Venue: Council Chamber, King George V House, King George V Road, Amersham
Contact: Democratic Services 01895 837236; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Presentation from Housing Interaction Trust
To receive a presentation from Rosalind Convery, Housing Interaction Trust.
Rosalind Convery and Sharon Allen, from the Housing Interaction Trust (HIT) were welcomed to the meeting and gave a presentation to Council on the work the Trust undertook in supporting the young people, aged 16-25, of the district who were homeless or at risk of homelessness.
Council was informed of the background of the Trust and the services it provided. HIT merged with Connection Support in 2015 and received funding from Chiltern District Council and Buckinghamshire County Council. It was noted that HIT had twelve units of accommodation and provided support, drop-ins, mediation, general advice, informal tenancy support and outreach work.
HIT currently employed four staff members, who were passionate about supporting young people and possessed a broad range of qualifications and skills.
The Trust aimed to support young people before they reached crisis point, discussing parental relationships, drug and alcohol misuse and homelessness. As part of this, mediation was offered to assist in keeping families together. An independent living skills work book had been developed to cover all aspects of independent living. This included tenancy rights and responsibilities, budgeting, cooking on a budget, effective communication and active living. Young people would work with HIT until they were ready to live independently. Various methods were used to support young people to live independently such as using roleplay, assisting with interview skills and attending meetings with the young person.
Referrals could be received from anyone, although these were more commonly received through self-referrals, education staff or outside agencies. In order to be eligible for housing the young person must be deemed vulnerable.
Council was advised that the majority of those who engaged with the service completed the programme in its entirety and two case studies were discussed where positive intervention had significantly helped vulnerable young people engage with services, progress to independent living and secure jobs or re-enter education.
Members raised questions on the percentage of young people accessing the service who gain accommodation; the length of the waiting list; prime causes of homelessness in young people; tenancy conditions; sources of funding and the impact of universal credit.
In response to the number of people who receive accommodation, if a young person was deemed suitable and was positively engaging with the service they would be offered a property. A young person would be in supported housing, which was a one bedroomed flat, for up to two years and when ready would be encouraged to move on to apply for social housing, house shares or private tenancies. The length of the waiting list was ever changing, as five young persons had moved on in a relatively short period there were presently no vacancies with a further eight people on the waiting list. If it was thought that there was an immediate risk of homelessness or there would be a longer need for housing, a referral could be made to Padstones or other supported housing providers, although understandably most young people wished to remain in the area.
The main cause of homelessness for those aged 16-25 was said to be family relationship breakdowns. To qualify for a tenancy, as well as engaging with the service, property needed to be kept in good repair and the young person must understand the issues of living independently.
In response to the funding question, it was said that the Trust wished to provide a more extensive service and was presently looking to raise money to create a welcome pack which would include household essentials and cleaning items for when a young person first moved in. Along with Council funding, the Trust made its own attempts to raise funds with corporate companies, amongst others funding some services. The Trust also made use of food banks for its clients. A Member recommended the Kingâ€™s Church in Amersham as a possible support provider as they had recently provided item packs for vulnerable people.
Universal credit remained a difficulty and delays in benefits being received had continued. This had generally seen an increase in youth homelessness and regular discussions were held with Paradigm and the Council to anticipate potential problems and find solutions. This also caused further uncertainty for young people who did not wish to commence a tenancy owing money.
The Chairman, on behalf of all Members thanked Rosalind Convery and Sharon Allen for the presentation and recognised the Housing Interaction Trust for its excellent work and the positive impact made to the lives of some of the Districtâ€™s most vulnerable young people.
Note 1: Councillor H Wallace entered the meeting at 6.41 pm
To approve the minutes of Full Council held on 8 January 2019.
The minutes of Full Council held on 8 January 2019 were approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
Declarations of Interest
In relation to item 8.1 Revenue Budget and Council Tax 2019/20 dispensations under Section 33 of Localism Act 2011 have been granted to all Members previously in relation to the setting of Council Tax.
Dispensations under Section 33 of Localism Act 2011 had been granted to all Members previously in relation to the setting of Council Tax, agenda item 8.1. There were no other declarations of interest.
To receive any announcements from:
b) Cabinet Leader
c) Head of Paid Service
(a)Â Â Â Â Â Chairmanâ€™s Engagements
A list of Engagements carried out by the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Council between 1 January 2019 and 17 February 2019 had been circulated.
(b)Â Â Â Â Â Chairmanâ€™s Announcements
The Chairman announced that the Annual Chairmanâ€™s Reception would be taking place on 1 March 2019.
The Chairman, on behalf of all Members congratulated Cllr C Ford and his wife on the arrival of their son, Toby on 14 February.
(c) Announcements from the Leader of the Cabinet
The Leader of the Cabinet had no announcements to make.
(d) Announcements from the Head of Paid Service
The Chief Executive reported that the installation of a new access pass system at King George V House and Capswood was underway and that in anticipation of the new readers being installed Members had been provided with a new access pass. Members were advised to continue using their previous access pass until the installation was complete. Democratic Services would notify all Members when the new cards were ready for use. Any Member not in attendance could collect their card from the Democratic Services team.
Further, the Chief Executive advised that the Declaration of Related Parties Transaction forms for 2018/19 had been given to Members at the meeting. Relevant guidance was attached to the form and Members were asked to return these to the Finance team before 5 April 2019. Â
The Localism Act 2011 required all Councils to produce and publish a Pay Policy Statement each year. As such, Full Council was asked to agree the Pay Policy Statement 2019/20, as recommended by the Joint Staffing Committee meeting held on 28 January 2019.
It was moved by Councillor I Darby, seconded by Councillor M Stannard and
That the Pay Policy Statement 2019/20 be adopted as recommended by the Joint Staffing Committee meeting held on 28 January 2019.
To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet for the meeting held on 5 February 2019 and to receive questions and answers on any of those recommendations in accordance with Rule 11.1 of the Procedural Rules.
To approve, following a recorded vote, the Councilâ€™s Budget for Financial year 2019/20 and the Districtâ€™s Council Tax for 2019/20.
Full Council had before them the following two reports:
Â· The Budget and Council Tax Report 2019/20 as considered at the Cabinet meeting held on 5 February 2019, and
Â· The supplementary report: Council Tax 2019/20 which contained final information from the precepting authorities leading to the total Council Tax for the district which Full Council was required to approve at this meeting.
Councillor I Darby, Leader of the Council, presented the budget to the Council.
With the new unitary Authority coming in to existence on 1 April 2020 this was the last Budget and Council Tax to be set by the Council. The Budget and Council Tax setting had continued to be based on the principal of providing residents value for money and delivering quality services.
The budget reflected the procurement being undertaken on a new joint waste collection contract between Chiltern, South Bucks and Wycombe District Councils, a service which was amongst the most appreciated in the County and would ultimately deliver cost savings whilst still providing an excellent service to residents.
The budget further reflected the commitment of the Council to invest for the benefit of its residents. The former ambulance site in Amersham would be re-developed to provide affordable housing and there was an ambitious plan to develop the Chiltern Pools site which would deliver financial savings whilst delivering services in an energy efficient manner. This was also the year that the new crematorium in partnership with Aylesbury Vale and Wycombe District Councils would open in Bierton, Aylesbury. Now that this had been paid for, a surplus of funds totalling Â£197,000 was accounted for in the budget and would be set aside to fund community projects.
The shared service delivery with South Bucks District Council had continued to benefit residents and was a scalable model to a new unitary authority.
The development of the Joint Local Plan continued and the budget reflected the continuing commitment to resource this important work by Â£217,000. It was planned that the Joint Local Plan would be submitted for inspection and consultation in the coming months.
Councillor Darby was proud to announce that the budget made no use of general reserves and recognised that Government funding cuts from 2020/21 would be challenging. As such future years had been considered whilst setting the budget to ensure that the new authority had sufficient funds to continue the culture and values set by Chiltern. The Council remained in a sound financial position and continued to deliver high quality services.
The increase in Council Tax to a Band D property would amount to 10p per week.
Councillor Darby then paid tribute to the Deputy Leader for leading the budget work and expressed thanks for the contributions of Officers.
Councillor P Jones gave thanks to the Leader and commended the Cabinet for their enthusiasm, commitment and efforts over the past year. It had been credibly noted that the Council had taken into consideration the funds required for a new unitary authority and had not elected to use its general reserves. Councillor P Jones further thanked all officers and Members who had contributed to the Council over the many years of its existence. Concern was raised that challenges may arise from the impending Joint Local Plan submission which Members would need to carefully review when presented in draft format. Further concern was raised that if residents did not use the Chalfont and Chesham Leisure Centres, these would be increasingly uneconomic to operate should the Chiltern Pools redevelopment take place and the forecast usage numbers of that centre materialise.
The Councilâ€™s Procedure Rules required the names of members voting for or against or abstaining from voting to be recorded in the Minutes.Â Furthermore all members had been granted dispensation under section 33 of Localism Act 2011 to speak and vote on the Council Tax setting.
It was moved by Councillor I Darby, seconded by Councillor M Stannard and on being put to the recorded vote the recommendations were agreed, with the votes being cast as follows:
For (33): Councillors: A Bacon, D Bray, J Burton, E Culverhouse, I Darby, M Flys, C Ford, A Garth, J Gladwin, M Harker, G Harris, M Harrold, C Jackson, C Jones, P Jones, J MacBean, P Martin, V Martin, S Patel, D Phillips, N Rose, C Rouse, J Rush, M Shaw, N Shepherd, L Smith, N Southworth, M Stannard, D Varley, N Varley, J Waters, H Wallace and E Walsh.
Note 2: Councillor A Garth entered the meeting at 7.18 p.m.
Revenue Budget 2019/20
1) That the Revenue budget for 2019/209 as summarised in the table in paragraph 4.13 be approved.
2) That the following use of earmarked reserves for 2019/20 be agreed:
- Local Development PlanÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£217,000
- Planning DigitalisationÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£81,000
- Economic Development ReserveÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£62,000
- Waste Efficiency ReserveÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£66,000
- Leisure FundÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£50,000
3) That the following additions to earmarked reserves for 2019/20 be agreed:
- Capital - Funding replacement refuse vehiclesÂ Â Â Â Â£394,000
- Capital - Funding of capital programmeÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â£189,000
4) That the creation of a new earmarked reserve of Â£1,995k for unitary implementation costs be agreed. Part of this reserve will be drawn down in 2019/20 after approval by the Shadow Authority.
5) That the creation of a new earmarked reserve of Â£250,000 for the creation of a Community Projects Reserve be agreed.
6) That a budget requirement of Â£10,910,000 be approved which will result in a District council tax of Â£186.30 for a Band D property.
7) That the level of fees and charges for 2019/20 (Appendix C) be confirmed.
8) That the advice of the Director of Resources (Appendix A) be noted.
9) That the comments in the report on the Councilâ€™s financial position in respect of the years following 2019/20 and the updated Medium Term Forecast be noted.
Council Tax 2018/19
1.Â Â Â Â Â Â That it be noted that the following amounts for 2019/20 have been determined under delegated authority and in accordance with regulations made under the local Government Finance Act 1992:
a) 44,716.00 being the amount calculated by the Council, in accordance with Regulation 3 of the Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax Base) Regulations 1992, as its Council Tax Base for the year.
b) The amounts calculated by the Council, in accordance with regulation 6 of the Regulations, as the amount of its Council Tax Base for the year for dwellings in those parts of its area to which one or more special items (i.e. Parish precepts) relate, are shown below.
2.Â Â Â Â Â Â That the Council calculates the following amounts for 2019/20 in accordance with Sections 31A, 31B and 34 to 36 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 (as amended by the Localism Act 2011):
a) Â£46,233,061 being the aggregate expenditure which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(2) (a) to (f) of the Act (including the General Fund and Parish Precepts).
b) Â£34,721,426 being the aggregate income which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(3) (a) to (d) of the Act.
c) Â£11,511,635 as its council tax requirement for the year including Parish Precepts being the amount by which the aggregate expenditure at 2(a) above exceeds the aggregate income at 2(b) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 31A(4) of the Act.
d) Â£257.44 as the basic amount of its Council Tax for the year, being the council tax requirement at 2(c), divided by the Council Tax Base for the year (44,716.00) at 1(a) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 31B(1) of the Act.
e) Â£3,181,044 being the aggregate amount of all special items referred to in Section 34(1) of the Act (i.e. Parish Precepts, there being no other special items).
f) Â£186.30 as the basic amount of its Council Tax for dwellings in its area, excluding Parish Precepts, being the amount at 2(d) above less the result given by dividing the amount at 2(e) above by the amount at 1(a) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 34(2) of the Act.
g) The amounts given by adding to the amount at 2(f) above the amounts of the Parish Precepts for the relevant Parish divided in each case by the Council Tax Base for the Parish at 1(b) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 34(3) of the Act, as the basic amounts of its Council Tax for the year for dwellings in each Parish is:
h) The amounts given by multiplying the basic amounts for each Parish 2(g) above by the number which, in the proportion set out in Section 5(1) of the Act, is applicable to dwellings listed in a particular valuation band divided by the number which in that proportion is applicable to dwellings listed in valuation band D, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 36(1) of the Act, as the amounts to be taken into account for the year in respect of categories of dwellings listed in different valuation bands.
3.Â Â Â Â Â Â That it be noted that for the year 2019/20 the main precepting authorities have stated the following amounts in precepts issued to the Council, in accordance with s40 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.
4.Â Â Â Â Â Â That, having calculated the aggregate in each case of the amounts of the Districtâ€™s and preceptors requirements, in accordance with s30(2) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, hereby sets amounts of the council tax for the year 2019/20 for each category of dwelling as follows.
The council tax for each category of dwelling by parish is as follows.
5.Â Â Â Â Â Â Determine that the Councilâ€™s basic amount of Council Tax for 2019/20 is not excessive, in accordance with principles approved under Section 52ZB of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, and thus there is no need to hold a Council Tax referendum.
6.Â Â Â Â Â Â No changes are made to the Council's current Council Tax Support scheme in respect of 2019/20 apart from applying annual uprating.
The Deputy Leader introduced a report on the Capital Programme and Repairs & Renewals Programme 2019/20 to 2023/24 which was reviewed as part of the Councilâ€™s budget process in order to assess, as part of the overall financial strategy of the Authority, what the scale and composition of the programme should be and the consequential funding implications for the financial strategy.
It was moved by Councillor M Stannard, seconded by Councillor I Darby and
1. That the Capital Strategy, including the Capital Programme for 2019/20-2023/24 (Appendix A), be approved.
2. That the Repairs & Renewals Programme for 2019/20 - 2023/24 (Appendix B) be approved.
The Council was required to formally review its treasury management policies each year as part of determining what level of returns will be achieved from investments. The format of the treasury management policies is defined by the Code of Practice adopted by the Council, and is required to be approved by the Council on recommendation from the Cabinet. As such, the Cabinet agreed at the meeting held on 5 February 2019 to recommend that the Treasury Management Strategy 2019/20, including its appendices, be adopted by the Council.
It was moved by Councillor M Stannard, seconded by Councillor I Darby and
That the Treasury Management Strategy 2019/20 including the following appendices to the Treasury Management Strategy (Appendix 1) be adopted by the Council:
â€¢Â Â Â Â Appendix 1A - Annual Investment Strategy Policies
â€¢Â Â Â Â Appendix 1B - Prudential Indicators including the borrowing limits
â€¢Â Â Â Â Appendix 1C - the MRP method to be used in 2019/20.
As set out in section 12.4 of the Councilâ€™s Overview and Scrutiny Procedure Rules, decisions taken as a matter of urgency must be reported to the next available meeting of Council, together with the reasons for urgency. Urgent items were considered by Extraordinary Cabinet meetings held on 9 January 2019 and 24 January 2019. Details of the decisions and reasons for urgency were set out in the report.
That the report be noted.
Verbal Reports from the Leader, Cabinet Members or Chairman of a Committee
To receive and consider verbal update reports (if any) from the Members listed above, and to answer questions on any of those reports from any Member of the Council in accordance with Rule 11.1 of the Procedural Rules.
a) Councillor I Darby - Leader of the Council
Councillor I Darby reported that Councillor L Walsh would take over as the Councilâ€™s appointed representative on the Buckinghamshire Health and Wellbeing Board and wished her success in the role. Councillor Darby said that she had been proud to have been the Councilâ€™s appointed representative on the Buckinghamshire Health and Wellbeing Board since the Board had started in its Shadow form.
Along with the Chief Executive, Councillor Darby advised that she had attended the District Councils Network annual conference which showcased the work of District Councils across the country. At the conference, informative addresses were given by the Rt. Hon. James Brokenshire, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Rishi Sunak, the Minister for Local Government, Liz Truss, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury and Bill Grimsey, who spoke on the challenges faced by High Streets. Councillor Darby reported that she had the privilege of chairing a session on â€˜enhancing the quality of lifeâ€™ which had been a productive session looking at public health and the methods of innovation District Councilâ€™s and the NHS planned to put in to practice.
In relation to the ongoing Local Government re-organisation, Councillor Darby reported that discussions with MHCLG and all of the existing Buckinghamshire Councils continued to progress. Along with the other District Councils in Buckinghamshire, the Council was committed to creating a new unitary authority that was fit for purpose and was the very best it could be for all residents.Â
b) Councillor P Martin - Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economic Development
Councillor P Martin reported that the draft Chiltern and South Bucks Local Plan would be presented and discussed at two upcoming meetings of the Joint Planning Policy Members Reference Group and all Members were welcome to attend. The first meeting would be taking place on 19 March 2019 at 6 pm in the Council Chamber at Chiltern District Council with the second taking place on 20 March 2019 at 6 pm in Room 6 at South Bucks District Council.
Councillor Martin added that the results from the Governmentâ€™s Housing Delivery Test had been published, this test analysed Local Authorities delivery of houses compared to houses required. Councillor Martin was pleased to announce that the Council had overachieved and delivered 132% of its requirement.
Members were advised of an upcoming HS2 Community Liaison Forum which provided an opportunity to hear from and question senior representatives from HS2 along with contractors who would provide an update on the work schedule. The meeting was scheduled for Monday 25 March at 6 pm in the Council Chamber.
c) Councillor L Walsh - Portfolio Holder for Healthy Communities
Councillor L Walsh reported that the Councilâ€™s Youth Awards ceremony would be taking place on 14 March 2019 at the Kingâ€™s Church in Amersham and Members were encouraged to attend to show appreciation to the young people of the district. A high number of nominations had been received and it had been particularly difficult to choose winners. The Council was proud of the young people in Chiltern who had volunteered to help others and made significant positive impacts on their communities.
Further, Councillor Walsh advised that Operation Gauntlet, the Chiltern and South Buckinghamshire scam awareness and prevention campaign was being launched on 5 March 2019. Operation Gauntlet was a joint scheme with Thames Valley Police, the Councilâ€™s Community Safety Team and Trading Standards. Two sessions had been scheduled for members of the public to raise awareness of current scams and to receive advice on how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud. Members were encouraged to promote the sessions to residents. Details of the sessions were provided, both being held at the Council Offices:
Tuesday 5 March, 4 pm to 5.30 pm
Tuesday 5 March, 7 pm to 8.30 pm
d) Councillor I Darby, on behalf of Councillor F Wilson - Portfolio Holder for Customer Services
Councillor I Darby on behalf of Councillor F Wilson reported that there would be two opportunities for Members to attend demonstrations of the â€˜My Accountâ€™ functionality as part of the ongoing Customer Experience Programme. The session details were provided:
28 February 2019 at 6.30 p.m. at Chiltern District Council offices
4 March 2019 at 6 p.m. at South Bucks District Council offices
Questions with Notice (if any)
The Chairman of the Council; Cabinet Leader or a Cabinet Member; or Chairman of any Committee to receive a question on any matter in relation to which the Council has powers or duties or which affects the District. Questions must be given in writing to the proper officer 3 clear days before the meeting, or if it relates to urgent business by 4pm on the day of the meeting, in accordance with Rule 11.2 of the Council Procedure Rules.
There were no questions.
Petitions (if any)
To receive petitions and/or deputations (if any) from members of the public including provisions allowing members to ask questions of clarification at the discretion of the Chairman.
There were no petitions.
Joint Arrangements and Outside Organisations (if any)
To receive reports about and receive questions and answers relating to any joint arrangements or external organisations.
There were no reports.
Motions (if any)
Written notice of every motion, signed by at least 2 Members, must be delivered to the proper officer at least 7 clear days before the meeting in accordance with Procedure Rule 12.
No Motions had been received.
Calendar of Meetings 2019/20
It was moved by Councillor J MacBean, seconded by Councillor G Harris and
That the Calendar of Meetings for 2019/20 be agreed.