Agenda and minutes

Cabinet
Monday, 23 July 2012 2.00 pm, NEW

Venue: Sparkenhoe Committee Room, County Hall, Glenfield

Contact: Ms. J. Bailey (Tel. 0116 305 6225)  Email: jenny.bailey@leics.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

Cabinet Support Members

Mr. J. G. Coxon CC, Mr. D. Slater CC

Also in attendance

Dr. S. Hill CC, Dr. R.K.A. Feltham CC, Mr. S. J. Galton CC, Mr. A.M. Kershaw CC, Mr. J. B. Rhodes CC, Mr. R. Shepherd CC.

Apologies for absence

Mr. N. J. Rushton CC, Mr. I. D. Ould CC, and Mr. E. F. White CC.

529.

Election of Chairman.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That Mr. D. A. Sprason CC be elected Chairman for the meeting.

 

Mr. D. A. Sprason CC - in the Chair

 

 

530.

Minutes of the previous meeting. pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 12 June 2012 were taken as read, confirmed and signed.

531.

Urgent items.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items for consideration.

532.

Declarations of interest.

Minutes:

The Chairman invited members who wished to do so to declare any interests in respect of items on the agenda for the meeting.

 

Mr. R. Blunt CC declared a personal, non-prejudicial, interest in item 11 (Paper J) on the agenda as the Leader of North West Leicestershire District Council.

533.

Review of the Criteria for Statutory Assessment of Special Educational Needs. pdf icon PDF 87 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Children and Young People's Service concerning the outcomes of consultation on changes to the criteria for the statutory assessment of Special Educational Needs and proposing new criteria, as set out in the appendix to the report. A copy of the report, marked ‘B‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

The Cabinet noted comments which had been received from Mr. S. J. Galton CC, and from Mr Max Hunt CC and Ms Betty Newton CC.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the new criteria for the statutory assessment of Special Educational Needs, as set out in the appendix to the report, be approved.

 

(KEY DECISION)

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

The current criteria were published in 2002.  Since then, there have been significant changes in the way schools are funded to support special needs, and the numbers of children who are being educated in special schools.

534.

2012/13 Medium Term Financial Strategy Monitoring (Period 2). pdf icon PDF 117 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Corporate Resources regarding an update on the 2012/13 revenue budget and capital programme monitoring position and plans to utilise potential revenue budget underspends and revenue reserves to fund a number of initiatives.  A copy of the report, marked ‘C‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

The Cabinet noted comments which had been received from Mr. S. J. Galton CC, and from Mr. Max Hunt CC and the Labour Group.

 

Mr. Pain CC said that the proposals represented a prudent and constructive use of underspends and reserves, in contrast to those put forward on previous occasions by opposition members.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)      That the 2012/13 revenue budget and capital programme monitoring position be noted;

 

(b)      That the following proposals, as detailed in paragraphs 26 and 31 to 33 of the report, be approved:

 

          (i)      Use of the net revenue underspend of £13.5m to fund -

 

Highways maintenance (including bridges) - £2.0m

Vehicle replacement (including gritters) - £1.2m

Repayment of debt - £10.3m;

 

(ii)     Increase the contribution to the Leicestershire Local Authority Mortgage Scheme (LAMS) from £2m to £10m;

 

(iii)    To utilise reserves, including -

 

Repair and renewals - £8.3m

Insurance uninsured loss - £5.1m

Waste infrastructure - £5.0m

A contribution of £1.1m from the Supporting People reserve.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

To inform the Cabinet of the latest budget monitoring forecasts on the revenue budget and capital programme for 2012/13 and to enable new proposals to be approved to utilise the projected revenue underspend and reserves to fund a number of invest to save initiatives.

 

535.

Local Authority Mortgage Scheme. pdf icon PDF 166 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Corporate Resources concerning the Local Authority Mortgage Scheme, which aimed to assist first-time buyers and help alleviate some of the issues around lack of availability of social housing and affordable private rented accommodation.  A copy of the report, marked ‘D‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That approval be given to the County Council’s involvement in the Local Authority Mortgage Scheme (LAMS), in the sum of £10m which will be drawn from reserves in a number of tranches;

 

(b)       That approval be given to appointing Lloyds Bank as the initial financial partner for a sum of £2m;

 

(c)        That the Director of Corporate Resources, in consultation with the County Solicitor, be authorised to appoint further financial institutions who have registered for LAMS, as deemed appropriate, and to arrange for the further deposit of funds as required (including possible further deposits with Lloyds Bank);

 

(d)       That the LAMS be adopted in accordance with the outline provided within this report and that the following arrangements be approved:

 

(i)         A total indemnity value of £10m, which will be drawn in a number of tranches;

 

(ii)        A maximum loan size for the authority of £142,500;

 

(iii)       The qualifying post codes will be provided to the lender in a schedule to the indemnity deed;

 

(iv)       In the case of those post codes not starting with the LE prefix it be made clear that the LAMS is available to all those resident within the Leicestershire County boundary;

 

(e)       That the Director of Corporate Resources be authorised to take all action and/or decisions he considers necessary to give effect to any matter relating to the proper functioning of LAMS;

 

(f)         That the Director of Corporate Resources, in consultation with the County Solicitor, be authorised to enter into a Service Level Agreement with Blaby District Council which will allow the County Council to participate in the Blaby LAMS;

 

(g)       That approval be given to the County Council indemnifying the Monitoring Officer in respect of any personal liability that he or she may incur by providing an opinion and providing the Lender with the Opinion Letter in relation to each and every Scheme that the Council enters into;

 

(h)        That approval be given to adding a paragraph to the Minimum Revenue Provision Policy, as shown in italics in Appendix 1 to the report;

 

(i)         That approval be given to adding a paragraph to the Annual Investment Strategy, as shown in italics in Appendix 2 to the report.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

Whilst the County Council is not a housing authority it clearly has a very significant role in terms of promoting economic prosperity within the County.  Participation in LAMS, by way of lending to banks in a manner which allows them to make more affordable mortgages available to people who do not currently have the resources to put a significant deposit into a house, will assist in ‘oiling the wheels’ of the property market within the County.  This can only be positive for economic growth.

 

There is evidence that there are a large number of individuals, couples and families who are currently in either social housing or private rented accommodation but who have the ability to pay a mortgage and want to buy their first house.  The obstacle to them becoming property owners is the need for them to save a significant deposit (sometimes as much as 25% of the property value) before they have access to a mortgage at a reasonable interest rate, or even access to a mortgage at all. LAMS allows these people to buy their first  ...  view the full minutes text for item 535.

536.

Highway Maintenance Efficiency Programme Potholes Review. pdf icon PDF 142 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Environment and Transport concerning the recommendations of the recent Potholes Review (published as part of the Department for Transport’s Highways Maintenance Efficiency Programme) and how these might affect services provided by the County Council.  A copy of the report, marked ‘E‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That the recommendations within the Department of Transport’s Highways Maintenance Efficiency Programme Potholes Review be noted;

 

(b)       That the principle of amending the currently delivered local highway service to reflect appropriately the Potholes Review’s recommendations be approved;

 

(c)        That the proposed allocation of £2m of additional resources for highways and bridge maintenance outlined in the Medium Term Financial Strategy report elsewhere on the agenda be noted.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

To ensure that the County Council appropriately responds to the outcome of nationally significant work commissioned by the Department for Transport which the Director of Environment and Transport has led on.  Ultimately, this may enable an enhancement to the current level of highway maintenance service provided by the County Council whilst contributing to the savings set out in the Medium Term Financial Strategy.

 

537.

Implementation of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010. pdf icon PDF 92 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Environment and Transport regarding the new roles, powers and duties placed on the County Council by the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and recommending the delegation of powers to the Director of Environment and Transport.  A copy of the report, marked ‘F‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the responsibilities associated with the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and Land Drainage Act 1991, as set out in paragraph 10 of the report, be delegated to the Director of Environment and Transport.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

In order to adopt a clear enforcement policy of powers contained within the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and Land Drainage Act 1991 (as amended by the FWMA), it is essential that the County Council delegates these powers to the Director of Environment and Transport so he can, in turn, authorise appropriate officers to take action.

 

538.

Glenfield Children's Heart Unit. pdf icon PDF 93 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Chief Executive concerning the decision of the Joint Committee of PCTs with regard to the future reconfiguration of Children’s Congenital Heart Services in England which would result in the cessation of children heart surgical services at the Glenfield Hospital, Leicester.  A copy of the report, marked ‘G‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That the County Council believes that the public debate about the future of the Glenfield Children’s Heart Unit must take full account of the importance of the related Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) service for children;

 

(b)       That the decision of the Joint Committee of PCTs to cease children’s heart surgical services at the Glenfield Hospital and the subsequent decision by the Secretary of State for Health to move the ECMO service for children to Birmingham Children’s Hospital, and their impacts, in particular:-

 

·        the problems inherent with the possible transfer of the ECMO Unit, particularly in relation staffing and training;

·        the difficulty that would be experienced in relation to transporting critically ill patients, particularly by helicopter;

·        the ECMO Unit at Glenfield Hospital is world renowned and yet failed to be awarded any points for innovation as part of the review process

 

            be noted with regret and concern;

 

(c)        That the action of the University Hospitals of Leicester Trust (UHL) to seek a legal and clinical opinion regarding both decisions be noted and supported;

 

(d)       That the Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee be advised that the County Council is particularly concerned about the decision to transfer the ECMO Unit to Birmingham Children’s Hospital and would urge the Committee to meet as soon as possible once the legal and clinical opinions are considered by the UHL Trust Board to consider a referral to the Secretary of State having regard to the decision of the UHL Trust Board;

 

(e)       That the campaign by parents, charities and others to lobby for a review of the Joint Committee’s decision, which includes an e-petition, be supported;

 

(f)         That a letter be sent to all Leicestershire MPs requesting their support for the retention of the children’s heart surgical services and the ECMO facilities at Glenfield Hospital;

 

(g)       That a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Secretary of State for Health.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

To advise the Cabinet of the actions being taken to seek the retention of the existing children heart surgical services in Leicestershire, as moving such services away from the county will adversely impact on children with congenital heart problems and their carers.

 

 

 

539.

Police and Crime Panel: Panel Arrangements and Composition. pdf icon PDF 106 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the County Solicitor concerning the arrangements for the operation and composition of the Police and Crime Panel, to enable that Panel to be set up.  A copy of the report, marked ‘H‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

The Cabinet noted comments which had been received from Mr. Max Hunt CC.

 

Mr. Orson CC commented that the District Councils had been generally supportive of the proposals.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That approval be given to the County Council continuing to operate as the host authority for the Police and Crime Panel;

 

(b)       That the Panel arrangements as required by the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 and the Terms of Reference of the Panel, as set out in Appendices A and B to the report, be approved;

 

(c)        That the Chief Executive be authorised to make such further practical arrangements with regard to the procedures and protocols to be followed in relation to the Police and Crime Panel as may be appropriate to facilitate its operation;

 

(d)       That approval be given, as a matter of principle, that the co-option of members from constituent authorities should be used to secure the balanced appointment objectives in relation to political balance and representation of the area covered by Leicestershire Police;

 

(e)       That, subject to ongoing review, and as provided by the Panel arrangements, the Police and Crime Panel be asked to consider co-option of three additional members from Leicester City Council to achieve the balanced appointment objectives.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

The steps set out in the recommendations are required in order to establish the Police and Crime Panel and to advise the Home Office of actions taken, as required by the Police and Crime Panels (Nominations, Appointments and Notifications) Regulations 2012.

 

540.

Local Development Framework Consultation - North West Leicestershire Local Plan: Core Strategy Pre-submission Version. pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Chief Executive concerning a response to the North West Leicestershire Local Plan Core Strategy Pre-submission Version issued by North West Leicestershire District Council.  A copy of the report, marked ‘I‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That the North West Leicestershire Local Plan: Core Strategy Pre-Submission Version be noted;

 

(b)       That the detailed comments on the Pre-Submission Version, as set out in the Appendix to the report, be submitted to North West Leicestershire District Council as the views of the County Council;

 

(c)        That the key comments set out in paragraphs 25 to 36 of the report be drawn to the attention of North West Leicestershire District Council.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

To ensure that the County Council makes an appropriate input at this key stage in the Local Development Framework process, so that issues of importance for the County Council are clearly expressed and influence the shape and content of the LDF.

541.

District Council Consultation on Planning Application 2011/0100/01: Hallam Land Management Ltd/Barratt Homes/David Wilson Homes/Davidson Developments - Outline planning permission for 4,250 dwellings and associated development - Land north and south of the M69, west of the M1, east of Beggars Lane, Lubbesthorpe (Blaby District Council) pdf icon PDF 94 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Chief Executive regarding the Development Control and Regulatory Board’s recommended response to a planning application on which the County Planning Authority had been consulted by Blaby District Council.  A copy of the report, marked ‘J‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the following comments be forwarded as the views of the County Planning Authority -

 

"Blaby District Council be advised that:

 

It is acknowledged that in terms of housing need, the proposed development is consistent with the regional plan and the submission version of the Blaby District Core Strategy.  On the basis of the figures in the above documents and previous consultation responses, there is a clear need for significant housing development within the District.  The form of development and location proposed are considered to be in accordance with the provisions of the development plan and consistent with good planning principles.  There is an argument that a decision on such a major proposal should ideally be delayed until the Blaby Core Strategy is adopted. However, all the evidence, including the consideration of alternatives, the need to meet housing needs and avoid delay in bringing forward sustainable development, points to this being a suitable location, subject to the satisfaction of other planning matters.  Therefore there remains no objection to the principle or location of the proposed development. 

 

However, in the context of the planning application as amended, a number of issues have not been addressed satisfactorily.  Until such time as these issues are addressed, the County Council has concerns regarding the application on the following grounds:

 

Further details should be submitted by the applicant in respect of gypsy and traveller and elderly persons accommodation to ensure that adequate provision is made.

 

There is insufficient detail about the provision of sporting infrastructure within the development proposal, which is a key component of any sustainable community, and should be provided by the applicant.  There are other concerns that the applicant needs to address (which the County Council should be re-consulted upon) that can be found in Appendix B of this document, before the application is determined.

 

The transport assessment work has not yet been completed in sufficient detail to fully assess the highway impacts of the development and identify mitigation.  The applicant has commissioned further modelling using the Leicestershire and Leicester Integrated Transport Model (LLITM) which will be used to complete the transport assessment work.  Therefore the highways work has not been completed to a sufficient stage to make a recommendation on the application.

 

The District Council is also requested to include the County Council's service requirements in a section 106 agreement if the development were to be approved.  The requirements have been submitted to the District Council separately and include (inter alia) a request for the land and funding for two primary schools and one secondary school, a £230,990 contribution towards library services and a £119,510 contribution towards the improvement of household waste facilities.  It is also likely that works and contributions towards highway infrastructure will be required, however these will not be known until the work to assessment the development using the Leicester & Leicestershire Integrated Transport Model is complete and the results considered.

 

If the development is approved the District Council is requested to introduce a mechanism as part of the planning permission that would enable key elements of the planning permission to be reviewed over the period of the proposal’s implementation with the purpose of ensuring that the form and delivery of the development is capable of adaptation to changing demographic, economic or other relevant circumstances."

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

To comply with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 541.

542.

Annual Treasury Management Report 2011/12. pdf icon PDF 105 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Corporate Resources concerning action taken and the performance achieved in respect of the treasury management activities of the Council in 2011/12.  A copy of the report, marked ‘K‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

Mr. Pain CC congratulated the Director and his staff on the performance achieved.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the Annual Treasury Management Report 2011/12 be noted.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

The Authority’s full adoption of the CIPFA Code of Practice for treasury management requires an annual performance report for 2011/12 to be considered by both the Cabinet and the Corporate Governance Committee before the end of September 2012. The report was considered by the Corporate Governance Committee on 29 June 2012.

543.

Recommended Change to Acceptable Investment Instruments for Lending Surplus Cash. pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Corporate Resources recommending that the list of acceptable investment instruments, as agreed by the Council at its meeting of 22 February 2012, be extended to include Treasury Bills issued by the UK Government.  A copy of the report, marked ‘L‘, is filed with these minutes.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That approval be given to adding UK Government Treasury Bills to the list of acceptable investment instruments agreed by the County Council at its meeting on 22 February 2012, for up to 100% of the loan portfolio.

 

REASON FOR DECISION:

 

UK Government Treasury Bills are a more flexible and higher yielding investment than an investment in the Government’s Debt Management Office, but the underlying credit risk is identical.

 

 

544.

Items referred from Overview and Scrutiny.

Minutes:

There were no items referred from Overview and Scrutiny.