intended use, the fund could be incurring abortive costs in paying for up-front costs that may not be deliverable or come into fruition for a number of reasons.

 

Some community groups may require extensive  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

20.

Strategic Planning and Budget Timetable 2018/19 to 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 314 KB

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Whitehead)

 

Joint Report of Chief Executive and Chief Officer (Resources)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Whitehead)

 

Cabinet received a joint report from the Chief Executive and Chief Officer (Resources)

 

The options, options analysis, including risk assessment and officer preferred option, were set out in the report as follows:

 

Cabinet may approve the proposals as set out in the report, or require changes to be made to the suggested approach.  The overriding aim of any corporate planning and budget setting process is to approve a balanced budget by statutory deadlines, allocating resources to help ensure delivery of the Council’s corporate and service objectives to achieve clear outcomes for the district.  The proposed approach is in line with that broad aim, drawing on the time and other resources available to the Council, to help ensure a robust approach, whilst giving flexibility to respond to any changing needs and circumstances.

 

Any changes that Cabinet puts forward should be framed in that context.  The proposals are designed to help develop and improve the management of the many risks facing the Council – as well as taking advantage of opportunities – and key strategic and other risks will be reported for consideration as part of the process.

A strategic, multi-level approach to operational and financial planning will assist the Council in delivering positive outcomes for the district, whilst helping to achieve financial sustainability.  Cabinet is therefore asked to approve the proposed approach as set out in the report.

 

Councillor Whitehead proposed, seconded by Councillor Hanson:-

 

“That the recommendation, as set out in the report, be approved.”

 

Councillors then voted:-

 

Resolved unanimously:

 

(1)       That the approach and outline timetable for the 2018/19 to 2020/22 strategic planning and budget setting process be approved.

 

Officers responsible for effecting the decision:

 

Chief Executive

Chief Officer (Resources)

 

Reasons for making the decision:

 

To put in place robust and structured arrangements for establishing budget and corporate planning proposals for 2018/19.

21.

Exclusion of the Press and Public

This is to give further notice in accordance with Part 2, paragraph 5 (4) and 5 (5) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 of the intention to take the following item(s) in private. 

 

Cabinet is recommended to pass the following recommendation in relation to the following item(s):- 

 

“That, in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item(s) of business, on the grounds that they could involve the possible disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of that Act.” 

 

Members are reminded that, whilst the following item(s) have been marked as exempt, it is for Cabinet itself to decide whether or not to consider each of them in private or in public.  In making the decision, Members should consider the relevant paragraph of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972, and also whether the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.  In considering their discretion Members should also be mindful of the advice of Council Officers. 

Minutes:

 

 

It was moved by Councillor Hanson and seconded by Councillor Pattison:-

 

“That, in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business, on the grounds that it could involve the possible disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of that Act.”

 

Members then voted as follows:-

 

Resolved unanimously:

 

(1)        That, in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business, on the grounds that it could involve the possible disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of that Act. 

 

 

 

22.

Chatsworth Gardens Housing Regeneration Project - Consideration of Phase 2 Proposals

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Hanson)

 

Report of Chief Officer (Regeneration & Planning)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Hanson)

 

Cabinet received a report from the Chief Officer (Regeneration & Planning) to consider detailed proposals and authorise officers to progress Phase 2 of the Chatsworth Gardens Housing Scheme.  The report was exempt from publication by virtue of paragraph 3, of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act, 1972.

 

The options, options analysis, including risk assessment and officer preferred option, were set out in the exempt report.

 

Councillor Hanson proposed, seconded by Councillor Clifford:-

 

“That the recommendations, as set out in the exempt report, be approved.”

 

Councillors then voted:-

 

Resolved unanimously:

 

 (1)     That Cabinet approves the preferred Option 2, tosecure an agreement with PlaceFirst for Phase 2 refurbishment of council owned properties on Chatsworth Gardens to deliver new homes for market rent.

 

(2)          That on the basis of the heads of terms outlined in the exempt report, and in conjunction with PlaceFirst, officers draw up final contract documentation for delivery of Phase 2.    

 

(3)          That the 21 site properties be disposed of simultaneously to PlaceFirst as set out in the exempt report.

 

(4)          That, subject to HCA lifting its charge on the properties, authority to sign the final legal agreements be delegated to the Interim Legal Services Manager.

 

(5)       That the Chief Officer (Resources) be authorised to update the General Fund Capital Programme and General Fund Revenue Budget as appropriate.

 

Officers responsible for effecting the decision:

 

Chief Officer (Regeneration & Planning)

Chief Officer (Resources)

Interim Legal Services Manager

 

Reasons for making the decision:

 

The decision is consistent with the Corporate Plan and the vision for Morecambe and Heysham as a confident community with a regenerated living, working and leisure environment.  PlaceFirst’s proposals for Phase 2 represents the final part of a site-wide solution to Chatsworth Gardens which fulfils the City Council’s longstanding objectives for West End regeneration.  It is clear from the outturn of Phase 1 that the quality of both the development and management regime that PlaceFirst bring to their projects will ensure the Council’s regeneration objectives are finally realised.  The decision will allow officers to secure an agreement with PlaceFirst which both reduces the Council’s risk burden and secures a positive outcome with a high degree of certainty. 

 

 

23.

Heysham Gateway

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Leyshon)

Report of Chief Officer (Resources)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Cabinet Member with Special Responsibility Councillor Leyshon)

 

Cabinet received a report from the Chief Officer (Resources) which sought approval to enter into a conditional sale contract in connection with a development plot of land owned by the City Council in the area known as the Heysham Gateway.  The report was exempt from publication by virtue of paragraph 3, of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act, 1972.

 

The options, options analysis, including risk assessment and officer preferred option, were set out in the exempt report.

 

Councillor Leyshon proposed, seconded by Councillor Clifford:-

 

“That the recommendations, as set out in the exempt report, be approved.”

 

Councillors then voted:-

 

Resolved unanimously:

(1)             That the City Council enters into a conditional sale contract for the land in question on the heads of terms as set out in Appendix A to Annex 3 of the exempt report.

(2)             That Cabinet authorises the Chief Officer (Resources) to approve any subsequent revisions needed to the sale terms in respect of conditional matters below the key decision threshold, following consultation with the Property Portfolio Holder; anything over the key decision threshold to be reported back to Cabinet for approval with the final terms being reported retrospectively to Cabinet.  

 

Officer responsible for effecting the decision:

 

Chief Officer (Resources)

 

Reasons for making the decision:

 

Sustainable economic growth is one of the Council’s four priorities and Heysham Gateway is identified as a regeneration priority in the Core Strategy and emerging Local Plan. The disposal of the site would be the first significant step for both the City and County Council in transforming the area known as Heysham Gateway into a high quality sustainable employment area which can fully realise the Port of Heysham’s role as one of the UK’s main ports for trade with the Irish Republic, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man and capitalise on key growth sectors.  It would also secure a capital receipt and the consequential revenue savings in capital financing costs.