Agenda and minutes

Council
Thursday, 22nd February, 2018 6.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Penns Place, Petersfield, GU31 4EX

Contact: Penny Milne  Democratic Services Team Leader - 023 9244 6234

Items
No. Item

74.

Prayers

Minutes:

The Chairman opened the meeting with a short prayer.

75.

Chairman's Announcements

Minutes:

At the invitation of the Chairman, the Leader took the opportunity to thank Mr Tom Horwood for his significant contribution as Executive Director (Governance) in recent years and, on behalf of the Council, wished him well in his new role as Chief Executive for Waverley Borough Council.

76.

Presentation - Charter for Elected Member Development

The Chairman to receive the formal Award to the Council of the Charter for Elected Member Development from Councillor Rory Love, Chairman of South East Employers

Minutes:

Councillor Rory Love, Chairman of South East Employers had been invited to attend the Council meeting to formally present the Charter for Elected Member Development.  Cllr Love praised the Council for its clear commitment to Councillor training and development and congratulated the Council on its achievement.

 

The Chairman was delighted to formally receive the award of the Charter and, on behalf of the Council, thanked Councillor Love for taking the time to visit East Hampshire DC to make the presentation.

77.

Apologies for Absence

To receive and record any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Abdey, Drew, Orme, Parker Smith, Waterhouse and Williams.

78.

Declarations of Interest

To receive and record any declarations of interests from members present in respect of any of the various matters on the agenda for this meeting.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

79.

Confirmation of Previous Minutes

To confirm the minutes of the extraordinary meeting of the Council held on 5 December 2017 and the scheduled meeting held on 14 December 2017, circulated separately.

Minutes:

The minutes of the extraordinary meeting of the Council held on 30 November 2017 and the scheduled meeting held on 14 December 2017 were approved as a correct record.

80.

Public Question Time (Standing Order 13.4(f)(i)) pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To deal with any public questions notified at least two clear working days before the meeting.

Minutes:

The Council received the following Questions submitted under notice in accordance with Standing Order 13.4(f)(i). 

 

Question 1 – from Jan Treacher

 

The council have indicated that their budget for the coming year contains no provision for any grant to Alton Community Centre despite the fact that East Hampshire funding has previously covered a very large amount of the centre's running costs. I have here a petition of over 1000 Alton people who are horrified by this huge cut and we want to hear how the Centre, which is an indispensable resource for the people of Alton and beyond is expected to continue with such a large amount of funding being withdrawn. We further ask that the grant be maintained at last year's level with an increase to allow for inflation.

 

Joint response from the Leader supported by Councillors Butler, as Portfolio Holder, Cowper and Shepherd

 

There have been several consultations and workshops with our Partner Funded Organisations over the last three years, with the aim of supporting these organisations to move towards delivering the valuable services they provide in our communities in a more financially sustainable way going forward.

 

I have taken note of the comments that have been made, and the questions that have been asked, and I am minded to recommend to the Cabinet that we reinstate this funding stream of up to £51,500 in 2018/19.  This will be for a fixed 12-month period and I will be appointing a Member Project Lead to support Councillor Butler, in working together with the PFOs during this period, to develop a new strategy for financial sustainability.

 

Question 2 – from Mrs Pat Lerew, Chairman of the Alton Community Association

 

In light of the Leader’s response to the previous question, and whilst expressing some disagreement about the perceived degree to which the PFO’s had been consulted previously, Mrs Lerew withdrew the following questions.

 

Question 3 – from Mr Roger Mullenger

 

(Mr Mullenger had been unable to attend the meeting and the question was read by the Chairman)

I have a question relating to item 11 on the agenda, "COUNCIL COMMUNICATIONS DURING “PURDAH” ". Unfortunately I cannot attend, so would like this to be a written question.

This agenda item is as a result of a cabinet decision on 8th February and clarifies as far as is possible the existing rules.

Based on this agenda item, would the Daily Mail article with statements by Cllr Cowper be covered, since they were made during the election period of the Bell Hill by-election. The article contained statements which could be interpreted as containing items which may be disputed and controversial and which could affect the election process.

Response from Cllr Cowper:

The pre-election publicity restrictions, or ‘purdah’, apply to the Council’s publicity and its use of resources, they do not fetter candidates, Councillors other individuals or the press, who are free to campaign during a pre-election period.

81.

Appointments

RECOMMENDED to full Council that it:

(1)          APPROVES the appointment of Councillor Glynis Watts as a Trustee of the Whitehill and Bordon Community Trust Board, following the resignation of Mr Tom Horwood;

(2)          NOTES the appointment by the Leader of Councillor Julie Butler as Deputy Leader, in accordance with Article 6 of the Constitution, effective from 22 January 2018; and

(3)               NOTES the appointment by the Leader of Councillor Ben Bentley as Member Project Lead supporting the Customer Relations Portfolio Holder, in accordance with Council minute 12/5/2017 and effective from 1 February 2018.

Minutes:

Proposed by Councillor Mouland and seconded by Councillor Butler, it was

 

RESOLVED that

 

(1)          Councillor Glynis Watts be appointed as a Trustee of the Whitehill and Bordon Community Trust Board, following the resignation of Mr Tom Horwood;

 

(2)          the appointment by the Leader of Councillor Julie Butler as Deputy Leader be noted; and

(3)               the appointment of Councillor Ben Bentley as Member Project Lead, supporting Councillor Julie Butler, be noted.

82.

Budget Speech by the Finance Portfolio Holder

Minutes:

As Portfolio Holder for Finance, Councillor Cowper presented the annual Budget Speech to Council, focusing on the significant shift towards delivering services differently, through innovation, partnership working, selling services, investment and a crucial attitudinal change to local authority funding across the organisation.  The Budget for 2018 was balanced and, going forward, the 5-year medium term financial strategy supported the Council’s aspiration to become free of both Revenue Support Grant and Council Tax.

83.

Revenue and Capital Budget 2018/19 and Medium Term Financial Strategy 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 116 KB

(A)           Recommendation to Council and Council Tax Resolution

(B)           Revenue and Capital Budget 2018/19 and Medium Term Financial Strategy to 2022/23

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Cowper presented a report and recommendation setting out the Revenue and Capital Budget for 2018/19 and the Medium Term Financial Strategy to 2022/23.

 

Councillor David Evans, as Vice Chairman of the Governance, Audit and Scrutiny Committee reported that the Committee had held a workshop with the Chief Finance Officer and Executive Director.

 

Councillor Cowper took the opportunity to extend his gratitude to the Chief Finance Officer and her Team, and to the Chief Executive and Heads of Service, for the intensive effort by all to rigorously review all service budgets to facilitate a balanced budget for the forthcoming year.

 

Proposed by Councillor Cowper and seconded by Councillor Millard, it was

 

RESOLVED that the Council

 

a)            approves the proposed Revenue and Capital Budgets for 2018/19, including a council Tax rate of £131.11 at Band D, representing a 0% increase on the current charge;

 

b)            agrees the Treasury Management Strategy and Prudential Indicators; and

 

c)            Notes the Cabinet decision of 8 February 2018 to apply during 18/19 a minimum increase of 1.5% to those fees and charges that are not otherwise constrained by statute, to be determined by the Chief Finance Officer in consultation with the Leader and Finance Portfolio Holder.

 

(The detailed Council Tax calculation is set out in the Annex to these minutes)

 

In accordance with the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 the voting on this item was recorded as follows:

 

For the Motion:

Councillor Ashcroft

Councillor Ayer

Councillor Bentley

Councillor Brandt

Councillor Brooks Jackson

Councillor Budden

Councillor Butler

Councillor Carew

Councillor Carter

Councillor Costigan

Councillor Cowper

Councillor D Evans

Councillor L Evans

Councillor A Glass

Councillor G Hill

Councillor M Johnson

Councillor A Joy

Councillor M Kendall

Councillor C Louisson

Councillor R Millard

Councillor R Mocatta

Councillor K Moon

Councillor B Mouland

Councillor T Muldoon

Councillor N Noble

Councillor D Phillips

Councillor L Pienaar

Councillor S Pond

Councillor R Saunders

Councillor S Schillemore

Councillor G Shepherd

Councillor M Smith

Councillor R Standish

Councillor I Thomas

Councillor E Tickell

Councillor G Watts

Councillor N Wren

 

Against the Motion:

None

 

Abstentions:

None

 

Absent:

Councillor Abdey

Councillor Drew

Councillor D Orme

Councillor Y Parker Smith

Councillor A Waterhouse

Councillor A Williams

84.

Council Communications During 'Purdah' pdf icon PDF 277 KB

The Council to consider the following recommendation from the Cabinet at its meeting held on 8 February 2018.

 

RECOMMENDED to full Council that the Policy Statements as set out in paragraph 6.1 to 6.7 of the attached report be approved.

Minutes:

Councillor Cowper presented a report and recommendation to Council, setting out a draft policy for communications during periods of ‘Purdah’.  The report clarified the Council’s mandatory obligations under the Local Government Act 1986 and, in particular, provided additional guidance on the application of the purdah obligations during elections not affecting East Hampshire District Council.

 

RESOLVED that Policy Statements 6.1 to 6.7 as set out in the report be approved.

85.

Questions under Procedural Order 23.4 (a)

(Notice of questions from Councillors must be given in writing at least 48 hours before the meeting)

Minutes:

There were no questions under Standing Order 23.

86.

Questions under Procedural Order 23.4(b)

(Questions from Councillors relating to urgent business, of which notice has not been given under Procedural Order 23.4(a), to be received at least two hours prior to the start the meeting).

Minutes:

There were no urgent questions.

87.

Committee Minutes

To receive the minutes of the following Committees:

 

Licensing Sub-Committee – 5 January 2018

Planning Committee – 11 January 2018

Joint Environmental Services Committee – 24 January 2018

Community Forum, Whitehill and Bordon – 30 January 2018

Community Forum Alton, 6 February 2018

Cabinet, 8 February 2018

Planning Committee – 12 February

 

Minutes:

The minutes of Committees held since the last meeting of the Council were received.