Agenda and decisions

County Council
Wednesday, 2 December 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber

Contact: Mo Seedat - Tel: 0116 305 2583  Email: mo.seedat@leics.gov.uk

Note: Please note: This meeting will not be open to the public in line with Government advice on public gatherings. The meeting will be webcast live via YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWFpwBLs6MnUzG0WjejrQtQ 

Items
No. Item

Webcast. pdf icon PDF 292 KB

A webcast of the meeting can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWFpwBLs6MnUzG0WjejrQtQ

1.

Chairman's Announcements.

2.

To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 30 September 2020. pdf icon PDF 360 KB

Additional documents:

3.

To receive declarations by members of interests in respect of items on this agenda.

4.

To answer questions asked under Standing Order 7(1)(2) and (5).

5.

To receive position statements under Standing Order 8. pdf icon PDF 195 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

“The Leader gave a position statement which provided an update on Covid-19 and the UK100’s new Net Zero Pledge.

 

The Lead Member for Adult Social Care, and Heritage, Leisure and Arts gave a position statement which provided an update on the Adult Social Care response to the Covid-19 pandemic and summarised the current position of the care sector in Leicestershire.

 

The Chairman of the Scrutiny Commission gave a position statement on the work of the Scrutiny Commission and its Committees to support and protect the residents of Leicestershire.

 

Copies of the position statements are attached.”

6.

Report of the Cabinet.

6a

Annual Delivery Report and Performance Compendium 2020. pdf icon PDF 423 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

“That the Annual Delivery Report and Performance Compendium 2020 be approved.”

7.

Report of the Employment Committee.

7a

Pay Policy Statement 2021-22. pdf icon PDF 194 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

“That the County Council’s Pay Policy Statement 2021/22, attached as Appendix A to the report of the Employment Committee, be approved.”

8.

To consider the following notice of motion:

8a

Increasing new tree planting across Leicestershire.

a)    This Council notes that

                      i.          The County Council Tree Strategy, agreed by Cabinet last year, identifies the need for a ‘substantial and sustained’ programme of tree planting to offset the effects of tree loss throughout the County;

                    ii.          In addition, the historic human and natural development of the County has had an impact on the landscape character with consequential loss of woodland cover;

                   iii.          The woodland cover over the counties of Leicestershire and Rutland currently approximates to 4% which is significantly lower than most rural counties like ours;

                  iv.          As well as acting as carbon sequestration, it is well evidenced that trees can remove air pollutants from the atmosphere. (Leicestershire 2018-21 JSNA);

                    v.          The statutory Committee for Climate Change advocates the planting of around 30,000 hectares (90 – 120 million trees) of broadleaf and conifer woodland each year to 2050, which has lately been supported by Central Government.

 

b)    This Council calls on the Cabinet to:

                      i.          Set a target for new woodland planting across the county, in addition to its existing programme of arboreal disease management and replacement;

                    ii.          Work with partners applying the Stewardship Scheme; Agri-environment schemes and Local Growth Funds and agricultural opportunities of the forthcoming Environment Act;

                   iii.          Consult with Local Planning Authorities notably through Local Plans, developer contributions; Planning conditions/obligations to increase woodland cover;

                  iv.          Use its best endeavours to seek new funding through future government funding offers, the county’s great landowners and other private concerns, including personal endowments.

 

 

 

Decision:

“a)      That this Council notes that

 

      i.         The historic human and natural development of the County has had an impact on the landscape character with consequential loss of woodland cover;

 

     ii.         The woodland cover over the counties of Leicestershire and Rutland currently approximates to 4% which is significantly lower than most rural counties like ours;

 

   iii.         As well as acting as carbon sequestration, it is well evidenced that trees can remove air pollutants from the atmosphere. (Leicestershire 2018-21 JSNA);

 

   iv.         The statutory Committee for Climate Change advocates the planting of around 30,000 hectares (90 – 120 million trees) of broadleaf and conifer woodland each year to 2050, which has lately been supported by Central Government;

 

    v.         The new England Tree Strategy which is expected to be produced by DEFRA before the end of the year will: -

 

               set out policy priorities to support and deliver an ambitious tree planting programme throughout the country focussed on expanding, protecting and improving woodlands, and how trees and woodlands can connect people to nature, support the economy, combat climate change and recover biodiversity;

 

               help bring together potential funding streams and wider policies to increase tree planting, including the forthcoming Environmental Land Management Scheme (ELMS) and other private and publicly funded schemes thereby supporting the Government’s “Green Future”, 25-year Environmental plan and aspiration to increase woodland cover in England to 12% by 2060.

 

b)            That it be noted that this Council has:-

 

      i.         a long history of encouraging tree planting through initiatives such as the ‘MOREhedges’, ‘MOREwoods’, Tree Disease Pack and Free Tree Replacement schemes which has resulted in over 26,500 trees and 14,000 metres of hedges being planted since 2010;

 

     ii.         in its updated Tree Management Strategy 2020- 2025 set a target for new woodland planting across the county, in addition to its existing programme of arboreal disease management and replacement;

 

   iii.         developed an overarching management plan for 340ha of woodland across the County Park Estate and submitted the plan for approval by the Forestry Commission which will set out a programme of sustainable woodland management works across the estate and provides opportunities to apply for funding to deliver works under the countryside stewardship scheme.

 

c)            That recognising the role tree planting can play in reducing carbon and improving the quality of the environment this Council commits to:-

 

      i.         Working in partnership with the National Forest Company on a Woodland Charter for Leicestershire which will: -

 

               set out a ‘vision’ for trees and woodlands in Leicestershire and form the basis for engaging partners to deliver wider ambitions for increasing tree planting;

 

               establish an up to date baseline for woodland and canopy cover for the County and will work with partners to set new SMART targets needed to increase canopy cover to ensure our communities are safe and economy is sustainable for the long-term.

 

     ii.         Consulting with Local Planning Authorities notably through Local Plans, developer contributions; Planning conditions/obligations to increase woodland cover;

 

   iii.         Using its best endeavours to seek new funding through future government funding offers, the county’s great landowners and other private concerns, including personal endowments.”

8b

Care Homes.

a.      That this Council notes: -

 

i)       the immense challenges faced by care workers in providing essential support to some of Leicestershire’s most vulnerable residents during the Coronavirus Pandemic and thanks them for their hard work, bravery and compassion;

 

ii)     notes how workers at some of the Leicestershire County Care Limited (LCCL) homes were forced to accept cuts to pay and conditions on threat of losing their jobs during the pandemic;

iii)    further notes the recent closure of the LCCL home ‘The Limes’ as a consequence the poor CQC reports the home had received.

b.          That this Council believes it is vital that care workers are properly rewarded for the work they do and resolves to request the Cabinet to require all providers to declare as a condition for inclusion on the Council’s framework of approved providers: -

 

i)                whether they pay the Real Living Wage to their staff;

ii)               their policy on pay for travel time;

iii)             their policy on pay for over-night care.

 

c.               That the information provided in (c) above be published to allow those purchasing care to take it into account when deciding which providers to commission.

 

d.              That this Council further requests that officers be asked present a paper setting out a path towards signing up to Unison’s Ethical Care Charter and the costs involved noting that should the cost involved in doing so exceed the Council’s ability to fund the commitment, this Council pledges to campaign actively for the Government for the increased funding needed, thereby creating a level playing field and the highest standards possible for Adult Social Care.

 

Decision:

“a)      That this Council: -

 

      i.         notes that Leicestershire’s care workers (internal and external social care staff) have demonstrated enormous dedication, professionalism and tireless energies in supporting people during the Coronavirus pandemic since March;

 

     ii.         notes that employers and providers of adult social care, have navigated their way through this unprecedented time with support from the County Council;

 

   iii.         extends its enormous appreciation and thanks to hard working adult social care staff and providers for all that they have done, and continue to do, to support Leicestershire citizens during this period of ongoing challenge.

 

b)       That this Council notes that: -

 

      i.         all providers of social care are required by law to pay their staff the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage (NLW and NMW), depending on their age and that the regulations also require employers to pay for all working time and for their travel time between care calls, excluding commuting time;

 

     ii.         the County Council’s contracts and tenders stipulate that employers are responsible for ensuring that they are legally compliant and that its care rates enable providers to pay their staff the NLW and NMW.

 

c)       That this Council notes that: -

 

      i.         officers are looking at the implications of signing up to the Unison’s Ethical Care and Residential Care Charters which will include: -

 

               engagement with providers and other stakeholders;

               identifying if and how elements of the charter can be included in any future publicly available service delivery processes and contract conditions; and

               a report to members setting out the viability of signing up to the Charters.”

8c

St Mary's Birth Centre.

The County Council recognises the strong local concern in and around Melton Mowbray about the proposed closure of the St Mary’s Birth Centre.

Accordingly, the County Council:

 

a.              requests the relevant NHS organisations to provide more information and justification for the proposed closure and in respect of how they envisage new facilities in Leicester would better serve Melton residents;

 

b.              draws the attention of the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee to the above.

 

Decision:

“a)    That this Council recognises that improvements to Leicestershire Hospitals are needed, welcomes the £450m NHS investment to Build Better Hospitals for the Future and notes that these proposals include reconfiguration of both Acute and Maternity services.

 

b)     That this County Council also:-

 

              i.       recognises the strong local concern regarding the proposed relocation of the Midwife-led Birthing Unit and closure of the postnatal ward currently based in Melton Mowbray;

             ii.       recognises the value of stand-alone midwife-led services;

            iii.       notes concerns regarding the temporary nature of the proposed relocated service at the Leicester General Hospital;

           iv.       supports the right of local people to campaign for local services.

 

c)     That this Council notes the response to the consultation is being led by the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 14th December and encourages all Members to:

 

              i.       read the ‘Build Better Hospitals for the Future’ consultation documents;

             ii.       examine how the proposed changes will affect residents in their division;

            iii.       give their individual responses to the consultation directly to the NHS or via the Joint Committee.”