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APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Whitworth.
(It was noted that Councillor Carrington was on parental leave.)
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
To receive declarations by Councillors of interests in respect of items on this Agenda.
Councillors 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, Councillors 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, Councillors 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.
Councillors Lewis, Gardiner, Parr and Dowding each declared an interest in Local Government Reform Developments, as Members of Lancashire County Council.
To receive any requests from the public to speak in relation to agenda item 4 in accordance with the provisions of Council Procedure Rules 11.1, 11.3 and 13 which require members of the public to give at least 3 days’ notice in writing.
The Mayor advised that no requests to speak had been received from the public.
To consider the report of the Chief Executive.
(Appendix 1 was marked ‘to follow’ and was published on 2 November 2020)
Councillor Lewis introduced the report of the Chief Executive. The report explained that, since the last Council meeting in September, the Government had requested outline unitary proposals from Cumbria to be submitted on or before 9 November and full business case proposals by 9 December. Given these new deadlines, the report asked Council to authorise the submission of an outline case for a unitary authority for The Bay. Cllr Lewis noted that the timing of the invitation from government was far from ideal, given the pressures of COVID, and confirmed that the three councils would continue to ask government to reconsider the timing of this process.
Councillor Lewis responded to a number of questions from Councillors before proposing that the recommendations, as set out in the report, be approved. Councillor Frea seconded the proposition.
There was a lengthy debate before the Mayor called for a vote. With 43 Members voting ‘for’, 4 Members voting ‘against’ and 5 abstentions, the proposition was clearly carried.
(1) That Council approves the outline proposal, attached at Appendix 1 of the report, and authorises submission to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government by 9 November 2020;
(2) That the Chief Executive and Leader be delegated to approve any minor amendments that may arise following consideration by South Lakeland and Barrow Councils prior to submission and to continue with the work on the final proposal; and
(3) That Council agrees that a final proposal can be submitted to a future meeting of Cabinet and Council prior to the requested deadline from Government of 9 December 2020, noting that a date of 8 December has been scheduled for this purpose.