Agenda and draft minutes

Council
Thursday, 10th December, 2020 5.30 pm

Venue: by Video conference

Contact: James Clapson 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

2.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 175 KB

3.

Announcements

    To receive any announcements from the Chairman, Leader, Members of the Cabinet or Chief Executive in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 2.2 (iv).

    Minutes:

    The Chairman advised Members of the passing of former Councillor Dr Jack Cohen.  Dr Cohen had represented Birchington for a number of years, initially as a Conservative Councillor, then as an Independent Councillor.  Tributes were paid to Dr Cohen’s work and character during his years as a Councillor.

4.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 87 KB

5.

Petitions

5a

Report Back to Council - Cabinet Response to the Adequate Toilet Facilities at Thanet Beaches Petition pdf icon PDF 70 KB

6.

Questions from the press and public pdf icon PDF 66 KB

6a

Question No.1 from a Member of the Public Regarding Disabled Parking Bays

    Minutes:

    Mrs Culligan, Deputy Monitoring Officer, asked Councillor Albon the following question on behalf of Mr Wraight:

     

    “Can disabled parking bays have permits issued to the person who applied for the bay, as the current situation leaves it open for use by people who refuse to apply for one thus depriving the person who applied for the bay who needs it.”

     

    Councillor Albon responded with the following points:

    ·  Disabled bays were available to be used by any blue badge holder, they were not for the sole use of the applicant. This was explained on the application form.

    ·  It was a national scheme and the Council was bound by its rules regarding who can use the bays.

6b

Question No.2 from a Member of the Public Regarding the Usage of Ramsgate Port

    Minutes:

    Ms Austin asked the Leader the following question:

     

    “Last year’s consultancy tender mentioning moves to ‘facilitate future expansion’ at Ramsgate Port Berths 4/5 understandably worried residents.

    Could you please confirm here your statement in correspondence that TDC will never import waste at the Port and has no plans for Berths 4/5 except Bretts’ existing usage at current levels?”

     

    The Leader responded with the following points:

    ·  Ms Austin could publish the correspondence referred to in her question, as it could help to shed light on the issue.

    ·  The consultancy tender referred to additional non-aggregate uses for the berth because it was believed that the scope of uses should remain as wide as possible, in order to avoid potential obstruction to future opportunities for new business at the Port.

    ·  The Council had no plans or intentions to import waste at the Port.

    ·  The Council was unaware of any plans by Brett Aggregates to change the volume or frequency of its aggregate imports.

     

7.

Questions from Members of the Council pdf icon PDF 70 KB

7a

Question No. 1 From A Member Regarding Enforcement of Byelaws

    Minutes:

     

     

    Councillor Bailey asked Councillor Albon the following question:

     

    “Thanet has many byelaws which the public generally support. However, the prevalent feeling seems to be that these byelaws are not as effectively enforced as people would like.

    Wouldn't the employment of additional enforcement officers prove cost beneficial as well as improving the quality of life in the district?”

     

    Councillor Albon responded that:

    • The Council recognised its limitations in enforcement of the byelaws.  It was conducting a review to update them and make use of new legislation that would make enforcement easier. 
    • Part of the review looked at how the Council enforced and how to maximise enforcement presence. 
    • The approach would be inform, educate, challenge then enforce if necessary.
    • The Council intended to increase public awareness of the coastal rules and regulations.
    • The Council had insufficient budget available to employ more enforcement staff.

     

    Councillor Bailey followed up her question with a supplementary question asking if it would be possible to publish, on the Council’s website, a breakdown of the enforcement statistics, such as dog fouling, littering and parking offenses on a quarterly basis. 

     

    Councillor Albon offered to discuss the options with Mr Waite, the Director of Operational Services.

     

7b

Question No. 2 from a Member, Regarding Manston Airport and the Local Plan

    Minutes:

    Councillor Roper asked the Leader the following question:

     

    “Now that the Secretary of State has stopped the DCO on Manston Airport due to not giving adequate reasons for his decision supporting the development, what are the prospects of the Local Plan being amended to take account of this?”

     

    The Leader responded with the following points:

    • The Council had not received any official information regarding this, however it was understood that a decision would need to be issued by the Secretary of State, after a re-examination of the Planning Inspectorate evidence.
    • It would not be possible to make detailed recommendations about how the Local Plan should be amended until a final decision had been made.
    • It was expected that a clear decision would be made before the Local Plan review was complete, and that the decision would be reflected in the updated Local Plan.

     

    Councillor Roper followed up his question with a supplementary question asking if the Council would approach RiverOak Strategic Partnership to discuss how the site could support and promote environmental activities.

     

    The Leader responded that the Council would want to play a full role in discussions about the future of the site.

     

8.

Notice of Motion

8a

Anti-Racism Motion pdf icon PDF 99 KB

    Minutes:

    It was proposed by Councillor Rawf and seconded by Councillor Hopkinson  that:

     

    “Thanet council notes the mood for change amongst the community to defeat racism.

     

    In recent months Thanet has seen two peaceful, socially distanced, community led marches in support of the cause of anti-racism.

     

    The council also notes that:

     

    ? Nationally there has been a surge in hate crimes since July 2016

     

    ? The council understands the importance and deep reliance we have on tourism to support the health of the local economy. This council believes that our future prosperity as a tourist destination is inextricably linked with our ability to stamp out the scourge of racism. This council further believes that we have a historic opportunity to shape the area into one that is attractive to all sectors of our diverse community and the wider country.

     

     Thanet council resolves to:

     

    ·  Acknowledge and support the work of local groups such as Calling Time on Racism, the People Dem Collective and Everyday Racism (We note and welcome the outreach work currently being undertaken with the aforementioned groups by officials of the council).

    ·  Build a campaign to mark a cultural shift toward businesses taking a more active role in shaping an anti-racist community calling on the experience of these local groups.

    ·  Review our obligations under the Equality Act making explicit the working links between all the departments and functions of the council.

    ·  Support the work of all the council’s community facing functions with due regard for the council’s legal obligations as stated under the General Duty of the Public Sector Equality Duty to:

    o  Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation

    o  Advance equality of opportunity

    o  Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not

    ·  Create a task force/working group if none already exists to oversee implementation of this vitally important area of work. The task group will include councillors, council officers, community activists and organisations and external expertise when required..”

     

     

    Councillor Whitehead, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Housing and Community Services provided a response to the motion.

     

    Members voted to debate the motion. 

     

    Following the debate the motion was passed to Cabinet for consideration in accordance with Council procedure rule 3.8(a)iv and 3.8(a)vii. 

     

9.

Leaders Report pdf icon PDF 67 KB

    To receive a report from the Leader of the Council in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 2.4.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Leaders report had been circulated to Members and published on the Council’s website before the meeting. The report has been attached as an annex to these minutes.

     

    Councillor Ashbee as Leader of the Conservative Party made the following points:

    • She echoed the Leaders thanks to the NHS and key workers, emphasising that everyone needed to continue to follow the rules.
    • There was continued concern regarding the use of the Manston airport as a lorry park site.  She asked how the Government’s offer of £500,000 would be used to mitigate the impact.
    • There was a need to end the uncertainty about the future of the Airport.
    • She looked forward to more information about the Margate Town Deal and suggested that a Development Group could be set up to encourage investigation of  other investment opportunities for the unsuccessful bids.
    • Recognition of the work done by the Thanet RISE team was well deserved.
    • It would require bold action for the Council to achieve carbon neutral status by 2030.
    • She awaited the outcome of the tree felling situation at Park Avenue, it should be made clear that the unlawful felling of protected trees would be investigated.

     

    The Leader replied to Councillor Ashbee’s comments with the following points:

    • The Council was still some way from understanding the potential impact of a Manston lorry park, it was awaiting crucial information from the Government.  The Council would need to be transparent about how the Government’s £500,000 funding would be spent.
    • He welcomed the idea of a Development Group to harness the energy of the Margate community and noted that there would also be a focus on projects in Ramsgate next year.
    • The Council needed to embrace its declaration of a Climate emergency and the associated challenges.

     

    Councillor Reverend Piper as leader of the Thanet Independents Party made the following points:

    • He wished to add his heartfelt thanks to the NHS, care workers and key workers. The Council should do more to encourage the community to obey the rules.
    • TDC officers should be proud of their efforts to help as many people as possible during the pandemic.
    • The climate emergency declaration was ambitious, the Council could only operate inline with current Government legislation.
    • He wished everyone a merry Christmas.

     

    The Leader replied to Councillor Reverend Piper’s comments with the following point:

    • The Council had undertaken a number of measures and steps to encourage the public to obey the Covid 19 rules.

     

    Councillor Garner as Leader the Green Party made the following points:

    • The year had been dominated by the impact Covid 19 has had on the community, he was proud of the role Council staff have played during the crisis.
    • He was pleased to see the 24/7 Winter Shelter was available, the project should continue for years to come.
    • Congratulations were offered to Councillor Ara for her nomination as one of 2020’s local heroes by the Isle of Thanet News.
    • If Manston was used as a lorry park there was concern about air pollution levels.  Air monitoring  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Report of the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Panel pdf icon PDF 124 KB

11.

Fees and charges 2021-22 pdf icon PDF 98 KB

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Councillor Yates, Cabinet Member for Finance, Administration and Community Wealth Building proposed, and the Leader seconded the recommendation from the report, namely:

     

    ‘That Council approves the fees and charges as listed in Annexes 1 and 2.’

     

    In accordance with council procedure rule 17.6, a recorded vote was conducted by the Deputy Monitoring Officer on the motion as follows:

     

    39 Members voted in favour of the motion: Councillors Albon, Ara, Ashbee, Bailey, J Bayford, R Bayford, Braidwood, Campbell, Coleman-Cooke, Crittenden, Currie, Dennis, Duckworth, Everitt, Farrance, Garner, Gregory, Hopkinson, Huxley, Keen, Kup, Pat Moore, Paul Moore, Ovenden, Parsons, L Piper, Rev. S Piper, Potts, Pugh, Rawf, Roper, D Saunders, M Saunders, Savage, Scobie, Tomlinson, Whitehead, Wing, and Yates.

     

    Five Members voted against the motion: Councillors Day, Game, Hart, Rattigan, and Shrubb.

     

    Nine Members abstained from voting on the motion: Councillors Bambridge, Boyd, Dexter, Fellows, Rogers, Rusiecki, Scott, Towning, and Wright. 

     

    The motion was carried.

     

12.

Mid Year Review 2020-21: Treasury Management and Annual Investment Strategy pdf icon PDF 533 KB

13.

Review of Questions word limit pdf icon PDF 73 KB

14.

Review of Petition Scheme pdf icon PDF 82 KB

15.

Use of non-gender specific titles in the Constitution pdf icon PDF 77 KB

16.

Changes to Committees, Panels and Boards 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 66 KB

    Minutes:

    The Leader advised that he wished to make the following changes to the Labour group’s nominations to committees:

    • Councillor Duckworth would be replaced by Councillor Pat Moore on the Planning Committee.
    • Councillor Campbell would be replaced by Councillor Duckworth on the Governance and Audit Committee.

     

    Councillor Ashbee advised that she wished to make the following changes to the Conservative group’s nominations:

    • Councillor Day replaced by Councillor Pugh on the Governance and Audit Committee.
    • Councillor Rattigan would be replaced by Councillor Paul Moore on the Planning Committee
    • Councillors Day and Game would be replaced by Councillors Wright and Robert Bayford on the General Purposes Committee.

     

    Councillor Garner advised that Councillor Roper would be replaced by Councillor Wing as the Green Party’s reserve nomination to the Planning Committee.

     

    Councillor Rev Piper did not wish to make any changes to his group’s nominations.