The Agenda for this meeting will be published 5 clear working days before the scheduled date of the meeting. The Minutes and Decisions for this meeting will normally be published within 9 working days following the date of the meeting.
Note: this does not apply to Scrutiny Working Groups or Scrutiny Commissioners meetings, please contact the relevant Scrutiny Officer for more information on the work programme for these Groups.
Venue: Council Chamber - Council Offices, Narborough
Contact: Sandeep Tiensa 0116 272 7640
Disclosures of Interests from Members
To receive disclosures of interests from Members (ie. The existence and the nature of those interests in respect of items on this agenda).
No disclosures were received.
To approve and sign the minutes of the meeting held on 21 April 2021 (enclosed).
The minutes of the meeting held on 21 April 2021, as circulated, were approved as a correct record.
To consider the annual report of the Leader of the Council, Cllr. Terry Richardson to the Scrutiny Commission.
Considered - the annual report of the Leader of the Council, Cllr. Terry Richardson.
The Leader began by covering the Council’s high priorities for the future. This included the recruitment of the new Chief Executive for Blaby District Council, with final interviews being held on 20th July.
Another key priority was the shape of Councils going forward, including discussions around combined authorities with the likes of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire councils. The Leader explained how this type of Council could be beneficial in monetary terms but also for strategic growth conversations within the East Midlands. The Leader highlighted the success this had in the West Midlands.
The Leader then moved on to highlight some of the main risks the Council faces, including the Environment Act which could potentially change the way we collect our waste, leading to a potential loss of £2 - £4 million. The response to the formal consultation is due for July 3rd.
The Leader also highlighted the risk of the Planning White Paper which could have major implications for the service and our council. Regular updates on this would be provided to Council.
The financial risks were also raised by the Leader, including the one year financial settlement, uncertainty surrounding New Homes Bonus and Business Rates and how this affects not only us, but also our customers.
The Chairman, Cllr. Geoff Welsh asked for an update on the impact of current restrictions on the Leisure Centre.
Cllr. Terry Richardson responded that the Leisure Centre is now open but not to full capacity.
The Strategic Director confirmed that the first few weeks of the Leisure Centre being open were successful. He also advised that the weather seems to have a considerable impact on the numbers entering the Leisure Centre and advised that this will continue to be monitored and be reviewed on a week by week basis.
Cllr. Antony Moseley queried the future forecast for the Leisure Centre usage.
The Strategic Director advised that the forecast looks very different to what was initially presented due to current COVID19 restrictions. The forecast will continue to change and will heavily depend on what changes the Government make to the restrictions.
The Chairman, Cllr. Geoff Welsh requested more information on the Befriending Service, referring to its success rate and its target audience.
The Strategic Director advised that the Befriending service is a support team and individuals are matched to a member of the Befriending service to offer support. An update on the befriending service would be circulated to Members.
Cllr. Louise Richardson requested clarification to whether the Befriending service and the Community Hub would continue supporting residents post pandemic.
Cllr. Terry Richardson provided reassurance that the current model of the befriending service and the Community Hub would remain but would need to be adapted. Lots of work has been carried out by officers to maintain open lines of communication with various groups and this would not be lost post pandemic. The Leader of the Council expressed his thanks ... view the full minutes text for item 33.
Update on the Emerging Local Plan
Members will receive an update at the meeting from the Planning & Strategic Growth Group Manager.
Considered – and update provided by the Planning & Strategic Growth Group Manager on the Emerging Local Plan.
Cllr. Anthony Moseley left the meeting and did not return.
The Planning & Strategic Growth Group Manager advised that the Emerging Local Plan is progressing well and Regulation 18, for starting public consultation (informal consultation) has been undertaken. This looks at the options being considered within the local plan and a long list has been created of potential sites for potential development. 800 responses to the consultation were received, which included responses from local residents, local parishes and statutory bodies.
The responses to the consultation will be put into a report to identify key issues and this will be shared with members. The list of preferred site options will hopefully be available by the end of the year.
There is a further consultation on the draft local plan in early 2022 and
there will be cross boundary discussions with neighbouring authorities about how we work together.
Considerable & Critical unknowns:
- Leicester City unmet need not declared yet, this affects our development.
- Technical work on infrastructure for strategic growth plan.
- Junction 20A.
- Climate change policies unknown.
The Planning and Strategic Growth Group Manager proposed a further scrutiny session in September, potentially including all non-executive members to present the results of the consultation and next steps.
Cllr. Geoff Welsh thanked all officers involved and for attending.
No issues were raised for further information or examination.
Further Actions for Scrutiny arising from Meeting
There were no further actions arising.